Sunday, September 3, 2017

Diabetes and BPH (My experience)

Synopsis: Alleviated BPH (Benign prostatic hyperplasia) by squatting exercises and urinating while squatting. Control Diabetes by lots of (6 hrs) of physical work.  Nno medications for either condition.
In  Apr 2012 I found that I had high sugar (500mg/dl) and BPH (Benign prostatic hyperplasia).

The issue with BPH is that you have to urinate often and very little each time. I could not travel from Colombo to  Puttalam without getting off the bus twice, in a 3 hour ride.

BPH is a nasty little problem, which affects many men over 55, (I was 53 in 2012) specially those who have been sitting at a desk job for many years of their lives.  That said the medication for BPH is readily available in Puttalam. Puttalam is not a town I would associate with a many who do a desk job. So maybe BPH is more common, and just does not affect only those who do a desk job.

When I was diagnosed, with Diabetes (Type 2) and BPH, started taking medication.
      For the Diabetes:  Metformin (2x500mg) and Gliclazide 3 times a day
     For BPH:    Urimax (tamsulosoin) and Finast (Finasteride) twice a day.

Urimax medication was not really a solution.  It kind of solved the urination problem. However made me very thirsty and would drink a liter of water at a time. So still had to pee every hour. i.e. Back to square one.
The even bigger problem was that it made me very lethargic and un motivated.

The Diabetes medication did keep blood sugar down., That said  even so a slight cut/tear in between toes would lead to a painful infection. Even had to resort to circumcision because outer skin would crack
because of urine dribble (now I am truly American/Jewish/Muslim).

So have worked to a relatively medication free solution, by my experience.
Cub Scout: Akela

BPH  (Benign prostatic hyperplasia) is the easy one. 
One word: Squat. If possible urinate in that position.
Obviously urban go getters cannot be peeing in squat position at work or at home. Maybe the home front will make exceptions to watering the the plants/trees in the garden. However,  I doubt the home-front is going to be happy with you wearing a sarong and squatting and watering the front lawn.

Wait: There is a work around:.
Just do squats at work. Try as best to get your buttocks to touch your ankles. I still cant get my buttocks to touch my ankles, just make do with the crouching position.  Hold the heavy desk or door to help getting up.  Just explain to your co-worker you want to develop your thighs (it does).

Fun and Expensive Solution:  Booze and Sex. OK you can cut down cost of sex with self help. You still have to pay for the booze. 
I tried to get around paying for booze.  The cashew apple/fruits apparently can be made into wine. I took that info and made 5 liters of Cashew Wine. Tried, tasting some of the cashew wine I had made.  The cashew wine didnt seem quite right. So tasted a few more sips or maybe it was gulps. I think I woke up two days later, somebody had drunk the whole 5 liters.

For people who care about useful Trivia, Cashew, Poison Ivy etc produce  urushiol, which is generally a allergic reaction for non Sri Lankans (thats a personal experience to be written up another day).

Diabetes Type 2. 
No Easy Answer.
Like I said earlier, I could not walk around (or not walk) because my feet would get infected, even while taking medication.
What has worked for me is just physical work, in the sun, no shirt or hat (bald head).
I think as a dark skinned person I need to be exposed to the Sun for me to be healthy. 
No work around:.
If I stop working for more than a couple of days I start to feel unhealthy. Skin drys up more than the "current" normal.

Fun Solution
Enjoy doing hard labor for at least 4-6 hrs for 4 days a week.
Maybe can cut down on the hard labor with the right diet, and right herbal stuff.
I still drink many beers, not often unhappily, get sozzled drunk once a week smoke too many cigarettes ( all  bad for Diabetes),.

Below, the original notes I made when started making lifestyle changes (I think 2015)

Diabetes 2
About a year back (as of 2015) , drank neeramulli (Artanema fimbriatum) and polpala
very day for about a week. Both grow wild here.

Quick search suggests that diuretics should not be used when having BPH.
The general local thinking its not good to drink every day.
Figured it could not be worse than the Urimax.
Also as often as possible sit and pee.
still working on squatting with both feet flat on ground.

Lots of hard phyiscal work, like cutting grass, trimming trees and moving earth.
From about 7 amd to 10:30 am in the sun without a shirt or hat (I have shaved head)
Then again from 4pm to 6pm.

Slowly Stopped all Meds about a month or two later.
Blood sugar back to normal, dont have to worry about wounds.

No issues about peeing, would not say its as great as when a teenager.
But dont have to get off the bus every hour when travelling.

Other than the physical work and now the occasional neeramulli or polpala no real change in diet/lifestyle. Eat whatever is there rice/stringhoppers/bread and booze about once a week, about 570 ml
(1/2 +1/4 of 750 ml) 33% alchol/Gal and some beer.

I am not sure if the Neeramulli/Polpala made a big difference.
I think just a push.  More likely hard work and sun was the factor.


  1. Hi Sereno,
    I've had type 2 diabetes since 1993. Yes, it's possible to survive that long. My meds are the same as yours-- Glicazide and metformin.
    No problems with feet, etc. Cuts heal in normal time.
    I think Glicazide itself reduces urination. Check it out.
    Don't depend too much on herbal remedies. Dosage is difficult to figure out.
    Wine-- I have been trying to make a sort of beer with fermented white rice. The Japanese do it, so why not us?

    1. hi xavier:
      Alleviated BPH (Benign prostatic hyperplasia) by squatting exercises and urinating while squatting. Control Diabetes by lots of (6 hrs) of physical work. No medications for either condition.

  2. very interesting post, especially the way you got the diabetes under control .thanks for sharing!

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