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Table of Contents

The day my life changed ............................................................................................................................ 2


What is Type 1 Diabetes? ............................................................................................................................. 7
What is type 2 Diabetes? ............................................................................................................................ 10
What are the differences between type 1 and type 2 diabetes? ............................................................... 12
Monitoring your blood sugar ...................................................................................................................... 13
How will diabetes affect your diet? ............................................................................................................ 23

Why should you exercise? .......................................................................................................................... 31


How can illness and other diseases affect diabetes? ................................................................................. 34
Driving with diabetes .................................................................................................................................. 38
Drinking alcohol with diabetes ................................................................................................................... 40
Complications of diabetes .......................................................................................................................... 41
Final note .................................................................................................................................................... 46
Common myths about diabetes ................................................................................................................. 46
Glossary of terms ........................................................................................................................................ 48

The day my life changed

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It was just another cold January day in my 2nd period U.S. history class. We were on the subject of World
War 2, learning about the events that led to the 2nd world war. It was boring every five minutes or so I
would look over at the clock to see how much time was left before break. Today they were serving pizza
bagels in the cafeteria and I had my thoughts on getting one. It mustve been around 9:30am when the
door opened letting in a chill wind into the warm classroom. It was a student with a call slip for another
student to go to the office. I didnt really pay attention to those slips, they were never for me and even
if it was I would have much rather stay inside the warm classroom then go out into the cold air.
However, to my surprise I heard Mrs. Vargas call my name and told me to get my things that my sister
was here to pick me up.
I was not sure whether to be happy or worried that I was going home early.
Throughout my school years since elementary I had never had anyone come to get me out of school.
Bad thoughts started to fill my mind as I walked down the hall towards the attendance office where I
saw my sister Jessica, waiting for me. As I walked up to her I noticed the worried look on her face, thats

when I realized that something was wrong. The first thing that came to my mind was that something
had happened to one of my family members. I thought of my mom since she had been having heart
problems recently. Thats when I asked her if everything was alright, she told me its you we have to
take you to the hospital the doctor called and said your blood sugar is really high. It was then that I saw
the tears in her eyes.
The moment I heard those words I felt like I couldnt really grasp the situation. Even as I stood
there waiting to be checked out of school thinking of what she had just told me. Something inside me
didnt click I felt as if this wasnt happening like there must have been some mistake somewhere. A
week ago I had gone in to get some blood work done and I remember the person who took my blood
saying that they were new and had only been there a week or 2. I immediately thought yea that idiot
must have made a mistake he probably mixed up my blood with someone elses the blood that was
tested couldnt have been mine.
On the way to the hospital I didnt say a word I just kept to myself, imagining the moment at the
hospital after I was tested and they realized this was all a mistake. Thats all I could think of nothing else.
Jessica explained to me that my mom and my other sister were waiting for us at the hospital. I looked
over to her and just nodded. She then told me then that she knew something wasnt right even before
this. She went on to say how she thought the rapid weight loss I had over the summer wasnt something
that normal. The unquenchable thirst I would experience often along with frequent urination. I had
always thought that I was thirsty because it was hot here in California during the summer and I would
drink from 10-15 glasses of water a day. This also led me to think that all the frequent urination was
because of all the water I drank even the 2 -3 times I got up at night to use the restroom. I didnt think it
was all because of me having a high blood sugar.
When I walked into the hospital my mom was there with my sister Liz. Her eyes were red from
all the crying she had been doing. I walked over to her, hugged her and told her to not worry that I was
going to be ok. She said Im sorry son I feel like its my fault for not paying attention to the symptoms
you were showing before. She also said she was sorry for not buying healthier food for us and that
perhaps had she done so this would not be happening. However, even at that point I felt like I still didnt
fully grasp the situation I just kept telling her that I was ok.

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After I was checked into the hospital, they moved me to a room where I would wait for a doctor
to come see me. In the meantime while we waited for the doctor, a nurse showed up; she told me to get
into the gown they had brought in earlier and that she was going to hook me up to an IV fluid. After all
that had been done she told me she needed a sample of my blood and said they were going to run some
tests to see how my blood sugar was. She left the room and for the next 10 minutes I was left alone with
my mom. I asked her what happened. How did she find out my blood sugar was high? She told me my
physician had called with the results from the blood tests from a week ago and he told her that they
needed to get me to a hospital as soon as possible because my blood sugar was really high. Even after
hearing what she said I still couldnt believe it all.
The doctor finally showed up and he had the test results from the blood sample taken earlier.
The words he said to us felt like they just went in one ear and out the other. He told us that my blood
sugar was 4 times what it should normally be and that I would probably have to stay a night so they
could see if they could lower it and to monitor me. My mom reluctantly agreed for me to stay and she
asked if she could stay as well. I just laid there on the hospital bed looking at the clock on the wall that
read 10:10 am and I thought to myself I could be eating a pizza bagel at school right now. Even after
hearing those words from the doctor my adolescent brain could not comprehend it or maybe I just
didnt want to.
It was about 7pm {around the time most people eat dinner} the nurse came in with a short
menu from which I could choose what I would like to have for dinner. It was a low carb menu so there
wasnt a lot to choose from. I asked for the breaded chicken breast with broccoli and a cup of fruit. The
nurse took my order and said she would be back shortly to check my blood sugar level. A few minutes
later she returned with a small black zipped up bag and said that this was going to be my blood glucose
monitor. She showed me how to use it and said that it would require me to prick my finger to draw
blood out so I could check my sugar levels. When she pricked my finger I didnt even feel it in fact I
didnt even think it had worked until she squeezed my finger and out came the blood. The blood glucose
monitor read 188, it certainly was lower than before. Then she said she would be back with my food and

my first insulin shot. About 10 minutes later she returned with the food and a tiny bottle along with a
very thin syringe. She swirled the tiny bottle for a few seconds before sticking the syringe in and draining
out the liquid. She told me the spots to inject insulin are in the areas with a bit of fat and said the lower
area of your buttocks, lower stomach and the back of your arms were the usual spots to inject insulin. I
told her to inject it my arm, she then grabbed the back of my arm and grabbed a bit of the arm skin
behind there and stuck the syringe in and released the liquid that was in it. Even after having my blood
sugar checked and seeing the numbers with my own eyes and just having insulin injected for the first
time I could still not accept that I had diabetes.
It was 12am my mom had fallen asleep in the pull out bed next to me, the television was turned
off and the chatter outside the room had gone quiet. I was left alone to my thoughts. I thought about how
my life was going to be from here on out. How I would not be able to eat all the things I used to eat before
nor drink whatever I wanted. I thought about how I was always going to be checking my blood sugar level
and having to prick my fingers 4 times a day. I thought about having to inject myself with insulin just to be
able to eat. All these thoughts swirled around in my head. Then I realized the one thing that would make
me finally wake up to all this. People with diabetes are not allowed to be in the armed forces, after high
school my mind was set on enlisting into the United States Marine Corps, this meant that I would no longer
be able to become a marine. It was as if my plans for the future had been reset. Then it all finally hit me
like a pile of bricks and I felt I would not be able to get out from underneath them. I have Diabetes now
and my life will no longer be the same as it once was. I couldnt remember the last time I had
cried I didnt cry when I broke my arm years back, I didnt cry when my cat was given away, and I didnt
cry a few months before when I had broken up with my girlfriend. I could not remember when the last
time I had cried was, but that night was the first in a long time that I cried.
This was my experience when I first found out I had been diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. I had
thought my life was going to drastically change but the truth is my life doesnt seem so different from a
person without diabetes. Sure I may not have been able to join the military like I wanted to but I have
still been able to have a good, healthy, and wonderful life with type 1 diabetes. I am sure many other
people with diabetes whether it be type 1 or type 2 have lived long prosperous fulfilled lives. With the
proper information and medical supervision, diabetes can be regulated and controlled to the point
where people might feel like they do not even have it.

