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Author Topic: Diabetes thread  (Read 7267 times)
reener06
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« on: June 21, 2016, 2:13:04 pm »

I've thought about starting this for a long time, but never got around to it. This thread is a support & venting space for diabetics. Type Is and IIs and everyone in between are welcome. Questions, comments, worries, concerns, needs related to this fun disease--dump them here.

I'll start. I've been diabetic since March 1981, Type 1. History of endocrine disorders in my family, but of 6 siblings and over 40 cousins, I'm the only diabetic. I took two shots a day until about 1994, then went to 4 shots, then moved to an insulin pump (Minimed)in 2000. Started on a continuous glucose monitoring sensor in 2007. I have taken jobs (or my spouse has) just for the health insurance. I have battled multiple employers and countless health insurance companies for coverage and I've been known to get angry with Minimed at times. I have minimal complications (mild gastraparesis, impaired nerve in left thigh). I have two healthy children, but complications during both pregnancies.

Trying to exercise regularly again, despite the multiple low blood sugars it is causing (and despite me downloading and tweaking my basal rates every 5 days). So far, gained two pounds from them. Yay.

In terms of academia (on the TT) I have a hard time each semester, come October and April, of maintaining exercise. I stay up too late trying to grade/stay on top of stuff, and am less likely to get up at 5:30 am to run. Also, the cold and dark don't help. Trying to think it through before the semester starts again.
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conjugate
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« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2016, 2:32:03 pm »

I am informed that I am on the brink of diabetes, and have been put on medication to try to put my system back on track.  Or that's what my doctor says.  Other people tell me that there is no "pre-diabetes" or anything like that, and the doctor is tactfully telling me that I am going to have to be on meds for the rest of my life, and perhaps that's right.

In any event, I need to go have my blood tested (it's been a few months).  But I've never had my urine tested and never had to take insulin, so I don't know just how diabetic I am.  I should probably ask for some more details the next time I go.
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Unfortunately, I think conjugate gives good advice.
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reener06
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« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2016, 2:44:44 pm »

My reading of the latest literature is there is a 'pre-diabetes' category, used to alert people that they are on the track to diabetes, and often with lifestyle changes, can reverse things and/or hold it at bay awhile longer. I really recommend "Diabetes Forecast" the American Diabetes Association magazine, or just their website, which answers lots of questions. Do you know what your blood sugar was at the last visit?
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wareagle
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« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2016, 4:43:51 pm »

Not me, but my son is Type I.  Like reener, my life was determined by health insurance until the Eaglet turned 26.  Now his life is determined by it.  He tried a pump for about a year, and we had so much trouble with it (infusion site blockage, extremely high blood sugars in a short period of time that took a day to get back under control, etc.) we dumped it for pens and old technology.  Having a hard time getting him to consider newer technologies, which has surprised me a bit.

Two of the three grandchildren my parents had have Type I.  But there don't seem to be any endocrine issues otherwise.
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libwitch
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« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2016, 3:33:29 pm »

I am informed that I am on the brink of diabetes, and have been put on medication to try to put my system back on track.  Or that's what my doctor says.  Other people tell me that there is no "pre-diabetes" or anything like that, and the doctor is tactfully telling me that I am going to have to be on meds for the rest of my life, and perhaps that's right.

In any event, I need to go have my blood tested (it's been a few months).  But I've never had my urine tested and never had to take insulin, so I don't know just how diabetic I am.  I should probably ask for some more details the next time I go.

Not a medical professional *ahem* but  health providers and insurers don't use (for any formal) reasons, the term per-diabetic anymore,  true.  Your blood sugar is either within healthy range without the use of medication, or you need medication.     (What it really means is that probably when you are fasting, your levels tested fine, but a 3 hour test showed problems).  And in small percentages, some people can manage to reverse the diagnosis with very careful diet and exercise.  I hope you can!

Since it is usually the pre- diagnosis for type 2, it is unlikely that you would be placed on insulin, and the urine tests usually start after the type 2 diagnosis to check for high level of proteins.
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reener06
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2016, 4:04:10 pm »

+1 to Libwitch.

Meanwhile, my gastroparesis flared up over the weekend. Blech. Nausea, gas, really bloating. I was able to run this morning, but crunches were pretty out. Exercise is helping it, though. A walk to the library gave some relief. I just need to wait it out. Once it gets going, it's just a waiting game, and lots of crackers and bland food. As long as I stay in tight control, it keeps it at bay and I don't need meds for it. I was doing great, but things went awry with the pump on Friday and now I'm paying for it.
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conjugate
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« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2016, 9:54:18 pm »

I am informed that I am on the brink of diabetes, and have been put on medication to try to put my system back on track.  Or that's what my doctor says.  Other people tell me that there is no "pre-diabetes" or anything like that, and the doctor is tactfully telling me that I am going to have to be on meds for the rest of my life, and perhaps that's right.

In any event, I need to go have my blood tested (it's been a few months).  But I've never had my urine tested and never had to take insulin, so I don't know just how diabetic I am.  I should probably ask for some more details the next time I go.

