Stories

Colin: “Since starting SN, everything about my health has improved!”

Colin: “Since starting SN, everything about my health has improved!”

Colin joined the programme after a routine blood test showed he was pre-diabetic. His goal was to reduce his blood glucose levels and lose some of the weight he had gained since retiring from his job 12 years ago. Colin was sceptical at first, thinking this would be just another diet, but very quickly he saw this was so much more and Second Nature was a life-changing opportunity for him!

A bit about you

I am a 70 year old retired Dairy Rounds man (milkman). My wife and I have been married for nearly 49 years. We live in Essex and have a daughter, a son, and five granddaughters.

I was medically retired about 12 years ago, suffering from migraines and vertigo (I don’t think bending down to doorsteps all the time helped). Although, in general, the job kept me fit, it had a negative effect on my joints, which resulted in me having two knee replacements.

After retiring, the vertigo prevented me from doing exercise of any sort. I spent a lot of time sitting around not being able to do anything other than watch TV and eat far too many snacks (custard cream biscuits in particular!) As a consequence, I gained a lot of weight. This stayed with me even though the vertigo improved, and I was able to exercise again.

About four months ago, I had a routine full blood test. The results showed I had high levels of sugar in my blood, with HbA1C levels at 42 mmol/mol. This meant I was pre-diabetic. The diabetic nurse recommended the Second Nature programme in an attempt to reduce my blood sugar levels and some of the excess weight I had gained. It seemed a great way to address the negative issues that had crept up on me. So, I agreed to give it a try and she put my name forward.

“I assumed it would be just another diet”

When the day came for me to enrol on the programme, I assumed it would be just another diet. Over the years I had tried losing the weight I had gained. First by self-motivation (I thought I knew how and could easily get rid of those extra pounds). When this didn’t work, I tried the 5:2 diet. This gave me a degree of success for a while. However, I soon began to struggle with counting calories on those two days and drifted back into bad habits. But when a parcel arrived from Second Nature with scales and a fitness tracker, I began thinking that this may not be just another diet after all.

When my start date came, I could instantly see this was going to be a life-changing opportunity for all aspects of my life and not just another quick fix.

Meeting my health coach and being part of the group

For me, day one began by being introduced to Carly, my health coach for the duration of my Second Nature journey. Like all the SN team, she has a passion for nutrition and food as well as a desire to guide us to achieve the goals we set along the way. She is always there for a one to one chat if I need that private conversation.

As well as meeting my health coach, I also met the rest of the group. We all had our own reasons for being there, but whatever the reasons, it soon became apparent we would give each other the support and encouragement we needed. This was something I found very helpful and would like to say ‘hello’ and ‘thank you’ to them all and wish them all the best for the future.

What Second Nature is about

The programme is about giving you the tools you need to make those life-changing goals you set for yourself. Whether it’s dietary needs (recipes and meal planning), fitness, mindset, energy levels, stress, or sleep patterns, there is something in the toolbox for you. That could be through the daily articles for us to read, or messages from other health coaches specialising in that topic.

How I feel since starting Second Nature

Before starting the programme, I was content to carry on putting my health at risk, even though I no longer had a medical reason for doing so. I feel that, had it not been for that wake-up call from the diabetic nurse, I would have carried on with that lifestyle. Since starting SN, everything about my health has improved! The recipes have completely changed the way I eat. I no longer have added sugar and enjoy balanced meals each day. This has also taken away the longing to snack.

My weight loss has been amazing (I’m on the verge of losing over a stone). Because of this, my energy levels have increased. This has encouraged me to engage in more exercise and walks and I regularly aim for 10,000 steps each day.

However, the main health benefit I’ve noticed is my blood sugar levels are now below the pre-diabetic range, with an HbA1C reading of 38 mmol/mol – a drop of four points!

Would I recommend Second Nature?

Absolutely!!

If you have the desire to make positive changes then give it a try and get your life back on track.

You can read more Second Nature stories here.

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Woman holding phone with Second Nature

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