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This small informative book is a collection of information I have learned throughout the years from
personal experience and books and articles I have read about living with diabetes, whether it be type 1 or
type 2. I am glad to be able to share this with you and hope it may help you as much as it has helped me.

What is Type 1 Diabetes?

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Type 1 Diabetes (also known by its scientific name Diabetes Mellitus type 1) is a form of
metabolic disease . In which a persons own anti bodies do not recognize the insulin producing beta
cells in the pancreas. This leads to anti bodies to attack the cells in our pancreas, which halt or lower the
production of insulin. In turn the lack of insulin in our bodies leads to increased glucose in the blood
stream and urine.
Signs and Symptoms
The symptoms of a person who is in the first stages of diabetes {or are on the verge of getting
the disease} may vary from person to person but they are usually a few of the following: rapid weight
loss, polyuria (frequent urination), polydipsia (frequent thirst), Xerostomia (dry mouth), polyphagia
(increased hunger), and fatigue.
Some of the more advanced symptoms of untreated diabetes include: xeroderma (dry skin),
rapid deep breathing, drowsiness, abdominal pain and blurred vision.
What causes type 1 diabetes?
The cause of type 1 diabetes is still unclear; many different theories have been brought forward
from various scientists and medical experts. Some theories speculate that the disease may be brought
on by genetics, a diabetogenie trigger, or exposure to an antigen.
Genetics can also play a role in whether someone will have type 1 diabetes. There are a lot of
genes that are involved when it comes to type 1 diabetes. It depends on the Locus or combination of
Loci. The genes may be dominant, recessive, or a little bit of both the gene IDDML is the gene
responsible for a cell surface receptor which is essential to the function of the immune system. Certain
variants of this gene increase the risk for decreased histocompatibility which is a characteristic of type 1.

The risk of a child developing type 1 diabetes is around 10% if the father has it. 10% if a sibling
has it, 4% if the mother has it {and was aged 25 years or younger when the child was born}, and 1% if
the mother was over 25 during the birth of the child.
Type 1 diabetes management
Type 1 diabetics usually require a form of insulin therapy. Insulin therapy is the treatment of
type 1 diabetes by administering insulin through either a syringe, insulin pen, or an insulin pump. Since
administering insulin usually requires more than 1 injection of insulin per day the patients who do not
wish to repeatedly puncture their skin may use an injection port along with the syringes.

Insulin pumps
Insulin pumps may be a better alternative for some patients. One advantage of having an insulin
pump is the better control to background insulin dosage. The downside of having an insulin pump is the
increased risks for hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia episodes, catheter problems, and no means of
controlling insulin delivery based on current blood glucose levels. Insulin pumps also cause high and low
blood sugars, just the same as injections if not followed correctly.
Different forms of insulin
Over the years there have been other forms of insulin experimented with that do not require to
be administered through injections. Heres a short list of different forms of insulin that have been
created but never really marketed:

Inhalable insulin

Transdermal insulin

Intranasal insulin

Oral insulin

Pancreas transplant
Some of these types of insulin had the same effect as insulin administered through injections

but some others performed poorly. Either way these types of insulin did not receive the attention from
consumers the companies who made them had hoped and were scrapped.
The Honey Moon phase
Patients with type 1 diabetes may also experience what is called the honeymoon phase right
after they are diagnosed with diabetes. The Honeymoon phase is the short period of time after when
someone is diagnosed with type 1 diabetes where the pancreas still produces a significant amount of
insulin to help regular blood sugars.
The Honeymoon period is caused when the remaining beta cells in the pancreas still produce
insulin to help the body regulate blood sugars. This makes blood sugar levels easier to control and may
even make blood sugar levels return to normal during the honeymoon phase. Unfortunately the
honeymoon phase does not last forever. The length of time that the honeymoon lasts will vary from
person to person. The honeymoon phase can last weeks, months or even years.

What is type 2 Diabetes?

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Diabetes Mellitus type 2 (also known as adult-onset diabetes) is a form of metabolic disorder. It
is caused by the high amounts of glucose in the blood, which is caused by decreased production of
insulin or ones body developing a resistance to the insulin produced.
Signs and Symptoms
The symptoms of a person who is in the first stages of diabetes (or is on the verge of getting the
disease) may vary from person to person but they are usually a few of the following: rapid weight loss,
polyuria (frequent urination), polydipsia (frequent thirst), Xerostomia (dry mouth), polyphagia
(increased hunger), and fatigue.
Some of the more advanced symptoms of untreated diabetes include: xeroderma (dry skin),
rapid deep breathing, drowsiness, abdominal pain and blurred vision.
What causes type 2 diabetes?
Unlike type 1 diabetes where the pancreas produces less insulin. Those with type 2 diabetes
develop an insulin resistance in their body. Insulin resistance is a physiological condition in which cells
do not respond to the actions of the insulin being produced. This means that the body is still able to
produce insulin but is unable to use it effectively. This leads to hyperglycemia (high blood glucose). This
causes the beta cells in the pancreas to increase production of insulin which in turn leads to
hyperinsulinemia.
Hyperinsulinemia is caused by excess amounts of insulin circulating in the blood.
Hyperinsuinemia is usually seen in people who are in the early stages of type 2 diabetes. While it is not
the cause of the condition it is only one symptom of the disease.

Unlike people with type 1 diabetes, the bodies of those with type 2 are still capable of creating
insulin. However, the insulin cannot be used by the body to process the glucose properly to turn it into
energy to send it to the cells. Instead the glucose stays in the blood which, if not treated, can harm the
body.
Complications of excessive glucose in the blood
High amounts of glucose in the blood stream can lead to complications over time if not treated.
Some complications are:

Neuropathy(nerve damage)

Damage to the small blood vessels in the eyes

Kidney failure

Dehydration

Heart problems
Diabetes may also lead to Atherosclerosis or hardening in the arteries that can lead to a heart

attack or stroke.
When a person who is diabetic becomes very ill or has severe dehydration they may fall into a
diabetic coma which can be a life threatening situation if the person stays in coma too long. It may
cause damage to vital organs.
Managing type 2 diabetes
The first step that is usually taken to manage type 2 diabetes is to increase physical activity,
eliminating saturated fats, and lowering the intake of sugars and carbohydrates. You should also focus
on a long term goal of losing weight. These steps along with regularly visiting your doctor will help
improve your insulin sensitivity in the body even if the person is not at the weight they should be.

