LIVING WITH DIABETES begins with an awareness that all is not as it should be, or, as it was. Indications of diabetes, or as some medicinal professional like to say, “a predisposition to” or “pre-diabetic”, include a cough or cold that endures longer than previously accustomed to; cuts, sprains, bruises that last longer than you have been previously accustomed to; feeling more clearheaded after a drink of liquor – not more than an ounce; experiencing a cloudy brain; feeling better for not having breakfasts that include carbohydrates; a change in for the worse in your eyesight; laziness or becoming lethargic.
LIVING WITH DIABETES is like living with a car motor with a heavy oil in the motor during the cold of winter. Blood does not flow freely. It is sluggish, and, so you are. With heavy oil, the motor does not receive lubrication where it is most needed. With your body, thick blood does not deliver the medication, hormones, or nutrients where they are most needed. Hence the lungs, the kidneys, the liver, the eyes suffer – most often irreparable harm is suffered by your organs.
I WAS LIVING WITH DIABETES – the diabetes of my father, my mother, then as each brother attained an age they were granted the degree of D. Then a sister-in-law’s family all grew into the status. They took they’re prescriptions, and, pricked themselves with insulin. It couldn’t happen to me. But it did. I took to the web to learn that carbohydrates generate glucose rather freely, some jumping into the blood stream before reaching the stomach. And the body, when short on glucose, makes its own. I discovered that many people WHO LIVE WITH DIABETES are unable to differentiate a carbohydrate from a protein from a fat from a fibre. The definition of a carb is simple: anything that grows from soil is a carb. Oh, it has fats and proteins, but the main element is being a carb. Surprised to know that cereal, potatoes, . . . .
Because the body can manufacture its own glucose, relegating oneself to a protein and fat intake doesn’t guarantee normal levels of glucose in the blood. Insulin, the body’s own glucose control hormone, normally takes the extra glucose and TURNS IT INTO STORED FAT as a way to maintain glucose levels.
The body attempts to control the creation of fat by attempting to diminish the effectiveness of the insulin, thus leaving the ‘sugar’ in the blood. The insulin producing cells, triggered by higher than normal glucose levels, work overtime to make the stuff, and, eventually get tired of making something that is not appreciated. Production is limited. So, what do we do, eat carbs, augment the glucose, which the insulin no longer can effectively control.
Exercise, brings the glucose level down or maintains it. A brisk [brisk means that it is difficult to talk to another person] three kilometer walk will bring my own glucose level down 3 Mmol. An hour bicycle ride will stabilize it in the normal range, for me. It is important when you LIVE WITH DIABETES that you know what a particular size of potato does to the level, or, what a walk or run or swim does to the level. And to periodically re-test the effectiveness.
It is important for those of us WHO LIVE WITH DIABETES that we make ourselves aware of the effect of various foods, exercises, medicines and herbs, minerals and vitamins. To perform a test of the efficacy of each of these, it is important that only one variable exists between the trial of each of these. Identical meals, identical periods of rest or exercise, both before and after the multiple readings are required for a useful evaluation. A reading is taken both immediately before and 1 1/2 hours after the two identical meals. The difference in the reading without and with the element being tested will indicate what the element does for you. I do the same with exercise, with the exception that readings are taken before the exercise [the readings being identical] performing the exercise noting the time taken to perform it, and a reading with the same elapsed time without the exercise. This will give you the efficacy of the particular exercise.
All of that and other things said and thought of, there is so many aids to diabetes and glucose control.
Metformin: is meant to reduce the body’s resistance to its insulin.
Pycnogenol: just discovered. Was touted as assisting metformin and lowering glucose by 2 Mmol. I have tried it, and, for me, it does lower the glucose levels by that amount for several hours.
Phase 2 and Phase 3 carbohydrate inhibitors which restrict their absorption.
Trace herb, vitamins and minerals.
LIVING WITH DIABETES is an interesting exercise in learning about and knowing your own body.