Posts Tagged ‘ diabetic meters ’

Controlling the portion size

Portion Control PlateI’m Deborah Susan, a dietician and personal trainer specializing in nutrition and physical fitness for diabetics. I’ve written over three dozen blogs covering various aspects of diabetes including symptoms, monitoring, explaining glycaemic index, carbohydrate counting, and correlation between body weight, lifestyle and diabetes and so on.

How often have you been told that to reduce your body fat (and thereby gain control over your diabetes), you need to cut down on your portion sizes? My clients always come back and tell me they have difficulty keeping control over portion sizes especially of foods that they love. Today, my blog will be on guiding you on how best to achieve and maintain that ideal portion size.

Over the years, manufacturers of food products (large scale and retail), have gradually increased the portion size of the food they package. The usual tactic is to initially offer a certain additional portion as “free” before gradually increasing the size of the package on a more permanent basis.

I remember about five years ago, when I used to purchase a bag of chips for my 5 year old son, the quantity of chips would be barely sufficient for him. Today when I see the bag of the same brand of chips at the local mall, it can easily feed at least 3 people. When you open a bag of chips they will turn soft in a couple of hours. A single person buying a bag of chips will therefore finish it all as quickly as possible.

Complete Wade Place SettingEarlier, restaurateurs and manufacturers of food products were guided by moral and ethical values. They were aware of food that was tasty but bad for health and therefore marketed it in small quantities just so it satisfied our craving for it. Today, the modern generation restaurateurs and manufacturers are guided by greed and the need to outperform the previous year’s revenue figures. While pop-and-mom establishments do exist, businesses have gone beyond the neighborhood food outlet; in fact, they have gone national and in many instances even global. These businesses have gone public and have a large shareholder base clamoring for higher profits. Ethics and consumer health be damned.

If you are presented with a larger portion of your favorite delicacy will you refuse? Therein lies the crux of the problem. Every food item bought and sold in the supermarket, mall, diner or local restaurant is a favorite for someone or the other. He or she wouldn’t mind eating a little extra. The problem is, over the years the ‘little’ has grown into gigantic portions.

So how do you control the portion sizes?

•    When you buy prepackaged food items, share it with at least two other people or, depending on the nature of the item, store 2/3rds in the fridge/air tight container.
•    While eating out, you can either request that the portion size be decreased, or pack away the excess food in the take-out container or simply leave it in the plate. You don’t have to eat everything that is put in front of you.
•    At home, if you feel that the portions have grown in size, I recommend you purchase quality portion control plates, bowls and scoopers. Portion control plates bowls and scooper will not only help regulate quantum of food consumed it will also help you in eating the right types of food.

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Dining Out with Diabetes

Mediterranean Diet and DiabetesMany Diabetics feel overwhelmed when they first start dining out after being diagnosed with Diabetes. After all, dining out removes some of the control you have over what ingredients and options you have for your diabetic meals. However, learning the dining out ropes may seem intimidating at first, but once you have a handle on it, dining out can be a true pleasure – and a relief if you spend much of your time in the kitchen.

As a recently diagnosed Diabetic, you should keep in mind that the principles of good nutrition are still in effect. Therefore, just because the menu offers high sugar options doesn’t mean that you should compromise your nutrition standards for the restaurant. Even if the menu does not offer items that are particularly low in sugar, you can (and should) always request that the chef take special care with your diabetes diet recipes. After all, your health is on the line! Many restaurants have special recipes for customers wishing to order sugarfree desserts or sugar free recipes. Sometimes, all you need to do is ask.

What to do when dining out:

•    Fried foods are tempting appetizers. However, most menus also offer fresh fruit, seafood or soup options. Select the Salmon seafood or soup.
•    When ordering eggs at breakfast, avoid scrambled eggs or eggs that could be mixed with butter or cream. Instead, opt for a boiled or poached egg.
•    Always ask for the dressing on the side. Many restaurants also offer sugarfree desserts in addition to traditional deserts or dressings.
•    Choose whole-grain breads when ordering rolls, crackers and biscuits. If whole-grain breads are not options, avoid eating breads made with refined flour.
•    Select brown rice over white rice.
•    Look for vegetables that come raw, steamed, stewed or boiled. Otherwise, make sure that the vegetables are not cooked with high-fat oils and butter.
•    Select lean meats, such as meats ending in “loin” (tenderloin, sirloin). Always ask for the gravy or sauce on the side of the dish.
•    For dessert, order fruit, yogurt or sugar-free ice cream. Though it may be tempting, unless there are other sugar free desserts on the menu, stick with the item with the lowest sugar level.
•    Never drink soda. Always opt for diet beverages, unsweetened tea or water.
•    Eat small portions (like you may at home, and take a doggy bag.)
•    Even when dining out, remember that you may have a special diabetes meal planning. Stick to it.
•    Don’t forget to take your medication. Grilled Fish Meal
•    Fat free doesn’t mean sugar-free. When in doubt, ask your waitress or chef for ingredients, or simply skip the item.
•    Plan to take some of your food home, even before eating. That way, you will avoid over-eating.
•    Approach buffets very carefully – start with a salad, take as much vegetables as you would like, avoid those croutons; tuck in the tomatoes; some sunflowers seeds, with no-fat or low-fat dressing and make that your first course. On the return trip, have more salad or follow the above guidelines for your entrée course.

