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DiabeticallyYours

Living life as a Type 1 Diabetic.

Archive for the tag “pump”

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!

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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!

5 likes and dislikes about being a diabetic mom!

A fellow blogger suggested I make this post after the 5 likes and dislikes about being a mom. Great idea! And I’m sure other diabetic moms out there will be able to relate! If you’re diabetic and don’t have kids, here’s what you can be expecting later in life about being a mommy!

5 likes:

  1. Healthy lifestyle! Having a baby gave me a great reason to take (better) care of my diabetes. I need to be as healthy as I can to be there for him later in life!;
  2. Are you a couch potato? Not anymore! Running after your toddler will have your BG drop often! At least in -my- case…;
  3. Healthy foods! Watch those carbs, eat more vegetables! Before being diabetic, I would eat anything, really. And Probably would give Aaden a “HappyMeal” much more often. Now that I know what foods can actually do to him, because of what I’ve learned as a diabetic, Aaden has a healthy lifestyle!;
  4. Amazing snacks! Seriously. When I’m low, I tend to look for anything high in carbs. Now, I tend to grab snacks I buy for Aaden, which in turn are pretty delicious and healthier!;
  5. A reason -never- to give up. Sometimes, as most diabetics will feel, I get really bummed out. Angry at life for giving me this disease. Not getting up in the morning sounds like a great idea… But when you hear your child babbling in his crib in the morning, laugh with you during the day and fall asleep in your arms at night, you’ve truly have found a reason to never, ever give up.

5 dislikes:

  1. Hypoglycemias. On their own, they are manageable. With a screaming kid clamped to your leg, it’s extremely infuriating;
  2. Pump users, warning! Aaden thinks the transparent tube that sometimes is dangling out of my pants is an amazing toy and tends to yank on it often;
  3. Dangerous wandering test strips. Sometimes I don’t realize it but I’ve dropped a used test strip on the floor. Aaden likes to taste everything that’s on the floor. Yeah, you know where I’m going with that;
  4. The fear that he might become diabetic. Sure, anyone could become type 1 or type 2. But being diabetic, your child has even more chances. I really wish Aaden to stay healthy, always.
  5. Pregnancy. I hated my pregnancy. The whole thing. Gaining 62 lbs, having to take 50 units for breakfast instead of 6, constantly having to readjust my insulin intake because of continuously raging hormones… Not cool!

What about you? If your a diabetic mom, I’d love to hear your thoughts! If you’re not a mom yet, what are your fears and expectations?

Raspberries on the cheek!

The difference between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

Recently, I’ve been reminded that even though I am a type 1 diabetic, my upstairs neighbour (a type 2 diabetic) has a different treatment than I have. Before I was diabetic, I would not know the difference, heck, I thought that having diabetes meant not eating sugar or else you get sick, type of thing. People who are not surrounded by diabetics or are not diabetics themselves usually have a poor education about the disease and the different types. So I thought I would give a definition of the difference and a little experience of mine from recent things that happened to me.

As per medicalnewstoday.com:

Type 1 Diabetes

In Type 1 Diabetes, the person’s own body has destroyed the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. When your own body destroys good stuff in your body it has what is called anautoimmune disease. Diabetes Type 1 is known as an autoimmune disease. 

Quite simply – a person with Diabetes Type 1 does not produce insulin. In the majority of cases this type of diabetes appears before the patient is 40 years old. That is why this type of diabetes is also known as Juvenile Diabetes or Childhood Diabetes. Diabetes Type 1 onset can appear after the age of 40, but it is extremely rare. About 15 per cent of all diabetes patients have Type 1. 

People with Type 1 have to take insulin regularly in order to stay alive. 

Diabetes Type 1 is not preventable, it is in no way the result of a person’s lifestyle. Whether a person is fat, thin, fit or unfit, makes no difference to his or her risk of developing Type 1. In the case of Diabetes Type 2, much of its onset is the result of bodyweight, fitness and lifestyle. The vast majority of people who develop Type 1 are not overweight, and are otherwise healthy during onset. You cannot reverse or prevent Type 1 by doing lots of exercise or eating carefully. Quite simply, the Diabetes Type 1 patient has lost his/her beta cells. The beta cells are in the pancreas; they produce insulin.

Type 2 diabetes:

Person with Diabetes Type 2 has one of two problems, and sometimes both:

1. Not enough insulin is being produced.

2. The insulin is not working properly – this is known as  insulin resistance

The vast majority of patients who develop Type 2 did so because they were overweight and unfit, and had been overweight and unfit for some time. This type of diabetes tends to appear later on in life. However, there have been more and more cases of people in their 20s developing Type 2, but it is still relatively uncommon. 

Approximately 85% of all diabetes patients have Type 2. 

