Diabetes Educational Resources:
Five Ways To Take More Responsibility For Your Diabetes
Suddenly… everything fell into place. You don’t have control over doctors, the medical profession, the pharmaceutical companies, and the mass media messages. Despite this lack of control, you have a demanding responsibility. You still have to prevent or limit those serious complication of Diabetes.
Part of this prevention is to learn as much about the Disease as possible – without becoming a medical researcher. However, so much of what has been written about Diabetes is to discredit a previous theory or someone, then they show that their idea is better. However, I think that is the wrong direction. I believe the question is not who’s to blame? But always what needs to be done?
You need to take more responsibility for your Diabetes. This responsibility is to look beyond the typical medical advice, not to ignore it but to add to it. You are not looking to replace the existing theories nor to suggest you get off your doctor’s treatment. These educational alternatives are to enhance your overall blood sugar results over the long haul.
To take this responsibility, you have to look for the results and trust the data not the experts. And you have to trust common sense. The idea that glycemic control is not the major goal of diabetes therapy is so illogical that you have the right to demand an explanation from your health care team. You will not get a good one from the ADA or other agencies. You do need expert opinion but only results will tell you who the experts are.
Below are 5 ways you can take more responsibility for your Diabetes.
- You Can Take More Responsibility by Testing Your Foods. Finding Out Which Are The Right Foods For You To Eat And Which Foods To Avoid
You can test to see what your foods are doing to your blood glucose levels. You can achieve this simply and inexpensively by taking your blood glucose before the meal and every half an hour or every hour after the meals and see what the food does to your blood glucose. Also in the morning, test your fasting level. You are looking for a food that spikes very little and can quickly bring you back to blood glucose levels that were there before the meal.
You can learn a great deal from these tests. For example, I have learned from my tests that my glucose level will spike and on an average, it will take three and a half hours to get back to the blood glucose level I started with before the meal. Another test to beware of is, if I start to eat before the blood glucose level settled down a new spike will start from that point and go even higher cause the blood glucose to go even higher. These tests can tell you when you can snack and have your next meal. But it is your numbers not generalized numbers across a wide variation of people.
Another thing you can learn from these tests is that small meals with even less carbohydrates gives better results in controlling Diabetes. It will create a lower spike and return to numbers before the meals sooner. So, I do my best to have small meals which spikes a little every 3 and one-half hours. Find out what your best eating rhythm is by testing it.
These tests are not expense at all. It costs me 23 cents per test strip. I take 7 measurements- ever half an hour. The total cost per test is $1.61. If I take a measurement every hour instead it cost 69 cents per test. It takes 10 seconds to type each number totaling 70 seconds per test. As you can see it is inexpensive and doesn’t consume a lot of time.
You would do these tests on foods that you will be consistently eating or foods you are uncertain of the effect they will have on you. You can do it periodically or if your A1C results are off.
Also, we need to do testing, because food labels can be very misleading. The number of carbohydrates listed on the packaging does not always coincide with the actual test results. Also at times you will be persuaded by research studies, reports or books. However, a most powerful way is to assess never assume. Test, test, and test.
This the biggest way you can take responsibility for your Diabetes.
An important note: Taking this testing responsibility is not to override a doctor. This is information to give to your doctor or help select directions that will be best for you. Don’ t eliminate the doctor advice they are an important member of your health team.
- You Can Take More Responsibility by Collecting A Larger Sample Of Tests For Your Doctor and You
You need more tests to determine what is going on with your blood glucose levels. A test here and there will not work. You need a larger number of tests to determine what to do and where to go with your Diabetes. These larger number of tests can be very helpful for your doctor, which prevents you from going in a wrong direction.
Here is a story to illustrate what I mean.
A few years back I had a bad sinus infection. I called the doctor’s office for an appointment. They mentioned they had a cancellation but I had to be there in 25 minutes. I lived 30 minutes away. But I gave it try, thinking the doctor was never on time. I arrived close enough. It was a fast and stressful ride in. The nurse wanted to take my blood pressure. I explained to her that I was stressed out and suggested she take it when I settle down. She said she needed to take it before the doctor arrived. If the doctor wanted to take another one later he could. Guess what? The blood pressure was high.
The doctor commented on the high blood pressure. I gave him my spiel. He took it again and it was a little better – it didn’t settle down yet. My doctor suggested a EKG test considering my age. The EKG had a double positive so that doctor suggested I see a cardiologist. The cardiologist looked at my record and said you have a high blood pressure and it concerned him, reading the number the nurse wrote weeks ago. He suggested a battery of heart exams which showed nothing. He then suggested blood pressure medication to get the blood pressure number down and he want to see me in a few weeks. I was disturbed by the absolute lack of any rigor in their decision process or any effort of paying any attention to me. I took my blood pressure twice a day for the three intervening weeks. The overall blood pressure average was 128/80. When I arrived in the doctor’s office I insisted that he look at my blood pressure results. He then concluded that there was no problem. It was this data that they do not have the time to collect but I did, and it stopped me from having to take a mediation I did not need.
