Saturday, July 6, 2013

Eyeballing the carbs

I'm trying to straighten out the basal patterns on my insulin pump. It can't be that difficult, can it? You just write down what you eat, how much insulin you shoot up to cover that meal and what your numbers think of that. Big deal... or is it a big deal after all?

It takes a lot of work to write it all down. I have made a template that I can use all over again. Still, you need to think things over. I wanted to start by having carb free breakfasts, three days in a row: no bread, no cereal, no oatmeal, fruit or dairy products. I could have meat or a cucumber salad, but I decided to go for a diced pepper and tomato omelette. I never minded having an English breakfast. Thinking of juicy sausages and a piece or two of streaky bacon, I swallowed that last bit of omelette. Done. In an ideal situation, my blood glucose shouldn't peak now, because I skipped the carbs. The thing with diabetes though, is that you never know. You can have this breakfast one day and have great numbers afterwards and you could have skyhigh readings the next day on the same breakfast. There's not much we can do about that. I guess diabetes has mood swings, just like us.

The first day on my carb free breakfast, I was surprised on the numbers increasing. I did not expect my numbers to go up like that. But they came down without a correction of insulin as well. Weird. I like to watch my Dexcom and learn more about D and my body interacting. I was looking forward to day 2, to check if that graph would be similar or not. The fun thing about carb free meals, is that you don't have to eyeball the carbs. That's always a tricky part in your treatment. Prepackaged food is the easiest in counting carbs: you just read the labels on the product and you're done. With home cooked meals, things are a bit more complicated and I don't always feel like getting out that scale and nutrition label, so I make guesses...

So day 2: omelette and diced pepper and tomato breakfast. Same amount, same preparation. I had my breaky a bit earlier this time. Just because I got up earlier, I guess, no other reason.
Things weren't that different, BG wise. What would they be like on day 3?
Unfortunately, it was day 30 on my Dexcom and it needed to be replaced. No way I was going to poke my fingers 20 times to be able to read the progress. So I guess I'll have to check some other day.

I could do carb free lunch though!
I decided to go for a crispy, flavorful Caesar salad. Sadly enough, carb free means: no crunchy croutons in my salad today. I replaced the bread by baked chicken pieces (I'm so happy with my freezer, that held a Ziploc bag full of cooked chicken cubes for quick lunches), topped that with Parmesan and a home made anchovy dressing, that is typical for this wonderful salad. I did wanted something else to give my salad more body, so I decided to finally try out that Oopsie bread I had been reading about. It is not really bread, that's why they call it "oopsie"..  I don't really know what happened, but my afternoon was just crappy. Highs and lows followed by, well, more highs and lows. Once I'm on that rollercoaster, I know the rest of my day will be ruined. I no longer feel like completing my food diary. I even forgot to change my pump site, so I ended up with numbers that were not normal. O well, I'll give it another go next week... after all, diabetes is chronic. It won't go away. There's always time to give things another try..


Kevin Keyken said...

Interesting experiment! I'm curious about the upcoming results!

Scott K. Johnson said...

Diabetes sure does have mood swings! Haha!

But I think you're on the right track. If you can get rid of whatever variables you can, it'll help you nail things down.

Once you have basal rates you can be confident in, it makes for a really great base for everything else.

Which reminds me, I'm terribly overdue for some basal testing. :-)

Cathy Van de Moortele said...

We'll have to come together one day Scott, to discuss all of this. Do you ever cross the ocean?