Modern day leprosy

Diabetes sufferer Julian Robinson has lost one leg to the disease and is battling to save his other.

Modern day ‘Leprosy’ is the result of poor blood glucose control in Diabetes. Low Carb is the prevention.

Julian (pictured) is one of my patients. He has spent 2 of the last 3 years in hospital, and all due to the complications of diabetes and poor control.

He has made a massive turnaround in taking back control by dropping his sugar and carbohydrate intake – something nearly impossible to do in a hospital food environment. He wants to keep his other leg. He has dropped his HbA1c from 17 (way out of control) to 7. He has cut back his insulin requirement by 75%. He is a legend. And he did it by listening to me and I respect Julian for that.

Every week I am seeing new patients with the complications of diabetes, whether or not it is Type 1 or Type 2. Many have disasters with their feet but this week the other issues of obesity, neuropathy, kidney failure, cardiovascular disease and blindness have crossed my path. A ‘tsunami’ puts it lightly.

The people with foot and leg ulcerations are the modern day ‘lepers’. They are put in the too hard basket by health professionals. They are shunted around like ‘medical tourists’. One clinic to another and dressing changes every day. No great success stories here and then they make their way to me as an Orthopaedic Surgeon or to the Vascular Surgeons. Often it is too late for us to work a miracle.

The complications of diabetes are preventable. It comes down to tight blood glucose control. It’s that simple.

The not so current guidelines for diabetes of eat what you want and chase it with medication is a total disaster for the individual and the community. The only way out that I can see is to go low carb.

Professor Manny Noakes from the CSIRO waves the flag for the recent great results of Low Carb (<50g per day) in the management of Type 2 diabetes. Better control, more weight loss and a reduction of medication. That’s called deprescribing. Julian has deprescribed. He is doing what he can with his diet and has lost weight and is gaining control.

Don’t go out and cut your carbs by yourself if you have diabetes. Do it with supervision and education. Work with your doctor or contact our team of Dietitians and Diabetes Nurse Educator at and do it properly the first time.