Take your daily tests and any other tests and prepare them for the doctors to look over. Make it simple enough for them to read it.
So, what I am heading towards here is taking charge. Testing your blood sugar and giving doctors more information. Doctors are very busy people and do not have the time to do through extensive testing, unless they perceive it as extremely dangerous. I am not trying to blame them. I’m trying to find a solution that is best for me and the doctor. The answer is not to be passive but to collect as much information to give them to find out what really needs to be done.
That’s another way to take responsibility for your Diabetes.
- You Can Take More Responsibility by Find Who The Medical Advisors That You Should Follow.
There is a wide variety of Diabetes solutions and claims. You need a way to capture which ones are the right ones for you to follow.
Diabetes is not a single disease but a syndrome with at least fifty possible causes. It is very complex. Too much of what is written implies it is one disease with one cause, which is grossly misleading and possibly damaging to you. Rather than overlaying these medical generalizations over you as popular as they might be, the best and most accurate way would be to test yourself and have your doctor test you. Doctors are usually too focused on their theories, pharmaceutical beliefs and have little time for you or to talk about alternatives. I would love to have a statement from a Doctor if you do this and that you will not have complication with Diabetes. The liability issues are too high for them to state that.
For example, there are some Doctors out there that claim the problem with Diabetes has to do with having a high acidic PH level. I can believe this is true of some people, but is it true for you? This can simply be tested with Litmus paper, very inexpensive and simple to determine. You can check this out here. If your PH level is okay no need to follow that advisor. If on the other hand your PH level is not good you might want to do more testing and looking at the suggestion of that advisor.
Some doctors are still recommending a high carbohydrate diet, this is extremely dangerous for me. Because I can measure what it does to my sugar levels. Whether it works for you needs to be tested.
The same is true for Doctors recommending certain diets and supplements. Again, they might work for some but you need to test for yourself if it is good for you. For me I have found very little help controlling my sugar levels from supplements.
Find out the advisors you need to follow. It is not about trusting these advisors but trusting the results.
In addition, even the major Diabetic associations and their advice needs to be tested.
This is another way to take responsibility is finding the leaders you need to follow.
- You Can Take More Responsibility by Using More Educational Resources
The amount of education out there is staggering and very difficult for one person to master it all, I know I tried reading hundreds of research studies, books and anything I could get my hands on.
You can use this website as an educational tool to help you. By either using the comments to make requests or sharing your views. Jump into this conversation. Make suggestions. Make corrections. Request answers to anything you need to understand.
If you don’t have your Diabetes education paid for from your medical plan, sign up for an inexpensive energetic presentation Diabetes, without becoming a super expert. Try Udemy video Click Here To Check It Out!
Ask Doctor Bernstein’s Teleseminars are free and an excellent source of advice. Whatever questions you have, he will answer them. Plus, you get to hear all the questions other Diabetics raise that might be applicable to you. Click Here to register
Here are a few books:
- Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution: The Complete Guide To Achieving Normal Blood Sugar by Richard K. Bernstein. He is the best for low carb diet and managing normal blood sugar levels. Click here.
- Blood Sugar 101: What They Don’t Tell You About Diabetes Jenny Ruhl. She has done a wonderful job explaining the research and has done a detailed analysis and it is worth a read. Click here.
- The Biography of Diabetes by Doctor Robert Tattersoll. This book will give you a sense of a brief medical history of Diabetes from the beginning. Click here
There are many other resources we will bring up in future posts.
Educating yourself on Diabetes will be a step in taking responsibility for it.
- You Can Take More Responsibility by Creating A Network Of People That Can Help.
Who else do you need on your health care team. Your doctor should line you up with an eye doctor, neurologist, kidney specialist, cardiologist, and a dentist.
You can also get your doctor to tell you what they have learned about Diabetes since your last visit.
Many doctor’s referrals need to have symptoms to recommend. Unfortunately, Diabetes is one of those diseases that once the symptoms arises you make be in more trouble than you like.
Having access to a dietitian would also be helpful. When I was on a low carbohydrate diet, I did get very good blood glucose numbers, but my overall nutrition deteriorated. You need to balance both.
Another way to get a network is to follow a forum on Diabetes. There are many Diabetes forums where you can share you concerns with other Diabetics. If you want more simply just Google them.
Here are a few:
What’s Coming Next
We will be writing posts on the effects of belief systems, stress, lifestyle changes, questions for doctors, leading healthcare professionals and consequences of not taking responsibility. These are just a few. You can make suggestion where you might want us to go next. Just put it in the comments.
Help Spread the Word
Let’s get more people involved in the conversation. Let’s learn from each other
Be well and take charge…