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Diabetes... Help?

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#1 BillTheTractorMan OFFLINE  



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Posted December 10, 2014 - 07:35 PM

I have a very good friend who has is type 1 diabetic. She has thus far explained what to do and what to look for in an emergency. She's explained what and why as well. She is giving me some reading material that she approves of. (Reason for her needing to approve of it is because I found some pretty scary stuff that didn't explain anything.) Anyway she has been telling me how I can help her and what her limits are some what. How ever as a newbie to diabetes, I don't know how I can positively affect it with out directly confronting it. (I didn't know it existed until a little over 2yrs ago and never gave it a thought until the last couple months when it took the front stage.)

A big thing I'm learning is the signs of when she needs to check her blood sugars.

I'm also learning that my current diet plan is not very diabetic friendly. So I need to learn how to cook differently.

I'm completely lost with this relatively new to me situation. I'm hoping to learn as much as I can as fast as I can. I have no idea where to start or what to ask. I'm hoping maybe some one here can point me in the right direction.

I don't usually look outwardly for help with personal issues. But I think others input might be very positive in this situation.

Edited by BillTheTractorMan, December 10, 2014 - 07:37 PM.

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#2 toomanytoys84 OFFLINE  



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Posted December 10, 2014 - 08:39 PM

My mom has been a diabetic for a good while now. I can't offer any direct help but I know things she told me.

Carbs are the enemy. Pasta, bread, potatoes will send her sugar out of the park.

Drinks. Water or sugar free juices. Diet pop works but not good for other reasons.

Another thing she said is she can better manage eating breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, snack. Each smaller portions for the main meals.

she should be able to tell what her sugar is doing by how she feels. Mom says she feels light headed when her sugar is low

best thing you can do is be supportive and help her diet by eating the same diet as she does to not make her feel singled out.

Edited by toomanytoys84, December 10, 2014 - 08:40 PM.

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#3 hamman OFFLINE  


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Posted December 10, 2014 - 09:16 PM

First of all, your friend is letting you know that she may need your help. What you are doing is realizing that you need to be there for her and possibly yourself. Good for you and good for her. Learn all you can about it. It is hard for someone to understand it when they don't have it. If you have a family doctor as him / her for help in learning more about what to do and how to help your friend and yourself. Go to your local health department and ask them for help. that is what they are there. If neither of these options are there for you go to the local hospital and ask to talk to the community health nurse. That's there job. Talk to a registered dietitian. They will help you. Lastly don't do nothing. That will help no one.  Thanks for helping your friend.    Good luck.                                                Roger.

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Posted December 10, 2014 - 09:29 PM

Sugar runs in the family. With a managed diet, two of my Uncles have held it in check pretty well.
There are a bizzillion variants recipe wise on many foods that make them much more diabetics friendly.
Meat and veggies seem OK, smaller portions on starches. Some people will say that a little natural sugar (maple specifically) isn't cheating... My uncle sticks as sugar free as he can with deserts.

Good for you Bill.please let us know how you are making out.
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#5 BillTheTractorMan OFFLINE  



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Posted December 10, 2014 - 09:52 PM

She knows her situation very well, but she likes to push the limits a bit. I'm told her doctor wants her A1C (I think, sounded like a steak sauce to me though.) lower. My best understanding of that is she needs her diet adjusted and needs to watch her blood sugar closer.

I found a diabetic cook book with common ways to prepare "normal" foods so that they are better for her needs. I'm actually interested in this one. I would like to lose about 40lbs myself and this may help from what I read.

one thing we learned recently is she needs to keep extra insulin here at my place. She got stuck up here after the roads iced up and the 30mile drive to her parents was too dangerous. She ran short on insulin quick.

Thanks for the responses.
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#6 Little Irish Men OFFLINE  

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Posted December 10, 2014 - 10:27 PM

That there is some good advice , from some good people . My mother had this ,and every thing they said was right. And like what roger said" Go to your local health department and ask for help" I dont know how far you are from rochester minn .? but the mayo clinic.  they have a web site and the TOP doctors in the world. GOOD LUCK  and be strong.

