Dietary discipline pays off for 89-year-old

I’ve written before about how much I’ve been inspired by my Great Aunt Jokie’s dietary discipline. At 89, she still eats as if her quality of life depends on the choices she makes, and it does.

Great Aunt Jokie

Great Aunt Jokie

As a Type 2 diabetic, she knows poor choices could doom her to spend her remaining years increasingly hobbled by blindness or worse. From her vantage point in an assisted living facility, she sees how that plays out all the time. One lady, the daughter of a diabetic cousin who “went to her grave with two legs off,” was worried she might have to get a toe amputated.

“But here she got real sick and died before they could take her toe off,” Jokie told me last week when I went to visit.

I’d brought her a box of sugar-free chocolates. But it turns out all that dietary discipline has paid off: Jokie’s doctor told her recently that her blood sugar is back to normal.

“He said I’m not really diabetic anymore,” she said.

Which doesn’t mean she plans to abandon her strict diet. She gave up bread, pasta, potatoes and all desserts — except for a weekly dish of ice cream — when she got diagnosed at age 80.

A lot of that stuff, “my body doesn’t like it anymore,” she says. “Bread and potatoes, they look good, but it doesn’t bother me anymore” to go without.

The only thing she’s really changed since she got the news is adding one weekend slice of pie to her normal routine.

Now that’s willpower.

Grandma Annie-Bananie with her baby sister, Great Aunt Josephine (aka Jokie), in the summer of 2013. With nine brothers and sisters who lived well into their 90s -- including  two who made it past 100 -- Jokie wants to make the best of however many years she has left.

Grandma Annie-Bananie with her baby sister, Great Aunt Josephine (aka Jokie), in the summer of 2013. With nine brothers and sisters who lived well into their 90s — including Grandma and one brother who made it past 100 — Jokie wants to make the best of however many years she has left.

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One Response to Dietary discipline pays off for 89-year-old

  1. GP Cox says:

    The woman has spunk!!!

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