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Last Sunday night I had a diabetes episode that left me feeling cranky and exhausted on Monday morning. It was a completely self-induced event, which just heaps guilt onto an already icky experience. Here's what happened:
The kids were asleep and I was settling into the couch to watch some TV with my husband. My blood sugar was 127 mg/dl after a dinner of salmon and roasted sweet potatoes (yum!). I decided to have some banana chips dipped into natural peanut butter as a snack. I didn't intend on eating many, so I bolused just one unit of insulin.
My first mistake was bringing the entire bag of banana chips to the couch instead of just taking a serving. One handful of banana chips turned into two, then three. In the back of my mind I heard this nagging voice whispering, "You should bolus, this is far more than 20 grams of carbohydrates..." But, I ignored it.
A couple handfuls later, I encouraged my husband to take some ...
The first job I had was in a movie theater, at the ripe ageof 15. I told my employer right away that I had diabetes. I told him there maybe times when I need to stop for a second and grab a juice box, and I explainedthat I would go somewhere private when needing to inject insulin. Fortunately, he’d had plenty of experience with diabetes because of another employee. His name was Mike and he was, to the say theleast, not really the same kind of diabetic I consider myself to be. Mike’s blood sugars were up and down all the time. He oftenhad episodic lows, requiring someone else to tell him he was acting funny andshould slow down and grab a soda. My boss was surprised to see that my diabetesreally never became an issue or interfered with getting work done. One of the best things about this job, however—and part ofthe reason my diabetes never became an issue—was because I had free access tothe soda machines whenever I wanted! It’s hard to drop low, even during a busynight...
All of us snack on food from time when we’re hungry and hope that it wouldn’t raise our blood sugar too much. But I wonder how many of us take “exercise snacks.”
New studies on food and exercise snacks point us in different directions. Food snacking may not be what it’s cracked up to be, and I will report on that study soon. But a new concept of exercise snacking is showing that brief but intense exercise before meals can help us manage our diabetes better.
In the paragraph above I emphasized the phrase “before meals” because we already knew that when we get exercise after a big meal we can quickly bring down our blood sugar level. That’s a good strategy that I have followed myself ever since my late wife asked me after dinner one evening what she could do to reverse a high level somewhere above 200. We went out for a moderate 10 to 15 minute walk, and when we got back home and she tested again her level had d...
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