Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Nobody Really Cares, Do They?

I want to bring up a subject that seems to come up a lot among diabetics who are eating the LCHF way or any other alternative diet for diabetes.  The subject of dealing with friends, family members, co-workers and food!

You know what!  Nobody cares!  Really!  Get this through your head right now!  Get a clue!  The rest of the world (for the most part) is not thinking of the diabetics in the room when it comes to dinners, parties, birthday treats at work, etc., etc., etc.

In fact, my experience has been that the thought process of others is more like that of the medical profession and the diabetes educators in general; "Just eat what everyone else eats in smaller portions and take your medications or insulin, if need be, and play nice!"

In my own family, on both my side and my husband's side, there is no thought to the diabetics when making the menu for a family gathering like Thanksgiving even though it would be very easy to accommodate with a side salad or some non-starchy vegetables added to the menu along with the stuffing and mashed potatoes.

Oh, and I love it when someone says to me "Well, your sister is a diabetic and she is eating the cranberry sauce!"  or "Come on, it's a holiday.  You can forget your diet today!"  Ah.... diet!   I'm not on a "diet".  I'm trying to control a disease!

In my small office of five people, two of us are diabetic and another is pre-diabetic.  At our monthly meetings, donuts are still served and birthday treats brought in are still brownies and caramel bars!   Even the other diabetic is the one bringing the donuts to the meetings!  Oh, she throws in a few apples once in a while to satisfy herself that she is trying to offer healthy foods.  Of course, the apple will be eaten later, after the donut but at least one can fool themselves into thinking that they made a wise choice!

Let's face it, when it comes to gatherings, we are the odd balls!    I sometimes feel a bit like "bubble boy".   Oh, I've heard about the comments made behind my back at the office regarding the butter I keep in the fridge there and the coconut oil that I put in my coffee at work.  I don't announce it or anything but they all know.   I've been told that when I am not there they discuss my foolishness and wonder how long it will be before I fall over of a stroke.  All of this, of course, discussed while they munch on chocolate covered donuts in the break room.

I've gone away hungry more than once with a table full of food.  The comments made to me by others is that there was plenty of food available so if I went away hungry it was my own fault.

Well, I guess that is true!  I am the one who has to think about my food plan.  No one else is thinking about it at all.  Should I call them ahead and ask what is on the menu?  Should I offer to bring a dish and then bring one that I can eat and others can eat or choose to pass on?  Should I eat before I go?  Well, how rude would that be; to eat at home and then decline to eat at the gathering?

It has been said, and I agree, that Diabetes is no longer looked at as a serious disease.  That label is saved for diseases like Cancer or Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke!    Most diabetics, when diagnosed are not even told that there are dangers of all of the above other diseases along with loss of limbs, eyesight, or kidney damage.  It seems that to most of the "normal" world these complications are completely unthought of.   Only those who have seen a diabetic parent, sibling or friend go through these horrible complications seem to understand.

I don't have all of the answers to this yet but I do know one thing for sure, nobody else is going to change for me so I need to "suck it up and deal with it".  No amount of whining or complaining is going to change anything.   I know that many of you can identify with this blog post and have your own experiences.  I hope that this will help you to be strong and find ways to help yourself by realizing that you can't expect the world to understand you.

Monday, December 2, 2013

No More Chili For Me And Other Thoughts On Food

I need to get back on track and eat MORE FAT!

Last weekend I made a batch of my favorite chili.  It is a "low carb" chili but it probably has around 16 grams of carbs in a cupful or so.  I really didn't know that until yesterday when I spent time inputing my recipe into   I knew that it was a carbier dish for me but I didn't know that it had that many carbs!  Every once in a while I allow myself the pleasure of making up a pot.   I only use 1/2 can of black beans in a whole pot of chili.

My husband doesn't eat chili so I am the only one eating the pot and of course it only lasts several days in the fridge.  I try to only have one serving of it per day.  Still, every day this week my blood sugar got a little bit higher.   A few nights ago I had a small second helping because I was really hungry and because I love it so much!   I did make sure I got the fat in by adding some cheese and sour cream to the bowl.  After eating the chili and the small second helping my after meal blood sugar was 155 two hours later.  It was still 130 at bedtime!  Not good!

My morning blood sugar was creeping up each day as well as I continued to eat one bowl or so each day.  I knew that I was out of ketosis which isn't good because my body was becoming a sugar burner again and I was seeing my old diabetic blood sugar issues that I have not seen in a year.  All the time as it was going up day by day I was questioning what the heck was going on with my blood sugar!

I now realize that I can't justify ever making this particular chili with even a small portion of black beans anymore.  Even the canned tomatoes are a problem for my blood sugar.  I have to remove this chili from my food plan in the future.  I say this with a heavy heart!  

Today, I'm getting back on track eating more fat, and smaller portions of meat and vegetables until my blood sugar normalizes again.  I am already seeing progress.  The chili is gone, and sadly, out of my life.  I may try my old version again that had no beans and 6 grams of carbs but I won't try that for a while.

Just like anyone else, I seem to have the ability to fool myself into thinking that I can eat some of my favorite foods without consequence!  It may not be the donut that ruins your day!  It may just be the "healthy" food that you think just couldn't possibly be the problem but it is!

It may be the one piece of "healthy whole grain" bread that you eat every day because you have been told that you need just a bit of fiber, or the apple a day that "keeps the doctor away".   It may be the tomato meat sauce on the spaghetti squash that you think is low carb but for some "unknown" reason your blood sugar goes up way high every time you eat it?  Is it the stevia with the  maltodextrin that was listed on the label that you didn't read?  How about the low carb protein shake with a bit of fruit to sweeten it up.  For some it is the "full fat" greek yogurt at 7 grams of carbs per serving but you are really eating a serving an a half instead.

What is it for you?  Do you secretly know it but refuse to accept it?   Do you need to eliminate your "healthy" favorite dish as I now have to do with my favorite chili?    Denial is "sweet" like candy is but it isn't good for a diabetic!   What do you need to do?