Thursday, July 28, 2011

G.D. Update

Well, the gestational diabetes class wasn't as stupid as I thought it would be. The dietary advice was much better than things I had read on the internet for diabetics, and they did a personalized meal plan for me (based on my weight gain, the fact that I have twins, etc.) which is very close to how I actually eat. The only real difference is that I pay much more attention to timing and balance (and my body's own signals), whereas the meal plan I was given was basically just a way of controlling overall carb intake. They do spread it out over the day (in three meals and three snacks) but there is no recommendation to also take in any certain amount of protein or fat, so there are suggestions like having a snack of fruit and a slice of bread. That would be a problem for me. Another suggestion would be to eat for breakfast, one egg, two slices of toast with butter, and a glass of milk. That much carb with that little protein would be a problem for me. Give me three eggs and I could handle two slices of toast if I really must eat them. But why must I eat them?

I was pleased to see that they didn't make any distinction between complex and simple carbs. I suppose they would do so before putting someone on insulin, but by default, we were all allowed to eat white bread and rice and even have fruit juice, if that's how we want to spend our carb allotments. They also didn't ban candy or ice cream, just told us we had to count the carbs. Again, that works for me, as long as I have protein and fat in my system, too.

I did get a free blood glucose monitoring kit. (Well, I guess my insurance is paying for it - nice how I have absolutely no idea about medical costs, huh?) I'm supposed to test each morning and two hours after each of my three main meals. I'm also supposed to test my urine each morning for ketones, which will supposedly tell me if I'm drawing on my body's stored fat. (I need to do more research on that. I don't understand the relationship between ketones and low blood sugar, and I don't understand exactly what the problem is, and whether it's only a problem in pregnancy.) And I'm supposed to follow the meal plan and write down everything I eat and at what time.

But here is what I'm going to do. I'm going to do all the testing. And I might test more often as well. (I'm suspicious that my blood sugar is dropping in the middle of the night.) I'm going to record everything I eat. But I'm not going to follow the meal plan. I'm going to eat like I always do and see what happens. If I never have an elevated blood glucose level on my own diet, then why change it? During the class, we did a finger prick just to make sure we all knew how to do it. It happened to be exactly two hours after I had eaten lunch, which is the time I will be testing going forward. My blood glucose level should be less than 120. It was...ready? 67. And my level two hours after dinner? 76.

I go back in a week for the nutritionist to analyze my data. Maybe I'll get more insight into hypoglycemia and how I can even better manage my condition after pregnancy. That would be wonderful. I also look forward to showing her how worthless and stupid that glucose tolerance test was in my case.

Well, that's assuming I'm right and my levels stay low. But I'm pretty sure I'm right.

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