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Can't believe it

Discussion in 'Newly Diagnosed' started by chris66, Feb 11, 2019.

  1. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Have just spoken to my GP and i asked about the possibility of test strips on prescription, her reply was no as the NHS recomend you dont test as it will cause anxiety so wont prescribe them unless im on insulin or blood sugars are low which as i am type 2 is unlikely, my problem is if they want me to control it by diet and excercise how am i supposed to know if im doing right or wrong if the only time it will be checked is when the Dr. sends me for a blood test? definately feel i'm just another statistic who doesn't need help!
     
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  2. Rachox

    Rachox Type 2 (in remission!) · Moderator
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    Very common I’m afraid. I asked but the answer was no too!
     
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  3. JoKalsbeek

    JoKalsbeek Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    Hey Chris,

    Quite a few of us self-fund here. Because you're right, you're flying blind and the NHS spiel is just an excuse not to have to pay up for the many thousands of T2's who'd otherwise be testing. In my first full year of being a T2 I spent 1000 euro's on strips, but I have an expensive meter (Or rather, the strips are. The meter's peanuts, but the only one my pharmacy carries). From what I understand there are cheaper options available in the UK. Worth checking out, especially since there's a discount for bulk purchases, I believe.

    In any case, if you for some reason can't get a meter one way or the other, press the doc for a HbA1c test every 3 months. And if you're not on medication which can cause hypo's, like gliclazide, (metformin isn't a problem), you can just decide to go low carb and go from there. 100 grams, or 75 a day's a good place to start if you like, and will certainly have some sort of impact.

    In case you're not sure how to go about your diet, (though I vaguely remember you were trying keto, right? Under 20 grams of carbs is as good as certain to drop a T2's levels to a HbA1c deserving of a party!) but, just to be on the safe side, here's a couple of things that may help:

    There are 3 macro-nutrients. Fats, protein and carbohydrates. Those macro’s mean we get the micro-nutrients we need: that would be vitamins and minerals. So… If you ditch the carbs, you should up another macro-nutrient to compensate, to make sure you don’t get malnourished or vitamin deficient. Carbs make our bloodsugars rise. Protein too, but nowhere near as bad as carbs do, so they’re alright in moderation. Fats however… Fats are as good as a glucose-flatline. Better yet, they’ll mitigate the effects of any carbs we do ingest, slowing down their uptake and thus the sugar-spike. Contrary to what we’ve been told for decades; fats are our friends.

    So what raises blood sugars? Aside from the obvious (sugar), starches raise blood glucose too. So bread, and anything made with grain/oats flour, rice, pasta, corn, cereals (including all the “healthy choices”, like Weetabix and muesli), most beans and most fruits. So you’ll want to limit your intake, or scratch them altogether.


    Which food items remain on the shopping list? Well, meat, fish, poultry, above ground veggies/leafy greens, eggs, cheese, heavy cream, full fat Greek yoghurt, full fat milk, extra dark chocolate (85% Lindt’s is great!), avocado, (whole) tomatoes, berries, olives, nuts, that sort of thing… Meal ideas? Have a couple:

    Scrambled eggs with bacon, cheese, mushrooms, tomato, maybe some high meat content sausages?
    Eggs with ham, bacon and cheese
    Omelet with spinach and/or smoked salmon
    Omelet with cream, cinnamon, with some berries and coconut shavings
    Full fat Greek yoghurt with nuts and berries
    Leafy green salad with a can of tuna (oil, not brine!), mayonnaise, capers, olives and avocado
    Leafy green salad with (warmed goat's) cheese and bacon, maybe a nice vinaigrette?
    Meat, fish or poultry with veggies. I usually go for cauliflower rice or broccoli rice, with cheese and bacon to bulk it up. Never the same meal twice in a row because of various herbs/spices.


    Snacks? Pork scratchings, cheese, olives, extra dark chocolate, nuts. :)

    Of course, there’s loads more on the web, for people more adventurous than I. (Which is pretty much everyone). Just google whatever you want to make and add “keto” to it, and you’ll get a low carb version. There’s a lot of recipes on the diabetes.co.uk website, as well as on www.dietdoctor.com where you’ll also find visual (carb content) guides and videos. And I can wholeheartedly endorse Dr. Jason Fung’s book The Diabetes Code. It’ll help you understand what’s going on in your body and how to tackle it, whilst not being a dry read. Not only that, but you’ll know what to ask your doctor, and you’ll understand the answers, which is, I believe, quite convenient.
     
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  4. Daibell

    Daibell LADA · Master

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    Hi. I wish the NHS would be honest and say no strips to control cost rather than lying and say you don't need to test. ALL diabetics need to test. The debate may be how often and what range you should be looking for. You need to buy your own meter and strips. Most meter manufacturers will provide a meter for free as they make their money on the strips. There is a low cost meter brand/strips on Amazon. I think it's the 'Codefree'.
     
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  5. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    My problem is im not working at present so cant afford to keep paying out for test strips from my income. Have started to work towards cutting carbs and got a list of 'good foods' three pages long from this site yesterday, have also invested in cook books with recipees for low carb, diabetics etc. Funnily enough in the same conversation she suggested i lose weight (3 stone lost since diagnoses so far) and reduced my fat intake which obviously i took with a pinch of salt bearing in mind info gained from forums on this site in recent weeks.
     
