Saturday, January 16, 2010

Still positive autoantibodies and other lab results

I got my labs done in December to share finally. I've been on the paleo diet for one year now and off insulin for six months. The diet is still working great with great blood sugars AS LONG AS I keep my carbs under about 90g/day. I can't eat a limitless amount of carbs. 60g or more of carb/meal will make my aftermeal sugar about 140.

My December A1C is 5.6. It's higher than I would prefer but I think the increase might be due to my dairy incident. I ate cheese for a total of two weeks and made my blood sugar increase for about a month like I said in my previous post. I went to my endo in Dec. and got some lab results about two pancreatic autoantibodies, insulin autoantibodies and GAD autoantibodies, which are still there.

Insulin Ab (U/ml) : Result 22.2 Reference Range 0.0-0.4
Glutam Acid Decarboxylase Ab (IU/ml):
Result >250.0 Reference Range 0.0-5.0

I checked my islet cell autoantibodes a month after going paleo in February 2009 and those actually went away. When I was diagnosed my Islet Cell IgG Ab was slightly elevated at 1-8.
Islet Cell IgG Ab (in Feb.09)
Result <1-4>Reference Range <1-4>

Knowing that I still have autoantibodies attacking my pancreas is quite disappointing. I thought theoretically by eliminating possible dietary triggers (grain, dairy, and legumes) and not needing insulin injections anymore, my body would stop the autoimmune attack (stop producing autoantibodies or decrease them). It really makes me question if the diet is going to keep on working.

There is one more dietary modulation that I could do to see if it helps. According to the Paleo diet, they suggest people with autoimmune diseases, like with Multiple Sclerosis, to avoid eggs and nightshades (tomatoes and peppers). I tried it once for a week and didn’t notice any difference in my blood sugar so I kept them in my diet. I am going to eliminate eggs and nightshades for 3 months and see if that effects my autoantibodies. Here’s a page about dietary treatment for Multiple Sclerosis, another autoimmune disease.

In three months I am checking ALL pancreatic autoantibodies. Also my C-Peptide is on the very low side of normal. C-Peptide measures if a person can produce insulin.

Results 0.8ng/ml Reference Range 0.8-3.5ng/ml

When I was diagnosed my C-peptide was low at 0.3 so it’s an improvement and I can produce my own insulin but it’s definitely on the lowest side! To me it says many beta cells are still dead or challenged. I am consuming only around 75-90g of carb per day. The past 5 months I have not regularly exercised. We'll see what happens with time and I will always keep watch on my blood sugar and make sure I am getting adequate nutrients.


  1. Hello Michelle, thanks for letting us know how many carbs your limit is.I am very happy as it is high compared to a low carb high fat diet where people go as low as under 5g a day.When I checked my antibodies (igG) via eubiotek in Scandinavia (via USA..) my test revealed 100% intolerance to eggs and legumes such as kidneybeans.I am surprised to read you have not taken out tomatoes etc yet.I am sure this is what you need to do.I recommend a swedish researcher and doctor called Staffan Lindeberg,he is a spokesperson for paleo and has written interesting books on the topic.Best of luck!Marianne

  2. Michelle wrote: "It really makes me question if the diet is going to keep on working."

    Remember how I said back in August that you may start experiencing some relapse of symptoms and may need to adopt a stricter approach? My own relapsing started occurring at close to this same point--around 6 months (though it was so mild at first that I didn't notice it--except in retrospect--until about 9 months and even then didn't think my diet could be optimized further until years later).

    Eliminating all nightshades (not just tomatoes) would definitely worth considering. That helped in my case and Dr. Cordain's research has connected them to autoimmune diseases.

    I don't know whether it will apply to you, but I have so far found that I have had to cut my plant carbs down to near zero to optimize my health. Of course, this has meant that I had to greatly increase my healthy fat intake (mainly grass-fed suet and marrow, pasture-fed eggs and cod liver oil).

  3. Michelle, thank God I found your site and the others you listed in your blogroll. My daughter, Lily, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in Sept. of 2009. After the advice of our chiropractor, we began the diet slowly, however, after three weeks of not even being strict on the diet, the medical doctor weaned her completely from insulin. He had no choice, she was becoming severely hypoglycemic to the point that the school nurse was calling daily asking if I was sure they didn't misdiagnose her. We started a blog shortly thereafter, but until now, couldn't find others who had the same experience with this diet. It's been almost three months now, and her A1C's have gone down so far from 13 to 7. She still has antibodies, however...but we're committed to sticking with the diet, knowing that the long term effects with or without insulin are beneficial to our overall health.