Patients have reported that decreasing their intake of saturated fats has also greatly helped reverse the
effects of insulin resistance.
Every year more people are being diagnosed with diabetes, in the years 2010 and 2012 there
was a 3.3 million increase in the US population alone.

What are the differences between type 1 and type 2 diabetes?

While type 1 and type 2 diabetes both involve problems related to insulin production in the
body the treatment for each type is different from the other. A persons age in which they are diagnosed
with diabetes also greatly differences, for example someone who has type 1 diabetes will be diagnosed
at a young age while someone who has type 2 diabetes is usually diagnosed late into adulthood. Some
differences between the 2 types are:

Both of these diseases still share the same complications if left untreated or managed
incorrectly. The best way to make sure you are on the right track to getting your diabetes
under control is to listen to your doctor or care provider. If managed correctly (and with

regular visits to the doctor) a person may live a long and healthy life as any other person
without diabetes.

Monitoring your blood sugar

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Monitoring the levels of glucose in your blood regularly is an important part of managing your
diabetes. Blood sugar tests may seem a bit tedious and painful at first but over time you become used to
it and you also realize how important it is to constantly check your blood sugar. Blood sugar tests are
done with a portable electronic device that measures the blood sugar levels with a small drop of your
blood.
Why should I check my blood sugar?
There are numerous reasons why someone should check their blood sugars regularly.
By constantly checking your blood sugar you will be able to:

See your progress on reaching your treatment goals.

Understand how diet and exercise affect your blood sugar levels.

Understand how factors such as sickness or stress affect blood sugar levels.

Closely watch the effect of diabetes medication on SLs.

Know when you are experiencing low or high blood sugar levels.

How often should you test your blood sugar?


The amount of times you should check your blood sugar depends. If you have type 1 diabetes
you doctor may ask you to check 3 or more times a day usually. If you have type 2 diabetes your doctor

may ask you to only check 1 once a day or maybe even just a few times a week depending on various
factors (treatment plan, illness, activity, etc.).
How many times should I test my blood sugar if I have type 1 diabetes?
For those with type 1 diabetes it is usually recommended to test your blood sugar three or more
times a day. Testing may vary per person but it is usually done before or after certain meals, before
going to sleep, before and after exercise, and sometimes during the night. Your doctor may also ask you
to check more often if you are ill, changed your daily routine, or when you take a new diabetes
medication.
What about type 2 diabetes?
Type 2 diabetics tend to need to test less than those with type 1 diabetes. If you are taking
insulin to manage your type 2 diabetes, your doctor may recommend checking your blood sugar 1 or
more times a day depending on the dosage of insulin you are taking. Testing is usually done before a
meal, after fasting for at least 8 hours and sometimes after a meal depending on what your doctor says.
If you manage type 2 diabetes with non-insulin medication or just with proper exercise and diet you may
not even be required to test your blood sugar daily.

Know what your target range is


Your doctor will set a target blood sugar result for you. The target range is where your blood
sugar number should be and these numbers vary on several factors such as,

Type of diabetes and how controlled it is.

Age

How long you have had diabetes.

If you are pregnant.

If Diabetes complications are present.

Overall health and whether there are other medical conditions you have.

The most common target levels for people with diabetes are:

Before meals between 90 and 130 milligrams per deciliter* (mg/dl).

One or 2 hours after meals- lower than 180 mg/dl.

Fasting for at least eight hours between 70 and 130 mg/dl.


Recording your test results
Every time you check your blood sugar make sure to record your results as well as specifics in a
log book. Record the date time, result, medication, dosage, and meal info. To make blood sugar results
easier there are mobile applications as well as a printable form on the American Diabetes Association
website you can use. You should speak with your doctor should your ever get results that dont fall with
what your target range is.
Avoid problems with your blood sugar monitor
Your meter is an extremely important tool to help manage your diabetes. It is also a sensitive
little device and improper care for it can lead to wrong blood sugar tests. Taking care of your meter
requires little work and having your blood sugar monitor in working condition is a must. By following
these steps you can make sure your blood sugar meter is giving accurate readings,

Be sure to handle your glucose monitor with care.

Use the instructions in the manual as not all monitors are the same.

Use the proper blood sample size described in the manual, different meters need different sizes.

Change batteries as recommended by the manufacturer for more accurate readings.

Use test strips designed for your monitor as not all devices and strips are compatible.

Store test strips as directed.

Do not use expired test strips.

Run quality tests as directed.

Dealing with low blood sugars


Testing your blood sugar regularly can help detect when you are having a hypoglycemic episode.
Hypoglycemia is when the glucose in the blood goes below the normal level it is supposed to be usually
below 70 mg/dl. Low blood sugars can be caused by a number of things such as,

Skipping a meal or snack

Taking more than the indicated dosage of diabetic medication

Drinking alcohol

Strenuous physical activity one is not used to.

Other medications if not taken correctly may also cause low blood sugars,

Insulin

Glimepiride (Amaryl)

Glipizide (Glucotrol, glynase)

Glyburide (Diabeta, Glynase micronase)

Repaglinide (Prandin)

Taking these medications in combination with your diabetes medication may cause hypoglycemic
episodes. This is why its important to regularly check your blood sugar when your diabetes
management plan changes.
Knowing the symptoms of low blood sugar levels
When you experience low blood sugars, you may begin to experience a variety of symptoms.
These symptoms may differ from person to person but may include,

Shakiness

Nervousness or anxiety

Cold sweat, chills and clammy skin


You may become irritated easily

Confusion and delirious

Rapid heart beat

Feeling lightheaded or dizzy

Hunger and nausea

You may become sleepy

Decrease in vision

Tingling or numbness in the lips or tongue

Headaches

You may feel weak or very tired

Easily angered or sadden

Lack of coordination

Nightmares or talking during your sleep

Seizures

Losing conscious

Should you feel any of these symptoms at any time check your blood sugar level as you may be
experiencing a hypoglycemic episode. Treating low blood sugar is a simple procedure in part of
managing your diabetes.
What is Hypoglycemia?
Hypoglycemia symptoms often occur when the persons blood sugar falls below 70 mg/dl. But
some people have blood sugar levels below this level and do not feel the symptoms. This is called
hypoglycemia unawareness. These people are less likely to awaken during the night when they are
experiencing low blood sugars.
Hypoglycemia occurs more in people who have low blood sugars frequently, have had diabetes
for a long time, or tightly control their diabetes. If you believe you experience hypoglycemia
unawareness speak with your doctor as they may adjust your blood sugar target range to avoid low
blood sugars.
Treatment
1. Consume 15-20 grams of fast acting sugars or simple carbs.
2. After 15 minutes have passed recheck your blood sugar.
3. If your blood sugar is still low, repeat.
4. Once blood sugar levels return to normal, be sure to eat a small snack if your next planned meal
or snack is still an hour or two away.

