Real life with diabetes. Evaluation with numbers

Unfortunately, quite often even just one bad result leaves us feeling that we are always and not up to the task at all, that all the numbers on the screen are terrible, and we ourselves have no chance of becoming a winner in the daily race called “Sugar Management”. diabetes.”

Worst of all, such an assessment comes from us. Of course, doctors and loved ones have a determining influence on our expectations and push us to achieve better blood sugar levels and lower glycosylated hemoglobin levels, but it is we who daily act as a judge.

Fortunately, we can also change the way we make decisions. Our subjective assessment has an incredible, truly incredible impact on how we feel after each blood sugar test, on our behavior. The results of your next blood sugar measurement directly depend on the same assessment.

For example, take George . George was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when he was 8 years old. Today he is 25, uses one of the best insulin pumps on the market and the world’s best continuous glucose monitoring sensor, works out in the gym with a personal trainer and does not skimp on healthy food choices. Simply put, George has everything you need to keep your blood sugar levels in the normal range every day. (Of course, even with these initial data, he will also have episodes of hypo- and hyperglycemia. But no one is perfect!)

Not so long ago, George received the results of tests for glycated hemoglobin. 8.9. The highest rate in almost 10 years. The unexpectedly high results upset George quite a lot, and his energy, accumulated over the entire time of fruitful work in managing diabetes, burned out instantly.

“I hate diabetes!” thought George to himself, and each of us probably remembered how often we repeat such phrases to ourselves (at least I made the same loud statement no more than yesterday!).

But the problem is not in the statement itself, but in the thoughts that George had after it.
“I can’t do anything. Why try if everything is so obvious? My sugar is constantly high. I hate healthy eating and will probably never learn to eat less carbs. Going to the gym is a waste of time, because after it the sugar drops, I snack, the sugar rises, and I just replenished the calories burned. I will never be able to lose weight in order to increase the sensitivity of the body to insulin. I hate it all. There is no way to be healthy. Sick of all!”

In other words, George admitted to himself that he had given up and was not going to make any further attempts to improve his glycosylated hemoglobin levels or change his habits, simply because he did not see the point in it.

It is not surprising that in just a year, George gained almost 7 kilograms. He stopped exercising and going to training, he lost his motivation to stick to the principles of a healthy diet, and, what to say, his glycosylated hemoglobin level increased by more than 10 percent. George admitted he was the loser.

Now let’s get to know Charlie . Charlie was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 9. Today Charlie is 25. He uses one of the best insulin pumps on the market and the world’s best continuous glucose monitoring sensor. A few months ago, Charlie also started going to the gym every day after work. He tries to eat healthy meals for lunch and not eat fast food in the evening.

Charlie’s last glycosylated hemoglobin test was 8.5. Higher than the penultimate results, when the level of glycosylated hemoglobin was 7.5. Charlie’s weight is kept at the same level as before the start of classes in the gym.

“Is my glycosylated hemoglobin up?” Charlie asked, and was immediately upset by how much effort he had put in lately to improve his health. “Oh, how I hate diabetes!”

But then Charlie took a deep breath. Then another, another… and I thought to myself:

“Well, my glycated hemoglobin level has gone up. That is, my blood sugar is on average higher than before, which means I don’t inject enough insulin, even though I eat less fast food and exercise more!”

“… but on the other hand, I was very afraid that my sugar would drop during sports, and I ate carbohydrates. It seems that after training I had high blood sugar levels, and physical activity could not lead to hypoglycemia at all, what was I so afraid of? Okay, next time I’ll try not to eat carbohydrates, watch my condition … and measure my sugar during training to prevent hypoglycemia.

“Oh, how I got it!” Charlie grumbled. “But what to do, you need to continue to experiment. I want to play sports and adhere to the principles of a healthy diet. I want my glycosylated hemoglobin to go lower. I can do it, it just takes patience.”


The difference in how George and Charlie reacted to glycated hemoglobin levels (the main measure of total blood sugar levels) is that George thought the number on the paper was his personal characteristic, while for Charlie it was just information about that his current efforts are not enough to achieve his goals.

Remember, the number on the meter is just a number. As well as an indicator of the level of glycosylated hemoglobin. This is not an indicator of your self-esteem. Again, this is just a number.

However, having information about the level of glycated hemoglobin and blood sugar levels allows you to discover important information. For example:

  • you may not be injecting enough insulin;
  • perhaps you inject too much insulin in the morning and not enough in the evening;
  • perhaps you are not choosing your diet quite correctly, and you should seek the advice of a nutritionist or nutrition consultant;
  • it may be time for you to change your injection site;
  • it may be time for you to pause and for a while stop using the continuous glycemic monitoring system so that the constant flow of information does not interfere with your success;
  • you may be going through a difficult period in another area of your life, and you have little strength left to manage your diabetes;
  • perhaps your current sports training program does not have the desired effect on blood sugar levels, and you should take care of preparing your body for each workout;
  • maybe you just need the help of a good diabetes consultant!

Monitoring your blood sugar around the clock is no easy task, and don’t expect the opposite. When things don’t go according to plan and you encounter difficulties, remember that the numbers on paper do not characterize you personally. These are just numbers. This is just a testament to the fact that life with diabetes is not as easy as it seems. When the numbers are good, we grow wings, and when the numbers are bad, we feel like losers. But remember one thing: these numbers are just numbers.

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