Sunday, November 29, 2009

Great Success

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. Hopefully those sugar levels stayed somewhat under control. I had a minor scare in the car on the way home. I started shaking, feeling weak, and sweating.

cold sweat.

My sugar level was in the low 30s. That is a serious bout of hypoglycemia. Not good. Luckily I was around a gas station so I got to indulge on a zebra cake.... forgot how much I used to like those. Thanksgiving was alright though. I tried to stay away from a lot of carb-loaded options in the meal. Stayed with veggies from the snack tray and limited my portion of stuffing to 1 serving. That was tough. I had a lot of green bean casserole and turkey with gravy. It's tough, but worth it to stay on top of my sugars.

In other news, I still really foggy from yesterday. There's a new game for Nintendo Wii called Super Mario Brothers Wii. It was awesome.

I say was because myself and three of my best friends sat down at 10PM last night and didn't stop playing until we beat the game, at 8:15 this morning. It was epic. Stupid. Fun. Exhausting. It was a great way to spend the last night of my Thanksgiving break. It was really fun because all four of us could play at the same time. It was also formatted and designed to look just like the old Mario games on Regular and Super Nintendo.

So how did I manage my Lantus shot? Usually I take it before I go to sleep. Obviously I didn't sleep last night. But I took the shot anyway, at about the same time I usually do. I just made sure I didn't really snack on anything whenever the other three were eating. Tough to pass up those pizza rolls at 3:00AM, but a guy's gotta do what a guy's gotta do.

Remeber how I mentioned that I play for the Ultimate Frisbee team at SLU. Well, the team started a blog that I am a contributor for, so I've listed the team's blog in my blogs section on the side of my page. Check it out!! You can also just click here.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Turkey Day Woes

Holidays just aren't kind to my diabetic brothers and sisters. Turkey, STUFFING, POTATOES, BREAD, corn, green beans, PUMPKIN PIE, APPLE PIE. Everything in caps there is loaded with carbohydrates.


If you're like me and really enjoy stuffing and just about anything else that belongs on a Thanksgiving spread, the holiday challenge of maintaining good glucose numbers can get daunting. Here are some things you can do to help keep those levels under control:

Eat a light lunch with little to no carbs in it.
Fill up double portions of green beans and turkey.
Limit mashed potatoes and stuffing to one serving.
Use that low carb bread I mentioned earlier for the stuffing.
Definitely one serving of dessert. (Check the ADA or DLife website for diabetic friendly recipes)

Just as a personal test I decided to take my blood sugar before I ate and after I ate. My instructions for insulin injection were 15-30 minutes before or after a meal. So I decided to do this injection 30 minutes after and check what my glucose levels were.

*DISCLAIMER I do not regularly do this, nor would I recommend this to any other diabetic. It was purely for self-education.

My sugar level before I started eating was 123. 30 minutes after eating, it was 254. Yes, I know, that's humongous. But I controlled my little experiment and took the appropriate amount of insulin. One hour after injecting myself, it was back down to 105. Fast acting insulin works. Fast!

So anyway, eat smart this holiday. Root for the Cowboys! Enjoy your Thanksgiving!!!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Running, and podcast preview

Like I said before, I used to be a runner. Way back in the day.

Way back.

But I've always been active, which is key for both type 1 and type 2 diabetics. exercise can help control blood glucose levels, essentially making someone less dependent on insulin. For a guy who incessantly hates medicine, that's great news. But running isn't the only way to go. Swimming, walking, biking are all activities that help promote overall health and wellness.

From my experience, it's all about making things habits. Ugh, I used to hate habits. Now I have to live by them. But it's been easier for me to build habits because my family is extremely habitual.

1.) Dad at gets up at 4-5 every morning for work, puts in a long day, and if nothing is going on at night, will probably fall asleep in front of ESPN or the Discovery channel at 10:15.

2.) Mom also gets up early every morning to go to Mass (6:30 Mass, yikes). She also walks every morning and cannot live without her calendar.

