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I am a type 1 diabetic (questions and comments)

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

So after almost hi-jacking a thread this afternoon I realized that some of us type 1 diabetics should get our own thread.  I knew in the past that @Gibonius had told me of some experiences after my blood sugar soared because of a steroid shot.  @DerekS was giving some info today on pumps and cgm.

 

A little history of my own journey.  I was diagnosed at age 19 while away at college.  It sucked.  I had actually had 2 friends in my youth that were also diabetic so when it happened I knew it was going to be work.  However I didnt really get on things until about 10 years later.  I met my wife and changed my life around.  It is recently though where I have tried my hardest to get my numbers in order.  In the last year I am down to a 7.5 a1c after years in the 9s.  I have started a more carb conscious diet and exercise regularly.

 

My endocrinologist has mentioned a pump and I have started looking into one.  I wanted to see if I could get a better grasp on my a1c before switching to a pump.  Those with a pump, did insurance help at all with it?  I am wondering if they just dont cover it or maybe they cover some.  I am pretty close to my max contribution this year after a couple of surgeries so I wonder if it would even count against my max out of pocket.  They way it sounds a pump and cgm may be the way to go.

 

Any other tips and tricks?  My endo told me about the Calorie King app and I use it a lot now.  Gives you the basic calorie breakdown of a ton of foods.

 

Any others out there with diabetes feel free to chime in.

post #2 of 11
The only thing that has helped me get my a1c to acceptable levels is the pump and CGM. There was such a dramatic and immediate difference the out of pocket was well worth it. My insurance covered 80% if i recall. My out of pocket for everything (plus a little over a years worth of supplies) was right at $6K.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 

How invasive is the pump and CGM in everyday life?  Showering, etc?

 

I've also heard in the past the the CGM wasnt incredibly accurate (like I would need to finger test my current amount to calibrate)  Has this improved?

post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcman311 View Post

How invasive is the pump and CGM in everyday life?  Showering, etc?

I've also heard in the past the the CGM wasnt incredibly accurate (like I would need to finger test my current amount to calibrate)  Has this improved?

the pump disconnects when you shower or swim etc. I also take it off when i work out. So, not at all actually. The hiccup i had, was that i didnt want to take a girl home and get to some love makin, and take my shirt off and have to explain what i was hooked up to. But im married now, so its not an issue.

the CGM can be accurate, or it can be way off. you still have to test your BS 2x a day to calibrate. there can be some inaccuracies if you test immediately after a high carb meal and its shooting up quickly. Its helped a ton for me because i had a hell of a time checking mine. ... almost never actually...maybe once a week.
post #5 of 11
Have a look at John McDougall's website. He is a world-famous board-certified physician practicing in California. www.drmcdougall.com

He most definitely is not an Internet wannabe-expert or quack.

So you were type-1 diabetic for years and never diagnosed? Your pancreas is making no insulin?
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 

Correct, my pancreas does not make insulin.  I was diagnosed at 19.  I just never used to have what they call "tight control" of my blood sugar levels.  The 3 month average test (a1c) numbers were always high.  I was never good about testing or counting carbs.  That changed in the last few years and now I am right at the upper level of their control window. (still can come down)  I changed a lot of things including my diet which I try and restrict carbs to under 125g a day.

post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcman311 View Post

Correct, my pancreas does not make insulin.  I was diagnosed at 19.  I just never used to have what they call "tight control" of my blood sugar levels.  The 3 month average test (a1c) numbers were always high.  I was never good about testing or counting carbs.  That changed in the last few years and now I am right at the upper level of their control window. (still can come down)  I changed a lot of things including my diet which I try and restrict carbs to under 125g a day.

thats tough. when i got on the pump i gained 25lbs in NO time. Ive been dieting and excercising and keep my carbs to below 50-60 a day. awful because i love bread/pasta
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 

When my numbers started coming down my weight also started to rapidly increase.  It didn't help with a busy life, family, kids, etc.  I try to hit the exercise bike 4-5 times a week for 30 mins.  I eat a whole lot of salads and chicken and still dont lose any weight.  I only went up like 10 lbs but it sucks trying to get it to come off.  (yes, I'm still trying)  The problem I have is that I have substituted higher calorie (lower carb) snacks into my daily routine.  My go to is almonds/mixed nuts because they are low carb.  I've even tried carrots/celery but they arent a very quick grab and go.

 

I too love bread and pasta.  I have a cheat meal maybe once every 2 weeks where I will have a bun or pizza or something.  I miss the days of a big ole bowl of pasta.

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 

http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm522974.htm

 

I could get into something like this.  No more monitoring or dialing in a pump.

post #10 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcman311 View Post

When my numbers started coming down my weight also started to rapidly increase.  It didn't help with a busy life, family, kids, etc.  I try to hit the exercise bike 4-5 times a week for 30 mins.  I eat a whole lot of salads and chicken and still dont lose any weight.  I only went up like 10 lbs but it sucks trying to get it to come off.  (yes, I'm still trying)  The problem I have is that I have substituted higher calorie (lower carb) snacks into my daily routine.  My go to is almonds/mixed nuts because they are low carb.  I've even tried carrots/celery but they arent a very quick grab and go.

I too love bread and pasta.  I have a cheat meal maybe once every 2 weeks where I will have a bun or pizza or something.  I miss the days of a big ole bowl of pasta.

man, you need to consult a diabetic dietician. tighter BG control almost always leads to weight gain. but you can't scarf high fat foods just to keep carbs down and insulin needs low. try more fruit instead. bacon and eggs but not toast. fruit smoothies. minimize processed/packaged foods. biggest thing is, watch your insulin. if you're always craving carbs, you're probably taking too much insulin.
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 

I havent been to a dietician yet.  If things were spiraling out of control then I would very much seek advice.

 

I am fairly stable now weight wise.  I have big time cut out processed foods and carbs.  Like I have said before, I usually have a salad/protein at least once a day whether it is for lunch or dinner.  I'm not always craving carbs these days.  Even when I was very low carb for a couple weeks I didnt really crave carbs.  I just miss the meals.  The simplicity and textures of some foods like pastas, you really cannot replicate a good noodle.

 

I have a good endocrinologist now that is pretty hands on.  We've lowered long acting insulins and increased fast acting insulin so as to react to meals and keep long term numbers stable.  I am still in discussions on switching over to a pump and CGM.

 

I've stabilized my exercise to 3-5 times a week.  Usually stationary bike about 30-40 minutes.  Its not much, but I can fit it into my schedule.

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