Celebrity Chef Charles Mattocks is on the front line in the fight against diabetes. Join us as we discuss how to look in the mental mirror and use positive thinking along with conventional treatment to face against a Goliath size but defeat-able condition.
How did you win the mental battle against diabetes?
I’ve always been a positive person. I’ve always been a fighter. I won it very early on because its important to change the way you think, get right in and get to work. When you are diagnosed, you have to think “my life is going to change and i’m going to do everything it takes to win.”
You have to have a solid plan and put it in play right away because the effects are not immediate. I can eat a chocolate cake and not think twice about it. I wont feel any type of way initially. Its not like arthritis or cancer. However over time its starts to destroy your organs little by little. People tend to hold on to bad habits and if you don’t get on the offense right away.
You have to look in the physical mirror, not just the mental mirror but look at your body and ask yourself if you need to lose a few pounds, or eat better.
How can we begin to think differently concerning our health?
You almost have to take yourself out of the situation, look at who is around you that will need you. I have children that need me healthy. I believe we need to think more positive about what we need to be in the future for not only ourselves but for loved ones.
What are the physiological effects of living with diabetes?
Mentally the ups and downs of the condition can be draining. I met a young guy that was type 1 and close to 300lbs. He got down to 175. He was in the hospital for 3 days because his blood sugar was in the 600 range. You can image the mental catastrophe that he is dealing with. Its scary because sometimes you don’t know why there are spikes.
There is physical treatment but is there mental support available?
There are things but you have to have good insurance, accessibility or even the wherewithal to find resources. I think a lot of people don’t have a lot of resources. I live in Orlando, the land of conventions, and i wouldn’t know if there was a diabetes convention because they aren’t advertised. I think a lot of people don’t have these resources.
The best treatment is a lifestyle modification.
There are not many support groups. As far as treatment and support we’ve got to do a better job. That is why im thinking positive and focusing on my film and television show.
You’re a celebrity Chef, diabetes advocate, now film and TV Producer, tell us about your show Conversations in the Kitchen.
The Conversations in the Kitchen cooking show is like Oprah meets food. I wanted to feature some of the biggest names in food, health and entertainment.
A lot of times we watch these well known people but don’t know who they are and what their lives are like outside of the spotlight. So its an in-depth conversation over food and lets face it the best conversations happen in the kitchen.
What was your motivation behind your documentary The Diabetic You?
Initially, I only wanted to create a 30 minute television show to tell my story of someone being recently diagnosed and to explore my life with the condition. The Pandora’s box opened to show me what’s really going on between food and pharmaceutical companies, patients and doctors.
I knew for this to be a successful film, people will have to know who I am. Not in a celebrity Chef light but as a diabetes advocate. I realized I needed to get out and make myself known in the diabetes world.
This is going to set a lot of people free!
We are very close to igniting the flame, especially with the television show Reversed. I was doing a lot work but I felt like i wasn’t reaching enough people when there are millions I need to see. I figure the best way to get them the information and to see all of these amazing people such as nutritionists, educators, primary care physicians and trainers all in one place was from the comfort of their own home.
Reversed is about reversing the mental, physical, spiritual and emotional conditions we may be in to live the best life we can live.
What’s your signature dish?
I’m Jamaican, so I love curry chicken. I also make a great cilantro salad. Because people don’t use it as a salad its a great talking point. A little feta cheese, olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper and man that thing pops like you have no idea!
We hear you’re working on a new food app, what is it designed to do?
This will allow the foodies and people who love to cook share their recipes. We are excited about everything coming down the pike.