Category Archives: excercise

Your sugars and your holidays


holidaysHow does one approach glucose control during the holidays?

Holidays are generally a time where we relax and let our hair down a bit more than at other times. Included in this are dietary relaxations like consuming more refined sugar than normal as well as alcohol in slightly greater amounts and strengths, depending on your preference and age. Also for some it may include more than normal outdoor activity and exercise.

All of these have repercussions for glucose levels.

So, obviously each person has an entirely unique set of circumstances as well as metabolism but roughly speaking here are some basic holiday guidelines.

If you are a type 1 and injecting insulins and testing :

1.) Consider testing your sugar more often if you are exercising more and possibly feeling hypo.

2.) Consider adjusting your insulin dose at meals with more carbs and simple carbs than you are used to (perhaps go through your dietician and doctor re this).

3.) Understand that if you drink a lot and sleep in the next morning this is dangerous and alcohol will at first raise your sugars and then after about 10-12 hours drop your sugars, so watch out for a “missed” hypo and make sure you tag a mate to check on you at least.

4.) If you are snacking and the carb count is more than 10-15 g of carbs you may need to bolus for this kind of snack in order to keep your sugars stable but it really depends on a number of factors other than just this.

5.) the weather plays a bigger role than you think, some people will go either high or low depending on very hot or very cold conditions so try to understand your body and rather pre-empt the rise or fall or at least be vigilant and test more often.

6.) consider wearing a type of medic alert bracelet in case of unconsciousness – it may save your life.

For type 2 diabetics on oral agents only or have additional insulin injections

1.) Most importantly holidays can mean massive weight gain, and this is very bad and hard to get rid of in the long run. Pre-empt this by seeing a dietician who could give you guidelines on how to cheat without too much weight gain. Also see it as a challenge to maintain your weight rather than a punishment and reward yourself with things other than the wrong food on the holidays. Set incentives and be kind to yourself with spoilers that blow your hair back and don’t put weight on.

2.) Make sure that you have enough medication and testing strips for the time that you are away as well as some back-up diabetes supplies.

3.) Know what carbs are and how they affect your sugars and plan accordingly.

4.) Know the carb content of the alcohol you are drinking and factor it into the daily calculation of insulin (if injecting) as well as the total effect of the alcohol and your activities (physical) or not.

5.) Try to see the holiday as an opportunity for increased movement -exercise in many different forms and find one that works for you, start the routine on holiday.

6.) Experiment with different healthy food and take mental note of how you feel and what it does to your sugars.

We all need a break, a re-set and a proper unwind. So most of all give yourself the mental  “space” and time you need to do just this. Planning for your holiday around your diabetes will aid in enjoying this time more and taking stress out of certain situations.

There are always healthcare professionals on duty, know the nearest casualty location and telephone numbers as well as ambulance and other emergency numbers before leaving home.

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Diabetes does not have to be


To be or not to be – TYPE 2 I mean. Lifestyle induced diabetes. This is a disease that we hardly saw 100years ago. It’s a new thing really.

A question of quality of life I believe. Both to prevent it and to “cure” it. Type 2 diabetes is essentially “toxicity of life” disease. Too much sugar, too much bad stuff, mainly sugar that causes inflammation generally but is specifically bad for the pancreas and the reason being it is like flogging a horse. Every time YOU demand insulin of the pancreas (every time you eat sugar or carbs) it has to produce it. Only it only has so many b cells to do this and the harder you flog it the harder those cells work and you literally flog your pancreas. At some point – once you have lost 50 % of those cells you become diabetic.

Now here ‘s the interesting thing. At 49.9% you are not diabetic but at 50% you are – go figure. Like with a lot of things there is a spectrum. So, surely you understand that one can “pick up ” this continuum BEFORE you qualify for type 2. SO why not find out??

Once you have type2 for real it is a matter of time before you flog those last 50% and then need insulin to save eyes, heart, limbs etc. However IF you take it seriously and “recruit” dying cells that are about to become apoptotic you can actually turn it around a bit, not back to 100% but you can slow the progress and retard the disease. So why not do that?

