The Allen County Public Library has many books about health and disease on its shelves. Since November is National Diabetes Month, I am going to focus on type 1 diabetes. Nearly 26 million Americans have diabetes and an additional 79 million have prediabetes and are at risk of developing the disease. There are many other diseases and diagnoses that people come to the library to research. Diabetes is just the example. If you have questions about researching any health topics, please contact Ask a Librarian.
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These are just a few of the hundreds of books related to diabetes in the ACPL catalog
What is diabetes? The simplified version is that it is the body’s inability to take glucose from the bloodstream and move it to the cells where glucose provides energy for everything your body does. The key to moving glucose molecules into the cells is insulin. Some people have type1 diabetes, which means their bodies do not produce insulin. Others have type2 diabetes, which is an insulin insufficiency. People with type2 either don’t produce enough insulin or they don’t produce the right kind of insulin. Their bodies are resistant to insulin. November is National Diabetes Awareness Month, so I plan to write a little about the disease every Wednesday this month. Today’s installment is about a day in the life of diabetes type1. I have had type1 diabetes for 40 years. I have used several different types of insulin in those years with anywhere from 1 to 6 injections of insulin per day. I currently use an insulin pump, which delivers a basal amount of insulin 24/7 via a tube inserted under my skin. When I eat, I calculate how many grams of carbohydrate I consume and based on rates programmed into my pump, it calculates how much insulin to deliver in a dose called a bolus. The bolus can be a normal bolus(delivered all at once), a square bolus (delivered over a period of time) or a dual bolus(split between a normal and a square bolus).
This is my log for November 1 2014:
2:15 a.m. I woke knowing my blood glucose (bg) had rebounded to high from a low yesterday evening. I took a 5 unit bolus without checking my bg because the monitor was downstairs and I did not want to put on my boot to go get it (I have broken bones in my right foot and am wearing a fixed ankle boot during the day.) That’s not the best idea, but we do what we can.
8:30 a.m. I checked my bg – it was 389. (90-100 is normal)
9:00 a.m. I took a 9 unit bolus to bring bg down.
10:30 a.m. bg 84. Lunch isn’t until 1:00, so the bolus brought it down too quickly. I ate 10 g of carbohydrates and suspended my insulin pump so that it did not continue to give me a basal dose while my bg was low.
11:00 a.m. bg 87. If that stays stable I should be fine until lunch.
12:00 p.m. bg 64 Called daughter who lives close to bring candy; I don’t have any with me today (unusual). Pump is still suspended, but 3.1 units of insulin are still active in my body from the 9:00 a.m. bolus. My daughter brought me a can of pop. 37g carbohydrates. Turned pump back on so it was again giving me a basal dose of insulin.
1:00 p.m. bg 192 Time for lunch. I had a queserito from Taco Bell. I estimated it at 32g of carbohydrates. My pump calculated 2.8 units of insulin for a normal bolus and 2.2 for a 30 minute square bolus for a total af 5 units.
3:00 p.m. bg 362. Queserito was actually 62g of carbohydrates. I plugged this information into my insulin pump and it calculated that I needed 1.6 more units of insulin.
5:30 pm. – pre- driving home bg check. bg 286. Pump calculated 2.0 bolus of insulin. Work ends at 6:00.
6:45 p.m. – home for dinner. bg was 232. I ate a hamburger patty, corn and green beans for dinner. 45 g carbohydrates. 3.8 units normal bolus, 2.8 units square bolus over 30 minutes.
9:30 p.m. bg was 210. No bedtime snack needed. The reservoir on my pump was empty, so I filled a new one and changed the insertion site and the tubing. I turned the clocks back and went to bed at 10:00.
My activity level for the day was low due to the broken bones in my foot. My day at work was mostly spent seated and my evening at home was spent reading. Different activity levels require different responses with the pump and can make bg go low very quickly.
Fasting bg Nov 2: 116.
Please come back next Wednesday to read about complications that can develop from diabetes.