October 20, 2015

Is Diabetes Perfection Possible?

This is why I read other bloggers. Every once in a while, an idea by another blogger speaks to me in ways that I was not prepared for and gives me an idea for a blog of my own. Ashley who writes at Bittersweet Diagnosis covers the topic of diabetes perfection because she was terrified of the complications. When she realized that striving for perfect blood glucose levels 24-7 is not realistic or sustainable, she realized that diabetes has taught her that diabetes shouldn’t hold you back from living your life.

We can all do our best to minimize the wild swings in blood glucose levels and we should do this, but to obsess about the levels is not good and generates stress which harms our management. I am learning that by getting the sleep my body needs and minimizing the stress in my life, my blood glucose levels are coming more into the range that pleases me.

Then by converting my food plan more to a low carb/high fat plan, I am starting to lose weight and my insulin needs are becoming less. Nothing significantly less yet, but I am seeing a change for the better.

Am I telling you how many grams of carbohydrates you should eat? No, I am not, as each person needs to use their blood glucose meter to test before and after meals (called testing in pairs) to discover for yourself the level you need to consume. I suggest starting at 100 grams total carbohydrates for the day - I suggest about equal carbohydrate grams per meal. Then by testing, you should adjust this up or down based on the testing results.

Why am I suggesting this? I know that until your body becomes comfortable with the number of carbohydrates, you will feel hungry, especially if you do not increase the amount of fat you consume. I know from experience that many doctors are still promoting low fat and some become very upset when patients increase the amount of fat consumed. That folks is why the food plan is named low carb/high fat (LCHF). Do keep the amount of protein at the level it has been and do not increase, especially if kidney problems exist.

Then over a period of a month, gradually adjust the grams of carbohydrates down or possibly up depending on what your meter is telling you. This from my blog on Sept 17 will explain, “eating to your meter” and this from the same blog will help further explain LCHF.

Because everyone is different, you cannot count on following what someone else has for numbers. Therefore, you must find what works for you, as this is the closest to diabetes perfection you will come. Just because someone else can obtain better or more consistent blood glucose numbers, you should not try to copy them as you may be able to better their numbers or maybe not obtain as good a set of numbers.

Forget about the perfection someone else obtains and work for your own perfection. It is often much easier to meet your own goals than another persons goals.  Remember that you are unique and must find what works for your body.


Denise said...

I so often minimize the horrible effect that stress from the numbers on the meter has on my overall health and my blood sugar specifically - thanks for the reminder! Absolute perfection simply isn't possible so I try to stay focused on WHY I choose not to eat processed sweets or baked goods or WHY I get up by 5:00am every morning to walk for 60 minutes or WHY I turn down most of the social engagements I receive invitations for (rushing around leaves me feeling stressed, so not worth it). By focusing on my "why" - to avoid complications of diabetes - I make mostly good choices most of the time, and I'm pretty sure that's the best I can aim for.

Ila East said...

I'm glad you stressed that each person is different. Even as type twos, some bonus before meals and some do not. To compare these two people and expect them both to get the same results is unrealistic. I so agree that you need to tear before and after meals at least in the beginning and ever so often after that. That's where I fall down. I test before a meal to give me an idea of how many carbs I can eat. As I age, I'm finding I have to continually cut back on the number of carbs, so age is another reason you can't compare two people.