Sunday, January 14, 2007

Diabetes Education Assessment

I went for an assessment with a diabetes educator at the hospital. Later I will go take 2 four-hour group classes. So far I've learned:

• A 9 day rotation to check blood glucose (BG) levels. If you are interested in following this, here is how it goes: 3 days testing before breakfast (fasting) and 2 hours after your first bite of breakfast (postprandial), 3 days testing before lunch and 2 hours after, and 3 days testing before dinner and after. Then go back to breakfast. This will give physicians a good indication of how your BG levels fluctuate throughout the day and if your diet, exercise, and medication plan is working for you.

• That I might require insulin at certain times in my life-such as when I'm on steroids, when I'm sick, and when I'm having surgery. This helps the pancreas out when the body is put in stressful situations. Stress tends to increase BG levels and cause the body to be insulin intolerant, thanks to hormones. Every hormone in the body increases BG levels except insulin. So, when you hear of adrenalin or cortisone levels in your body-these are hormones that can increase BGs.

• My body secretes more hormones when I'm in the beginning stages of getting sick (fighting infection) and I can actually tell when my BGs go up that I am probably getting ready to be sick (or I'm under too much stress and need to use stress reduction techniques). So, writing down BG levels on a chart is good for more than just telling if the program is working. It can tell you how well your body is fighting off any sort of physicial stress.

• That insulin is not a drug-it is the exact replica of what our body makes, so it comes in the body clean and there are no interactions, it doesn't go through the kidney or liver like drugs do.

I'll pass on more diabetes tips as I learn them!

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