To be or not to be ? The choice is yours and the decision in your hands for the grab or not?

 

Surgery as a patient


The hardest 2 things I have ever had to do is deliver 2 babies. Yes I did do it naturally and perhaps at the age of 37 and 39 I should have listened to the wise advice of so many colleagues and had 2 planned caesars. I wanted the very best for the two angels that I had waited so many years for and I believed going through the birth canal was that. What I did not realise is what it would take out of and from me.

Delivering a child naturally comes with a lot of waiting (patience has never been my forte). It then involves an “older” body “co-operating” with the birth process. If that had all happened “naturally” I guess it may have been different. My body needed help and in the second birth it needed an ocean of a medication called oxytocin (syntocinon). This very large dose into my system helped my 39 year old uterus contract in order to deliver one 3.5 kg baby.

I will keep you in a bit of suspense, like a bit of a thriller novel.

I have just (last friday) had surgery – 4 years after my precious second child’s birth. It was an operation to effectively remove my uterus. This organ that has caused a fair amount of poor quality of life. The surgeon was extremely happy with his operation (they usually are) and presented me with a photo of the wretched organ and great news that it had gone swimmingly.

Wind back 4 years. I had just delivered a baby at around 3 am in the morning. The team were tired. God knows they had had me in chunks. No nursing staff are ever delighted to “nurse” a lady doctor – goes against many grains. I was lying in a lot of blood and had already started to bleed. I was in a fair amount of pain considering I had already delivered a child. The pain escalated, the nausea escalated, the bleeding escalated. I called for help so to speak and was told to shut up and sleep (in my own blood) they had really had enough of me for one night. I tried again. I phoned a friend – no one was up at 4 am. I tried my husband – his phone was off – he was trying to sleep after a hell of a night. I phoned the neighbour and asked him to wake my husband and come to the hospital.

AT one point I left my body and watched mayhem from above.

I woke up – well “arrived” back in my body about 2 days later having been taken to theatre, resuscitated, transfused etc. They never did figure out what was causing my pain 4 years ago. I started on a long journey of recovery mentally, physically and emotionally.

The surgeon showed me (this last saturday)

what happened – my uterus had ruptured and well lets just say the human body is an amazing thing.

I do certainly wish that it had been discovered 4 years ago for a few reasons. The very first and most important being my marriage which suffered greatly for the rupture. The second being the suffering that could so easily have been avoided. I can actually deal with a fair amount (though I do believe my pain threshold is useless), but my wish would be for another women to not have to go through the journey I have travelled. The third being the faith I have lost in my own “kind”. Never did I think it possible to be treated the way I was that night or on 3 occasions where all I really wanted was an apology from the midwife and all staff closed rank and called me something close to a lunatic and just bloody well get over this and move on.

Well I can now. Move on.

I can also say that a hysterectomy is a relative walk in the park. Almost a non-event. Yes I had pain post-op and yes I required the strong stuff. But 2 days later I was not on anything for pain and today I feel like I could run a marathon (I won’t for all those urging me to rest).

Life is an interesting journey and some of the suffering actually helps create focus and for that I am grateful. The most awesome part is just beginning – a journey with Dave and my two girls.

Josef Pilates – unconventional response


I do just love the story of this man, born in Germany to a father of greek descent. He had “healthy” parents who got the flame kindled for what was to come. He was a sickly child with many obstacles to overcome and born into the world at a challenging time. He was a circus performer who toured England and somehow also got involved in training the scotland yard police in physical training.

When the war broke out he was “interned” on the isle of man due to being german (first world war). It was during this time that he helped prisoners of war who were bedridden to “exercise” by “creating” novel equipment so that they could exercise in bed.

He was a war hero and asked by the kaiser to train german troops but declined the offer and rather went across to America to start a new life (and not partake in world war 2).

