19 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Back to School preps should include a Written Care Plan

Back to school preparations should include establishing a Written Care Plan. Basically a plan is put in writing as to how your child's diabetes should be managed while he or she is at school. This plan, developed in coordination with your physician, the school nurse, the educators and of course you the parents.

The plan is specific to your child and should be reviewed annually or as any changes occur. The plans and regulations will vary depending upon the state. For more information, on establishing a plan, visit the American Diabetes Association's site.

Photo: Dreamstime

18 August 2014

Tip of the Day: See your eye doctor

See your eye doctor if you are experiencing blurry or double vision, dark spots or floaters, or pain. A headache can often be a sign of eye strain.

17 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Shoe shopping

Throughout the day our feet swell. Today's tip then is to go shoe shopping in the late afternoon or evening.

If you do go during the day, as I had to recently with the girls, take a thick pair of socks with you. The thickness of the socks will compensate for the afternoon/evening swelling.

Photo: Dreamstime

16 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Stretch

There is no argument that exercise is good for us, especially as diabetics. Stretching first is equally good. Why? Stretching increases flexibility, improves your range of motion, reduces tension, improves posture, lowers the risk of back pain, and decreases soreness after a workout.

Photo: Dreamstime

15 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Alcohol consumption

Drinking alcohol can lead to serious low blood sugar reactions. Hence, today's Tip of the Day is to monitor your alcohol consumption as well as your blood sugar levels if you plan to drink.

Photo: Dreamstime

13 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Control post meal sugar spikes with whey.

Control post meal sugar spikes with whey. A new Tel Aviv University study, published in Diabetologia, suggests a novel way to suppress these deadly post-meal glucose surges: the consumption of whey protein concentrate, found in the watery portion of milk separated from cheese curds, before breakfast.

According to TAU's Prof. Daniela Jakubowicz and Dr. Julio Wainstein of the Wolfson Medical Center's Diabetes Unit, Prof. Oren Froy of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and Prof. Bo Ahrén of Lund University in Sweden, the consumption of whey protein before meals may even keep diabetics' need for insulin treatment at bay.

"What's remarkable is that consuming whey protein before meals reduces the blood sugar spikes seen after meals," said Prof. Jakubowicz.

Tip from an ErekAlert! press release.


12 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Depression is more than just feeling down

We all have down days. Depression is more than just feeling down. It is a feeling of being smothered or being held under water til you're almost out of air. Depression is not wanting to get out of bed and deal with life. It is feeling like you are lower than pond scum, like you just don't matter to anyone. It is feeling so tiny and so worthless. It is feeling like nothing you say or do makes a dent in this world or the people in it. Depression is horrible. Depression is not like a broken arm or leg that will eventually heal. Depression stays with you. It eats at you like a tapeworm. It is a feeling of hopelessness and despair.

Today, as the world mourns comic genius and incredible actor Robin Williams who sadly lost his long battle with depression yesterday in an apparent suicide, I would like to offer these tips on fighting depression:
  • Get active. Go take a walk. Hit the gym. Get active. Move around.
  • Let the sun shine in! Go get some sunshine.
  • Get social. Be interactive with people. Keeping to yourself only encourages that feeling of being alone which in turn increases your depression.
  • Talk to a friend.
  • Seek professional help.
Diabetes may actually double the risk of diabetes, according to the National Institute of Health (NIH). When we are depressed, we are less likely to take care of ourselves in the best manner. In other words, we let ourselves go.

I implore you - if you feel depressed, please see your doctor. Talk to him (or her). We must be self advocates!

Photo: Dreamstime

11 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Tracking your weekly activity

How do you know if you need to be more active if you do not keep track of your activities? How do you determine if the activities you are doing are actually working? The answer, and the Tip of the Day, is simple: track your weekly activity!

Tracking your weekly activity will give you an idea of how many calories you are burning each day, and therefore each week on average. I have to admit that I find this a tad more difficult than it probably actually is. For example, yesterday I got lost in my genealogy research. I literally spent the better part of the afternoon - easily five hours - at my computer doing research. If I were sitting doing light effort arts and crafts, I would have burned up roughly 73 calories a half hour. That works out to a probable 730 calories burned. I do not feel like I burned up ANY calories yesterday, let alone over 700 just sitting here doing research! Tracking my activity over a week though gives a better idea of what I use on average (not that my weeks are the same or ever average)!

Good luck!

Photo: Dreamstime

10 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Searching for recipes

When looking for recipes, try The Food Network online. The site has a section, as many food sites do now, devoted to diabetic friendly recipes. I found one for Oven Baked Salmon that looks like a possibility. The nutritional info shows zero carbs! Total time from prep to eating is only 20 minutes! Click HERE for more diabetic friendly recipes on the Food Network.

Photo: Dreamstime

09 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Do a 10K a Day

Do 10K a day ... 10K steps that is! Walking is a great cardio activity and one that is inexpensive and relatively easy to accomplish. Grab a pedometer (to record your steps) and get walking!

Some suggestions:
  • Take a walk at lunch.
  • Park further away from the door.
  • Use the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Find a walking buddy.
  • Record your steps so you can keep track of your progress.

Don't have a pedometer? On average, one mile equals 2,100 steps. A block equals 100 steps on average. Did you enjoy some time at the pool today? Substitute walking for swimming. On average a minute of swimming equates to 150 steps.

The hardest step is always the first one.

08 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Healthy substitutions

Many of the comfort foods we eat can be substituted to make them healthier. For example, instead of French fries, try a small baked potato. Instead of a candy bar, try some fruit. Roast your chicken instead of frying. Instead of potato chips, try pretzels. Instead of regular pretzels, try whole wheat pretzels.

Photo: Dreamstime

07 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Plate Method

The Plate Method is one way to plan out your meals. It is most useful at lunch and dinner. Imagine a plate. One half of the plate should be non starchy vegetables. The other half should be divided evenly between lean low-fat protein and carbohydrates. Add fruit and dairy for a complete meal.

Photo: CDC

06 August 2014

Tip of the Day: Use smaller plates

In planning out your meals, smaller serving sizes are suggested. If you are used to larger servings though a small serving on a large plate looks sooo little. Hence, use a smaller plate. It's a mind trick of sorts but until you get used to the smaller servings, it works!

Photo: Dreamstime