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Discussion in 'Greetings and Introductions' started by SueSmith, Nov 25, 2017.

  1. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    Hi all

    I'm a new member today. I was diagnosed with type 2 a year ago. Since then I've lost about 1.5 stone in weight. My glucose level a couple of days ago was 8.4, and the average over the past 3 months is 9.5 (before meals).

    I'm a bit confused because my HbA1C measurement recently was 10.2% which indicates an average glucose level of higher than I am getting. Does that mean my meter is giving incorrect results?
     
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  2. Diakat

    Diakat Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Your a1c will reflect glucose all the time, your finger pricks only show glucose at that moment.
     
  3. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    Ok - but my post meal (breakfast) average is 11.7 - and sometimes it's less than the one first thing in the morning. Should I also take a measurement at the end of the day, to get an idea of my true level?
     
  4. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 · Oracle

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    Hello Sue, and welcome!

    Well done on the weight loss, that is excellent. Have you much more to lose?

    If you are only averaging your levels before meals it will bear no relationship to your HbA1c at all. Your HbA1c of 10.2% is the same as 13.6mmol/l so you are spending a lot of time above 13mmol/l, which is not desirable I'm afraid. . http://www.diabetes.co.uk/hba1c-to-blood-sugar-level-converter.html

    You will peak after meals, and the amount you peak to depends entirely on what you have just eaten.

    If you tell us which medications you are taking and whether you have any other chronic illnesses, it will help us to help you.
     
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  5. Daibell

    Daibell Type 1.5 · Expert

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    Hi. You really need to test 2 hours after a meal. That HBa1C figure is too high? What diet are you on and what meds have you been prescribed?
     
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  6. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    Hi, I'm down to 10 1/2 stone. I'm taking 4 metformin a day, but nothing else. No chronic illnesses.

    I have soft fruit & 1 Weetabix for breakfast, usually about 6 Ryvita over the day. I try to limit my intake to 130g Carb, though I find that difficult, it's usually about 140-150. I don't have any sugar as such, except for a biscuit when I'm out, if it's offered, and very occasionally something like a small kitcat (once a month or less). I don't eat any bread.
     
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  7. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    Yes - I test 2 - 3 hours after breakfast, and I've usually had a snack (2 Ryvitas) between breakfast and the test. Sometimes the after breakfast test is lower than the earlier one.
     
  8. LittleGreyCat

    LittleGreyCat Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Tagging @daisy1 for the welcome pack.

    Couple of things:

    First, it would be good to test as soon as you wake up. This will give your fasting level and give some idea of your background BG level before you eat anything. However, look up Dawn Phenomenon.

    Secondly, I would gently suggest that you try and get your daily carbohydrates below 100 grans per day with an aim to get at or below 50 grams in the long term. You need to take on board that "sugar as such" is a relatively minor part of an eating plan. Let me pick out the things you have mentioned so far that are probably not good for you (recognising that your BG levels are way too high for comfort).
    • Soft fruit - supposedly healthy but crammed full of sugar
    • Weetabix - supposedly healthy but crammed full of carbohydrate
    • Ryvita - supposedly healthy but chock full of carbohydrates
    • Biscuit - hmm?
    • Small kitkat - perhaps you should resume treats once your HbA1c is down to a reasonable level?
    • No bread - good - but how about potatoes, pasta, parsnips, rice.......?
    Welcome to the forum, we are here to do our best to help. I think you need to take a deep breath, read a lot on here (and elsewhere) about how to eat well but keep carbohydrates low. Being unable to get your carbohydrates below 150 grams a day is usually a sign that you are still addicted to carbohydrates, and it is a hard addiction to break but worth the effort.

    As I (too)often say, you have to turn your perceptions about healthy food upside down.

    The popular view over the last 20 years or more is that low fat food is healthy, cereals are healthy, fruit juice is healthy. Fruit is healthy. Unrefined carbohydrates are healthy. Skimmed milk is healthy. Zero fat yoghurt is healthy.

    For a diabetic this is absolutely wrong.

    A good start to the day is eggs, bacon, mushrooms tomatoes. Think full English/Irish (without the beans, toast, hash browns and other carbs). Mixed grill. Proper butter. Double cream. Full fat cheese.

    Trying hard not to preach here.:)

    I have been diagnosed almost 10 years now and it took me an awful long time to get my head round what was a good way to eat to keep my BG down to a reasonable level. I am still learning.

    So don't panic, small steps, read a lot, but please try and ease back a little on those carbohydrates.
     
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  9. LittleGreyCat

    LittleGreyCat Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Assuming you eat dairy, try swapping your Ryvita for a piece of cheese. It might bring your BG down a little.
     
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  10. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 · Oracle

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    To be blunt, I am not at all surprised that your rose by nearly 6mmol/l after eating fruit (soft or otherwise), weetabix, plus 2 ryveta as a snack in the 2 hours following breakfast. I assume you probably had milk with the weetabix, and that is also high in sugar. You could try different carb-free breakfasts for a few days, just as an experiment to see the difference (with nothing but water in that 2 hour period). Eggs are a good start - cooked any which way, maybe some fried mushrooms or a mushroom and cheese omelette, or some cold meats, or cheese, in fact anything at all that has no carbs in it. Your meter will tell you that these are better choices.

    The idea is to test immediately before you eat and again 2 hours after first bite, and keep any rise from before to after under 2mmol/l and preferably less. More than this and there are more carbs in that meal that your body can tolerate. If you also keep a food diary including all ingredients and portion sizes, then record your levels alongside, you will see patterns emerge over time that will allow you to reduce the portion size or eliminate some of the carbs completely.

    It is clear from what you say about your levels and number of carbs eaten that you are eating far more than your personal tolerance level. (We all have different tolerance levels depending on many factors).
     
