Does it ever get any easier , trying to figure it all out?

By Debster_386 Latest Reply 2014-08-26 17:25:56 -0500
Started 2014-08-21 14:37:01 -0500

I just found out two weeks ago I am a diabetic type 1. I didn't even know what Ac1 meant until today mine is .. 8.2 My doc said at 9 I should be taking insulin. I am taking 2 pills one before breakfast and one before dinner. I cant remember name of them at the moment. Today was my first follow up in 3 weeks. I also have high blood pressure and take pills for that twice a day. I am also on Nexium. for reflex disease… got that down to once a day . Well my bp was good today 122 /82 . I lost 10 pds BUT those darn blood test say my sugar is still too high. She is going to give me two month to get it down, then more then likely i'll have to do the insulin shots . I go to see a dietician next Tuesday. I don't understand any of these stuff. meal exchange, carbs, fats, sugars ect.. They say eat wheat bread if any , well Italian white has less carbs, less sugar ect then wheat. Eat fruit and veggies, yeah right! A med apple has 25 carbs, no thx lol Its just all so confusing. I wake up in morning and before I even eat my test reads 172. Before I go to bed at night its sometimes 122 or so .. I eat something thinking it will go to low while I am sleeping. Doc informed me today that wont happen mines to high. Well I seen it jump down 30 what ever you call it in two hours. So thinking it would continue to come down 30 every two hours while I sleep. I know if its to low you eat something and check 15 minutes and continue so until it comes up. What do you do if it goes to high? So many questions and I am not a ppl person. When I am at docs im so nervous, I forget to ask a lot of things and then half time I cant remember them anyhow, good grief! My mom was a diabetic type two. She played it risky ate what ever she wanted and just always took a shot for which ever was needed. I don't even want to have to take shots if I can help it. Just poking my finger for these 3 weeks (IT HURTS) They are so sore, more so dry from alcohol wipes. I have read some of the post and it does help! I need a menu wrote out for me, week for week that be nice. Be less stress anyhow! I guess one day at a time is all any of us can do !

23 replies

JanKay 2014-08-26 15:53:01 -0500 Report

Debater—- I am also a Type 1 diabetic, and found out one summer when I was only 12. When my mother took me to the doctor in 1960 to find out why I was always thirsty, tired, and had lost so much weight suddenly for a bubbly, bouncy 12 year old, the doctor told my Mom I had diabetes, and told her it was hereditary. But no one in my family had diabetes for 6 generations. I had the mumps right before I was diagnosed, so although it hasn't been proven yet, my doctor now says it is possible that "triggered" my diabetes. 54 years taking insulin, and because of family and friends like you meet here on Diabetic Connect, who can encourage you and answer your questions, I finished junior high, college, grad school, traveled to several countries in the world, and taught school for 32 years before I returned. Diabetes is not the best chronic disease to have been "blessed" with, but if you keep active, and find great doctors (and there ARE some out there) you will do great.

Hops 2014-08-24 06:59:53 -0500 Report

Hello Debster, I began insulin injections September 22, 1968. Insulin is made from human DNA. I do not know what if anything is natural in Metformin.
Stress is a leading factor in raising the blood sugar. The blood sugar increase is a natural response.
What do you do to relax? Meditation helps me as does prayer. Reading a book, watching a movie, being with whomever I love. Diabetes involves learning every day to stay up with the changes resulting from your mental condition, your diet, your nutrition, and your exercise.
I recently met a doctor in Minneapolis who helps people lower their blood sugars by drinking apple cider vinegar. She tests the acid level in their stomachs and if their stomach acid level is low she has them drink six ounces of water mixed with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar before each meal. It helps me as a Type 1.
Before visiting your doctor I suggest you write down a list of your top questions about diabetes. Then narrow that list down to three or four crucial questions. Then you bring your list of questions to your doctor's appointment. I have been using my diabetes list for more than 20 years now.
Don't worry, be happy diabetes is manageable.
Good luck and remember to test the level of stomach acid you have. Ask your doctor about drinking apple cider vinegar.
Be well, Tim

Debster_386 2014-08-24 08:56:10 -0500 Report

Morning Hops, Thanks so much! I will ask her about the apple cider and have a list ready! : )

Hops 2014-08-24 09:12:13 -0500 Report

Apple Cider Vinegar. Apple cider spikes the blood sugar. Apples themselves are very healthy in the medium size. Some fruits such as bananas raise the BG rapidly then only to crash an hour or two later. You will learn.

Chopstix 2014-08-26 17:25:56 -0500 Report

There is a difference between apple cider and apple cider vinegar. They are definitely not the same. Use the vinegar with the 'mother' in it because it has nutrients still. The distilled vinegar has been cooked henceforth does not have all the nutrients it should.

