I was diagnosed with Diabetes in March, so I am fairly new to this. My A1C at the moment is at 12.6. What are some foods I could eat and things I could do to bring it down. I am pretty concerned with how high it is. Thank you :]
When I first found out mine was pretty high too! The best thing I did to learn what I could do was I checked with my local hospital and attended the diabetes education course they offered as soon as I could. You could also check with your local health dept. The first thing they taught me was to count my carbohydrates. They told me I could have 45 carbs a meal, but it could be different for you depending on your needs. It took me a while to learn which foods had what amount of carbs in them. Where I found the best information was the internet. I looked at the American Diabetes website the most. It tells you what foods will be harmful and which are okay to eat. Try not to eat a lot of sugary foods or "white" foods. For example, if you want potatoes go for sweet potatoes instead of white or eat wheat bread instead of white. I have found a type of bread that is wheat white! I know it sounds funny but it tastes just like white but has all the fiber and nutrition of wheat. Are you seeing a endocrinologist yet? They will more then likely set you up with some type of diabetes education class. I remember when I went I was the youngest person there! But it was nice because they really do teach you very valuable information that will help with every aspect. Some things I have been told work to bring down sugar levels is to drink plenty of water and if it not like over 200 or so then to try exercising. If it is high, you should check you ketones first and if they are at an ok level then you can exercise. If the ketones are high then you don't need to exercise because it could make them worse. You can find the strips to check your ketone levels at walmart or a pharmacy will usually have them. Let me know if there is anything else I could help with! I remember when I first was diagnosed and I was so over whelmed and confused so no question is a bad question! It is always better to ask then to put it off and it had been something important. But really try to find a diabetes education course somewhere near your hometown because that will be the biggest help :)
i personally find that exercise is key to good control, which leads to a good a1c. regular exercise keeps insulin absorption rates high and blood sugars level. a good diet helps too, but i put more emphasis on exercise. swimming and jump rope do wonders for diabetes because they're full body exercises and promote a lot of circulation.
*a note on exercise: all exercise is good at all intensity levels. however, keep in mind that some types of exercise (and this varies with how fit someone is) will actually increase your blood sugar (often caused by small amounts of adrenaline). so just be sure to check your sugars before and after exercise so you can get a feeling of what kind of exercise affects your body in what way. also, if you exercise at night, it's really important to check your sugars before bed to avoid lows.
diet is, of course, important, but before you can execute a useful diet, you have to figure out how your body reacts to carbs and insulin. as indicated by Lindsey classes will help you form a general understanding about carbs/insulin using general rules. once your a1c is down to a safer level using the general rules, you should take further steps to make those general rules specific to you/your body/your lifestyle. low carb foods, vegetables, lean meats (fish), tend to be the basic 'good' foods for diabetics. milk is fantastic because it has a very steady absorption rate, is relatively low carb, and has good protein content. vegan diets are actually pretty great for diabetics too. try using some vegan substitutes for every day things. an example that comes to mind is wildwood aioli mayonnaise - much better for you than normal mayo. there's a whole bunch of vegan items out there that don't taste horrible and are way better for diabetics.
routine is really helpful in getting your numbers in control. after you have them in an acceptable range, then i would try experimenting on yourself to fine tune that control. if you're not comfortable doing this on your own, ask your physician to help, but i promise you it's something important for tight control.
i have to disagree about the information on ADA website being good. for someone who was just diagnosed, yes it's good, but after you have it for a while and you learn the intricacies of diabetes, the standards of control on the ADA site are rather low.
a really great book is called Diabetes Solution by Dr. Richard Bernstein. his name is well known in the diabetes community. he's a type one diabetic that has a medical practice in new york. the book suggests that you keep a low carb diet of less than 30g carbs per day (this is what he's known for i guess). i don't agree with the dietary suggestions of the book because it can't be applied to all ages realistically. i need about 4-5000 calories a day. there is no way i could do a 30g carb/day diet and meet me calorie requirement. i mentioned the book because the other information he has in the book is SUPER valuable. it's written in plain, understandable terms, but gives you a very good and accurate understanding of how things work in a diabetic body compared to a non-diabetic.
start with diabetes classes and nutritional education => use the education to get your numbers in control => fine tune/test out things to find a good compromise between how you want to live and how you have to live with diabetes
I've only had diabetes for a little over a year and I didn't have very very good control until I got on the pump. I was super scared to start it. I thought it was going to be so uncomforable and weird but it's not. I love it maybe you should talk to your endo about it or ask about information about it after I got my pump my endo made me go to a class to learn how to count carbs idk how I was doing anything before that. Not knowing how to count carbs I would kinda just guess at everything, is that where your at? I'm just asking because that's exactly how I was when I was new to everything, well I still kind of am. Once I learned that and I had my pump my life dramatic changed I love it soooo much. I've been using the pump for about 5 months now and my A1C was a 6.0 the last time I went in. Excersize helps a lot also and just eatting less carbs and being careful. Honestly once I learned how to count carbs and how many units I need for x amount of carbs I was set. I still have ups and downs but it stay pretty close to normal now.
Take care I hope this helps some, oh the first few months are going to be a little tough anyways because the dr still has to learn exactly how much insulin you need also.
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