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Wendys8861 11-12-2010 06:12

Newbie - Pre-Diabetic and confused!
Greetings all, from Central California.

I saw my Dr. a couple of months ago for a routine physical. At that time she had me do some blood work. The results came back with a diagnosis of hypo-thyroid and rheumatoid arthritis. my sugar levels were a bit elevated so she had me do a fasting glucose test. That test also revealed some elevation in my sugar so I went for an A1C. The A1C came back and my level was 6.3%, which she said was pre-diabetic. She did not put me on medication but feels we can treat it with diet and exercise. She also gave me a glucose monitor to test my blood sugar levels at home.

I have followed her instructions for testing: I test every morning when I first get up, then before a meal and 1 1/2 - 2 hours after a meal, and before I go to bed. So far, my highest reading at any time has been 130 (after I ate some fruit) but it's usually no higher than 110 and the average for the week has been 103. First off, I'm not sure if these numbers are good or not.

When I got the diagnosis, she also said she would be sending me to an endocrinologist and dietician as well as an opthamologist. I'm still waiting for the referrals and that's where I'm confused.

Until I can get in with the nutritionist, I'm not sure what foods I can and can't eat. I've stopped eating all bread, have quit soda and am reading every label for carbs and sugars before anything goes into my mouth. The problem is that I have no clue how many carbs/sugars I should be eating and won't know until I can get to see the nutritionist. Also, I've been trying to read up as much as possible and I keep seeing posts about "exchanges" and I don't really get that. Can someone maybe enlighten me on this?
I'm glad I found this place and will probably be posting here several times until I can understand more about this disease.

If there's anybody that can shed some light on whether I'm doing things right or wrong, I'd appreciate it!

Shanny 11-12-2010 06:45

Hello Wendy . . . you're taking it seriously and that's half the battle already! By checking your blood several times through the day and learning, as you did with the fruit, that some things cause higher "spikes", you're well on your way to "eating to your meter". A good carb counter book will help you get a feel for which foods are safe . . . I use CalorieKing because it has scads of entries and includes many popular restaurants items.

The biggest offenders, along with bread, are other white foods like rice, pasta, potatoes, and almost anything made with grain. I have no experience with the "exchanges" thing either, but there are plenty of others here who can pick up where I leave off! :D

I think you're doing great, and it sounds like your doctor has good handle on it too. I'm glad you found us and I hope you'll find a good fit with us and stay a good long while!

Thank you for joining us! 11-12-2010 15:58

Hello Wendy,

On the numbers front - you're suffering the same as me - when I was diagnosed in August in a French hospital, they let me play with a meter and Oh'ed and Ah'ed over the numbers I got - but it seemed that nobody thought that perhaps I might care what these numbers meant.

Anyway, I learned quite quickly and one of the places I looked is here Blood Sugar 101. This lady has been diabetic since 1997 and her site and her book explains a lot in simple terms - just what you need when you don't really know what you're looking for.

As Shanny says, you're halfway there already - you're taking the issue seriously and looking for help. You're very welcome and you'll find a lot of help and support here.

Good luck, John

RobertIA 11-12-2010 17:45

Welcome! Shanny has it correct and you are wise for treat this as the real thing now while you are able. With exercise and nutrition now, you should be able to keep the complications at bay for many years.

If you need any inspiration, I suggest reading a blog by Tom Ross who does control his with exercise and diet. Check it out here: Not Medicated Yet: Your Non-Depressing Guide to Type 2 Diabetes. .

Keep a positive attitude.

lawprop 11-12-2010 20:45

Hi Wendy and welcome to the forum.

If there is one thing you should learn right now it's that pre diabetes is no different then full blown diabetes in the way you treat it. It is basically the same condition but you are lucky enough to have found out before it develops to danger levels.

If you take control now you will save yourself a lot of complications later on.

I was diagnosed as pre diabetic with insulin resistance and high blood glucose levels a over a year ago. From the awesome advice people here gave me, I came to understand how to get a handle on it through eating the right foods and hopefully stop it developing to the point of ever needing meds.

You can do this if you focus on low GI diet and monitor how different carbs effect your BG levels. Some are fast acting and will throw your BG way up for a short period so monitoring with a meter is a must to understand what is happening in your body. Balancing food with exercise is important too as it helps the insulin to get at the sugar in your blood.

Your aim should be to try understand how your individual body handles different foods so you can manage to keep your BG as level as possible.

It's not as scary as it first feels and you are definitely not alone.

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