Thursday, May 13, 2010

Diabetes Blog Week Day 4: carb or not carb?

First of all- please don't follow my advice. I am a horrible example for eating in general, let alone a bunch of diabetics who are looking to see what else is out there.

You have to remember, I was not diagnosed until I was 21, so I ate what we call "normal" throughout all of my childhood and boy am I paying for that now. Unfortunately, I have a very strong tooth and from time to time still mourn the loss of eating a piece of chocolate cake whenever the hell I want to.

When I was first diagnosed (4 days before Thanksgiving), I started on shots and used an exchange diet- that totally sucked. I also had to eat at certain times of the day because of my long-acting/short acting insulin that I was taking. Talk about horrible, in the middle of a college class and I have to whip out my bologna sandwich because it's time to eat. I found a new Endo at that time and she amazingly switched me to a humalog pen which gave me a little more freedom.

My insulin pump changed my life. I had to take a 6 month class at my local hospital to even get it- included all the carb counting and training I would ever need. When I first got the pump- I went crazy with eating, making statements to my friends and family like - "It doesn't matter what I eat..I just bolus for it!" That attitude put me at a 7.7 A1c which is not what I call "being able to eat what I want."

Number 1 rule I follow- no sugary drinks- no regular pop, no juice(rarely is more like it), and no sweet tea.

Number 2- I always carry my Carb Master book with me which has local restaurants and food items that can help me carb count.

Number 3- I still eat cake for birthdays and ice cream several nights a week and pie at Thanksgiving.

Number 4- Pizza and past will ALWAYS make me high, no matter how many methods I've tried to "figure it out"- there's little elves in those foods that create sugar as we scarf down the food.

Number 5- In the past few months since TTC, I've been loading up on the fresh stuff. Lots of fruits and FRESH veggies- this has done amazing things for my BG.

Number 6- I rarely eat the same thing 2 days in a row- I know that works for many people because they can predict their blood sugar, but I get bored with food easily.

Number 7- I think it's pretty safe to say that I almost always under carb count- I am trying to be honest with myself about what I'm actually eating and I'm seeing huge results- simply from admitting to my insulin pump that "Yes, I'm eating 90 carbs right now" instead of faking it and pretending I'm only eating 50. Does anyone else ever do that?

At any rate- eating what I want is what keeps me happy- just focusing on being more honest about the realities of what I put into my body has helped me make healthier choices...and with a hopeful baby in the future...this shows me I'm ready for the challenge!


  1. Hi,
    Yep - I underestimate carbs too. Shockingly. hence the 2 fab-o hypos this week from homemade muffins. How COULD that be 100g cho?? :O Pizza does evil, evil things to me too. So if I dare have some I go thin crust and only before about 3pm. Totally with you on #6 but highly recommend that when you're pg that you at least go for a consistent breakfast - it'll make life that much easier for you, honestly. With you on the fruit and veg too. I like eating food that I can identify :) You are ready for the challenge. I feel it in my bones, as kooky as that sounds ;)

  2. I'll have the try the eating pizza before 3pm rule...that may help me NOT eat pizza so much as well. Thanks for the recommendation on consistent breakfast during pg- I'm trying to take notes on any little piece of advice I can get! Thanks for the motivation to continue with the challenge- this blogging has been a blessing!

    I'm on vacation for a while so my posts are set on to you upon my return (and maybe I'll have some good vacation stories :)

  3. Actually, when we eat out, my husband and I usually debate the carbs on my plate. I find that I always overestimate them, because I hate to see high readings on my meter. My husband always underestimates them, because he is nervous about me going low. So if I say it's 60 grams of carbs and he says it's 40, I'll bolus for 50 grams and it usually works out pretty well. :)

  4. Karen really does know how to bolus when eating out - she nailed a gnocchi that should go down in the D hall of fame. Now I know her trick!

    Pasta in indeed tricky. We have incorporated Dreamfields into our regime. It still peaks a bit overnight, but nothing like regular pasta and I've managed to figure out an extended bolus for Caleb that works well. Just a thought. :)

  5. Karen should be awarded something for figuring out that one! My husband and I debate carbs as well- I like the compromise and my husband will appreciate that!

    I've used extended bolus' for pasta before but I've gotten out of that habit...maybe I should pick that back up!