Here is a short list of 15 grams of fast acting sugar or simple carbs,

Glucose tablets(take as directed on package)

Gel tube (take as directed on package)

2 tablespoons of raisins

4 ounces (1/2 cup) of juice or regular soda( not diet )

1 tablespoon of sugar, honey, or corn syrup

8 ounces of nonfat or 1% milk

Hard candies, jellybeans, or gumdrops (check the package to determine how many to take

What is Glucagon?
If Hypoglycemia is left untreated it may lead to serious complications such as seizures and losing
consciousness (may lead to coma). Should you ever allow your blood sugar drop to these levels and lose
consciousness, someone else must take over on what to do to raise your blood sugar.
All diabetics with type 1 diabetes should have Glucagon some place near where it can be
reached by another person. Glucagon is a hormone that allows your liver to release stored glucose into
your bloodstream if your glucose levels reach extremely low levels. Glucagon injection kits are used as
medication to treat someone with diabetes that has become unconscious from a severe insulin reaction.
Glucagon kits need to be prescribed by a doctor. Be sure to speak with your health care provider if you
think you might need one and also ask them how and when you should use it.
It is important to make sure that the people you are in contact with frequently such as family members,
friends, and coworkers are also instructed on how to administer glucagon to treat severe hypoglycemic
events. Should you ever lose consciousness and those around you do not know how to administer
glucagon, glucagon is not available, or if they feel they cannot handle the situation. They must call 911
as you may go into seizure and your life is in danger.

Should Glucagon be needed:


1. Inject glucagon into the areas in either the arm, thigh, buttocks, following the instructions on the
package
2. When the individual regains conscious 5-15 minutes later they may experience nausea or
vomiting
3. If you have needed glucagon, be sure to let your doctor know about what you can do to prevent
severe low blood sugars in the future.
Be sure to let any caretakers know to not do any of the following should you lose conscious,

Inject insulin (lowers blood sugar even more)

Provide food or fluids (choking hazard)

Put hands in mouth (choking hazard)

What is hyperglycemia?
It is important to not let your blood sugar get low but it is just as important to not let your blood
sugar get high. A high blood sugar rating is usually above 150 mg/dl but may vary from person
depending on treatment. When your blood sugar is high this is called hyperglycemia.
What causes Hyperglycemia?
There are multiple things that can cause someones blood sugar to go up. Some may be simple
mistakes where others may be a sign of something more severe,

If you are type 1 diabetes you may have not taken enough insulin

If you have type 2 diabetes your body may be becoming more resistance to the insulin
produced

You ate more carbohydrates than planned or exercised less

You maybe be ill

You are experiencing stress from personal issues in your life

In the morning your body releases a lot of hormones and those may cause your blood sugar
increase.

Symptoms of hyperglycemia
While the symptoms of hypoglycemia may sometimes be harder to detect, the symptoms for
hyperglycemia are more straight forward and you can tell right away if you are experiencing high blood
sugars. Symptoms for high blood sugars include:

High levels of sugar in the urine ( your urine may be a bit sticky)

Frequent urination

Increased thirst

Treating hyperglycemia
Checking your blood sugar is the best way to determine whether you are experiencing
hyperglycemia. Exercising is the best way to lower blood sugars, however, before exercising while you
are experiencing high blood sugar you should check for ketones. Exercising while there are ketones in
your body may actually increase your blood sugar levels so its important to determine whether you
have ketones in your body before doing any rigorous activity. Eating less carbs may also help lower your
blood sugar levels. You should always team up with your doctor and nutritionist about what to do if you
are constantly experiencing high blood sugars.
What are ketones?

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If hyperglycemia goes untreated it may become a serious problem. High blood sugars may cause
Ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis develops when your body doesnt have enough insulin. Without the insulin,
your body cant convert glucose into energy so your body is forced to use fats that are stored for energy.
When your body breaks down fats it causes ketones to be produced. Your body cannot handle large
amounts of ketones and will try to get rid of them through the urine. However as much as your body
may try, it cannot release all the ketones that are in your blood leading to ketoacidosis.
Ketoacidosis is a life threatening complication from untreated hyperglycemia and is one of the
leading causes of hospitalization and death of children and young adults with diabetes. The symptoms of
diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) may include,

Extreme Thirst

Frequent urination

Fruity smell in breath

Feeling weak or sluggish

Rapid breathing

Fast heart beat

Feeling ill
Testing for Ketones in urine and blood
There are 2 ways to test for ketones the first one require ketostix, these can be purchased at any
pharmacy. Testing for ketones using ketostix require a ketostix strip to be dipped in your urine or passed
through a urine stream and depending on what color (according to the package) the strip turns that is
the amount of ketones in your system. The second way to test for ketones is by using blood sugar
monitors that are also able to be used to test for ketones (not all monitors can be used for this) with

ketone blood testing strips. When using the blood test strips (depending on what the numbers) are you
should follow the guidelines on the blood strip package on what to do. The action that should be taken
depends on the test results. If the results indicate there are no ketones in your system no action is
required. If there is a small amount of ketones you may have to drink more fluids, take your medication
as you normally do and check again a few hours later. If there are large amounts of ketones in your
system you should contact your doctor right away and ask on what action to take, if you cannot get a
hold of your doctor you may need to visit the hospital or emergency room depending on your blood
sugar level and symptoms.
Testing for ketones is an important part of managing diabetes and should not be neglected or
forgotten. Remember to always check for ketones if you are experiencing constant high blood
sugar readings, if you are ill, or if you are urinating frequently and feeling dehydrated.
Identifying that you have ketones in your blood is the first step in preventing the
complications that come from ketoacidosis.

How will diabetes affect your diet?

The biggest change that will happen to your diet after you are diagnosed with diabetes is the
management of carbohydrate intake. Carbohydrates are sugars that are the main source of energy for
your body. Carbohydrates have the biggest impact on your blood sugar levels so monitoring carb intake
is vital for diabetes management. The reason for this is because carbohydrates are broken down into
energy by insulin and since the decrease of insulin or insulin effectiveness interferes with this, it causes
the sugars from carbs to stay in the blood causing high blood sugars.
Carbohydrate counting
Counting carbs may be difficult at first, since most people do not like limitations as to what they
may eat. However, carb counting takes time and once you integrate it into your eating habits it will
seem so simple you will wonder why people struggle with it. Your nutritionist may give you a set amount
of carbs to eat for each meal and snack. This doesnt necessarily mean that you will be eating less in fact
there are foods that do not count towards your carb count. Vegetables and some meats do not have
carbohydrates so this makes them ok to eat even if you are at your carbohydrate limit. Below is an
example of some foods that have carbohydrates and other foods that are carb free.

In general the foods that are high in carbohydrates tend to be starchy or sweet such as fruit,
grains, and other sugary foods. However this isnt always the case. Foods that tend to be low in
carbohydrates are vegetables and proteins. Here are some foods that have carbohydrates in them,

Fruits and juice

Grains and oats

Milk and yogurt

Starchy vegetables like potatoes

Dried beans and soy products

Sweet snacks like cookies, candies, and soda.

Carb counting will require you to read the nutrition labels on foods to determine the serving size.
Its important to know what the serving size is so we can know how many carbs are in each serving.
Below is an example of what things to look at when looking at a nutrition label.

