Eugene Robinson, Sr. is a retired Army sergeant, father, and grandfather who has lived a healthy life with no major medical issues. After retirement, he worked out regularly and developed a skill for culinary arts. It wasn’t until he reached his late 50s that he discovered that he was a diabetic.
“I’ve had friends find out they were diabetic and they slip into two categories,” said Eugene. “They either go into denial and ignore it, or use it as an excuse to give up. I’m not afraid of doing the hard work to take control of my condition.”
It’s no secret that adapting a low-sugar diet and stepping up their exercise can have tremendous, if not reversing, effects on those living with diabetes. Eugene began relying on his old military fitness regimen and he also used his love of cooking to discover new ways to prepare meals that promote better health.
“I started subscribing to magazines like Eating Well, Cooking for Diabetics, and checking out different diabetic-friendly cooking websites,” Eugene explains. “And then I started working those recipes into my weekly meals. Because it’s not about ‘knowledge is power,’ but the application of knowledge.”
Eugene also discovered that these recipes were not only diabetic-friendly, but promoted healthy eating overall; therefore, he began sharing his magazines and recipes with his family.
“I’m the fifth child out of twelve and our ages range from 53 to 71,” he explained. “I’m 66 and I’m in the best shape of my life – so I want my brothers, sisters, nieces, and nephews to enjoy the same good quality of life as well.”
Since Eugene’s diagnosis, he has lost more than 30 pounds and his A1C has been under 6.0 for several years. He still takes metformin to keep his numbers in check and remains consistent with his cooking and workouts.
“It ain’t easy and sometimes it can be frustrating,” he admits, “But you gotta ask yourself what’s important – talking about your situation or doing something about it. I choose to do something about it and that’s a decision you have to make everyday.”