Tuesday Topic: The State Of My Diabetic Style

Woman Shopping

Spring has sprung so it’s time to ditch the tights & cardigans and pull out the summer attire.  For the average person, it’s probably not a concern, but for me this time of year brings on a little anxiety.  I give injections so there is somewhat of a battle field of bruises on my arms and thighs.  This made me think – has diabetes altered my sense of style?

  • Shorts – I don’t wear them and probably haven’t since high school.  Bruises on my thighs don’t look too hot, but a good tan does help camouflage them.

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3 Major Concerns About Living Alone

Single Life

My life is very different than the average person my age.  I’ve never been married, don’t have children and have shared my home with a housemate for the past 10 years.  This unconventional lifestyle allowed me to pursue my dreams and the freedom to travel, but next month everything changes.  I’m branching out and going back to living alone.  YAY ME!

I look forward to walking around naked, leaving dishes in the sink, having multiple closets to house my shoes and storing diabetes supplies wherever I want. Continue reading

Whip It Together Stir Fry Recipe

Wok

I do my best to prepare meals that will stretch a few days since I’m single person on the go.  This week I was bored with the usual go to meals so I pulled out the wok and started emptying out the fridge.  Found items include portobello mushrooms, a chicken breast, a yellow onion and broccoli.  Let’s do this.  Continue reading

Watching A Tornado Boost My Blood Sugar

What A Tornado Does To Blood Sugar

I was reasonably calm–eating dinner in the garage inside my car, the dish wasn’t getting a signal in the storm–trying to figure out if a tornado could drop close to my house. As I tune in, I hear what I’m conditioned to hear, “This is crazy. Stuff is flying everywhere. You won’t believe this, another tornado is on the ground in Moore.”

That’s where I grew up. We’ve been through May 3rd, May 20th, and countless other “get in the shelter” moments. I currently live about 20 miles north of Moore in Oklahoma City, a place that missed the twisters last night. Moore was not so lucky, again. Voodoo. Yet, as a family member of mine put it, “I wasn’t freaking out this time. I knew it was only an F1, so we were calm. The fence is down and I think we lost a few shingles but I’m heading to bunko.” Continue reading

Choose The Champion From The Contenders — Low Snack March Madness

The Low Blood Sugar Snack Champion

Our field of contenders is complete. Thank you to everyone who submitted their life-saving food or drink choices. In regards to many of the snacks, I can recall specific instances where I consumed that food when low. With that said, speaking from personal experience, I have written a review of the low blood sugar snack contenders.

It’s time for us to crown a champion of low blood sugar recovery. You get two votes. Pick two snacks off the list, yes, they must be on the list, and submit those two snacks in the comments section below. The DDG team will tally the votes and declare a champion at the beginning of next week. Voting will last one week.

Banana

They’re cheap and easy. Not usually an attractive description, but here, it’s perfect. Coming in at a smooth, versatile 27 carbs, this fruit gives your blood sugar a bang for its buck, with staying power due to the fiber. Continue reading

Low Blood Sugar March Madness–Submit Your Champion

The Low Blood Snack Champion

The DDG team is looking to crown a champion of our own, one to rival the NCAA tourney’s champion found in March Madness. Today, that tournament begins. It’s time to declare the field of contenders, a group fighting for a distinguished honor.

World’s Greatest Low Blood Sugar Recovery Snack

Why is the DDG looking to anoint a titleholder? Because we care about this. Amber eats fruit strips. Ryan loves cereal. Whole foods vs processed foods. Juice vs candy. We deserve a champion.

We need contenders. We need your go-to low blood sugar snacks. Who knows, you might even be low as you read this. If you’re not low, pretend that you’re low. What do you grab out of the fridge? Cabinet? At the gas station? What do you crave? Please don’t induce a low blood sugar in this process.

Okay, now you’re ready. In the comment section below, submit your two top snacks. The DDG team will compile this list into a bracket and release the first round of voting next Monday.

Ready. Set. Snack.

Take That Diabetes – Today I Win

DDG Flipping the Bird

I’m stoked to share my recent visit to the endocrinologist.  In earlier years this dreaded trip brought on a week or so of anxiety…  Would he know I lied about my blood sugar?  Could he tell I drank a wine cooler a few weeks ago?  Will they have to take blood?  He is the window into my diabetic life and I was terrified as to what he could reveal.  I no longer stress about this biannual visit, in fact, I kind of enjoy it.  I work hard every single day to feel good and my numbers hopefully reflect my actions.

The visit starts with a super sweet nurse who allows me to prick my own finger.  YAY ME!  Having someone else prick my finger seems to be WAY more painful (control issues?).   Continue reading

The Spring Break Guide: 4 Tips To Have The Time Of Your Life

The Diabetes Spring Break Guide

Let’s talk about Spring Break. I can feel it. I know you can too. It’s starting to warm up. Winter is fading away, well, for me because I live in Oklahoma, not Minnesota, and it’s trip taking time. Spring break is doable with diabetes. No doubt. Being out of college, I now look back fondly on the naivety of previous trips, filled with great memories and great luck. That being just said, here are my tips on how to not only survive spring break, but make it one for the ages.

