Fellow Grinder – The Diabetes Advocate, Dave Thomas

Dave Thomas

The DDG recently met Dave Thomas, a T2D who raised a ton of cash for the American Diabetes Association, Tour de Cure.  He was a total hoot and fulfilled the DDG mission of Real Support For The Diabetic Life, by honestly answering the questions we presented.

1. What would you like to tell all of those people who don’t understand the type 2 diabetes diagnosis?  All the people that I run into who don’t understand diabetes have never taken the time to look into it or someone with diabetes hasn’t taken the time to explain it to them.   There are a lot of stereotypes associated with being diabetic.  I would like for them to ask me about it when they see me checking my sugar, or in my case taking some insulin.  It would open up a great conversation about my diabetes and an opportunity to educate them.  If it’s someone I know pretty well I could share what to look for if I am high or low.  Just about everybody in my office knows now that I have diabetes.  It didn’t always used to be that way.   I still get the occasional remark,  “you can’t eat that, you’re diabetic”.  I just smile and talk to them later.

2. You’ve been a diabetes activist and fundraiser for a few diabetes organizations. What advice could you give them in order to get more people involved?  You have to be passionate about it.  Sharing about diabetes and educating people whenever and wherever you can.   You can wait to raise money at the time of the event but then that’s is all you do.  If you want to bring awareness to the facts and the effects of diabetes then you have to be an advocate year round.

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What A Crock!

What A Crock Event

A few years ago my dear friend and owner of Native Roots Market created a crockpot challenge to benefit Dreamer Concepts: A Community Art Space.  The event was a total blast and everyone was fighting for the top prize – CREAM OF THE CROCK!  There were four categories: Meat Entree, Vegetarian/Vegan Entree, Dessert and Vegan Dessert.  The rules are fierce and were not to be taken lightly.

1. The entire dish must be cooked in the Crock Pot, only in the Crock Pot, and stay in the Crock Pot.
2. Fill the Crock at least 3/4 full. The more people who get to taste your dish, the more votes you can get.
3. You don’t have to disclose your secret recipe, but please list your ingredients so we don’t have any allergy mishaps.
4. Contestants should arrive with their fully-cooked Crock Pot by 6:30 PM for set-up & pre-judging.

As the Executive Director of Dreamer Concepts, I couldn’t go down without a fight.  After weeks of crockpot research, I found what I believed could take home the gold, Chicken with Macaroni and Smoked Gouda Cheese.  HEAVEN!

Ingredients: Continue reading

5 Disturbing Diabetes Observations from the Fair


state fair

The DDG was recently out and about at a September institution: The Oklahoma State Fair. Amber took in the sights during a weekend afternoon and Ryan reveled in the Friday night lights. What we saw, well, isn’t all that surprising I suppose–all things fried, parents spanking in public, and 14 year olds smoking cigarettes. All that being said, only judgment through diabetic eyes was passed. Here’s our list of the most disturbing observations from the fair:

#1 – Deep Fried Gummy Bears

fried gummy bears Do you really need to deep fry something that is already so unhealthy? What joy does a deep friend gummy bear bring to someone? Wouldn’t they taste better normally? Please explain.

#2 – Corn Dog Stands

corndog standWhile making an hour long lap around the fair grounds, I counted 18 corn dog stands. Do we really need that many options for battered, fried meat on a stick?

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5 Ways to Back Off the “High” Cliff

Walking off the "High" blood sugar cliff

High blood sugar sucks. Really though, it changes who you are. You become angrier. Patience has no meaning anymore. The idea of a nap rules over everything else in the world. Things that you love, my example would be cycling, sound detestable. Someone could ask me to go cycling and I’d want to respond with “I hate bicycles!”.

Okay, I know you get it. So how do we still function as human beings while high? I have a few hacks that I’ve learned via trial by fire over the 15 #blessed years of my life:

1) Repeat “Life is impermanent. How you feel now, will soon change.”

