We are in the third day of the annual Diabetes Blog Week, hosted by Karen Graffeo over at Bitter-Sweet Diabetes.
The topic today is One Thing to Improve. As Karen instructs: "Yesterday, we gave ourselves and our loved ones a big pat on the back for one thing we are great at. Today, let's look at the flip side. We probably all have one thing we could try to do better. Why not make today the day we start working on it? No judgments, no scolding, just sharing one small thing we can improve so the Diabetes Online Community (DOC) can cheer us on!"
In deciding which of our team at the 'Mine would write this one, Mike quipped: "Only ONE thing to improve? Geez." So, that won him the honor of penning our entry for today!
While we sometimes joke that no Person With Diabetes (PWD) is perfect, my motto is that I'm "pretty perfect at being imperfect" when it comes to my own D-management — a little by choice, and some by simple lack of willpower. You could actually say I'm the epitome of anti-willpower when it comes to handling some of the basics of diabetes management that they teach us back at diagnosis time. You name it, I'm probably able to improve it. And there's no shame on my part in admitting that.
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But one thing that clearly rises to the top of my improvement list is my ability to slack on my carb counting and insulin dosing in the evenings. See, I tend to do all the right things during the day. Routine is key, but so is the fact that in an office setting, there's less temptation to just go "grab something."
Once I'm at home and dinnertime rolls around, though, all bets are off. That's when my slacking begins, from not accurately measuring the food and dosing accordingly to idly munching on snacks throughout the evening. Obviously, that leads to higher BG readings at night. Sometimes so high that it impacts my ability to sleep. Then I need to give myself a correction (or a rage bolus) to start coming down by morning, although I'm often still in the 200s until mid-morning. That of course spills into the rest of my day, sometimes creating a chain reaction on the glu-coaster where Lows and Highs smack me upside the head!
Now that I'm working from home, the costly vending machines or store-bought options have made way for whatever might be in the cupboard or refrigerator — meaning less obstacles on the path to eating, if my willpower is taking a nap.
So, that's my item to improve on. I know I can start by making better use of the digital scale we bought a few years ago, but haven't utilized as much as we should. I can also focus on checking the carb counts for home-cooked meals and finding the necessary nutritional info when we dine out. When at home in the evenings, whether I'm online or hanging with the family, that means resisting the urge to snack. If I am that hungry or need to eat something, the scale and ONE portioned bowl needs to be the limit.
Measuring food, dosing correctly, testing to ensure I'm staying in range or closer to it, and balancing that food with exercise and all the rest of whatever might be happening in life. Simple, right? Maybe so, for those textbook PWDs. But I'd say for me, all that is easier said than done.
With my history of slacking, I know one post is not enough. I'll have to keep writing and tweeting about this, and hopefully lean on the cheerleading DOC to help keep me accountable! (thanks in advance, for the likely swarm of messages on this...)
And then, I'll worry about all those other items that should be on my improvement list...
We'd love your input: Do you all have any tricks or tips to stay accountable on carb counting and insulin dosing?