Now lets say your meal plan says you can have 60 carbohydrates per meal. It is dinner time and
you need to prepare your meal, chicken breast with a baked potato but these 2 foods alone do not make
a total 60 carbohydrate meal so lets look at what other choices you can add.
This was a brief example on how to carb count using a 60 carbohydrate meal plan. Your
nutritionist may either give you less or more carbohydrates per meal depending how active you are.

Remember just because something says that it only has 15 grams of carbohydrates doesnt mean it
wont raise your blood sugar. There are some bad carbohydrates out there that can still raise your blood
sugar even if eaten correctly. Make sure to also get the most of your carbohydrates. For example lets
say for a snack you are about to eat would you rather eat a small piece of candy that has 30 grams of

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carbohydrates as supposed to eating a piece of toast with peanut butter and a serving of milk that also
equal 30 carbohydrates? Which one sounds more filling? Especially if your next meal is not for 2 more
hours.
How do fats affect your blood sugar?
While carbohydrates may get the most attention when it comes to managing your diabetes it is
also important pay attention to the types of fats that you consume. Some of these fats may cause other
health problems which may interfere with your diabetes management. The 3 different types of fats that
you should adjust the intake of are trans fats, saturated fats, and unsaturated fats.
Trans-unsaturated fatty acids
Trans fats are the worst type of fat these are the fats you must always avoid. Trans fats increase
your cholesterol levels which may lead to heart problems. Trans fats are produced when liquid fats turn
into solid fats (also called hydrogenation). All foods that contain trans fats are required to be listed on
the labels. This makes it easier to see which foods to avoid, however if some foods contain less than 1
gram of trans fat the label may show it has 0 grams. The best way to check if a food has trans fats is to
check the ingredients in the nutrition label to see if it lists hydrogenated oil or partially hydrogenated oil.

Sources of trans fats include

Processed foods like snacks that have hydrogenated oil or partially hydrogenated oil.

Sticks of margarine

Fast food especially food that is fried.

Saturated fats
While saturated fats are also bad, they are still more tolerable than trans fats. Saturated fats are
still bad and increase the cholesterol in your blood which can lead to heart disease. Diabetics are already
at risk for heart disease so high blood cholesterol greatly increases the chances of a heart attack or
stroke.
The goal for every person, diabetic or not, is to eat less than 10 percent of calories from
saturated fats. That means that if a person eats 2000 calories a day they need to eat less than 20 grams
of saturated fats. This is not a lot considering that a serving of cheese may have up to 8 grams of
saturated fats.
Some foods that have saturated fats are,

Lard

Fatback and salt pork


High fat meats like ground beef, bologna, bacon, hot dog, and sausage.

High fat dairy products such as whole milk, full fat cheese, butter, ice cream, and sour cream.

Butter

Cream sauces

Gravy made with meat drippings

Chocolate

Palm oil

Coconut and coconut oil

Chicken and turkey skin

Cholesterol
Cholesterol is naturally produced by your body but it can also enter your body from food intake.
The cholesterol from the food we eat may increase blood cholesterol, which is why it is important to eat
no more than 300mg of cholesterol per day.
Cholesterol is required to be on the label some sources of cholesterol include:

High fat dairy products

Liver and other organ meats

High fat meat such as pork, ground beef and poultry skin

Egg yolks

Polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats


Even though trans fats and saturated fats may be bad for you there are other kinds of fats that
may be beneficial. These fats include polyunsaturated fats and monounsaturated fats.
Polyunsaturated fats are healthy fats that can help lower your cholesterol. Polyunsaturated fats
different from saturated fats and trans fats in that they are liquid fats. It is vital to blood clotting, muscle
contraction, relaxation and inflammation. Polyunsaturated fats may help reduce heart disease.
Foods that contain polyunsaturated fats,

Corn oil

Cottonseed oil

Safflower oil

Soybean oil

Walnuts

Pumpkin and sunflower seeds

Salad dressings

Monounsaturated fat is a fat that can help lower cholesterol and reduce the chance of heart attack or
stroke. These should replace saturated fats and trans fats as much as possible. Good sources of
monounsaturated fats include,

Avocado

Canola oil

Nuts

Olives and olive oil

Peanut butter and peanut oil

Sesame seeds
While it may be good to consume food that is rich in unsaturated fats, these foods also tend to be high
in calories. So when consuming these types of food be sure to read the nutrition labels and eat portions
in accordance with your nutrition plan so you do not eat excessive calories.
Remember to be sure to follow your meal plan (given to you by your nutritionist) and to ask any
questions you may have regarding any foods types you are not familiar with. Also be sure to check if a
certain types of food are ok for you to eat if you are on a strict meal plan.

Why should you exercise?

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Exercising is a great way to get your diabetes under control. Everyone should do it not just those
with diabetes. The benefits to exercising are an increase in insulin effectiveness, weight loss, and is
good for your overall health and wellness.
If you are type 1 diabetes it is important to make sure to balance out your insulin dosage and
carbohydrate intake along with the activity. Type 1 diabetics are more prone to low blood sugars when
being active.
The way your blood sugar levels responds to the exercise you do varies on,

How long you were exercising

How intense was the activity

What your blood sugar level was before the start of the activity

Any changes that occurred to your insulin dosage

You may experience a drop in blood sugar the first few times when exercising. It is during this time
when you will realize if you need to either change your insulin dosage or eat extra carbohydrates if you
are going to exercise. This may take some time getting adjusted to as your blood sugar level may vary
depending on activity, which is why it is important to check your blood sugar before and after exercising.
Be sure to always carry a small snack or some form of carbohydrates to eat should your blood sugar
levels drop and you are not home.

It is important, if you repeatedly have low blood sugar levels, to speak with your doctor on what you
can do to avoid low blood sugars when exercising.
Exercising is also very important for type 2 diabetics as exercising can help restore insulin sensitivity.
Exercising will also cause the person to lose weight (which also helps lower the insulin resistance in the
body).
What time of the day is the best time to exercise?
Some people like to workout first thing in the morning to help give them energy for the rest of
the day. Others like to workout at the end of the day. For people who are not diabetic, it does not really
matter what time of the day they work out. However for diabetics, especially those with type 1, it is a
little different. Exercising at different times in the day may affect your blood sugar levels for the rest of
the day. Some people have reported that if they exercise in the morning, their blood sugar levels for the
rest of the day are much better. People who work out later in the evening have reported waking up with
lower blood sugars in the morning. This shows that exercising does indeed decrease the sugar in our
bloodstreams but you might want to take precautions when working early in the morning or later in the
evening to avoid having unwanted low blood sugar levels.
If you are one of those types who like to exercise in the morning, be sure to check your blood
sugar levels before you exercise. Your blood sugar is more sensitive in the morning since you have not
eaten anything for at least 8 hours. Any type of activity may lower your blood sugar and cause
hypoglycemia, which is why you should eat a small snack of carbohydrates to have something so your
blood sugar doesnt go lower than it should. Be sure to also carry some carbohydrates at all times when
exercising.
Some people may not have time in morning or in the day to exercise so they choose to do it
later in evening (probably after dinner). If you exercise late in the evening, be sure to eat your snack
before bedtime and to check your blood sugar before you go to sleep. Exercising in the evening may
cause hypoglycemia while you are sleeping. Should your be experiencing lower than usual blood sugars
levels before going to bed have an extra snack to be on the safe side so you do not experience low blood
sugars during the night.