– Just reminding myself that all will be okay again is reassuring. It’s easy for us to believe that our current struggle will last forever but it’s just not reality. It always gets better. Continue reading

Tuesday Topic: Relying On, Well… The Relion

Relion

For at least the last decade, I can recall the same test strip options being available: Freestyle, Freestyle Lite, Accucheck, OneTouch, and Precision.

Do these brands come up with new, more precise technology? No doubt. They do. Are the most up-to-date options, with the most accuracy and painless application, ever covered by my insurance? Never. Take for example the IBGStar testing machine, Sanofi’s development for the iPhone. This is real cool but not cool enough to pay $1.50 per strip. Continue reading

Thriller Alarm Clock

Thriller Alarm Clock

I spent 12 days in Children’s Hospital and was lucky to have met a few fellow sick kids.  One in particular humbles me to this day.  John woke up every morning and blasted Thriller on his record player.  I didn’t mind waking up to that song, but God it was early.  John was a permanent resident because his parents abandoned him due to his condition and insane medical bills.  I am not sure how long he had been there, but his room was a bedroom, not a hospital room and the nurses treated him like a son.

I have no idea what was wrong with him, but he was in a wheelchair and had a number of tubes coming out of every part of this body.  I was pissed about the one IV – ridiculous.  I couldn’t help staring at the hole in his neck and he explained at some point in me stalking him that it was the only way he could breath. The tube and the snotty nose were pretty appalling, but it didn’t keep me from visiting him every day. Continue reading

Simple Recipe To Feed Your Kale Addiction – #1

Eat More Kale

I recently posted on Facebook, that I had a new addiction – KALE!  You wouldn’t believe the outpouring of kale dietary comments, recipes and products.  I decided to start a new series of posts – my addiction to kale.   I will continue to post new and exciting discoveries with this leafy green as I feed my healthy addiction.  We will begin with kale chips.  Who doesn’t love a nice salty chip, but this one won’t leave you feeling guilty.

Ingredients:

  • Bunch/Bushel or whatever it is called of kale (any color)
  • Smoked Salt – check out Native Roots Market
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 375 and find a large baking sheet. Continue reading

Zen and the Art of Diabetes Management, Part I

Zen and the Art of Diabetes Management

I’ll admit that I could be more without diabetes. Not acknowledging that, to be blunt, is ignorant. Don’t mistake me, I subscribe to the power of positive thinking, knowing that it improves the quality of each moment. However, I will not use that methodology to convince myself that my life is better with the disease.

Diabetes is a grind, never ceasing. Yet, it’s forged who we are. Most of us will give it responsibility for great things in our lives. Still though, deep down, on occasion or daily, we ask the question, “Could we be more without it?” Being content knowing that we could, that’s the Zen in diabetes. Continue reading

Tuesday Topic: Killing Your Kids With Food

 

Toddler Lunch IdeasI stumbled across an article that actually offended me last night, Ten (Quick and Easy) Toddler Lunch Ideas.  I am not a dietician, but feel confident stating that dried cranberries, potato chips, crackers, cheddar cheese, and a fruit burst do not add up to even a remotely healthily lunch.  I can’t imagine how horrible a child would feel after eating this for lunch.

While working on this post, I happen to catch a few minutes of The Doctors, where they were discussing a controversial campaign to combat childhood obesity.

The episode featured a powerful public awareness video campaign created by Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.  The video shows an obese 30-something-year-old man being rushed to an emergency room after having a heart attack. It then flashes back through the past 30 years showing the man eating fast food and candy and sitting on the couch playing video games. The video flashes forward to the ER again, and the tagline on the screen reads: “Your child’s future doesn’t have to look like this.”  The Doctors say  the “Rewind the Future” video might seem harsh to some, but parents need to understand its strong message: Unhealthy food choices that start as children can have deadly consequences.

The Doctors share a few alarming statistics and food swap ideas: Continue reading