For diabetic dessert, try the fruit. Remember some buffets, use canned fruit with sweetened juices, watch those; too much sugar. Fresh fruit is always best and they generically have those around the salad bar as well.

Dining out can often is a huge relief for families in which one person has Diabetes, but not everyone. When you dine out in such a situation, everyone can feel comfortable ordering foods that they enjoy and no one has to worry about cooking diabetic delivered prepared meals in addition to a meal that the whole family will crave. Keep in mind that by remembering your nutrition basics, you can eat large, very healthy diabetic diet meals without having to feel guilty. Bon Appétit. Enjoy.

Typefreediabetes offers a full line of diabetic testing supplies, including; incontinence products, men’s diabetic socks, delivered prepared meals, durable diabetes medical equipment, diabetes carbohydrates and facts about diabetes.  Typefreediabetes offers quality products at discounted prices on a wide selection of quality name brand equipment and supplies.

What Causes High Blood Pressure?

Most diabetics do not know what causes high blood pressure. Diabetes is very closely linked to high blood pressure – a condition also known as hypertension. It is estimated that about 75% of adults that have diabetes also have high blood pressure and that a person with diabetes is about twice as likely to get high blood pressure as someone without diabetes. Discover what causes high blood pressure. Start today to change those risk factors you can control. Always prefer to use automatic digital blood pressure monitor for monitoring blood pressure level.

Diabetes diet recipesHigh blood pressure occurs when arteries become filled with sticky deposits like cholesterol. Cholesterol builds up in the arteries decreasing the passageway through which blood can flow. As the passage gets smaller, the heart has to pump harder to push blood through the smaller openings of the arteries, which increases blood pressure.

It may help to think of high blood pressure by thinking of your arteries as a garden hose. If the garden hose becomes filled with sticky dirt, it is more difficult for water to flow through the hose. The pressure ahead of the blockage within the hose increase, in this situation one should always prefer to eat low fat low carb recipes for controlling cholesterol. However, the pressure past the blockage is a lot lower and so is the blow of water. So, in a human system the heart feels the pressure resistance, but the blood takes a long time to get to the feet .

As such, high blood pressure often leads to poor blood circulation, slow healing, and swelling. Additionally, when a person has high blood pressure, he or she is four times as likely to develop heart disease and has an increased chance of having a stroke. A stroke happens when a part of the brain does not get enough blood to feed and keep those cells alive. For avoiding this type of situations he or she should always check blood pressure level through body fat analyzer.
Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor

Reading the Numbers

The most common way to get a blood pressure reading is through the use of a wrist blood pressure monitor or a canvas band that fits around an arm or a leg. This blood pressure monitor measures systolic (si-stol-ik) and diastolic (dahy-uh-stol-ik) pressure by pumping air into the cuff until the cuff is snug around the arm or leg.

Systolic pressure is the pressure inside of the artery that builds every time the heart contracts to push blood through the arteries. The diastolic pressure is measured when the heart is resting (after each beat) and filling with blood. When your blood pressure is read, the systolic number is always on the top (the larger number) and the diastolic number is always on the bottom (the smaller number).

How Do I Know if I Have Hypertension?

Hypertension is characterized by headaches, dizziness and blurred vision. Because these symptoms are also associated with other conditions, they can be hard to identify as symptoms of high blood pressure. Therefore, it is important to get a regular blood pressure check from automatic blood pressure monitor as well as your doctor.

diabetic diet and meal plansDamage from High Blood Pressure (hypertension)

  • Kidney Damage – The very small arteries in the kidneys are damaged reducing the removal of waste and toxins from the blood. The waste begins to poison the blood, and the rest of the body. Finally, this leads to kidney failure and dialysis or kidney transplantation or death.
  • Heart Disease – Poor blood flow leads to overworking of the heart.
  • Loss of Vision – Blurred vision begins, get worse, and leads to blindness. Damage to small blood vessels and pressure inside the eyes.
  • Blood Vessel Damage – High blood sugar cause scaring in the lining of blood vessels, this leads to stiffening (arteriosclerosis) and blockage (atherosclerosis) of arteries. These damages bring about more damage such as:
  • Seizure in Pregnant Women
  • Aortic Aneurysm – A weakening in the wall of the aortic artery that lead to a bulge and if untreated a burst and death.