Recently, as some of you know, I’ve subscribed to Weight Watchers. As I’m part of a diabetes forum, I’ve asked them if they knew or know anyone who is diabetic and have any stories to share. I was surprised to realize that 90% of all comments were negative for all sorts of reason, but mostly because WW now counts fruits as 0 points. I was wondering how that was a problem until I realized that out of every replies, only 1 type1 diabetic had answered me. The rest were all type 2. Most of type 2 control their diabetes with medications and by watching what they eat, meaning as little sugars as they can get. Fruits have sugar. Good sugars, but sugar non the less. Or as we diabetics call them, carbs. The more you eat them, the more sugar you have in your blood stream.

That being said, as a type 1 diabetic wearing an insulin pump, if I want an apple, I will eat an apple. I log in 15g of carbs into my pump and she (Yes, my pump is female!) gives me the necessary amount of insulin to cover those carbs. Just as a regular pancreas would. But most type 2 diabetics don’t regulate their blood sugar with insulin. It is with medications, so they cannot eat fruit, or any other things that contain carbs, as they want.

It’s weird, I’ve been diabetic for 6 years, and it just dawned on me that I may have it easy. Well, easier, than a type 2.

What do you think? Am I just thinking this or is it fact?

The insulin-less morrow.

Hey there fellow bloggers and trusty readers!

After my post from last night, I wanted to leave you with an update before I leave for the weekend and not lead you into thinking I might have been seriously hurt from the lack of insulin! To my surprise, I actually woke up with a reading of 5.4 mmol! (That’s a 97.2mg). Doesn’t stop the fact that I could have side effects from not having insulin in my body for a long period of time (I suspect the head ache I have is related). But when I woke up I had an e-mail from a concerned follower and blogger. I don’t know if he wants to remain anonymous so I will only be linking back if he allows it! (And he did! Thanks Scott E.!Not so anonymous anymore! Haha!) And, even though I realized some few things that I should have done instead of just going to bed like that, without insulin for most of the night, it made me feel good! To know that there are people out there with and without the same disease and they care enough to send me a warning message, to be safe, tips on how to act during that period… Things I would have followed if I hadn’t read this email this morning but last night, when he sent it!

No, instead of checking my e-mails, I read The hunger games (Almost done the first book) to keep my mind off of the situation. Was I just evading it? Trying to ignore it instead of taking action? I know for a fact that If my husband would be there, he would have run out in the search for a 24 hours drug store! but he’s at work and I’m alone with Aaden and the last thing I wanted to do was to wake him up, dress him and go look for a store, then have to constantly wake him up by going in and out of the car… I should put my health first, I know, but sometimes I don’t think rationally!

Anyways, I’m fine, and yes don’t worry, I’m getting ready to go out and grab that insulin vial before I get ready and leave for the weekend! I’ll be fine though, and I’ll be back!

Read you soon!

~Valerie Anne

Oh no! No more insulin!

I’m leaving for the weekend tomorrow for my step mother’s birthday. A 2 hours ride for Aaden and I. I love it there, in fact, I’m going to move there in less than 3 months!

So I’m sitting on the couch, watching TV after I put Aaden to bed and my insulin pump beeps, warning me in caps “LOW RESERVOIR”. Argh! I remember that it had warned me at dinner time so I waste no minutes and get up, grab my reservoirs and the insulin vial. Butterfingers. Miss butterfingers. That should be my last name. Not Chiang, Butterfingers. Drop the vial on the ceramic floor. Crash goes the vial, splash goes the insulin. And it was a new bottle so there is no substitute. I look at the time. The pharmacy is already closed at that time. Look at how much insulin I have left in my reservoir; 4.4 units. A total of 4 hours and 27 minutes left.

And the adventures of miss butterfingers begin.

That means that I will have about 9 to 10 hours without insulin. I will have to go to the pharmacy as soon as it opens tomorrow so I can eat breakfast (In PJs if I have to!) and then rush to do everything before I leave for my weekend. I’ve never have this happen to me though, it’s a full first time since 2006.

I’m sure I’ll be fine, but my Blood Glucose will be high tomorrow morning that’s for sure…

Anyone have their insulin vials break before? Be without insulin for 10 hours or so?

You did what, mommy?!

Insulin pumps: Silouhette VS Quick-Set infusion set

In my last post, I was talking about insulin pumps and different infusion sets and realized that not everyone was aware of the four kinds of sets available on the market. Having tried two of them, here’s my two cents:

Silouhette infusion set:

The Silouhette set is mostly axed for lean, active people as it offers the option of insertion angle. If you’re a skinny person, you will love this set as you can insert the catheter at an angle that would best suit you: Right between the skin layer and the muscle, as parallel as can be!

Here are the positive points of the set I’ve find:

  • Hides well under clothes;
  • Easy to detach for showering, swimming, etc;
  • Loved the option of inserting the catheter at 45 degrees or as close to skin as possible;
  • Can easily be inserted manually

There are always cons though:

  • Easy to rip off of you when you bump into things, remove clothes, etc;
  • Easily leaves scars for people with sensitive skin, like me!;
  • As I gained weight during my pregnancy, the more fat build up, the less effective my usual infusion sites became.

