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DiabeticallyYours

Living life as a Type 1 Diabetic.

Archive for the tag “iBGstar”

The iBGStar in a diabetes congress!

Yesterday I got an amazing e-mail from Weber Shandwick, on behalf of the global Sanofi Diabetes division’s team for the iBGStar meter! And guess what? They liked the review I’ve done and want to show snippets from it during this year’s European diabetes congress by Sanofi!

I’m so very excited and deeply honored that they even saw my video to start with, let alone liked it! I’ll keep you updated on more things to come with my future projects concerning diabetes stuff!

 

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Diabetes and memory loss.

I had a half day off from being a mommy and wife yesterday as I took the road to my endocrinologist’s. Sunny day, sunglasses, lounge music… Driving an hour to go shopping and another hour to my appointment. (My endo is far away because I moved last year but kept her.) I left my son with my husband and, for the first time in a while, had some time to myself, for myself.

I spent about 45 minutes in my favourite book store. It felt good.

I was happy to see my endo and she was happy about my results and seeing the iBGStar in action, live, for the first time. She knew about it but never really had seen one in person, so going through my stats and multiple sections was fun for her. I could tell by the glint in her eyes. You know, like when you have something shiny in your hands. But I digress.

I remembered a small conversation I had with Leah about high BG and memory loss, so I asked my endo about it. And here’s what she told me.

High blood sugar and confusion come together. Just like low blood sugar’s confusion state, but in a less drastic way. However, high blood sugar is not linked to dementia or memory loss. Long term, low blood sugar is. And by long term, she said “Frequent low blood sugar over the lapse of 10, 15 years or more”. Your brain needs sugar in order to feed itself, and so the constant low level of sugar in your blood can lead to brain damage that cause memory loss, dementia and all those nasty things. She also said that this study was done on type 2 diabetics on insulin treatment and that type 1 diabetics did not have such a study. Because type 1 is rare and that type 2 has become an epidemic, they have not bothered to conduct the study within type 1s.

I’m assuming it’s the same, if not worse, with type 1s.

So there you have it. Low blood sugar can cause damage to your memory, as studies show. Hence why it’s so important to take care of your diabetes.

Oh, and my latest A1C? 6.2! Awesome!

Type 1 diabetics; misunderstood?

Let me start by saying that while I understand what type 2 diabetics go through a daily basis, I believe that Type 1 diabetes should need a whole different name. Why? Because of the misunderstanding between people, between professionals, and I’m a little tired (especially today) of having to explain to everyone the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 over, and over, and over again.

I went to the pharmacy today to pick up test strips. Something I do very often on a monthly basis, ever since I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I recently changed my strips from One Touch to BGStar because of my new glucose meter; the iBGStar. So I’ve only picked up a box of 100 test strips about 2 weeks ago, which makes an average of 7 tests a day. Which is realistic, quite frankly. Upon my arrival, they give me my Humalog (Insulin vials) but let me know that there are still 24 days left before I can renew my test strip order.

Um. Excuse me?

I tell the (new) pharmacist that I’m a type 1 diabetic, I need to test my blood glucose quite frequently. Before and after meals, when I wake up, when I go to bed, before and after physical activities or just when I feel plain weird. She tells me with a very serious face “You’re only supposed to test about 3 to 4 times a day.” And I look at her with a very confused face which reflected something like ~How dare you tell me how to control my disease~ and ~Since when?~ and this is when I repeat myself. “I’m a type 1 diabetic, I need (I emphasized on the needing part) to test several times a day.” Especially these days, with the weight loss and the very frequent lows. I need to recalibrate my pump’s basals, so how am I supposed to know how much insulin to deliver if I don’t know my BG every few hours?

She looks at me, a frown on her face, clearly showing that she did not understand why I need to test so often. One of the difference between type 1 diabetes and type 2.

No, I cannot control my blood sugar with what I eat. No, I cannot ~cure~ my disease. I know I don’t look sick, I am just pancreas-disabled, for life. No, if I’m low I don’t need more insulin. No, that is not an mp3 player, it’s an insulin pump. No, you would not die if you would have to inject insulin multiple times a day. Stop saying that.