In Manhatten he started a “contrology” studio in the same building as some dance studios and the rest is largely history.

I find it fascinating that someone dealt a fairly difficult hand of cards came up so trumps with this “new” form of exercise that now helps millions of people across the globe.

If you have not tried pilates do it today : mind body soul invigoration!

don’t just sit there – phone around, google and go

A spoon full of sugar :)


Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down. This is a philosy that buys into disguising one thing as another. A way to make something that is hard easier. Something that tastes bitter taste sweet in order to get it down and in so doing to heal.

While this may be a technique that could work for say antibiotics, it is maybe not the way to go for a general philosophy in life. Sometimes we need to face the hard truth – the music even if it is damn hard to hear.

The hard facts are that simple carbs – boil down to sugar – in copious amounts are bad for you. Simply put sugar makes things stick to other things – your arteries and veins and organs – eyes and kidneys are unhappy campers if you load the body with sugar.

There are even some studies that show the effects of sugar on the brain being something similar to cocaines’ effect on the brain. And the more you have the more you need kind of scenario plays out here too.

How many spoons of sugar in that coke ? or fruit juice ?? Too many.

Think about what you drink.

Think about quality of life, and longevity with quality.

Think blue – diabetes, type 2 is preventable as well as treatable.blue-circle

 

 

 

Diabetes type 1 on the rise?


Is type 1 on the rise or is it just that we are better at diagnosing it?

Type 1 diabetes is where your pancreas or B cells are not able to produce any insulin and thus your cells are not able to get any glucose into them and literally “starve” and are forced to metabolise other substrates in order to attempt survival. This is what causes the massive weight loss associated with initial diagnosis.

The anniversary for the first successful insulin being dosed was yesterday.

1921 – Banting and Best (accredited -though there were more people involved).Ninety six years ago. So before that if you had type 1 diabetes you would not really survive.

Now however type 1 ‘s sometimes outlive non-diabetic patients.

We have come a long way.

Is type 1 hereditary ? In part so that is one reason why we do have an increase in type 1 diabetics. It is not the whole story.

However type 2 diabetes has risen out of proportion to any other chronic disease on the planet. To say it is a tsunami logarithmic disaster is to be polite about it.

Type 2 is preventable as well as treatable. And yet! we have this huge huge burden on our health economics worldwide. Does not make sense.

So a challenge for the new year – are you on a trajectory to developing type 2 ? You have the power to stop that. IF you are already type 2 there are so many things you can do to get better control as well as control  the progression and not go onto the inevitable : insulin.

For inspiration and ideas : follow Fran Steart on Facebook for wonderful recipes, get exercising (in any way that takes your fancy) and see a team of practitioners who can get you to target. 🙂

 

 

 

 

Diabetes -wish it would trend like Trump- in an ideal world (sigh)


Diabetes is a scourge of modern day living. Why are we not winning ?

This is a simple disease – type 2 that is perfectly PREVENTABLE and perfectly treatable and yet we are losing this battle left right and centre.

Dialysis, amputations, blindness abound and really should not.

WE have the tools but we do not have political will or the will of the people.

We live in an age where as humans we choose easy street time and time again. Easy street in eating, easy street in not exercising, easy street in unhealthy choices.

One hundred years ago we were skinny and ate half of what we do currently and guess what we had a almost nil type 2 problem. Fast forward to 2016 and the numbers are staggering (like a drunkard) – out of control.

For a disease that is preventable and treatable.

A sugar above 10 has an effect much like coke on the floor – everything becomes one sticky stuck together mess – that’s a poorly controlled diabetic’s body.

Keep your sugar below 10 and voila – no problems in fact, keep your sugar at target and you live longer than a non-diabetic !

Easy peasy lemon squeezy – but we are not doing it ?

I urge you to look after your body – the only one you have – check your sugar regularly -pick up diabetes early and treat it. Better still eat healthily and exercise and skip it. It is possible. It is really possible – however if you would rather just be fat and still – have some diabetes.

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