It is better to exercise in the morning as this helps regulate your blood sugars the rest of the
day, but if you cant in the morning then its ok to do it in the evening, Everyone is different what might
be good for some people is worse for others.
High blood sugar while exercising
Your blood sugar may also rise if you are doing high intensity activities. This is caused by the
stress hormone releasing more glucose into the blood than normal. Should you also notice that your
blood sugar level is high before exercising, test for any ketones. If you do have ketones present in your
system avoid exercising as this may cause your blood sugar to go even higher. If no ketones are present
and you feel fine then you may go ahead and exercise.
It is important to partner with your nutritionist and doctor on finding an exercise plan
that will balance out with your meal plan and medication dosage. Should you ever have any
questions or would like to change your exercise plan, speak with your doctor on what you
may do.

How can illness and other diseases affect diabetes?

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Colds, coughs, and flus, may not seem like life threatening illnesses on their own but for a
diabetic can cause complications involving your blood sugars and may have other effects in their body
that can become serious. Getting sick while you are diabetic may cause your blood sugar to rise when it
normally shouldnt this is caused by additional stress that is brought onto your body the other illnesses.
Colds
You may notice that when you have a cold your blood sugar will be higher than normal. This
happens because extra hormones are released to fight the viral infection that is in your body. These
hormones may help your body fight off the infection but it also causes the effectiveness of insulin to
drop, which in turn raises your blood sugar. It is important to check your blood sugar more often when
you are sick to keep track of your blood sugar levels. Keeping track of your blood sugars when sick also
helps your modify your management plan should you need to. It is also very important when you are
sick to check for ketones as they build up more when you are sick because of these increased blood
sugar levels. If you have type 1 diabetes this can lead to ketoacidosis. Type 2 diabetics are also required
to monitor their blood sugar closer as this can lead to hyperosmolar hyperglycemic nonketotic coma,
which is caused by extremely high blood sugars.
A lot of people dont feel like eating anything when they are sick but for diabetics it is very
important to still eat as this can cause low blood sugars and can lead to hypoglycemia. You can still eat
things you would normally eat from your meal plan. It is recommended to eat at least 15 grams of
carbohydrates per hour if you do not feel like having bigger meals. If you are vomiting, have diarrhea or
have a fever be sure to drink a cup of fluids every hour. You can sip it over time you dont have to drink
it all at once just be sure to drink fluids to stay hydrated. If you blood sugar is high you may sip on water
or a sugar-free drink, if you are experiencing low blood sugars drink a cup of fruit juice or cup of

sports drink. Whenever you eat or drink something be sure that it is something that is allowed in your
meal plan.
Over the counter medications for cold symptoms may help ease the illness on you but make
sure to stay away from medicines that are high in sugar. Medicines that are in sugar tend to be the liquid
cold medicines and cold and cough drops. Try looking for medicines that say sugar-free on them so it
doesnt affect your blood sugar level. You may take regular cold and cough medicine tablets which do
not have sugar in them.
Flus
Avoiding the flu is more important if you are diabetic as the flu causes stress on your body and is
harder for diabetics to fight off the viral infection. The flu is a viral infection of the respiratory system
and muscles. Symptoms of the flu may include:

Fever

Aches and pains in the joints and muscles around the eyes

Feeling weak or fatigued

Pale skin with red watery eyes

Headache

Sore throat

While sick with the flu be sure to check your blood sugar every 3 hours as your blood sugar
levels may increase or decrease without you feeling it since you are sick. Be sure you also check
regularly for ketones while you are sick especially if you have type 1 diabetes.

Remember to continue eating to keep your blood sugar at your target level. If you are vomiting
or have a fever be sure to drink plenty of fluids frequently to keep yourself from becoming
dehydrated. If you experience either a lot of low blood sugars or high blood sugars contact your
doctor and ask how what you should do to regulate your blood sugar levels.
Diabetics should do all they can to avoid catching the flu. They are recommended to receive a flu
shot. Flu shots should be done around September to help for the usual flu season that comes in the
months after. While the flu shot vaccine may not protect 100% percent against the flu, it makes it a
lot harder catch it. You should also ask your family members to receive their flu shots, as it is less
likely to get the flu if you are around people who do not have it.
High blood pressure and diabetes
High blood pressure can lead to a serious of health issues even more for diabetics. It can lead to
diabetic eye disease, kidney disease, and heart problems. It is common for diabetics to develop high
blood pressure as they get older. Having diabetes and high blood pressure increases the risk of having
blood circulation problems, as diabetes damages arteries and makes them more susceptible to
hardening (Atherosclerosis). Atherosclerosis can lead to high blood pressure which can cause blood
vessel damage, stroke, heart failure, and kidney disease.
Patients with high blood pressure and diabetes are usually given ACE (angiotensin converting
enzyme) inhibitors and ARBS (angiotensin II receptor blockers) to treat high blood pressure. There are
other medications that can be used but these medications can also help prevent or slow down kidney
disease in diabetics. Some high blood pressure medications may also cause changes in your blood sugar
levels, be sure to speak with your doctor about the side effects of these medicines.
Tips to help prevent high blood pressure,

Control your blood sugars levels

Do not smoke

Maintain a healthy weight for your body

Eat healthy

Be more active

Decrease alcohol consumption


Have less salt in your diet

Regularly visit your doctor

Thyroid disease
Thyroid disease is an autoimmune disorder that causes the thyroid gland located in your neck to
produce more excess hormones than are required. These hormones affect the way your metabolism
functions. While it may not directly affect your blood sugar, it changes the way glucose and insulin is
metabolized. For example, some patients with hyperthyroidism, insulin goes through your body fast
which can leave you with higher blood sugars. 15-20% of patients with type 1 diabetes develop thyroid
disorders. Some symptoms of thyroid disorders include,

Check with your doctor if you are experiencing any of these symptoms and ask whether you
may have a thyroid disorder.

Addisons disease

Addisons disease is an auto-immune disorder that affects the adrenal glands this causes the
adrenal glands to not produce enough of the hormones cortisol and aldosterone. These hormones
control several functions in your body such as, blood pressure, fluid balance, and heart function, use of
insulin and sense of alertness. Symptoms may not always appear right away but include:

Change in skin color especially around the creases

Appetite loss

Weight loss

Depression

Irregular periods

Dizziness and low blood pressure

If you experience these symptoms let your doctor know as it may be required to perform tests on you to
determine if you have Addisons disease. Addisons disease is diagnosed with urine and blood tests and
is treated with pills that help bring hormones up to normal level.
There are many diseases out there that can affect the way you manage your diabetes.
These are just a few examples of what some are and how they affect your diabetes control.
Remember to always let your doctor know if you feel or show symptoms of any other
disorders or disease as it may have a big effect on your blood sugar levels.