Graylin Bee
Graylin Bee 2014-08-22 19:04:52 -0500 Report

It does take the metformin a while to get your insulin producers working. It might be possible the problem isn't with the cells that make the insulin but with the cells that pick up the insulin. Diabetes is complicated…
However that said, some aspects seem to get easier over time. Your understanding of how carbs work with or against you will increase. Some people need a snack of a carb and protein combo to keep morning spikes to a minimum. A cracker with some cheese or peanut butter might help you.
I had a problem with certain types of salad dressings giving me a high morning reading. I would eat a well balanced supper. Have a good bedtime BG. Then wake up way to high. Seemed to only happen when I used a certain dressing. So perhaps it might be your metabolism doesn't like something you are eating. I also learned that not all grains react the same for me. Oats give me a higher BG then corn. Both are too high for me, but if I am going to cave into a craving I will choose nachos over an oatmeal cookie.

wraithmb 2014-08-22 08:45:53 -0500 Report

I think everyone else has done a great job answering your questions. I am a t1 (type 1) so I depend solely on insulin for my glucose control.

White breads and other processed foods act faster when you eat them, so they cause a bigger spike in my sugar. I have personally seen that switching the type of bread to whole grain can cut that spike just about in half! For me it is all about matching the action of foods I eat to the action of my insulin.

As far as foods to eat-most green vegetables are considered "free" foods, in that they gave little to no carb. Broccoli is one of my favorites as nobody else in my family eats it, so there is always lots for me! A dietician will be able to answer your questions on these issues.

Last but not least, it is a bit overwhelming when you are first diagnosed, but it does get easier. You will get used to all the poking. The advice to change lancets often is a good one. It will hurt less. I have often joked that after so many blood tests, insulin injections, a1cs and the like, I should stuff a garden hose up my butt and go into business as a professional water sprinkler…

Let us know how you are doing and if you have more questions, ask away!

Debster_386 2014-08-22 09:19:58 -0500 Report

Morning Wraithmb, Thank -you for answering : ) I really don't eat much bread. Well try not too. I do how ever like wraps. You can throw just about anything in them. But I see the carbs and sugars are higher in wheat then normal ones. I do use the spinach wraps sometimes. I've found they are less in everything. So your saying even though the white bread ect have lower stuff , the wheat are better, because they don't spike your sugar as fast ? I am not a veggie person . Broccoli, cauliflower, Is okay with cheese on it. I like corn and peas. Maybe if I try and eat veggies raw, would that be same thing? As far as the lancets i don't change them every time, so i'll try that.Thanks for the laugh about the garden hose . Have a great day! : O )

Chopstix 2014-08-24 20:05:28 -0500 Report

Try putting cinnamon and nutmeg on your broccoli, cauliflower carrot mix when you stir fry them. Garlic is also good for you more ways than one. Do the apple cider vinegar with a glass of water and a squirt of lemon juice and or honey about half hour before meals and see if that helps any. It did me. Don't forget you are in one of the best places to get help any time you need it…

wraithmb 2014-08-22 10:19:17 -0500 Report

Veggies are usually good raw. It's when you cook some of them that they start to count as something. Carrots come to mind and I believe peas, only count as carb when cooked… Don't quote me though. A good app for nutritional inf is myfitnesspal. I use it quite a bit on my iphone, but I believe it's available for android too.

wraithmb 2014-08-22 09:39:10 -0500 Report

Veggies are usually good raw. It's when you cook some of them that they start to count as something. Carrots come to mind and I believe peas, only count as carb when cooked… Don't quote me though. A good app for nutritional inf is myfitnesspal. I use it quite a bit on my iphone, but I believe it's available for android too.

haoleboy 2014-08-21 17:22:57 -0500 Report

Hi Deb and welcome,
if you are going to eat bread, something many of us have all but given up, the recommendation is usually to eat "whole grain" bread (not to be confused with "whole wheat" bread) as whole grain is a complex carbohydrate … meaning it will release its carbs slower than a simple carbohydrate (white flour) will. (read more here: … but moderation is the key.
I follow a low carb diet rich in nutrient dense foods and have eliminated processed foods and all added sugars. IMO the key is to eat as healthy as possible … which will also help with your hypertension.
I have to believe you are a type 2 otherwise you would be on insulin. The pills you are taking are probably Metformin? If so it can take several weeks before you see an improvement from taking them. For now diet and exercise will serve you well.
Yes it does get easier, so take a deep breath … you've found a good place to ask questions (and vent if needed).

Here are some websites that have helped my understanding of diabetes:


Debster_386 2014-08-22 09:27:14 -0500 Report

Morning Haoleboy. Thank you for responding. Yeah , I think I am just looking at normal wheat maybe. So if you want a sandwich, to bad, pretty The pills are Metformin twice a day. Maybe im not being patient enough. Thank you for the sites, i'll check them out. Have a great day! : O )

TLTanner 2014-08-21 16:46:11 -0500 Report

Hi Debster!

Welcome to DC!

I have to ask since you speak of your sore fingers, first, where on your fingers are you poking? Second, are you re-using the lancets?

