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Hi!
I've had diabetes type 1 since the summer of 2003. When I got diabetes I was 11 years old. The hospital that detected it found it unnecessary to give me any information on how my diet should be. And only gave the diet course to my parents. It probably makes sense to not give an 11 year old this course, but anyways.

I figuratively woke up a couple of years ago. I tried to fix my bloodsugar levels. But didn't manage. It's quite difficult for a 14 year old to do this all on herself.
My parents were never especially good at practicing what they had learned in that diet course. And I never understood properly what I could eat and not. I've basically lived on a rule that goes like this: "I can eat anything I want, just need to take enough insulin."
But this rule doesn't really work, and now I'm sick and tired of having almost continual high bloodsugar.

I use insulin. Insulatard at mornings and evenings, Novorapid before meals and when bloodsugar is high.
I usually take more insulatard in the morning, than I do in the evening. But lately I have woken up in the night or earlier in the morning with low bloodsugar values. Any tips on how I can prevent this? (sorry if I seem a bit stupid about my own disease. I think I might be just that)

Also I get this insane craving for lots of food when I get low bloodsugar and usually end up with high levels instead. If I eat too much, should I take extra insulin?

What Im basically wondering is: What can I eat? How many carbs can I eat a day? How can I learn to count carbs? And how can I know how much insulin is needed for each type of food? Should I be worried about fast and slow carbs? :S

Also. Im a girl. When "that time of the month" comes, it seems to me that I need more insulin. But it seems to change from time to time. Sometimes I need more insulin 1-2 weeks before, and sometimes I just need extra insulin during. Any tips?

Getting very confused,
Janine
 

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Hello Janine, welcome to Diabetes Forum. I think you are our first member from the Norway, Finland and Sweden group of countries. I know that Type 1 diabetes is very common in that part of the world. I have been Type 1 for 64 years and I am doing very well. Type 1 can be controlled but it takes much hard work and patience. A Type 1 can have a long, healthy life once good control is established.

Carb counting is a very important part of getting that control. You need to know your carb ratio. That is the number of carbs you can eat for each unit of Novarapid you inject. If your carb ratio was 15 then you would inject one unit of Novorapid for every 15 carbs you ate. A 30 carb meal would require 2 units. I use insulin beore every meal and snack. You would have to experiment to determine your correct carb ratio. It differs from one diabetic to another. I need one unit for every 6 carbs. The carb counting approach may not seem to work if your insulatard dosages are not appropriate. It seems that you need less insulatard in the evening, and more in the morning. That might control your lows at night and in the morning.

Do you see an endocrinologist (diabetes specialist)? That is the best choice of doctor for diagnosing and treating diabetics. A diabetes educator can teach you what you need to know about carb counting and insulin dosages. That is the way it works in the US, it may be different in Norway. Your doctor may refer you to a specialist for your learning about carb counting.

I suggest that you look at the Glycemic Index topic in the Diabetes Diet and Nutrition forum. Eating food with lower glycemic numbers is much healthier and keeps your blood sugar lower.

There is much more that can be said. I will stop here. Ask all the questions you want. We are here to help!

Richard
 

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Hi!
I've had diabetes type 1 since the summer of 2003. When I got diabetes I was 11 years old. The hospital that detected it found it unnecessary to give me any information on how my diet should be. And only gave the diet course to my parents. It probably makes sense to not give an 11 year old this course, but anyways.

I figuratively woke up a couple of years ago. I tried to fix my bloodsugar levels. But didn't manage. It's quite difficult for a 14 year old to do this all on herself.
My parents were never especially good at practicing what they had learned in that diet course. And I never understood properly what I could eat and not. I've basically lived on a rule that goes like this: "I can eat anything I want, just need to take enough insulin."
But this rule doesn't really work, and now I'm sick and tired of having almost continual high bloodsugar.

I use insulin. Insulatard at mornings and evenings, Novorapid before meals and when bloodsugar is high.
I usually take more insulatard in the morning, than I do in the evening. But lately I have woken up in the night or earlier in the morning with low bloodsugar values. Any tips on how I can prevent this? (sorry if I seem a bit stupid about my own disease. I think I might be just that)

Also I get this insane craving for lots of food when I get low bloodsugar and usually end up with high levels instead. If I eat too much, should I take extra insulin?

What Im basically wondering is: What can I eat? How many carbs can I eat a day? How can I learn to count carbs? And how can I know how much insulin is needed for each type of food? Should I be worried about fast and slow carbs? :S

Also. Im a girl. When "that time of the month" comes, it seems to me that I need more insulin. But it seems to change from time to time. Sometimes I need more insulin 1-2 weeks before, and sometimes I just need extra insulin during. Any tips?

Getting very confused,
Janine
I wasn't diabetic when I had periods. I have read that hormones can cause your blood sugar to act strangely. During that time of the month you may need more insulin, keep a notebook every month and see if there is a pattern to your change in your insulin needs during and around the time of your period. Maybe that will shed some light on your situation.
 

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Welcome, Janine. It can be SO overwhelming. Richard is right in advising you learn carb counting and your carb to insulin ratios.

There are many good books available. One in particular called Using Insulin might be a good one for you to read. The author is John Walsh.

It would be wonderful if you could see a diabetes specialist and educator and begin to take charge of your own treatment. Let us know how things are going with you and ask all the questions you have . . . we are here to help, so lean on us!

do take care, Janine, and good for you wanting to get control of this!

 

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Hi Janine

I am now 25, but was diagnosed with diabeties when i was 13. I have been on MANY different insulins, and I am onw on exactly the same as you. Insulatard in the morning, (14units) then novorapid when i eat, then insulatard (14) before bed. I was experiencing low BG ie (hypos) just about every morning due to the fact that i lost quite a lot of weight and want eating as much, therefore what i started to do was reduce my night time insulatard by 2 units and then check my BG in the morning and keep doing this until you get it to a normal level, i find that now with taking 10 units insulatard at night my BG is around 6-7mmol in the morning therefore i am no longer experiencing hypos. Do exactly the same with your morning insulatard increase this by 2 units and test your glucose throughout the day and see how that is, if still high increase the following day by another 2 and so on.

In regards to periods, I am exactly the same, also when i get a cold or feel unwell, my BG goes high, therefore i do the same thing, increase by 2 units until i get it right.

It is extremely hard being diagnosed at that age, I know, i rebelled and didnt want to be diabetic, stopped taking insulin etc, but got into all sorts of trouble and ended up with several hospital admissions, until i realised that I was normal and stopped being embarassed by it and started to get it under control.

With the insulin we are on, you can pretty much "eat what you want" as long as like Richard says you carbohydrate count. For example i count 10g of carbs as 1 unit, therfore if say i want to eat a cadburys fudge bar, per bar it is 18.8g of carbs therfore I would round it up and take 2 units of insulin. At first you will need to experiment (your diabetic nurse/doctor) should have explained all this to you, you may need 2 units for every 10g etc. I would go back to the diabetic clinic, and ask them to explain the DAFNE course. (Dose adjustment for Normal eating) as this is the system we are under, (taking Insulatard and Novorapid) or even look it up online.

Hope that helps you, and you understood all that, but any questions I would be happy to help you, it is sometimes better when someone who is on the same system as you explains. :) Laura
 

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It's a pleasure to welcome you to our community, Laura. I hope you'll visit often and we can get better acquainted. You have a lot of experience, knowledge and wisdom that can help many others in their journey through the minefield that is diabetes.

Take care and do visit us often!

 
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