Rebel Without a Cause

Last week I did something that I hadn’t done in months. I ate ice cream. I know, I’m a rebel. Watch out world. Diabetes? What Diabetes?

Admittedly, my diet is restricted by choice and nature rather than the joys of living with the ‘betus. That being said, there is still the issue of portion control. Whenever someone incorrectly says “oh that means you can’t have candy?” I summon my inner John Locke (“Don’t tell me what I can’t do!!!) and inform them that if I wanted, I could have just chocolate for dinner, it’s only a matter of how much chocolate. So taking into account my obsession with control, relatively limited food choices, and hardcore portion control, I rarely deviate from the system. It can get quite boring.

The real issue is the insulin. When I was diagnosed I was put on a rather strict regiment of Humalog. 4 units for breakfast, 4 for lunch, 6 for dinner. My meals were made to fit that number, not the other way around. Now, no one is perfect and there are times when I know the standard insulin injection is not going to cover my meal. But I do what I can to make those times a rarity in the hopes of attaining as much control as possible. However, it *expletive deleted* sucks some times. There have been plenty a night when I have eaten what is calculated as a proper amount of food compared to my insulin, but I still go to bed hungry. Control almost always wins out over my stomach in those battles. There are times when it feels like I am almost starving myself. But because Diabetes said I have had enough, I listen.

I’m sure part of the problem is that I eat like a man possessed for 10 minutes and then I’m done. I rarely take time to enjoy a meal. Eating often feels like a chore, another step in the process of the day. Sure I could deviate from the plan and increase insulin intake for the sake of increasing food intake. But what’s the point of a plan if you don’t stick to it?

So about the ice cream. This wasn’t a battle of wills against a craving that was lasting for weeks on end. I have been in great control for the past few weeks Diabetically speaking and after eating a rather uneventful dinner I felt like ice cream. That simple. Vanilla flavored ice cream with chocolate-covered rice “crunchies” and a caramel ribbon, I give you Quarterback Crunch . It was quite epic. It’s unlikely that I’ll even think about having ice cream again for months, in part because splurging like that is a lot of hassle for 5 minutes of bliss. My health is my primary concern, and while I could probably afford to loosen up from time to time and have something that actually tasted good, I’m not willing to celebrate something short term that could jeopardize the long term.

31 Flavors of Win

31 Flavors of Win

Wow, I sound like a robot.

6 thoughts on “Rebel Without a Cause

  1. I don’t believe that diabetes should control my diet. When I was first diagnosed back in November, I received a lot of different instructions from many different people. Both my first doctor and the first endocrinologist that I visited advised me to limit my carbohydrate intake to 60-70 grams per meal and to take four units of Novolog before each meal. Soon, I started to feel like diabetes was controlling how much I was permitted to eat, and when.

    Based on research I had done on my own time about the condition, I couldn’t justify letting diabetes, or my prescribed insulin doses to be more specific, control my eating habits to that extent. Basically, I see it this way: my pancreas (or part of it) kicked the bucket. Now, to minimize the damage done to my body, I need to do the best I can to mimic what it did when it was working. I know that it didn’t give me precisely X units of insulin at 6:00a, Y units again at 12:00p, and Z units at 5:30p. Instead, it gave me insulin based on when my blood sugar started to change and by how much. So that’s what I try to do.

    In my opinion, one unique aspect of diabetes is that it’s not a condition for which your doctor can just tell you, “Take X units of insulin Y times a day.” The only person who can most accurately prescribe a dose of insulin for me is myself.

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  2. i have felt this way at times, but from an outside point of view, it doesn’t make sense to eat based on blood sugar numbers. obviously, in some ways, it is very important. for example, treating when low or having enough carbs before the gym to prevent low blood sugar. but not eating because of blood sugar even though you are hungry doesn’t really make sense. as an extreme, if your blood was 300+ all day, i dont think you would not eat anything. you still need to eat and just deal with blood sugar issues at the same time. i do think it is important to control and be balanced about what you consume, but i think there are alternatives. sometimes if i am hungry but have already had enough carbs, i make scrambled eggs and that does the trick. and there are other things people say you can do to feel fuller longer.. eating slower, for example πŸ˜›

    to summarize, not eating based on high blood sugar seems like dangerous and unhealthy territory that needs to be balanced with dangerous and unhealthy territory of high blood sugars.

    but what do i know.. im new at this and eat ice cream almost every day πŸ™‚

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  3. That looks great!

    I fight with myself in times like these. I know that I do the “diabetes doesn’t control me” thing often, but I also know that my blood sugars are harder to manage if I eat wildly.

    It’s not something that I have fully accepted yet, and still find myself trying to “buck the system” a bit too often.

    I, for one, really admire your discipline, even on a post talking about ice cream. πŸ™‚

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  4. That’s nuts, dude. I imagine you probably have a better A1c than me, but considering I eat dessert-y kinds of foods nearly everyday and other less-than-ideal crap, I consider myself proof that you can eat normally (relatively speaking) and still manage your diabetes. My last couple A1c’s have been around 6. I do weigh a lot of what I eat at home, and I eat plenty of healthy stuff to balance things out, plus I’m fairly slim and my weight is stable. I mean, do what you feel like you have to do and all, but you can still enjoy food like a normal person, eat when you’re hungry, and manage your diabetes around your food rather than eat your food around your diabetes – and still keep your D and your body in good shape.

    Your way is essentially the way it was when long-timers like me were kids, and it F-ed up a lot of us. So from where I sit, I can’t for the life of me, wrap my mind around doing it that way intentionally when there are other options.

    Glad you enjoyed your ice cream though πŸ™‚ Baskin’ Robbins actually has 31 cent scoop night tonight, so I’m hoping to drag the husband out to get some.

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  5. After 31 years of living with the “betus,” balance is key in both diabetes & life.
    High blood sugars happen man.

    LeeAnn and I both grew up with the restrictive old school diabetes diet, and she’s right. It screwed many a diabetic up. Caused a lot of guilt, a lot of food issues, not to mention the physical damage.

    I found that the minute I stopped restricting things from my diet, diabetes was much easier to handle. With the help of my Certified Diabetes Educator, I learned what my insulin to carb ratio was, how to count carbs, and how to work with diet full of choices, not restrictions.

    My A1c is good, in the 6 range, and has been for quite awhile. Much easier to keep that way when I allow for ice cream deliciousness and the likes there of when needed.

    I’m a strong believer in dark chocolate for medicinal purposes and have some everyday.
    Kelly K

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