So she goes ask the head pharmacist (or what I assume to be, much older gentleman who nods when she speaks to him, looks at me, nods and smiles a little as he recognizes me). She comes back saying they will call me tomorrow because they are out of BGStar strips. It’s okay, I mean I still have a few to last me until tomorrow. Besides, it’s not like they’re out of insulin or anything.

So as I was walking back home, my son in his stroller amused by his surroundings, I kept wondering why. Why is it, that even professional people, don’t know about type 1 diabetes? No, not that they don’t know, but they are clueless about it? They think because you are diabetic, you cannot eat what you want. I actually can. How many carbs? 15? Here, let me inject insulin, I’m good to go. I’m not type 2, this type of diabetes is different, on so many levels! But yet again, I’m labeled as if I was because society does not give proper education on this kind of disease.

I was a little… Not insulted, but deceived, maybe. Especially that I had to explain, again, what type 1 diabetes was, to a pharmacist.

Did you get your diploma in a Cracker Jack box, missy?

Weight loss: weight-in #2

What a week! Actually, it’s been pretty boring for the most part, non-dabetic wise; rain, cold, no walks outside unless it’s to go to the car and drive to the grocery store. I think it’s the only outings I’ve done with my son and it showed! He got back at me almost all week, Mr. Grumpy face. Well, the fact that four, yes FOUR teeth are coming out is making him extra grumpy, so it doesn’t help. But no park trip, no walks outside, just plain old inside watching Baby TV when we’re not playing games or I’m not doing house chores or playing Zumba.

Diabetic wise, my body decided to step up and kick my butt. I had to put my basal rate at 75% basically all week and I blame that one two things; weight loss and physical activities. I’m moving. A whole lot than I was before I started this weight loss journey. When I sit on the couch, I remind myself “Isn’t there anything else to do that would require me to actually move?” and then there’s something. There is -always- something to do. Dishes, vacuuming, cleaning, playing with my son, you name it. So I was low more often than I was high. Look see for yourself!

See all the red dots? Those are lows from this week. Eek!

So for all the calories I would spend, I would eat back a lot. Orange juice, followed by bananas or nuts.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

And this is how I felt for most of the week...

I wasn’t expecting much change in my weight. I mean, my pants have become slightly looser, but I blamed that on wearing them like three times in a row and them becoming stretched. Although when I looked in the mirror, my “muffin top” looks more like a “bread top”. Love handles that are asking for still too much love. So this morning, I hopped on the scale. And then I remembered; yesterday was a bad day before a weight-in! Went to my uncle’s, ate lasagna, a Tiramisu, drank a glass of wine and had a scoop of maple ice cream… Yup, I busted my Weight Watcher’s points and went into those cheat points. I should have weighted myself beforehand, but oh well. Let’s see…

So as I stepped on the scale, thinking about my week, the orange juice at 90 calories a glass, had about 15 to 20 of those for sure… My night before, where all the good foods crashed in my system… But took in account all the Zumba I’ve danced, the soccer I played with my son, the cleaning I’ve done… And I stared at the scale at what seemed like an eternity before it showed me the numbers.

206.4 Lbs.

Two hundred and six (point four). From last week, I have made it to my goal of losing 5 lbs once again! I’ve lost five pounds! So that means that I’ve lost 10 lbs since the beginning of my weight loss journey! Me! Someone who is blaming everything on the fact that being diabetic is contributing to my weight gain. That being diabetic makes it even harder to lose weight. (It -is- true though…) That for all these years, I’ve blamed it on being diabetic and my crazy insulin intake, the lows, having to drink juice all the time… And I’ve lost more weight in two weeks than I have in about 10 months.

I can do this. Today, I’ve realized that yes, I can do this!

And I’ve got to keep that line going downwards!

Finger or forearm blood tests?