    We will be checking A1C levels on the next visit and we're hoping they have dropped again. Lily's blood sugars are near perfect now, but we can see them shoot up when she has something like popcorn at the movies or on Thanksgiving when she had a slice of regular pumpkin pie...however, we notice that her body is now able to correct the sugars quickly.

    We are so optimistic about this diet and hope to spread awareness as well. Thank you for your blog. Please keep doing what you are doing.

  4. Thank you for these updates, Michelle. May I ask if you have been tested for celiac disease? If you have it and are still eating gluten grains in any form, even hiding in salad dressing, even hiding in soy sauce, even masquerading as MSG, that might be the trigger. I just got tested and the results are mixed so the picture is unclear.

    My belief is that many of us T1s are undiagnosed celiacs who become sensitized to dairy proteins due to the leaky gut that celiac causes, and that is the trigger for our T1. I also think that even without having full blown celiac disease that could be diagnosed with a biopsy, this could occur early on.

  5. Elizabeth in my experience you are 100% on the spot about that.It is crazy where gluten is hiding.I thought was a good guide when I realized this.Also interesting is wheter there is a connection wit a virus that feeds of certain "foods"-similar to the one causing coldsores (oral herpes.) Red meat is very good protection, grains and milk produkts not.I am now reducing my insulin more after discovering this. Also interesting:
    Parasites can ble linked to gluten intoleranse as pockets form in the bowel as a result where parasites can nest.(
    Tests for gluten intolerance are inreliable in my experience.

  6. You don't have to have to have clinical celiac disease to suffer ill effects from eating gluten:

    "There was a ... 35% increase in risk [of death] in those who had gluten sensitivity, but no celiac disease. ... This is ground-breaking research which proves that you don't have to have full-blown celiac, with a positive intestinal biopsy, which is what we used to think ..., to have serious health problems and complications from eating gluten--even death." --Mark Hyman, MD "Gluten: What You Dont Know Might Kill You,"

  7. I am so impressed with your diet changes and results. You are amazing and inspiring!

  8. Hi Michelle! I'm a type 1 diabetic myself (have been for 19 years), and just started the Paleo diet about 1 year ago. So wish I would have found it sooner, but it's amazing how much it helps my maintain good control of my blood sugars. I just found your blog today, but I'm wondering if you are still eating fruit? I noticed you're eating 75-90 grams of carbs per day. I eat a Paleo diet with no fruit, as it does cause an insulin spike. I learned this trick from Dr. Bernsetin's book, "The Diabetes Solution." His entire goal is to normalize glucose levels for diabetics that equal those of healthy non-diabetics He offers a diet very similar to paleo, but doesn't allow any of his patients to eat fruit. Maybe you've already done this and I just missed it on here, but if you haven't, I really think it would help save your insulin production! I also blogged about you today & another type 1 diabetic saved from insulin on my Paleo Girls blog - if you want to check it out it's at Best of luck to you!

  9. Michelle, best wishes to you and thank you for the informative post.
    Here's a blog on atypical types of Diabetes that may be of interest to you and your readers. I discovered it reading the Whole Health Source blog.

  10. It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.............................................

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  12. Hello Michelle!
    I'm type 1 diabetic from Poland. I was diagnosed 3 years ago. This is my second week on paleo. I want to ask you to write what exactly did you eat during paleo. I wonder if you avoided things like salt (it doesn't affect immunity I think) or fat from meat. If you could contact me please email me to . I'm also very curious if you know anybody else who is cured from diabetes?

  13. Hello Whether a particular autoantibody will be present is both very individual and a matter of statistics.also the antibodies can affect the effect of generic viagra ? Each will be present in a certain percentage of people who have a particular autoimmune disorder. For instance, up to 80% of those with SLE will have a positive double strand anti-DNA (anti-dsDNA)

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  17. Hay, it's good to know that you can produce your own insulin now, no matter if it is low but atleast you are doing good. Good luck for your future.

  18. Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, would you mind emailing me when you get a chance?



  19. Amazing story Michelle! I have type 1 myself and I've been involved in T1D research. Can you give me some data (I'm a nerd) please? How old when you were diagnosed? When was your first test for autoantibodies (IAA, GAD65, IA2, ZnT8) and c-peptide, relative to diagnosis?

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