diet

The Numbers Are In

I’m home from my doctor appointment now, after a restless night of anxiously awaiting my blood work. Though I tried not to, the worry of how much my A1C had increased kept me from the restful sleep I had hoped for. 

All in all, the visit went quite well: my blood pressure, SAT, heart rate, temperature, etcetera, were all good, weight was up a few pounds, the only thing that I wasn’t surprised by that the nurse takes care of before seeing my PCP. I figured with my lack of sleep and A1C-anxiety my BP would be elevated for sure but it wasn’t. I went ahead and got my flu shot this morning, too; I’m glad to have that taken care of sooner rather than later. Finally the new nurse, a rather cheerful and concerned lady that I think I’ll like, took my blood sample for the A1C test; now to wait for the results ….

After a few minutes my PCP came in with what seemed to be a rather serious look on her face. She began with the normal “how’s life treating you” and “how are you feeling” type of questions, before turning to the real issue, or at least the one I wanted to know about: the number!

“So, on your last visit your A1C was 5.1”, she began, sounding pretty serious, “and today it is-” (I began to rehearse my excuses in my head at this point for why it had jumped so much.) “5.0!”, she finished with a huge smile. She has a great sense of humor, which I love, and enjoys teasing in this dramatic fashion I think. 

To say I was stunned would be an understatement! I went ahead and confessed my worries and stumbles to which she said I’d wasted a lot of energy on nothing. She then recapped the progress I’ve made over the last 13 months and told me how proud and happy she was of and for me, concluding with “God helps those who helps themselves and you’ve put a lot of effort into getting here. So stop beating yourself up over a few “bad” choices that could’ve been really bad ones!”

She was right. By consciously choosing better things to binge on I had improved my A1C, even if I had picked up a few of those formerly-lost pounds. And I see that in my “regular” diet I can loosen my stranglehold some and still maintain healthy, normal BG levels. I can’t tell you how relieved I was at this news!

As an added bonus, she is also giving me a prescription for a new-to-me topical gel to help my arthritic joints, which I have many of. She thinks I’ll greatly benefit from this “only one of its kind” gel, the name of which escapes me. It’ll be a week or so before I get it but I’ll try to update what it is and how it works for me when I’ve had a chance to try it out. And with winter closing in on us this new “help” comes at a great time.

The Bible teaches us that we aren’t to worry over things but to turn them over to The Lord. No matter how strong our faith, or at least this applies to me, I reckon it’s our nature to worry no matter how hard we try not to. This is another lesson that I need to do what I know I need to do and let God take care of the rest.

Blood Work Blues

At just over 13-months now since I was diagnosed with Type-2 Diabetes, tomorrow I’ll be going in for my now-regular A1C test, and other blood work; the A1C results I’ll get tomorrow but will have to wait a few days for the others to come back. I must admit that I’m somewhat anxious to get my numbers; I know that my A1C will be higher this time than last, I just don’t know how much higher it’s going to be. 

I thought that summer would be easier to control my blood glucose (BG) than the winter had been. After all, the warmer weather would, I reasoned, provide more opportunities for me to exercise since I generally feel better in the warmer weather than the cold. But as it turns out summer is hard, really hard, in other ways. Between the extra busyness of the season, trips/vacations, and the seemingly endless barrage of stress I’ve endured, my diet, and surely my BG, have suffered quite a bit. 

The busy schedule I’ve kept and traveling conspired to make it much more work to attempt to eat what I should, when I should. It really surprises me, looking back, at how much more difficult that was than making good choices during the holidays. Despite being more active during the summer, the unstable atmosphere of the season were much more challenging than holiday dinners and get-togethers last winter. 

Being stressed has always brought out the worst in my dietary habits: all good habits go right out the window to be frank. Sometimes, with some things, you have a degree of control over the stressors; I haven’t had much-to-any control over these in the last several months. I have, at least, recognized this and have tried to make choices that weren’t as bad for me. Learning, for instance, that fat helps to slow the conversion of carbohydrates to glucose has been a help; why are all the really good comfort foods so carb-rich anyway? I’ve also been trying to find extra ways to get more protein into my anxious-eating times. How well did I do at this? I reckon we’ll see tomorrow. 

Hopefully I’ve also learned from trial and error, including the above mentioned items, ways to loosen my dietary-stranglehold-grip at least some so I can lean toward a little less rigorous “plan” that I can live with day-in, day-out, no matter the situation I’m in or going through. After all, this disease isn’t going anywhere and, despite my trip-ups, I don’t have any plans to let it cause any more damage to my body or further decrease my quality of life than it already has: I will be the master not the slave to diabetes.