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#7 FrozenInTime OFFLINE  

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Posted December 10, 2014 - 11:19 PM

Diabetes is not fun.  I have it.  When they caught mine, I had an AIC of 7.6.  I went through a dietitian every couple months for a year.  I learned how to eat correctly, what to avoid, what I could indulge in, etc.  I picked up a diabetic cook book and use it constantly.  There are web sites with recipes for low/no sugar cooking.  I count my carbs for every meal, learned to sub one food for another, how much, etc.  I still eat pasta, taters, cream soups but I limit the amounts and how often.  I have learned that I MUST eat atleast 3 times a day, with a lite snack, usually fruit between lunch and dinner.  I just had to learn WHAT to eat 3 times a day.  I felt I was eating too much as I was used to eating twice a day, or when I felt hungry.  BUT, eating on this 3 times a day, eating *correct* food, I have actually lost 70 pounds and my AIC has dropped down to 5.8.  Now I only take a light *maintenance* dose of Metformin.  It is possible to control and seriously drop the levels, but it takes work and lots of will power.  I will have to be careful with it the rest of my life, but with the training I received, I feel I can do it.  Like previously suggested, she needs to talk to a dietitian experienced with treating people with diabetes.  It is a step in the right direction. 


My wife would notice me getting spacey, glassy eye'd at times, more tired than normal, she will hand me an apple and tell me to eat it.  I don't know how to explain another way I get, you won't see it I don't think, but I could tell when I needed to get something in me stomach.  An apple, orange or something like a hand full of nuts would make the feeling go away and I would feel good again.  It is not a *I'm hungry* feeling, just a feeling of... don't know how to explain it, kinda like a feeling my gas tank is sucking on fumes and the engine is about to shut down.


I wish her good luck on her journey, it is controllable.

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Posted December 11, 2014 - 08:44 AM

how long has she been diabetic? Type 1 is "chidlhood" diabetes, her body makes now insulin what so ever. She needs to be very diligent on her diet and checking her sugars various times of the day so she can regulate her insluin properly. I have diabetes in our family, mostly Type 2 which is "adult onset' or "insulin resistant". It's a tad easier to regulate, but still requires effort. My mom has been dealing with it for 30-40 yrs and we are fighting her with high numbers right now. My sister pasted away at 54 this past Aug and everyone pointed to her sugar dropping and going into coma. My mom has gotten scared about he'rs so she has started eating a lot of carbs, very little protein so she won't drop too low, it's a battle with her.


I have good friends who the mom has Type 2, the 8 yr old daugther has Type 1, the poor little girl is super high then crashes, it's rough on her. They recently got a black Lab that has been trained, he alerts them with the drop below 70 or go above 180. He even alerted the mom while she was at her girl's school, she checked their blood, both her and girl were fine, but another girl in a another class was out of range. He is amazing.


Pretty much what has been said is spot on. Just make sure you know the signs of when her sugars drops too low, this is the bad times. She can go high, 200, 300, 400 and be just fine, but when the sugar drops too low, the body shuts down and she can go into coma. I had to deal with a couple lows when I ran life squad, you can lose a person within a few hours when it drops low versus being high.

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#9 boyscout862 OFFLINE  

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Posted December 11, 2014 - 10:01 AM

Always have extra insulin (with the prescription) and something to eat, with you, to help even out the blood sugar. The good diet will have many benefits. Good Luck, Rick

Edited by boyscout862, December 11, 2014 - 10:02 AM.

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#10 oldedeeres OFFLINE  

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Posted December 11, 2014 - 12:07 PM

What everyone has said is spot on. My sister in law had type 1 and mother in law type 2 . Diet can make or break your success in dealing with this, and modern research has definitely helped in handling what used to be considered an almost insurmountable problem. Physical activity also enters the equation, but you learn to "read" how you feel when working hard and balance your diet accordingly. They always had a snack in their pockets when away from home or even just out in the yard working, to deal with "that feeling" if it came on. Good luck with this.
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Posted December 11, 2014 - 06:45 PM

I am diabetic and take a small amout of medication and watch my diet....Really should watch the diet more, but it is difficult.

Good luck to your friend, and I hope you can help her if she needs help!

As a volunteer fire department medical 1st responder, I have seen many folks have problems with high & low blood-sugar.

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#12 BillTheTractorMan OFFLINE  



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Posted December 11, 2014 - 08:00 PM

She found out 7yrs ago when she was a teen.

Thanks for all the responses. We're together again tonight while she's working nights in my little town again this weekend. I made brats and tator tots for dinner. Her blood sugar went up around 300. I learned how she figures how much insulin and how the pens work. Other then my issue with needles it doesn't seem too bad.
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