  11. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    I eat butter and cheese, semi skimmed milk (because I don't like full cream milk in tea) & single cream on my breakfast. If I listened to my doctor (or more to the point, the diabetic nurse) I would be on a low fat diet, because my cholesterol is highish. However, since a lot of the cholesterol research is a scam to get the world on statins, I take no notice of that.

    Incidentally, it's difficult to find what is a "low" carbohydrate diet, in terms of total carbohydrates consumed. The diabetic nurse wasn't interested in discussing it, nor in my testing my glucose levels. I had to buy a meter (and later found I could have got a free one here) and I buy the testing cartridges. I went on a 6 hour NHS "diabetes" course which was very simplistic, and spent as much time on fat levels in food as it did on diabetes (because, you know, cholesterol). I picked 130 gms because that's what my dad was told he should aim for when he was diagnosed about 50 years ago.
     
  12. hichamgsm

    hichamgsm Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Welcome
    I think your health will improve well here with the guidance of some very distinguished members
     
  13. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    Um, no. I don' rise by 6 mmols/l. My 3 month average before breakfast is 9.5, after breakfast it's 11.7. A rise of 2.4. On Wednesday, before breakfast it was 8.9, 2 or 3 hours later it was 7.9 - a fall of 1.

    I do keep a spreadsheet of everything I eat, every day, with the amount of carbs I eat, plus various recipes with the carbs in them.
     
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  14. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    Thank you. I'll certainly try to see how I can reduce my carbs. But I feel I do need the fibre - it keeps you going! I might try those Protein noodles thingies, which are very low carb
     
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  15. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 · Oracle

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    I do beg your pardon in accusing you of rising by 6mmol/l after breakfast. I misread what you said and I apologise.

    I am pleased to see you are being proactive about this, especially in respect of the low fat nonsense and understanding of the "Great Cholesterol Con", and all the spreadsheet stuff - excellent. Oh .... and cream in preference to milk is excellent. I also have skimmed milk in tea as I don't like it creamy, but at around 2g carbs per mug it doesn't worry me!

    130g carbs is at the very top of the low carb spectrum .... and 50 years is a long time ago! Science moves on.

    If you test as I described earlier, and keep that food diary, you will arrive at your personal tolerance level, which could be anywhere but is obviously well below what you are currently eating. Just try not to exceed a rise of more than 2mmol/, and preferably less, after all meals. (don't just concentrate on breakfasts) You will also find that we have different tolerances at different meal times. Personally I can not have any carbs at all before lunch time (apart from my skimmed milk in my one cup of tea of course!!!) I am much better at evening meal times.
     
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  16. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    Thanks for all your advice. I think I'll start testing 2 hours after my evening meal (if I can - I'm out a lot in the evenings). I'll also try to get the NHS to prescribe the test cartridges. They're quite expensive (£15 on Ebay, £30 from Tesco). Then I can test more frequently, to see which meals are causing the problem.
     
  17. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 · Oracle

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    Testing your main meal is the best plan if you are short on strips, but testing other meals is equally important if you are to discover when and why you are exceeding 13.6mmol/l (according to your HbA1c)

    There are meters with much cheaper strips, and are very popular on the forum.

    The most popular meters for self funding T2's are the Codefree and the Tee2 because the strips are much cheaper than other meters, and you need a lot of strips. You can't buy them in pharmacies.

    Try here for the Codefree meter
    http://homehealth-uk.com/product-category/blood-glucose/blood-glucose-monitor/

    and here for the extra strips
    http://homehealth-uk.com/all-products/sd-codefree-test-strips-to-be-used-only-with-the-sd-monitor/

    There are discount codes if you buy in bulk.
    5 packs 264086
    10 packs 975833

    The Tee2 is here and the meter is free.
    http://spirit-healthcare.co.uk/product/tee2-blood-glucose-meter/

    Don’t forget to check the box that you have diabetes so you can buy VAT free. (for either meter)

    Edited to add that on Metformin you are highly unlikely to have testing equipment prescribed, and are more likely to be told testings isn't necessary.
     
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  18. SueSmith

    SueSmith Type 2 · Member

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    And yet I read on here only today that Metformin doesn't really do very much. Don't the NHS know that? (it's OK, don't answer that - the GPs probably get paid per prescription). I don't like taking it (I don't like taking any medicine) and I take 1 tablet 4 times a day instead of 2*2 because otherwise I get stomach ache & feel permanently slightly sick. How the heck are you supposed to know how you're doing if you're not supposed to test yourself between the annual check.

    Anyway, thanks for the advice on testing. I wish I'd known before forking out for an expensive machine.
     
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    #18 SueSmith, Nov 25, 2017 at 6:45 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 25, 2017
  19. LittleGreyCat

    LittleGreyCat Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Metformin isn't a magic bullet to drop your BG immediately, but it does have good long term effects.

    It lowers the take up of carbohydrates from the gut, reduces the production of glucose by the liver, and reduces Insulin Resistance in the tissues which helps to make insulin more effective.

    In your immediate overall BG levels, it only makes a small difference. However it is working away in the background doing good things for you.

    Sensible to split the doses.:)
     
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    #19 LittleGreyCat, Nov 25, 2017 at 7:34 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 25, 2017
  20. Alexandra100

    Alexandra100 Other · Well-Known Member

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    I sympathise with your annoyance, but never mind, the great thing is to have got your own meter. It will give you independance of all health professionals and control of your own future. As well as a fascinating hobby doing your own research and experiments! Priceless!!!

    Personally I am trying not to regret too much all the stores of food I'll never eat: Oxford marmalade, beetroot juice, I can't bear to go on ... Do food banks want beetroot juice, I wonder?
     
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