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  6. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi, i bought a meter and also got a Contour next one, free problem being strips come in at eighteen pounds for fifty for both meters, the thing i find most strange is, my Dad is also type 2 and has been for nearly thirty years and has always had his strips on prescription from the start even though its only recently he has been put on insulin.
     
  7. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Guru

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    Hi @chris66 The two meters with the cheapest strips (a lot less than half what you are paying) are the Codefree and the Tee2. They are very popular with the T2s on this forum. You only need one meter but you need thousands of strips, so chose a meter with cheaper strips.

    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. (applied at the check out stage)
    5 packs 264086
    10 packs 975833

    The Tee2+ is here

    http://spirit-healthcare.co.uk/product-category/shop/tee2/


    Don’t forget to check the box that you have diabetes so you can buy VAT free. (for either meter)
     
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  8. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi, thank you will look into it
     
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  9. JoKalsbeek

    JoKalsbeek Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    The dietary advice given is usually outdated... They told me to cut fats and up carbs too. (Adding a lot more kilo's to where I had too many to begin with). Stick with what you've learned, and if you can't afford strips, keep an eye on the scales. Most likely you'll lose weight while going low carb, and then you can at least guess your sugars are doing better as well, because *something is happening*. There are cheaper strips than the Contour (I have the Contour TS. Four of 'em, helping me into the poor house. ;) ) From what I understand the Codefree meter has cheaper strips, (about eight quid for 50). https://www.diabetes.co.uk/blood-glucose-meters/sd-codefree-blood-glucose-meter.html

    Just so you know, the testing's handy when you start out. I spent a lot of money on strips because that first year, I got SO MUCH WRONG! It wasn't even funny. With all the conflicting advice I got it took me ages to figure out what was working and what wasn't. Wish I'd logged on here back then, people here would've sorted me out in no time at all, but stupid me, I'd tried the Dutch forums instead, and there were no answers there, just scared people who were as clueless as I was. For you, it could certainly go a lot quicker! But anyway, once you know what meals do for you, you don't really have to test those again. I mean, bacon and eggs with cheese.... You don't even really have to bother with, as they're practically zero carb anyway. Pick your battles, basically. If you end up testing, that is. If not, with circumstances being what they are, like I said... The scales. Or in lieu of those, measure your waist. That could be a clear indicator too. Not a precise one, but if something's changing, somewhere... There's hope. ;)
     
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  10. Mr_Pot

    Mr_Pot Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    If you can't afford the strips don't let that stand in the way of getting started on a low carb diet. I reduced my HbA1c from 54 to 41 in three months by just cutting out sweet things, cakes, biscuits, desserts etc and cutting out or down bread, potatoes, pasta and rice. Metering is excellent for fine tuning your diet and for the feedback that it is working but you can make good progress without it if necessary.
     
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  11. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Yes the scales have been my friend lately, the dial doesn't spin round as much as it used to :) also starting to get back into all those jeans left in the wardrobe that i had outgrown so as you say with my change in diet and increase in walking something is going right for me and encourages me to carry on, along with all the good people on site :)
     
  12. JoKalsbeek

    JoKalsbeek Type 2 (in remission!) · Well-Known Member

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    I have faith you're going to blow that GP away! :)
     
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  13. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Already stopped the sweet things, bread is at a minimum cakes biscuits gone and maybe a couple of roast potatos with Sunday dinner was my starting point and fine tune as i go along, maybe test once a day before main meal and two hours after and go from there.
     
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  14. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Now theres a thought! :happy:
     
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  15. Starfish18

    Starfish18 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hello. I just wanted to say I've just bought the Tee2+ for £9.99 test strips are £7.75 for 50, you get the lancing device about 10 lancets a wallet to keep your meter in and a log book for free from spirit healthcare and if you write in the vat bit that you're t2d they knock off the vat which will save you a bit. Hth I was recently diagnosed with type 2 I'd be lost without testing, like you say, how do you know if you can tolerate what your eating if you can't test
    Best of luck on your journey
     
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  16. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Hi, thanks for that think i will have to invest in one of those, another member said the same earlier so its obviously the way to go.
    Thanks also for the good wishes and i wish you all the best too.
     
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  17. Starfish18

    Starfish18 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thank you. Don't do what I did and use 50 test strips in 2 days! Oops! Trust what your meter is telling you. I didn't and kept retesting just to be sure.
    I have nothing to compare it to but I'm finding it a good little meter. It took about 5 days to arrive. In the mean time I tried to eat a lchf diet until it arrived. Investing in a meter is definitely the way to go
     
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  18. Flora123

    Flora123 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I am very very lucky. My doc gave me a meter as they were confused that I’m slim and diabetic and prescribed strips (not many) as he wasn’t sure what type I am/was. He saw the results I’m achieving and happy to continue prescribing, within reason. I test a lot so I do self fund in addition. I do feel he can see the benefits of prescribing to control my DM but he did say no one else has my determination to control this and wished all his patients were as good. Shame not to give others the chance
     
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  19. chris66

    chris66 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I do have meters but the strips are £18.00 for fifty which i cant afford, so problem is i no longer test regularly which in turn means i dont know if im eating the right things which is low carb as much as i can or if the portions are too big/small.
     
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  20. Starfish18

    Starfish18 Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Blimey. Some are so expensive aren't they. I wouldn't be able to afford that either that's why I went for the Tee2, cheaper strips.
     
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