Happy New Year!
If you’ve been following this blog, you took time last week to think about your priorities in regard to your diabetic health. (If you missed last week’s blog post, you can download this PDF copy: Setting Goals, Objectives, Strategies, and Tactics. Now it’s time to implement those plans!
Goals for January: To establish a routine of good habits that will help improve your diabetic health, regardless of your dietary lifestyle.
These are cumulative activities for the month of January. Start with using your blood glucose meter daily as described in Week 1. Beginning with Week 2, continue to use your blood glucose meter daily and add the water. In Week 3, continue with the blood glucose meter and water and add vegetables. During Week 4, continue the blood glucose, water, and vegetables and add exercise, preferably outdoors with fresh air and 20 minutes of sunlight.
Day 1 – Get a Baseline
Goal: To measure and evaluate your progress.
- Check and record your weight and body measurements.
- Check and record your blood pressure and heart rate.
- Record your clothes sizes: shirt/top, dress, skirt, pants, shoes, underwear.
- Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, don’t check these again until the first of next month.
Now, move ahead to the first January challenge!
Week 1 – Blood Glucose Meter
Goal: To establish a habit of using your blood glucose meter daily until you have reversed your blood sugar numbers to non-diabetic normal.
- Learn how to check your blood glucose in the most efficient and least painful way.
Ideally, you should check your blood glucose three (3) times a day. Of course, this may depend somewhat on how many test strips your doctor prescribes and how many your insurance will cover. I have been fortunate that (so far) my insurance covers 100 test strips per month (3 per day) with $0 co-pay. If you doctor/insurance will not cover your test strips (or will not cover as many as you’d like to have), you can purchase meters and test strips without a prescription. Many Adventist Vegetarian Diabetics group members have found the most cost-effective to be the ReliOn brand from Walmart.
To give you some perspective when you check your daily blood glucose: Normal non-diabetic fasting (pre-meal) blood glucose is between 70 mg/dL (3.9 mmol/L) and 99 mg/dL (5.0 mmol/L). Post-meal blood sugar (postprandial): Independent of what they eat, the blood sugars of truly normal (non-diabetic) people are under 120 mg/dL (6.6 mmol/L) one or two hours after a meal. Most normal (non-diabetic) people are under 100 mg/dL (5.5 mmol/L) two hours after eating.
Be sure to record your blood glucose (in mg/dL or mmol/l) every time you test. If you are taking diabetes medications and/or insulin, write down the times and amounts taken. Here are the times for testing that my doctor recommended:
- Fasting Blood Glucose (FBG)
- Your choice: pre-meal or post-meal (60, 90, or 120 minutes after the first bite) – test at different times on different days
- Record your average blood glucose for that day
At the end of the week, if your average daily blood glucose is 100 mg/dL (5.1 mmol/l) or more, continue to test every day. If less than 100 mg/dL (5.1 mmol/l), test once or twice a week.
Blood Glucose Monitoring: Tips to Monitor Your Blood Sugar Successfully
Monitoring your blood glucose level yourself is fairly straightforward and easy to do. Though the idea of taking a sample of your own blood each day makes some people squeamish, the modern spring-loaded lancet monitors make the process nearly painless. Logging your blood glucose levels can be part of a healthy diabetes maintenance or dietary routine.
OneTouch® Delica® lancing device
Lancets available in two sizes: 30 Gauge Fine and 33 Gauge Extra Fine
For more details about checking your blood glucose and using your glucometer, refer to Diabetes Testing Supplies.
Tips on using your blood glucose meter most effectively: HOW TO USE YOUR BLOOD GLUCOSE METER.