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Glucose Monitoring Advice Please as I Start 8 Week Blood Sugar Diet

Discussion in 'Ask A Question' started by deClare, Oct 26, 2017.

  1. deClare

    deClare Type 2 · Member

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    Hi everybody! I am fairly new to the forum and getting my head around how to navigate it (kind of).
    I'm sure this question is addressed in here somewhere but I can't find it! :(

    I am about to start Michael Mosely's 8 Week Blood Sugar Diet as my hb1ac numbers are still not great. I'm taking 3 different tablets for my Type 2 diabetes control and as is the case in my NHS Trust, I do not monitor my blood sugars with a glucose monitor.

    I want to go and purchase a kit for myself as I know my blood sugar levels could get dangerously low with the meds I'm on and doing a drastic diet. I've been told by my diabetes nurse not to do it, but then I'm also being told that I'll soon need insulin if I don't get my numbers down.

    Does anyone have any advice about what I need to buy exactly? Is it just a monitor and testing strips? When should I be checking my blood sugar levels? And can anyone suggest where I can buy the kit where it won't cost an arm and a leg? I honestly have no clue as I've never had to take my own blood samples despite being 2 years into my diagnosis.

    Thanks for your help!!
     
  2. NoCrbs4Me

    NoCrbs4Me I reversed my Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    My understanding is that the NHS will pay for monitoring strips if you are on any blood glucose lowering meds other than metformin. Have you asked them about that?
     
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  3. Boo1979

    Boo1979 Other · Well-Known Member

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    I use a tee2 meter (free) and strips (£7.50 for 50) - bought it online from spirit healthcare.
    To see what effect individual foods / meals are having then you need to test your sugars before eating and again 2 hours after finishing. I would advise keeping a record in a book or spreadsheet.
    Following the blood sugar diet is one way to do it, another is to test individual foods one by one.
    Following a structured diet makes it easier in the short term but doesnt give you the info you need to design your own recpes etc and runs the risk of being too radical / powerful and driving your sugars too low too quickly. Testing individual foods one by one is slower and gives you a richer set of data. No reason why you cant start with one and do the other at a later date - whatever works best for you
    If your meds can send your sugars too low then you need to be tracking your sugars very closely and testing mutiple times a day while making dietary changes, not just around meals. If you see any sign of hypos then you would need your medication reviewing as a matter of urgency
     
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    #3 Boo1979, Oct 26, 2017 at 7:56 PM
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2017
  4. deClare

    deClare Type 2 · Member

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    Hi! Thank you so much for taking the time to reply to my post. I take metformin along with 2 others and when I last asked about a glucose monitor in July, I was told type 2 diabetics don't get them unless they are on insulin. So, I think this is something I'll just have to financially take on at least for a few months until I see which foods are causing my spikes.
     
  5. bulkbiker

    bulkbiker Type 2 · Master

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    In case you want to buy your own... Meter advice..

    https://homehealth-uk.com/product-category/blood-glucose/

    (or telephone: 01923 711511)

    for the SD Codefree meter, which costs £12.98 or:

    http://spirit-healthcare.co.uk/product/tee2-blood-glucose-meter/

    (or telephone: 0116 2865000)

    who distribute the TEE 2 meter, which is free.



    The cost of testing comes down to the ongoing charges for test strips and lancets.

    For the SD Codefree, the strips are £7.69 for a pack of 50 and there are discount codes available for bulk purchases:

    5 packs x 50 use code: 264086 .. cost is £29.49

    10 packs x 50 use code: 975833 .. cost is £58.98

    For the TEE 2, the strips are £7.75 for a pack of 50 .. but there are no discount codes currently available

    Make sure that you tick the appropriate box on the on-line order form and you won't pay VAT on your meter or strips. For the bulk discount on strips for the SD Codefree, you need to complete the order (check the boxes to confirm that you are diabetic and the number of packs that you want). Then click on view basket and on the left hand side of the window you will see two boxes .. Coupon Code and Apply Coupon. Enter the relevant discount code in the first box and then click the Apply Coupon box. This applies the discount and adjusts the price .. and finally, you then proceed to checkout.



    I should add many thanks to @AM1874 Who compiled this useful guide.
     
