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The Diabetes Education Network

Discussion in 'Diabetes Discussions' started by Stuboy, Jun 12, 2009.

  1. phoenix

    phoenix Type 1 · Expert

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    I'm with Stu and Kegstore on this one, I feel that carb counting, portion estimating skills are massively important. Without knowing how many carbs are in a meal then insulin doses are purely arbitary. Like them I also eat very few packaged foods so food labelling isn't the answer for me.
    Given that many type 1s are in hospital when diagnosed, its a good time to start.
     
  2. lj1921

    lj1921 Type 2 · Active Member

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    I would love to know more about carb counting
     
  3. cugila

    cugila · Master

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  4. Katharine

    Katharine · Well-Known Member

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    That is an excellent carb counting list from Leeds. Thankyou for posting it.

    If you google"B-DEC" you can register for a carb counting course that also helps you figure out your carb ratios for different meals.

    The Education Network could ask for inpatient meals for diabetics to have carb counts attached. Once people are home they may find the "eyeball" method easier if they have had the specific values for the different portions of food explained.
     
  5. Sid Bonkers

    Sid Bonkers Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    Thanks from me too for that carb counting link, just what I was looking for.

    It occurred to me whilst reading this thread that this forum has around 16,500 members, if you add that figure to all the other diabetic forum members and lets be generous here and call the total 80,000 informed diabetics. What are the other 2.5 million doing?

    I often read that "I was told to eat lots of starchy food and exercise more" so what are the vast majority of diabetics doing to help themselves, when you consider this statistic it is easy to see why 'best advice' is to eat loads of carbs, that way none of the ill informed will have too many hypo's.

    Of cause there may be complications which will ultimately cost the NHS millions more than teaching every diabetic more about their condition and the importance of testing. Weighing up the cost of test strips against the huge costs involved in complications wouldnt it be cost effective?

    Of cause there will always be those who will not be helped either through denial or a 'I'll cross that bridge when I get to it' attitude, but surely most would like to do something to help themselves if only they knew how...
     
  6. badmedisin

    badmedisin · Well-Known Member

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    There definitely needs to be a more organised and structured education plan that all diabetics are automatically referred to when diagnosed and can access for updates if needed.

    I was diagnosed with type 1 when I was 8, I spent a week in hospital being taught about carb counting and how to inject, had a hypo induced so I'd know how to recognise one in future, and had to suffer the horrors of my parents & random step-parents learning how to inject (luckily they've never had to do that again!). But the carb counting info was pretty basic, I was told that 1 unit of insulin would deal with 10g carbs or 1 "exchange", which is a ratio that really doesn't work consistently (not for me anyway), and the dieticians talked to me, not the psychotic stepmother that did all the cooking, so it was very little help.

    Evidently things have changed a bit in the last 22 years, but I feel that I only get updates accidentally! For example, I recently learned that I shouldn't be injecting in my arms - how long have they known that and why didn't anyone tell me? And the diabetes nurse says you don't have to count the carbs in parsnips - how my childhood xmas dinners would have been improved if I'd known!

    Anyway, after obsessively carb counting for a while, I turned into a teenager and it all went a bit wrong. Especially after I heard that carb counting wasn't really neccessary - nobody ever explained that one. Now that I'm 30, I'm trying very hard to properly get it all under control, but it's hard when everything you think you know turns out to be a bit misguided! The dietician keeps promising to teach me again how to count carbs, but that's not really what I need to know. I can easily look up carb values and I cook everything from scratch so I know exactly what's in my food. I need to know how carbs relate to insulin dose, and how it all interacts with blood sugar levels. For example, how come an identical breakfast two days running can leave me hypo one day and with a blood sugar of 14 the next day? But they won't tell me that without a food diary, and they keep sending me away because I've had a cold for ages and she thinks that's affecting my results enough to make all this tedious food diary stuff pointless. So I still haven't a clue really.

    I want to get on a DAFNE course or something similar, but it doesn't seem to be available here. SO anyway, the point of all my ranting is basically that something like the DAFNE course needs to be made available for everyone, and some basic level of diabetes education should be compulsory for the newly diagnosed - my friend wasn't even told about always carrying emergency carbs and about testing before driving (and always testing if you feel a bit wrong). So he had a massive hypo, drove here with a blood sugar of 1.9, and was acting completely bizarre. He only tested after I hassled him, and luckily I always have lucozade, as he had no food at all. This is the basic stuff we should all be told as soon as we are diagnosed, but sadly not everyone is, and they're probably the ones that have car accidents! :shock:
     
  7. NigelM

    NigelM Type 1 · Active Member

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    Obviously a bit late for your conference. I attended a course in Colchester General Hospital which was run over 4 wednesdays. I had wanted to go on a Daphne course, which I had heard a lot about. On reflection, doing it in a less intensive manner (with "homework" - well tasks) had huge benefits.

    The sad thing was that almost half of the patients / students dropped out and didn't finihs the course. My HbA1c came down after 3 months - but not as much as I would have liked. The nurses were very pleased - so I had probably been expecting too much too soon.

    Now on a medtronic pump with the Countour Link meter and really like it. Am just waiting to get my HbA1c done again to see how I'm doing.

    I was diagnosed in 1999 in Germany. They had no outpatient capability so I had to be admitted to hospital for the minimum period of a week. I was so bored that I discharged myself after 3 days. I don't think you learn too much inthose first few days as it is a lotto get to grips with all at once.

    Nigel
     
  8. Romola

    Romola · Well-Known Member

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    NigelM - I think we are very fortunate in NE Essex.

    I am fairly newly diagnosed - and seem to have none of the difficulties others have had.

    I was given a test meter and prescriptions for test strips. Invited onto the Xpert patient program. Given good dietary advice - and following it has given me a good HbA1c result after 3 months.

    But I am sorry to hear that so many dropped out - it must be very dispiriting for the staff who run the courses.
     
  9. hanadr

    hanadr · Expert

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    The collins Calorie guide DOES have carb values for freah foods. Inevitaly, they are an average and if you choose 1 variety of potatoes, you can probably look that up too. As far as I know, new pots are lower carb than old ones and Vivaldi are the lowest.
     
  10. NigelM

    NigelM Type 1 · Active Member

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    Romola,

    My HbA1c was very good forthe first couple of years. It slipped after that - a combination of the end of the honeymoon period and my pancreas finally giving up altogether and becoming more casual aboutthe whole thing. With injections, I found that I could never remember whether I had or had not actually done the injection. With a pump at least these is the evidence onthe screen!

    I hope your numbers continue to hold up.

    Nigel
     
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