I'm going to say that most of us (diabetics) have found it less painful to use the sides of the fingers rather than the centers. Also, you don't have to press all that hard on your lancing device to prick your finger. If you do, the needle goes deeper and can cause more pain.

I have my lancing device set on the lowest setting so that it doesn't go in too deep. I also NEVER re-use my lancets. I use them once and throw them away, using a new one each time I stick my finger. I found that my fingers were getting really sore when I re-used and after my kidney transplant, they told me not to ever do that again. So, I haven't. Don't need infections.

Instead of alcohol wipes, just wash your hands with soap and water and forget the wipes. I don't use them either for the very reason you stated, they dry my fingers out something horrible! Others may disagree, but I think you can get the same kind of clean without all the dryness from just washing your hands before testing your BG levels.

Good luck to you on your new journey with Diabetes! Don't hesitate to ask questions, as you have so far, or even just rant if you need.



Debster_386 2014-08-22 09:33:51 -0500 Report

Morning TL Tanner, I poke my fingers right in the middle and yes I re use it. Thank you for this. I will try the sides of my fingers and change lancet every time. I am a very clean person my family call me a neat freak , even when it comes to hand washing, lol So ill try and just wash my hands, even if its wash one time use swabs the next. I reuse the lancet twice then change it, but I think i'll change it every time now . Thanks have a great day! : O )

TLTanner 2014-08-22 17:35:21 -0500 Report

Hey Debster,

I once saw a picture of a needle going through the changes as you use it, from beginning to end, and I didn't like it. It also explained to me why it hurt so much the longer you used it. Not to mention how it would bruise my fingers and they would be hard to stop the bleeding.

I don't remember who, but someone told me about the sides instead of using the middles. I think I was in the hospital. At any rate, I started doing that and found it didn't hurt like the middle of the finger did AND it gave me more areas to poke! I use both sides of the fingers. So now, it's just remembering which finger and which side I'm on… LOL

Glad to have helped and hope you had a great day!


jayabee52 2014-08-21 16:20:04 -0500 Report

Howdy Deb

You ask a lot of questions in this discussion, which is good! I will try to answer them, but please forgive me if I don't get them all answered. Sometimes I miss stuff.

I am wondering if you really are T1, as T1s use insulin alone as a control for their high BG (blood glucose) levels, they don't use pills to manage their high BGs. More than likely you are T2 or perhaps (though unlikely) T1.5.

Just taking insulin does not make you a T1 as I am a T2 and had to take insulin when my kidneys failed.

Going to see a RD (registered dietician) is a really good thing as you may well get a lot of answers for which you are looking.

If you truly are T2, your pancreas is producing some insulin of its own. The question is, does it produce enough insulin to manage your BG levels if you eat very carefully.

Mine does and I had been able, for the past 3+ yrs to follow a meal plan where I can manage my BG levels, achieve an A1c of 5.5, lose 65 lbs of weight (in 5 mo) lower my insulin resistance, and keep my BG levels in the 90 to 130 mg/dl range. I have written about that meal plan here on DC and am willing to send you a link to that discussion upon your request.

You ask 'What do you do if it [BG level] goes to high?" Drink plenty of water is one thing. Get out and exercise is another.

Drinking water tends to thin out the blood a bit, which lowers the BG level just a little bit.

Exercise does more as it burns off some of the glucose in your blood and has the additional benefit of reducing your insulin resistance so the higher BG will be more easlily enabled to enter your cells as it should.

When it comes to asking questions of the Dr, you may wish to try what I do: I write down (on a word processing program) the questions as they occur to me. The day of (or a day prior to) the Dr's appt, I will print out two copies of the questions. One copy I give to the nurse who takes my vitals and ask that it be placed in my file folder where the Dr will see it. I keep my copy and then with the Dr I go through it and ask the questions. I write his answers on my sheet (I leave enough room on the sheet for answers right next to the question)

This way i get my questions answered and have a way to go back and review Dr's answers when I need.

To answer your question posed in the title, Yes I do believe it becomes easier with time and practice.

I think that is about all I can handle at this time. Should you have further questions or I skipped an important question for you, just ask it.

God's best to you

Debster_386 2014-08-22 09:46:40 -0500 Report

Morning Jayabee52…Thanks so much ! So lots of water and exercise help lower it. Good to know! I would love to see your meal plan please. The biggest thing I think for me is knowing how to plans my meals for the day. Im more apt to screw up if I don't think ahead. Like she wants me to have 7 starches, 3 fruit ect… a day. I'm not the brightest crayon in the box, but I get by just fine . But when it comes to that, it just stresses me out trying to figure how to put it all together for a day. Plus make it some what enjoyable for my family also. My husband is awe sum, he'll eat just about anything I cook! Well except, I found a recipe for diabetic spaghetti lovers soup! I liked it, they did not . I think once I visit the dietician and understand what is good , it will be a little easier. Have a great day! : O )

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