Quick-Set infusion set:

 

The quick-set infusion set is the most popular choice and is effective for all patients. It has a 90 degrees cannula which offers best insulin injection. When I gained weight during my pregnancy (A whooping 60 lbs!) This set would reach deeper into my skin for better insulin action and I stuck with it post pregnancy!

Positive points:

  • 90 degrees catheter allowing great insulin effectiveness;
  • Difficult to accidentally rip! (My 1 year old son grabbed it several times and pulled without success, HAH!);
  • Leaves little to no scars on sensitive skin;
  • Even if recommended to change every 3 days, I keep it on for a whole week and it still is effective on the 7th day;
  • Has a great locking system to prevent accidental detachment.

Negative stuff:

  • Easy to see under the clothes as it gives bigger relief;
  • Sensitive skin people might find the glue-on part itchy;
  • Hard to manually insert (Without insertion tool) as it is a 90 degrees insertion.

Have you tried any of the other sets? If so, would you recommend another? And what are your experiences with those mentioned?

Pumping insulin!

I was having a small conversation with fellow blogger Leah and was reminded a few things about being a type 1 diabetic on an insulin pump. I thought I would share a little of my experiences with this awesome little piece of equipment, a.k.a my mechanical pancreas.

I acquired my pump in the beginning of October 2008, just a few days before my wedding (Half of the pump’s cost was a wedding gift from my father, too!). I have a paradigm 522 from medtronic which I have customized with neat looking covers sold by the company. At first, it was nerve racking. I wanted to experience the simplicity of not having to count my insulin needs for meals, for corrections, etc… I wanted to experience eating whenever I wanted, whatever I wanted, I wanted to feel what it was like to be “normal” again. When the nurse came to my house (Because you need a small class about how to use it and the nurse will set the pump to your needs as well) I was really happy, but also overwhelmed with the amount of supplies she brought with her! Let me give you a small list to make it simple:

Supplies with injection pens:

  • Pens
  • Insulin vials
  • Needles

Supplies for an insulin pump:

  • Pump
  • Battery
  • Insulin vials
  • Reservoirs
  • Infusion sets
  • CGM (Continuous Glucose Reading) set
  • Insertion sets
  • Extras such as Pump clips, customizations…

She came in with so many boxes I got scared and was already reluctant of having to go through that kind of change, but I welcomed her into my kitchen and we got started… We calculated my insulin needs and my husband tagged along, wanting to learn it as well even if he isn’t diabetic. It’s always nice to know what your partner goes through and understand what it takes and how everything works! So the nurse had me enter a bunch of informations in the pump for it to be set to my needs. She then explained to me how to insert the catheter, how to fill up the reservoir, how to rewind the pump and all the neat things about my new style of life. Needless to say I felt overwhelmed once again with the amount of tasks I needed to overcome just to have this pump set and attached to me!

I was shaky at first when I inserted the infusion set because she wouldn’t let me use the insertion tool. She said it would be best If I learned how to insert it myself in case the insertion tool would break, and it was a good idea because I had to do it manually often. Not because it broke, but because I forgot it at home when I was away!

When this was done, she moved unto the CGM set. Biggest. Needle. Ever. But hardly felt anything when it went in! As I got used to the CGM over the days, I realized though that it wasn’t for me. First because my insurance company wouldn’t cover it and second, well, it’s a second injection site, more scars (my skin is VERY sensible!) and I preferred just testing my blood glucose manually than having my pump tell me. The CGM has a lot of benefits though because you can prevent a lot of hypos and hypers with it!

I re-discovered sleeping in over the next days, eating at the times I wanted, learnt how to cope with having something attached to me 24/7 (Unless I was underwater, shower, etc…) but overall I was really impressed on the impact it had made on my life! The only negative thing I found early in development is that since I could eat whenever I wanted, I gained weight fast… but that’s called self-control and is a whole other topic!

Would I recommend the pump? Definitely! Would I go back to my pens? Not one single bit! It made my pregnancy go smoothly and my A1C go as low as 5.4 with little to no hypos!

What’s YOUR story? Pen? Pump? Tried both? Which one did you prefer?

 

Busy busy Bolus busy

Oof!

For the past few days I’ve been soooo busy… From picking my husband up at the airport to visiting family two hours away, it seems like I’ve just finally sat down and took a breath! All this moving around and sleeping elsewhere makes me forgetful sometimes. I forget my son’s milk, his utensils (He’s only 14 months old so he has his own plastic cutlery!) his blanket… But all these things I can buy at the local store.

What I can’t get in a jiffy is my insulin pump supplies. Thankfully I had some reservoirs in the bottom of my backpack from the last time we visited! I usually order my insulin supplies from medtronic’s online store so it usually takes about 3 days for me to get it.

I tend to forget things like toothpaste, my perfume, an extra pair of socks… But I make sure my diabetic supplies follow me around! 

What about you? Do you keep extra supplies at friend’s and family? Have you ever forgotten your supplies and couldn’t have any for a few days? Share! I’d love to hear from you!

“Forgot your supplies mommy? I’m NOT impressed!”

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