One of the things I enjoy most about my job is working with my fellow IDS clinicians. Because all of us have T1D, we have a chance to learn from each other and support one another. We also have as much fun as we can. We love debating the virtues (and shortcomings) of the latest products and enjoy a friendly blood sugar wager from time to time.
Our semi-monthly “food challenge” competitions are a source of both amusement and learning… and a great chance to let off some steam. For those who don’t know about them, our food challenges involve having a specific type of food and then using our wits to figure out the best way to manage the blood sugars that follow. We compare notes and see whose blood sugar was the most… shall we say… cooperative. We’ve tackled everything from pizza to sushi to ice cream. (anyone who would like to check out the results can go to @integrated_diabetes_services on Instagram, or integ_diabetes on Twitter).
Our latest challenge involved Halloween candy: a minimum of 40g carbs worth, to be exact. Each person was allowed to pick their favorite. I loved watching some of our usually model-citizen dieters devour their share of peanut butter cups and Snickers bars. We shared our unique insulin dosing approaches and the glucose trend graphs that followed, first with each other, and then with our social media followers.
Here’s what my glucose looked like after devouring a giant 3-Musketeers:
After posting all of our results, we actually received complaints from a number of people saying that we were “promoting unhealthy behaviors.”
This really got me thinking. Maybe we would be better off only eating healthy food all the time. And exercising every day. And showing the perfect glucose levels that result. Or at least giving that impression that that’s how IDS clinicians live their lives.
But that’s just not reality. Sometimes we eat junk. Sometimes we take a nap instead of working out. And yes, our blood sugars hit the 300s and 50s (20s and 3s in mmol/l terms) from time to time. And you know what? That’s OK. Diabetes management isn’t about being perfect. It’s about doing a good enough job to stay healthy and still enjoy the fun things in life.
If you feel as though diabetes is keeping you from enjoying life to the fullest, let us know. If nothing else, we can help put things into the proper perspective and provide the tools & training to get you where you want to be.
We hope you enjoy this month’s edition of Diabetes Bites. Your feedback is always welcome and appreciated.