Thursday, December 27, 2012

Keeping track of what I'm doing

Ah, I already miss the days when I was solely on the Optifast products.  There was no thinking involved.  I had six shakes a day, the occasional soups and everything was very regimented.  I had no problem following what was prescribed because, seriously, how could I screw it up?  That's probably why I found it so easy to do for months and months until I did the modified fast and then, finally, the full-fast.

Don't get me wrong ... I am not second-guessing my decision to go off the products and onto weight loss the old-fashioned way through diet and exercise.  I just miss the absolute simplicity.  Now I'm sort of relearning some things and how I will continue living healthfully with diabetes or without diabetes (we're just not sure where I stand these days with all of that).  Today my blood sugar levels were better.  The lowest I got was 59 in the middle of the night, which was low, but the lowest it got today during the day after that was 70.  Of course, I had to manipulate my food intake to get myself there.  When it was 59 this morning, I had to have products with sugar in them to regulate it.  That was really hard to do because every fiber of my being was fighting it.  I didn't want to do it.  I thought maybe if I just stuck my head in the sand, it would magically get better.  Naive?  For sure!  Clicking my heels together three times also doesn't work, just in case you were wondering.

Since I track my food, I logged in the products and calories I had to get my blood sugar normal.  It took 793 calories of sugar to not only get me normal this morning but stay there.  Let me tell you, it was a sickening experience.  In fact, throughout the day, I remembered that feeling this morning and made sure to have more carbs when I ate because I didn't want to repeat that low blood sugar again.  I also didn't take the diabetes medication this morning.  I have decided that I'm going to do the best I can to not take it, at least until I see my doctor for advice, and just monitor where I'm at a lot during the day.  So here's how I did:

  • 2:30 a.m. - woke up to a blood sugar of 59 so I had those 793 calories to regulate starting here and lasting for the next 4 hours
  • 3:13 a.m. - 70
  • 4:21 a.m. - 70
  • 6:43 a.m. - 90 finally in the normal range (normal fasting four hours after eating is 80-120)
  • 8:49 a.m. - 100 had a mid-morning snack of carbs before heading out for the day
  • 2:01 p.m. - 71 after lunch, starting to get in the danger zone again, didn't have many carbs with my meal
  • 3:34 p.m. - 91 after a mid-afternoon snack
  • 5:17 p.m. - 81 pre-workout, had 3 servings of carbs before hitting the gym since I knew I would dip low because of the exercise
  • 9:05 p.m. - 95 right after dinner, the level will raise within the next several hours but I made sure to have plenty of carbs with my meal
  • 11:05 p.m. - 106 given I just had dinner two hours ago, it's actually a little low - it should be about 140-160 two-four hours after a meal but we'll see how it fares by the time I wake up in the morning
Yes, I was obsessively pricking my finger but you would be, too, if you had to go through what I did to regulate my blood sugar, not only today but the last several days.  If you're not a diabetic, please count your blessings that you don't have to go through this stuff.  Being too high or too low with the numbers produces effects in your body that are not pleasant.  In fact, when I was on the treadmill at the gym, I was worried the entire time about possibly being too low and potentially passing out on the conveyor belt (talk about having a big imagination!).  If you are a pre-diabetic, do whatever you can to not cross the line.  Believe me when I tell you that's it's worth all the extra effort not to turn into a full-blown diabetic.

Like I said when I started writing this, the days of the fast were so much easier!  I did buy a couple of books while I was at a bookstore today that will help me with counting my calories and carbs, as well as not having foods that have a high glycemic index.  

This first book lists practically every food out there, including combination foods.  It tells you all the nutritional information, including how many exchanges of a carb, protein, etc. it has.  Sometimes when I look online, there is so much wrong information that I really can't trust the nutritional info out there.  This is invaluable if you're tracking your food, which I find to be a necessary practice as I continue in my weight loss.  It also explains how someone who is a diabetic should be eating.

The second book has some recipes of foods that are considered to be in the low glycemic index category.  If you're not familiar with what the glycemic index is, every food has a number from 1-100 that tells how fast it will be converted into pure sugar within your body.  The higher the number, the faster the spike in your blood sugar.  There are some foods that are low and some that are high. For example, a serving of Cornflakes has a rating of 83, which is considered high.  Crazy, huh?  It also has a section in the book that breaks down how to use this info when selecting foods that keep our bodies on an even keel with blood sugar. 

Keeping track of what I'm doing is essential for me to continue being healthy and doing what is right for my body.  I wish I could be one of those people who can be so loosey goosey on just eating whatever food they want, healthy or not.  For now, I need to monitor religiously, just like I am doing with my blood sugar levels.  I want so badly to continue being a success story, not just another sad statistic.

2 comments:

Big Heart said...

it is madness that you had to deal with keeping your blood sugar low and now you have to try to keep it up! hope everything works out well for you my friend! see you on sunday for our walk!

Kathy said...

It is beyond madness as far as I'm concerned! It just makes me respect the processes of the body all the more and a reminder to never take anything for granted. See you Sunday ;-)

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