While I was reading my iBGStar user guide, I was reminded that you could now use your forearm to do your blood glucose tests. To me, testing on my fingertips isn’t a big deal. I don’t find it hurts (anymore) and I’m wondering if doing the tests on my forearm would benefit me in any way. So I’m doing my own little research to find out what positive or negative points I could find in changing my method of testing my blood sugar.

I wish my insurance would cover the CGM (Continuous Glucose Monitor) but I can’t really afford the standard 50$ every 3 days. That way, I wouldn’t have to test so often during the day, just less as you still have to make sure the results are accurate. But that’s another issue.

Abbott Diabetes Care suggest that testing on the finger is reccommended when you think your blood sugar is low. So I’m guessing that finger tests are more accurate, but that’s just a theory. The only benefit to testing elsewhere on your body I’ve found while searching the net, was that it’s less painful. But other than that, I’m wondering if any other kinds of benefits could emerge by doing so.

Are you testing anywhere else than on your finger tips?

 

iBGStar Review

I’ve finally received my iBGStar from Sanofi Aventis! I say finally because Canada post -again- did not deliver to my door and instead sent it to the post office. I blame this on a lazy postman.

I was very excited to get it, so much that I’ve basically let aside my chores for the day. No store visit for this lady today! (Bananas will have to wait, Aaden… Sorry!)

I’ve made a review video about it which I will integrate into this post at the bottom of it. So if you don’t feel like reading, go watch the video!

First, while the animations are purely decorative and entertaining, I love seeing my iPhone telling me to put blood on the test strip and make a futuristic animation of my blood going into the device and being tested. Super cool! (I bet this will even make my non-diabetic friends jealous and they most likely will want to try it out too just for the heck of it!) It’s easy to set up; even though I read the instructions to make sure I didn’t do anything wrong, it would have been easy to just connect the iBGStar, as it was already charged, and start testing right away. I was high, I knew this, but I didn’t care about spoiling my device with my super sugary blood, so I tested right away, along with my old OneTouch meter, to see if the readings matched. And they did, so everything was set to go!

Here are some positive points about the iBGStar:

  • Small; about 1/6th of the size of your iPhone or iPod;
  • Free app; just download it straight to your iPhone or iPod;
  • Track your BG on charts; up to 90 days of tracking on one single chart, easy for your endo to read;
  • Statistics e-mail friendly; Your endo needs some results on charts? One single press of a button and it’s right on his desk(top);
  • Built-in user guide; no more downloads from websites after losing your user guide;
  • Syncs readings to your iPhone when connected if you have made a reading while disconnected;
  • Goes where your iPhone or iPod goes;
  • Charges alone or with your iPod and iPhone. Just connect to the wall or into your iPhone or iPod and your iBGStar charges!

And for some negatives:

  • iPhone and iPod battery vampirism; the iBGStar loves your device’s energy! Sucks it right out to charge itself, unless your device is on hibernating mode;
  • No customizable backgrounds; you have the choice of 6 pre made backgrounds to chose from.

So far, so good! I can’t see anything else that is a negative. So that was a small review, yes, but I’m sure I will have much more to say about the iBGStar in the next coming weeks as I get accustomed to my new toy.

;

Oh hi Active life!

And it’s packing day! And probably will be packing week as we’re moving in about 2 months! Packing, if done at my pace, is a pretty nice workout I’ve found. I’ve dropped low 2 times until I decided to put m pump at 50% of it’s usual basal rate. But then, I decided that I would work my elliptical machine while Aaden would nap (and is still napping. The only time I can blog without interruption!) so 20 minutes of intense “running”, I had to lower my basal rate at 25%. And still go low. I think I’m working too hard -or- need to lower it even more.

As for my blood sugar, it’s been dropping like a bullet. I am blaming this on weight loss and I’m not going to complain about it, HAH! I can fix a low very easily, however, it’s much harder to lose weight.

Speaking of blood sugar, I’m waiting for Canada postal service to deliver my new precious little baby; the iBGstar. Fellow blogger Diabuddies blogged about it and got me hooked. Next thing you know, I’m ordering the thing. Will be posting reviews about it soon so keep reading!

Until then, stay healthy!

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