YOU Are The Problem In This Equation
It's true! You are always the variable in the scenario when it comes to controlling Diabetes of ANY type. To list a few...
- The way your body reacts to carbohydrates.
- The way your body reacts fats.
- The way your body reacts to protein.
- The way your body metabolizes insulin.
- Whether you are sick, or fighting an infection.
- How much you slept the night before.
- Did you snack late at night?
- Was your insulin injected into a muscle or fatty layer or somewhere in-between?
- Did you do more or less physical activity than the day before?
- Did you party with friends?
- What altitude were you at?
If we were robots, built exactly the same as the next person, performing exactly the same actions as the rest... It would be so easy to control Diabetes! Trouble is.... We're not!
Don't let that list scare or dishearten you. I'm using it to get your attention and describe our troubles to those that don't understand.
So How Does Food Affect Our Diabetes?!
Food is pretty much the primary enemy for a Diabetic! If you're anything like me, and I assume you must be because you are human and need to eat to survive...
Food is something we love, food is something that comforts us, food is something that socializes us, and makes us feel normal. The fact that we, as Diabetics, have to constantly THINK about it is so irritating that we just want to ignore the fact that we have this stupid condition completely!!!!
Simply put... We can't ignore the fact that we have Diabetes.
We CAN however think of it as a guiding light to keep us healthy! As a "normal" person, if you talk to a nutritional adviser, they will most often outline a "diet" that a diabetic, with a similar body make-up, naturally has to follow to be healthy!
That was probably one of the most important discoveries during my visit to the hospital! Losing weight and being healthy isn't about "going on a diet", it's not a temporary thing... It's about what the body needs to heal, grow, and function optimally!
I know it may seem stupidly obvious to some of you but... Wow! We as Diabetics, who naturally have to maintain a healthy intake of food (the "right" food) and activity just to live normal lives can actually help non-diabetics because our own "diets" are so controlled. That was a revelation I honestly never expected to have.
That's Great... So... How Does Food Affect My Diabetes Then?!
Simply put... I don't know how it affects YOUR diabetes because I don't know YOU.
Any additional answers to this question would be pure speculation based on how food affects ME.
The best part about our world (at least for most of us) is that nutritional facts are printed right on the packaging of most of the food we buy...
For a Diabetic, this means we have at least a starting point allowing us to establish baselines of how food affects us.
For example, I am currently working on a 10 to 1 carbohydrate ratio and a 50 to 1 insulin ratio. This means...
- For every ten grams of carbohydrates, I would need to give one unit of insulin to maintain my current glucose level.
- For every full unit of insulin, I expect to drop fifty units on my glucose meter
- That implicitly means that for every ten grams of carbohydrates I consume, my glucose meter readings should (again, in theory) increase by fifty within fifteen to twenty minutes.
Math?! I know right? Math was and is one of my worst subjects, but...
Repetition of the same thought or physical action develops into a habit which, repeated frequently enough, becomes an automatic reflex.
- Norman Vincent Peale
I had to make that quote, because it's one of my personal core values (post Diabetes diagnosis). Another one of my core values has always been...
It may take less than 30 days to break a habit, but it takes additional resolve to keep it that way!
Yes, I quoted myself! Lets not pull too hard on that thread right now. We'll get to know each other better as time goes on.
Long Story Short
There are so many variables that affect our glucose levels that I'm just completely unable to give you a direct answer. However, there are some basic guidelines we can follow to reduce our frustrations.