Not a medical professional *ahem* but  health providers and insurers don't use (for any formal) reasons, the term per-diabetic anymore,  true.  Your blood sugar is either within healthy range without the use of medication, or you need medication.     (What it really means is that probably when you are fasting, your levels tested fine, but a 3 hour test showed problems).  And in small percentages, some people can manage to reverse the diagnosis with very careful diet and exercise.  I hope you can!

Since it is usually the pre- diagnosis for type 2, it is unlikely that you would be placed on insulin, and the urine tests usually start after the type 2 diagnosis to check for high level of proteins.

Actually, it was my fasting levels that had the doctor (and his predecessor, a doctor who moved out of the area) worried.  So I'm on medication, diet and exercise.  It's been more than six months since my last blood test, so I suppose I should go see about it.
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Unfortunately, I think conjugate gives good advice.
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egilson
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« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2016, 11:32:05 pm »

When I was a grad student, I went to student health and said, "I'm getting up two or three times a night to pee, and I've lost about 15 pounds over the past month even though I'm not dieting." My blood glucose was over 500. Now, I eat fairly well, don't exercise as much as I should, and take 2000 mg of metformin plus a bunch of other stuff for ancillary conditions. I'd like to lose 15 lbs., but my A1Cs are consistently between 6.7 and 6.9, so I think I'm doing alright.
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michigander
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« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2016, 7:13:55 pm »

Egilson:  I've been diabetic for years now.  What my doc is telling me is that for people who aren't 60 yet, their A1c should be 6.0 or less.  As I'm over 60, he says that there's relatively recent research that it's OK for mine to be as high as 7.0.  Unfortunately, my last reading was 7.6 so I have some work to do!
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reener06
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« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2016, 7:49:02 pm »

If I recall, an A1c of 6.0 is about an average of 120, while a 7.0 is an average of about 150. I aim for around 6, with a range of .3. I also download my sugars weekly and keep tabs on this. My latest readings show an average of 113, which I'm happy about, but it takes lots of work.
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lucy_
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« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2016, 3:27:58 am »

Type 2 here. It runs on both sides of my family so it was just a matter of time. I was lucky to ease into it, knowing that it ran on both sides of my family, having another chronic illness that had me getting lots of blood work done, so was able to follow the increase in insulin resistance from around 2001 when the fasting numbers were in the "prediabetic" range.

Then more recently, they started also doing A1c readings. For years, A1c stayed below 6, but then finally it rose to 6.5, so we started metformin ER (didn't want to deal with the GI issues that metformin can cause as I already have an IBD, so just started with metformin ER and that worked well).

Not sure how much the metformin helps, but it doesn't hurt. And it does help with my evening numbers which have always been my problem.

Really diet and exercise are the most important thing for me, as I think is true for most type 2's.

I walk every day. That's important for me, especially after meals. Helps the insulin resistance.

But even more important is limiting my carbs. The amount I can have per meal has gone down as the years have gone by. Now I can eat 15-20 grams of carbs per meal without a problem. For me, all carbs (sugars or starches) are pretty much the same, its the total carbs per meal or snack I have to count. Fiber doesn't count. Its really not a problem eating lower carb. I just focus on protein (meats, seafood, eggs, goat cheese, nuts, seeds), healthy fats (coconut milk products, olive oil, nuts, nut butters, seeds), veggies, and limited fruit. My favorite foods are fruits so I eat as much as I can get away with. Yes, I do eat some complex carbs, but I'd rather get my carbs in the form of fruit, so the starches are limited. I don't really miss most of them. I do love potatoes though so sometimes that's my carb instead of the fruit. And sometimes in the morning, I have slice of toasted whole grain bread with some peanut butter or cheese and tablespoon good fruit preserves. That will max out my carb limit. Its all about the carbs for me, controlling them that is.

I do need to lose weight though, story of my life for quite a few years now. I was always very thin, until the diabetes hit, then it caused me to gain and retain weight. But the diabetes isn't any worse now than it was when I was 30 lbs lighter. But my liver is less happy with the weight. So always trying to lose. I lose it in the summer and gain it in the winter. But I keep trying.
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conjugate
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« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2016, 11:32:59 am »

Metformin knocked me for a loop.  I was sick all the time (thought I'd caught a bug), got cold chills and dizzy spells, and was about to go to the doctor for antibiotics when I (belatedly) got around to reading the package insert on the Metformin.  Oh, it says that if any of these symptoms occur, stop use and notify your doctor AT ONCE, not after three weeks.  Okay, well, now I read the package inserts.  Great.
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Unfortunately, I think conjugate gives good advice.
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egilson
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« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2016, 1:54:13 pm »

When I last did 4x/day blood glucose readings, those readings were always highest in the evening before bed and in the morning before I ate. Moreover, my average before my hernia operation was 169 and after was 112; I'm not sure how that happened except maybe as a reflection of overall stress before the operation, which I really needed about three months before I finally had it.

I suspect that I should give up or at least cut far back on one of my major sources of carbs: either fruit (two pieces a day), or steel-cut oats and brown rice. Oh, well; at least I'll be spending less on fruit.
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