Bring your glucagon kit

You know that red thing with a prescription label on it, probably in the back of your fridge? Either grab it, or pick up a new one at the pharmacy because that one in the fridge expired 3 years ago. Continue reading

Being Mindful, While Drinking Coffee, and Inhaling Insulin | Amber Clour and Ryan Fightmaster | Real Life Diabetes Podcast #3

Real Life Diabetes Podcast #3, Amber Clour and Ryan Fightmaster

Amber and Ryan got together, just to catch up on the diabetic life. The diabetes world is booming with news. Inhaled insulin is on the diabetic radar again, with Afrezza now on the market. New research revealed how diabetes leads to an increased risk of depression. They were not surprised. Mindfulness plays a role here, and they discussed its benefits. They shared their opinions. Coconut oil has them obsessed. Along with those topics, they rambled as only those with diabetes can, regarding just about everything that affects blood sugar, which is well, everything. Continue reading

Tuesday Topic: Breaking Down GlucoSuccess, Apple’s Latest ResearchKit App

Diabetes App By Apple - GlucoSuccess

Yesterday was similar to a holiday for many–it was Apple Keynote day. I had no idea that it was happening. I have an iPhone. It works for me. I’m no Apple geek. But, one of my med school buddies was watching it live, saw the announcement about ResearchKit and diabetes, and sent me a link. After reading it initially, my interest peaked. The iPhone would be an incredible vehicle to gather data on a HUGE scale, think about their 700 million users, but I needed more information.

Basically, Apple has partnered with a few prestigious research organizations, Massachusetts General, Mount Sinai, Stanford, etc., allowing them to gather data on very large populations of people with diabetes, asthma, heart disease, and Parkinson’s. Here is the official verbage from the app GlucoSuccess by Massachusett’s General Hospital:

GlucoSuccess is powered by Apple’s new ResearchKit, allowing you to participate in a medical research study focused on Pre-Diabetes and Diabetes. Our study team at Massachusetts General Hospital hopes that this app will not only further research into Diabetes, but also help you gain insight into how your behaviors affect your health.

GlucoSuccess - Massachusetts General Hospital, diabetes app Continue reading

Eye-Opening Revelation At The Doctor’s Office

Doctor's Office Check In

As a diabetic veteran, I’m accustomed to the arsenal of diabetes inquiries in addition to the ten page questionnaire about my family history.  As I strolled in early to get my mammogram, I was greeted by two lovely women who were easily over the age of 85 and adorable.  As I checked in one of them said, “Sugar, do you know where you’re going?”  I don’t know that I’ve ever been called Sugar, but am delighted by her sweet demeanor.  I make my way through the labyrinth of hallways and reach my destination –  Women’s Imaging.  I check in, grab my pen and am ready to start knocking out the paperwork, but instead the nurse asked me about insurance and had me return to my seat.  NO diabetes questions? Continue reading

The Indiscriminate, Transcendental Low Blood Sugar

Photo Credit: Red Dirt Ruminations

Photo Credit: Red Dirt Ruminations

Peace. Focus. Confidence. Ask a person with diabetes if those words are associated with low blood sugar. You’ll get a resounding no. If we look at it from the perspective of the brain’s energy needs in blood, 20 percent of each heart beat heads to that squishy mass. In that blood is energy in the form of sugar. Cut down the energy source to your brain and lose functioning power, like the ability to focus.

Science is wonderful. Yet, the phrase Albert Einstein is often credited with, Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted, applies here. Continue reading

Tuesday Topic: Would A Soda Tax Encourage Healthier Eating?

Soda Aisle                                                               Image from Valestock/Shutterstock.com

A few days back, Jack Woodfield, a writer for diabetescommunity.com released Reduced sugar in diet and soda tax proposed by federal panel, an article addressing recommendations by the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) comprised of 14 individuals from various fields.  After reading the article, I asked myself – Would a soda tax really encourage Americans to choose healthier options?

The DGAC announced that sugar reduction is a matter of urgency.  Roughly two-thirds of American adults are reported to be overweight or obese and 117 million Americans have one or more preventable chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease, both or which are being called “major public health concerns” by the panel.  In addition to reducing sugar in the American diet, the report proposes a soda tax with revenues from this tax could then financially support greater implementation of healthy fruits and vegetables.  The report also targets fructose, which is commonly found in soda and processed foods linked to increased rates of type 2 diabetes.

According to the article and 571-page report, “Higher sugar-sweetened-beverage taxes may encourage consumers to reduce sugar-sweetened-beverage consumption,”

A few questions immediately come to mind. Continue reading

Diabetic Retinopathy Is Officially On The Radar

Eye Exam

Since my diagnosis date 31 years ago, I’ve had this little dark cloud that follows me.  Most days I forget it’s there or meditate to leave it behind, but it recently returned.  In a recent post, Does Diabetes Limit Your Career Path, I mention a message we received from a lovely woman suffering from diabetic retinopathy (DR).  Her message really hit home.

Three days after writing Does Diabetes Limit Your Career Path, Ryan and I had our eyes tested by Dr. Jacob T. Smith, of Classic Vision.  We had a lengthy discussion and reviewed a few images of DR and other diabetes related complications found in the eye.  Post discussion, I jump in the hot seat and images were taken of both of my eyes.  Ryan grabbed his camera to film Dr. Smith’s comments, which started with something like, “Would you like me to sugar coat the situation?

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