Driving with diabetes

Once you are diagnosed with diabetes there are certain steps you will need to go through
before you can begin driving again. You will need to be evaluated every few months by your doctor to
ensure that your diabetes is under control and you can operate a motor vehicle without problems.
While this may make driving more tedious, it is required for the safety of yourself and others. As
accidents involving diabetics who experience low or high blood sugars on the road arent uncommon.

Staying safe while on the road


Studies have shown that those with type 1 diabetes have had more collisions related to
hypoglycemia problems. This is why it is important to always check your blood sugar before you drive
and to make sure to have some carbohydrates should you experience low blood sugars while on the
road. Most people dont realize how dangerous it can be to have a hypoglycemic episode while driving;
it can cause you to lose focus or worse, faint which can lead to a major accident.
It is required by law to have medical evaluations for diabetics before they can drive. These
arent only limited to diabetics, other disorders or diseases also require medical evaluations to drive.
Remember if you are ever experiencing an unusual low blood sugar or very high blood sugar
and are not feeling well DO NOT drive to the hospital. If possible have someone drive you or
call for an ambulance. This is not only for your safety but the safety of others as well.

Medical IDs
One thing you should always carry with you is a medical id bracelet or necklace. This should
include your information such as address, emergency contact, your name and it should state that you
have either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. This is important in case you should lose conscious and require
medical assistance. It will be easy to identify that you have diabetes and the proper medical assistance
can be given. These come in many styles and are very affordable all diabetics should be required to have
one with them at all times.

Drinking alcohol with diabetes

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Most people believe that diabetics are not allowed to drink alcohol, however, this isnt true.
Diabetics can still enjoy alcohol if it is consumed with moderation and proper precautions. It is
recommended for men to have no more than 2 drinks per day and for women to have no more than 1 per
day. However not all drinks are considered 1 drink; 1 drink of alcohol is considered 12 oz. beer, 5 oz. of

wine or 1 oz. of hard alcohol.


Drinking alcohol can also cause hypoglycemia after excessive drinking. If you are going
to drink be, sure to check your blood sugar before to know if it is at a safe level, (you should
also check it a few hours after just to be safe especially if you are going to go to bed). If you are
going to go to bed and you see your blood sugar is low have something to eat to help bring it
back to normal and recheck again.
Sometimes telling the difference between hypoglycemia and drunkenness may be difficult as
they may sometimes feel the same. You should always wear your medical ID that says you have diabetes
and let others know. It is important to continue to always stay on your meal plan as sometimes when
you are drinking you may be tempted to eat a little more than you should.
Drink in moderation
Drinking alcohol can still be enjoyable even if you are diabetic, just be sure to follow certain precautions
such as:

Do not drink on an empty stomach or when your blood sugar is low, if you are going to drink
have it with food otherwise your blood sugar may drop especially if you are on insulin or other
diabetes medication.

Do not substitute food from your meal plan with alcohol, do not count alcohol with your carb
counting.

Enjoy your alcohol do not gulp it down all at once.

Have a sugar-free beverage with you to keep you hydrated (water, diet soda, unsweetened tea)

Drink light drinks like light beers or if you are having mixed drinks use a zero- calorie mixer.

Do not drive after drinking or hours after

Wear you medical ID

If you are going to have alcohol be sure to always check your blood sugar and to follow
necessary precautions and to wear your medical id.

Complications of diabetes

While there are several complications that can come from bad diabetes management the most
common ones seem to be, foot complications, neuropathy, and kidney disease. You may also notice that
your cuts, scrapes, bruises, and other wounds take longer to heal.
Neuropathy
Neuropathy is when the nerves in your body become damage, and you may lose feeling in some
parts of your body. Over 50 percent of people with diabetes have some form of nerve damage.
Especially for those who have had the disease for a number of years.

There are many types of neuropathy but 2 of the most common are peripheral neuropathy and
autonomic neuropathy. Peripheral neuropathy includes numbness or loss of feeling in the feet.
Symptoms include, tingling in your feet, increased pain or sensitivity, and numbness or weakness.
Autonomic neuropathy is another form of neuropathy that diabetics may experience. This kind
affects bodily functions. Autonomic neuropathy affects the autonomic nerves which control the
digestive system, bladder, genitals, and other organs. Symptoms of autonomic neuropathy vary on what
part of the body is being affected,
Digestive system:

Problems processing food such as vomiting undigested food or food sitting in stomach.

You have lost control of your bowels.

Feeling bloated after eating.

Constipation

Indigestion or heartburn.

Urinary tract:

Losing control of your bladder.

You do not feel like urinating when your bladder is full

Frequent bladder infections

Problems with urinating like frequent urination, less urination, or urine leaking,

Heart and blood vessels,

You feel dizzy if you stand up quickly

You have loss conscious from standing up too quickly

Your heart rate is fast for no reason while at rest

You have experienced a heart attack without warnings


Autonomic neuropathy can be diagnosed by different tests. These can be X rays, ultrasounds or other
tests depending on what the nerve damage is. On the bright side autonomic neuropathy can be treated
by working with a dietitian to help plan meals. If you are on a restricted diet there are various therapies
that are effective in treating autonomic neuropathy. Foot Complications

Many foot complications can arise from diabetics if they do not properly care for their feet. Foot
problems occur when there is already nerve damage from neuropathy present in there. This can lead to
changes in the skin, shape of feet, and foot wounds not healing which can lead to infections.
Skin changes in your feet
Changes in your skin may occur. Some of these changes include the color of your skin changing
and the skin becoming dry and cracked. This is caused by the nerves in your feet that release oils and
moisture no longer functioning. Do not put oils or creams in between your toes as this may lead to
infections. To help restore moisture in your feet dry your feet after bathing and apply a little amount of
plain petroleum jelly or unscented moisturizer.
Contact your doctor for a foot exam if you experience any unusual dry skin in your feet.
Calluses
Treating calluses in your feet is important for proper foot care. Too many calluses in your feet
may mean that you need therapeutic shoes and inserts. Calluses tend to build up faster in people who
are diabetic because of the high pressure areas underneath the feet. Calluses need to be trimmed so
they do not turn into ulcers. Should a callus or corn ever get too thick to cut have your doctor cut it for
you, do not try to cut them yourself as these are sensitive areas that should be handled carefully. Also
do not use chemical agents to remove calluses or corns as these may cause burning in your feet. To help
keep any calluses you may have under control, it is best to use a pumice stone every day, use it on wet
skin and be sure to moisturize the area right afterwards.

Foot ulcers
Ulcers on your feet usually occur on the ball of your foot or on the bottom of your big toe. Some
ulcers may form on the sides of your feet but these are usually caused by improper fitted shoes. While
you may not notice any pain from some ulcers it is important that you always check with your doctor if
you have developed a foot ulcer. If neglected, foot ulcers can lead to infections which if it is not healed
can then lead to an amputation of a limb.
When you have a foot ulcer your doctor may do a number of things to determine how to treat
it. They may have x rays ordered of your foot to see if your bone is infected. You might also have to visit
the hospital to have any dead or infected tissue cleaned out. Your foot may be cultured and antibiotics
will be given depending on the infection.
Your doctor will order you to stay off your feet and may have you wear a special brace or cast
for to keep pressure off your foot. This is important to keep the ulcer from spreading and/or going
deeper into your foot. If time goes by and your foot ulcer is still not healing you may be referred to a
vascular surgeon. It is important to have good control over your diabetes as high blood sugars make it
harder for your body to fight against infections.
Once your foot heals treat your feet carefully as the scar tissue may be sensitive.
Special footwear may be required to protect your feet and to help keep the ulcer from
returning.

