Posted in Diabetes

A New Direction: Pursuing Treatment for My Diabetes

It’s been a long time since I’ve written. Work got busy, had a vacation, and now and slowly getting back into the swing of things. Hopefully now I can get back to blogging as well!

It’s been a long couple of months. I’ve been slowly starting to add more carbs (and food) back into my diet to put on some weight (my diet is still very low carb though). I feel better and don’t feel as exhausted as I did all the time. It’s especially noticeable after exercise as previously I just kept zonking out because I didn’t have enough energy.  I have also gained a tiny bit of muscle. However, with more food come higher blood sugars. The higher my blood sugars, the more I have to exercise, which leads to a net weight gain of nothing as I gain a pound or so and then lose it again. This failure to gain weight has started to become a bit concerning as my period has been gone for a while=no bueno. That means I’m at high risk for osteoporosis, heart problems, etc. I’ve discussed options with my doctors and nutritionists this past week and have decided that it may be best for me to start insulin therapy.

This discussion with my doctors came about after my blood sugars went crazy during my vacation and spiked over the 200s.  I think this all happened because either:

a) I spent a whole day sitting on the plane and didn’t do my usual after meal walks which led to a backup of carb (I brought all my meals on the flights with me from home so I wasn’t eating random stuff at airports though).

b) I had a delayed meal (I did eat a bit of protein and some almonds though so my body wouldn’t freak out. Protein and fat shouldn’t elevate blood sugars).

This really put a damper on my whole vacation. I noticed I was feeling a bit funny and unusually thirsty one of the days (I must have downed like 10 bottles of water). And the next morning I woke up with  fasting glucose of 176. By the end of the day I was well over 200. I have never been that high in the morning since I was originally diagnosed. I felt terrible the rest of the vacation and definitely spent a few days over the 200s so had to cut down carbs drastically and go walking after every meal to get the blood sugars back down. Otherwise, there was no way they were coming down. My nutritionist thought that was kind of strange and thought that my body really may not be producing enough insulin and therefore not getting the nutrients it needs if I have to exercise so much to keep my blood sugars under control.

Since I’m so thin and the last thing I want is my body to continue cannibalizing itself for energy, I think insulin would be the best option for me right now. I feel my body is desperately trying to put on the weight while I desperately try to keep the blood sugars down. My doctors tried a couple of pills with me earlier this week since I have been running a bit high after trying to add my usual amount of carbs back into my diet after coming home from vacation (Januvia, Glipizide), but none of the meds seem to have done anything for me. 😦 Today I met with my endo to discuss insulins and administration and think I will be starting this week after the approval for one of my prescriptions goes through.

I’m terrified of the idea of starting on insulin though. What if I mess up? What if I end up with blood sugars over the 400s? What if I go low while exercising or at night? What if I have an allergic reaction to it? What if I’m insulin resistant on top of being insulin deficient and the insulin doesn’t work for me? The other thing that terrifies me is making changes to my diet since, for the most part, eating doesn’t make me feel very good (if my meal doesn’t have the right balance of carb, fat, protein I feel miserable as I feel my blood sugars going up).

This feels like I have gotten diagnosed all over again, but I know it’s what my body probably needs right now to get healthy again. That way I can really exercise without worrying about dropping more weight. Although I’m still feeling bummed, I am hopeful that this decision is for the best. I think I have delayed this decision for a long time given that no one has really been able to tell me with certainty whether I’m a type 2 or type 1.5 (LADA), which is confusing. From forums I have read online, it seems many people in a similar situation to mine have this same issue of not really knowing 100% and being confused about which treatment options to pursue. Plus it seems like there’s a lot of variability on what treatments work and don’t work for the 1.5’s: some people seem to do well on meds only, others on insulin only, others on insulin and meds. For those confused about type 1.5, here is a good video discussing a bit about it:

And here’s another one by Dr. Bernstein:

I’m still hopeful that I’m a type 2 and once my body gets back in check and I continue exercising I can wean off insulin and just be on a pill (or at least that’s what I try to tell myself). One can only hope…. Feeling a little bit lost and alone at the moment. I hope I find something that works for me soon so I can start to feel better. 😦

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Author:

Hi all! This blog is a space to share my journey and day-to-day experiences with managing diabetes. Please note, I am not a doctor or nutritionist, just a patient that lives with the condition.

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