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  6. Bluetit1802

    Bluetit1802 Type 2 (in remission!) · Guru

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    Of course you need a meter, how else will you know how your body reacts to your choice of foods and if your medication is too strong for a low carb diet? Without one you are working blind.

    If your medication is one of those that forces the pancreas to produce extra insulin you need to tell your nurse. This is important. Then you need to be VERY CAREFUL reducing carbs too much. The fewer carbs you eat the less insulin you need. Too much insulin and you will be in hypo territory. So you need to test, test, test,.

    What are the names of all your diabetes medications?

    This is the method recommended for testing initially:
    Test before you eat
    Test again 2 hours after first bite
    Keep a food diary including portion sizes and all ingredients
    Record your levels alongside the food
    Look at the rise from before to after, and try to keep it under 2mmol/. (preferably less) More than that and there were too many carbs on your plate.
    Look for patterns to find which foods are your danger foods, and work out if you can just reduce portion sizes of the carbs or eliminate.
     
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    #6 Bluetit1802, Oct 26, 2017 at 8:48 PM
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2017
  7. deClare

    deClare Type 2 · Member

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    Hey No2D - Thank you so much for taking the time to reply to my post. There is absolutely no reason for you to apologise for unsolicited advice. Your advice definitely was solicited!
    I think you may be right that low calorie and low carb together could be dangerous .... which has been my hesitation all along. What you're saying makes sense and in reading Boo1979's comment, too, I think the wisest thing for me will be minimising my carbs and investing in a monitor to see which foods I need to eliminate. And obviously this seems to be working for member NoCarbs4Me. I'm pretty good with porridge (with cinnamon and fresh berries only) for breakfast and then I have a sandwich and a piece of fruit for lunch. I've cut way back on evening meal carbs, but perhaps things like the porridge are sabotaging me.
    Thank you again for your reply and hopefully I'll be able to update with a positive post in the not too distant future!
     
  8. deClare

    deClare Type 2 · Member

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    Hi Bluetit1802! Thank you so much for the very specific advise here. I agree that a glucose monitor makes sense. I was completely surprised when I was told, 'oh no, type 2 diabetics don't need them because all that testing can make people feel depressed.' So yes, I think I need one too. And it's my body and my responsibility to look after it. The food diary suggestion is a really good idea to help see patterns. Thank you again!
     
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  9. deClare

    deClare Type 2 · Member

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    Hello Boo1979 - Thank you so much for the detailed reply and for all the advice. I have halved my HB1AC since my diagnosis (the numbers were shocking!) but they are still not in the recommended range. Keeping a food diary and a spreadsheet is completely logical but I hadn't thought of the monitoring needing to be *that* structured. But yes, I realise now that keeping close track of what I eat and when and how much is going to be crucial!
    Thanks again!
     
  10. deClare

    deClare Type 2 · Member

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    Hello Bullbiker - Thanks a lot for all this info! And thanks too, to @AM1874 ! I feel like a complete moron but I need to ask one more thing. What do I need to actually take the blood? I know the lancets pierce the skin to get the drop of blood, but does it matter what I buy to take the blood to use with one of the two devices you've mentioned? :shy:
     
  11. ringi

    ringi Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Do you drive a car? If so the DVLA requires you to test you blood before driving if you are taking any meds that may result in a hypos. If so you may wish to point out to your doctor that his/she is responible for you breaking the law by not giving you a meter and strips, hence they are breaking the law themselfs.
     
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  12. deClare

    deClare Type 2 · Member

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    Thanks for the imput ringi! The meds I take don't cause hypos. But I know what you mean, testing my blood is probably a good idea as I do drive. Thanks again
     
  13. bulkbiker

    bulkbiker Type 2 · Master

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    The meters come with a lancing device to prick the skin with so everything you need is in the kit. The frequency with which people change their lancets seems to vary a lot.. I change mine about once a month.. others change them with every prick.. when I bought my first meter I ordered 300 spares.. needless to say I have quite a lot remaining..
     
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  14. ringi

    ringi Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    If there is no risk of hypos, then there is no need to test your BG while doing the "8-week blood sugar diet". Testing BG will show you what progress you are making and hence motivate you, but it not needed for safety unless you are taking drugs that can result in hypos.
     
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