Poor blood circulation


The reason why your feet may lose the ability to fight infections and to heal properly is usually
due to poor blood circulation in that area. This is caused by the blood vessels in your feet hardening and
the veins becoming narrower due to diabetes. The biggest factor that affects blood circulation is
smoking. Smoking makes arties harden much faster than they normally would. If you smoke and are
diabetic, it is probably best for you and your family to stop. Keeping your blood pressure and cholesterol
low also helps with keeping good blood circulation.

Exercising is excellent for keeping good blood circulation. It stimulates the blood in your feet and
legs. Something as simple as going for a walk can do wonders when dealing with low blood circulation.
Be sure to wear good, comfortable shoes and avoid walking on any open sores you may have.
Amputations
Diabetics are more likely to have a limb amputated than someone without diabetes. This is
because many people with diabetes have poor blood flow to the feet. This together with nerve damage
can cause infections and ulcers that may lead to amputations. Most amputations are preventable with
proper diabetes control and good foot care. This is why all diabetics should take care of their feet and let
their doctors or health care provider know of any foot problems they may have. You should always
follow your doctors advice when it comes to ulcers or other related foot problems.
The biggest threat to your feet is smoking as smoking affects your blood vessels and
causes the blood flow to your feet to decrease. This causes infections and ulcers to heal
slower, increasing the chances for complications. Many of the people who are diabetic and
require limb amputation are smokers.

Final note

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This is what I have learned over the years from my personal experience with type 1 diabetes and by
sharing it with you I hope it may be of help or give you a better understanding of diabetes. I hope this
information helps those who dont believe diabetes is a serious issue. While it may be overwhelming at
first with all the carb counting, insulin medication, blood sugar testing, and doctor visits. It only gets
easier with time and soon all these things will become a part of your life and will seem like you have
been doing it all along. It will allow you to live a long healthy life with your family so you may enjoy
many long wonderful years. However it all comes down to you whether you put in the effort to take
care of yourself. You need to want to take care of yourself and actually do it. In the end this is all for
your benefit and also for those you love to see you happy and in good health.
Thank you for reading,
Miguel Lopez

Common myths about diabetes

Myth: Diabetes is not a serious disease.


Truth: More people die from diabetes per year than those with AIDs and breast cancer combined. If left
untreated diabetes is life-threatening.
Myth: Only overweight or obese people develop diabetes.
Truth: While being overweight or obese is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes these 2 factors dont always
lead to diabetes it depends on other factors as well. Genetics are also a risk factor for type 1 diabetes
so someone who is at the proper weight may still have diabetes.

Myth: If you eat too much sugar you will develop diabetes.
Truth: This is not always true, while studies have shown that type 2 diabetes is linked to excessive
consumption of sugar. Diabetes involves many other factors such as genetics and life style choices.
Myth: Diabetics should eat special diabetes foods.
Truth: Diabetics can still eat normal food like any other person. There is no difference between special
diabetic food and normal food they both still raise your blood sugar levels and should be eaten
according to serving portions.
Myth: Diabetics cannot eat starchy foods like breads, pasta, and potatoes.
Truth: Diabetics may still eat starchy foods, as long as they follow their meal plans and eat the right
portions.
Myth: Diabetics should not eat sweets or chocolate.
Truth: People with diabetes can still enjoy sweets, as long as their follow a healthy meal plan with
exercise sweets and desserts can still be enjoyed. It is important however to eat a small portion of
sweets to keep your blood sugar in target range.
Myth: Diabetes is contagious
Truth: This is just silly diabetes cannot be caught by someone like a cold or flu.
Myth: Fruit is healthy for you so you may eat as much of it as you want
Truth: This is not true as fruit still contains carbohydrates which will raise your blood sugar if not
consumed according to your meal plan.

Glossary of terms

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Addisons disease- is a disorder in which your body stops producing or produces less of certain
hormones in your body produced by your adrenal glands located above your kidneys.
Antigen- is any substance that causes your immune system to produce antibodies against it.
Atherosclerosis- is the hardening or narrowing of the arteries which cause poor blood circulation,
atherosclerosis is the usual cause of heart attacks.
Auto immune disorder-is when there is an unusual response from the bodys immune system against
substances and tissues that are normally found in the body, for example in type 1 diabetes the bodys
immune system attacks the cells in the pancreas causing reduced insulin production.
Carbohydrates- are complex sugars that need insulin to be broken down in your body to be used as
energy, it is broken down into blood sugar which is used as fuel by the cells in your body.
Diabetogenic-is used to describe anything that may be a factor in causing diabetes or something caused
by diabetes.
Glucagon- is a hormone produced by the alpha cells in the pancreas and has the opposite effect of
insulin, this is used sometimes should someone have very severe low blood sugar levels to raise them
back to normal.
Glucose-is a sugar that is required by all living organisms and mainly comes from carbohydrates.
Histocompatibility- in genetics is the condition of having antigenic similarities in cells from one to
another that is not rejected.
Hyperglycemia-is when there is an excess amount of sugar in someones bloodstream.

Hyperosmolar hyperglycemia nonketotic syndrome- is a diabetic coma that may happen to a person
who has diabetes if they are ill or whose body is stressed, it is more common for people with type 2 to
fall into this coma as opposed to those with type 1 diabetes.
Hyperinsulinemia- is when there is excess amount of insulin circulating in the blood stream, this is
caused by insulin resistance and may be one of the symptoms of type 2 diabetes.
Hypoglycemia- is when there is less glucose in the bloodstream than is required.
IDDML- one of the genes responsible for whether type 1 diabetes develops
Ketoacidosis- is a serious condition which can lead to a diabetic coma or death, it occurs when the cells
do not receive the energy they need and your body begins using stored fat for energy.
Ketones- are the result of having uncontrolled high blood sugars and not taking insulin for a long period
of time, they are produced when the cells in your body begin burning fat for fuel and can lead to
ketoacidosis.
Ketostix- are test strips that use urine to determine if any ketones are present in your body.
Locus/loci- The specific location of a gene on our DNA Sequence
Metabolic disease- is a disease or disorder that affects or changes the way your metabolism functions.
Neuropathy- is a disease in which your nerves lose their function which causes numbness or weakness.
Physiology- is the branch of biology that deals with the normal functions of living organisms.
Polydipsia- is an extreme thirst that is one of the symptoms of diabetes.
Polyphagia- is extreme hunger or increased appetite, is a symptom of diabetes.
Polyuria- is the production of abnormally large quantities of dilute urine.
Thyroid disease- is any disorder that affects the small gland that is found at the base of your neck.

Xeroderma- abnormal dryness in skin


Xerostomia- a condition in which the mouth is unusually dry.

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