Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Surprise, surprise, surprise!

I had my 3 month visit with my HCP today. I wasn’t thrilled to be going. I fully expected a higher A1c and a subsequent “discussion” about how/why it was going up. I just don’t have the energy to argue. I was armed with my reasons: 

I’ve been binge snacking in the afternoons now and then.

I’ve chosen to eat a few high-carb meals that I knew would raise my bg, and they did.


My A1c is solid as a rock. Steady as she goes. Not wavering and a bloody good number at that. Color me stumped.

I told Terri (my HCP) that I was quite surprised and we discussed the above-mentioned reasons why I expected a higher number. She empathized with me regarding the stress eating (elder parent care). She applauded me for allowing myself a splurge now and then. She told me that I’m doing very well. (Have I mentioned how much I like this woman?) She knows me and also knows that I am fully aware of what I need to be doing and she gave me confidence that I can get there again. It was an uplifting visit (but my arm hurts because I finally got my flu shot. Whine.)

While driving home I thought about why I was so surprised. I’ve mentioned previously that I haven’t been dwelling on my diabetes care much lately due to other issues that require my attention. Again, I’ve not been ignoring it, just not dwelling on it. Looking back over my bg log I can see that the only time I’ve been testing, other than fasting, is when I expected it to be high. I had Chinese food with my son: 197. I binge snacked all afternoon. BEFORE dinner bg: 196. Obviously, those types of occurrences need to become rare but, also obviously, the rest of the time I’m doing just fine! Because I was only checking my blood glucose when I expected it to be high, I had a skewed view of my over-all blood glucose.

I don’t plan any drastic changes to what I’m doing, other than curbing this dang tendency to snack on carbs in the afternoon. I rarely eat a high carb meal and often feel “bad” about it afterward (ie: not really worth the glucose spike). I don’t see this as a problem. Bottom line is that I’m doing just fine even though I thought I was “failing” now and then. Score!

Lesson: It’s important to look at the big picture and don’t make assumptions based on a few high numbers. Oh, and regular exercise makes all the difference. Rock on!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

The MOST important tool for dealing with diabetes


There are so many tips, tricks, devices and ideas out there that are designed to help people with diabetes deal with, and hopefully control, their disease. You may have even read about some of them here on my blog. I’ve recently been thinking about getting back on track and tightening up my control of food intake etc and wondering what method/tip/idea I should utilize to achieve success…yet again. It occurred to me that all I need is time. Time is the most important tool for dealing with diabetes.

I’m not talking about “if I only had more time” kind of thing. I’m not referring to how cool it would be to have a Tardis and be able to go back in time to change things or whatever. I’m talking about making better use of the time that I have; that we all have.

Here is how I came to this revelation: I know how I should be eating and I know how much exercise will improve my health. I’ve been at this for a long time and don’t really need to think about or research new ideas. I just need to do something! The thing is that lately I’ve rarely “taken the time” to do what’s best for my health. I don’t really have any excuses since I’m retired but time still seems to get away from me.

I know that when I eat a lower carb dinner that is mostly vegetables, my bg the next morning is much, much better. I know this may come as a shock to some of you, but I can get lazy. (Sorry to burst your bubble.) When I’m in lazy mode, I choose to make meals that are quick and not much of a hassle. There’s no reason that those meals can’t be quick AND low carb/healthy! I often don’t take the time to think it out and go and shop for the needed ingredients to make the meal. I need to take the time.

I mentioned that I’m retired and therefore my days are pretty loose and relaxing…mostly. I do have regular responsibilities, mostly revolving around caring for my mom, but there really isn’t a reason for me to avoid doing the things I need to do to care for myself; like exercising on a regular basis.

“Gosh, today I need to make three phone calls, go to the bank and then shop for Mom’s groceries. I don’t think I have time to exercise today.”

Really Kate?

I know that when I take the time to hit the treadmill every day, I feel better and have more energy to tackle my amazingly busy days. I need to take the time.

I’ve been snacking too much in the afternoons…again. If I take the time to make lower carb snacks and goodies, I’m much better off. At least if I overdo it I’m not scarfing down mass quantities of processed carbs! I need to take the time to bake. I have tons of recipes that I’ve found online that would make it easier to snack in a better fashion. I need to stop collecting them and actually make them. I need to take the time.

See? I need to stop saying, “I got, got, got, got no time” and switch it over to “Time is on my side” (yes it is!) .

The other night I tried a new recipe for dinner. It. Was. Fabulous! It was chock full of vegetables and…bacon.  Mmmm bacon. It was a good meal that was mostly healthy and even Ray enjoyed it. Win! It was easy and quick to make and satisfied us both. My fasting bg the next morning was the best I’ve seen in a while. Here is a  link to the recipe in case you’re interested. I made a few changes: I used Real Crumbled Bacon by Hormel, sautéed using olive oil, added some onions and subbed spinach for the kale. I also doubled it, at least, and there was hardly any left. Really, REALLY good! 

My complaint that I don’t have time to take better care of my health is bogus. I need to take the time to do the things that I know will promote my health. Time is my new tool to deal with my diabetes. I’ve got the time, do you?