3.) Charlie, don't even get me started. Everything he did was in order. I could sit in bed at night in high school and give color commentary on his nighttime routine with my eyes closed. Homework til 10. Cheese torilla in microwave. Load backpack. Use bathroom. Brush teeth. But vaseline on lips. Take drink of water. Then put retainer in. He actually couldn't go to sleep if he was out of sync!!!

Well, now with frisbee behind me, and thanks to Google spreadsheets taking care of my daily blood glucose numbers, I am starting to focus on getting back into shape and working out every day. I'm going to start with a low dosage of running mixed with abs and push-ups. I'll gradually increase the weekly mileage until frisbee starts again in the spring. I'll upload a training log on here once i get a few big school assignments out of the way first.

But here is a list of simple ways in which anyone can take baby-steps towards a healthier life.

1.) Take the stairs, forget the elevator if it's just a few floors.
2.) Walk to church or the grocery store if you live close enough.
3.) Try to at least walk around a neighborhood for 15 minutes a day.
4.) Choose that apple when you're eying the Reese's.
5.) Make a conscious effort to include vegetables with meals. (pickles on a burger don't count)
6.) Choose one day of the week and drink water instead of coffee.
7.) Reruns of ESPN are on again in the morning.
8.) When waking up, get out of bed and get active right away. Avoid the drowsiness.
*I'm horrible at that
9.) If the weather is nice, read a book outside. Soak up some Vitamin D
10.) Talk to your mother and tell her you love her.

In other news, I'm going to be doing a few test runs with podcasts on here. Some will be only audio, some will have video as well. It's all run through this cool website called podOmatic. You should see the message with a link on the left side of the page. Hopefully you like it. Let me know if it doesn't work...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Hello class!

Kristen Wilson interviewed me the other day about living with Type 1 diabetes. It went really well. I actually do love sharing my experience with other people. She also told me that she might show my blog to the class that she did the interview for. So, I figured I'd put up a picture as a quick guide to the tell-tale signs on diabetes onset:

I personally had all of these symptoms besides nausea. In the week or two before getting diagnosed, I was urinating 10-15 times a day, usually waking up twice at night as well. It was pretty rough. But now with my sugars under control, my life is normal.
If you guys have anything that you're interested in or want to know more about please email me at!!!

Monday, November 16, 2009

A new Meter, A good day!

I went to the doctor today. My appointment was at 9:30, and even though I didn't get out of there until 11 (ugh), I did walk out with a new functional glucose testing meter from OneTouch. I had recently lost my old one. Hooray!!

I'm going to shift to a focus on athletics for a while. Athletics are a big part of my life. I played organized sports with my twin brother all the time growing up. I then ran Cross Country and Track in high school. I am currently involved with Ultimate Frisbee, a cool sport that involves a LOT of running. Exercise is a main part of everyone's life... at least it should be. But it is essential for diabetics to help maintain good health. Insulin and exercise are the two ways that I can actively lower my blood sugar. And hell, why not lower my blood sugar while staying fit and reducing some dependence on insulin?

(Note: I will always be dependent on insulin. But it is both physically and psychologically beneficial to control it through exercise as well.)

Dr. Albert, my endocrinologist, explained to me this morning that 30 minutes of exercise can be the equivalent to 1 unit of insulin and 1 net carb. For a guy that loves running around and playing sports, this is like music to my ears.

For the more daring of heart than I, here is an article about "Iron Andy" Holder, a Iron-man triathelete who has lived with Type-1 diabetes for some time. This story is actually quite remarkable; and it serves as a good reminder that diabetes should never be looked at as a hindrance. It is merely just a little hurdle that needs to be jumped.

Here is a picture of "Iron" Andy:

For more information about Andy, check out his blog at
For more information about Andy's diabetes foundation, and an interview with him, check out this website.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

How aware are you?

November is Diabetes Awareness month. More specifically, November 14 is World Diabetes Day!

more info here.