The Type 1 diabetic must use enough insulin to take the right amount of sugar from the bloodstream to convert to energy, and cell building material. They must also be very focused on their nutrition, diabetic diet meal plans and levels of exercise.

Tips to Help Avoid Hypertensionautomatic digital blood pressure monitor

Hypertension is a common condition amongst Diabetics. However, there are some lifestyle changes such as get diabetic diet and meal plans and healthy diabetic breakfast that you can make in order to reduce your chances of getting high blood pressure:

  • minimize salt consumption
  • find methods of reducing stress
  • stretch
  • exercise regularly
  • lose weight
  • avoid consuming large amounts of alcohol
  • don’t smoke
  • get regular blood pressure check-ups by using digital blood pressure monitor

If you think that you have hypertension, consult your physician immediately. Addressing hypertension early is the best way to avoid the health risks that are often associated with the condition.

Typefreediabetes offers a full line of diabetes supplies, including diabetes insulin pump; socks for diabetics, portion control plates, glucose tablets, blood glucose monitors, durable diabetes medical equipment, omron body fat analyzer, automatic blood pressure monitor and many other home health care products and supplies. Typefreediabetes offers quality products at discounted prices on a wide selection of quality name brand equipment and supplies.

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Glucagon Emergency Kit!

All Diabetics that use insulin, especially children with Type 1 Diabetes, should have access to an emergency glucose kit, also known as a Glucagon Emergency Kit. When a Diabetic misses a dose of insulin, takes too much insulin, or, for any reason, has a very low blood sugar level, the person can lose consciousness and go into shock.  For diabetics, one of the most needed things (except for insulin) is having a glucagon shot and someone capable of using it when necessary.

Important: Diabetics should always tell people around them, such as family members and co-workers, of their condition. Those family members and coworkers should always know where the Glucagon Emergency Kit is just in case the Diabetic loses consciousness and cannot inject him or herself.

How it Works

A glucagon kit is similar in appearance and use to an insulin kit, in that there is a needle and a vial of medication. However, instead of injecting insulin, a person experiencing low blood sugar should be injected with glucagons. Often, the person will be unconscious, so someone will have to inject him or her with the glucagon before he or she goes into coma.

Glucagon is a hormone that raises the level of glucose in the blood. The alpha cells of the pancreas, in areas called the islets of Langerhans, make glucagon when the body needs to put more sugar into the blood.

Glucagon, like insulin, must be injected. Within the glucagon kit are a syringe pre-filled with a liquid and a vial of powdered glucagon. You prepare the glucagon for injection immediately before use by following the instructions that are included with the glucagon kit. In general, small children (under 20 kg, or 44 pounds) are given 1/2 cc (half the syringe), while older children and adults are given 1cc (the entire syringe). In kids, some authorities advise using 1/2 cc to start with, and then giving the other 1/2 about 20 minutes later if needed. This method can lessen the rebound hyperglycemia that usually ensues after use of glucagon. There is no danger of overdose, however. Injection is given in a large muscle, such as the buttocks, thigh or arm. (The needle on the syringe is usually larger than those on insulin syringes.)

There is injection preparation instructions imprinted onto the cases of emergency glucagon kits and blood glucose test kit so that the process is simple even for someone injecting a patient for the first time. It is best to inject a patient in a large muscle, such as the thigh or buttocks, because of the size of the needle. Keep in mind is that children should only be given about half of the syringe (1/2 cc) while adults should take the whole syringe (1cc).

Non-Insulin Dependent Diabetics

Type 2 Diabetics and pre-diabetics may also face low blood sugar levels that cause them to require emergency treatment. In most cases, a simple glass of juice or piece of candy can help to restore the blood sugar to safe levels. Therefore, it is always a good idea to keep sugarfree candy or a juice box on hand, even when you are not insulin-dependent.

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Diabetic test strips or Diabetic Meter and Lancets are part of a diabetic’s life

Diabetic meters, often called Self-Monitoring Blood Glucose (SMBG) tools, are small battery-operated devices that Diabetics use to measure their blood sugar levels. There are over 25 types of diabetes meters available. If you have been recently diagnosed with Diabetes and are now looking for the right meter for you, understanding how they work can help you make the best choice. Your doctor can also assist you in finding the perfect meter.

Lancing devices and lancets are used to get a drop of blood for blood sugar testing and monitoring. These tools pierce the finger and draw the blood to be tested. Below are a range of lancets that are less painful because the piercing device is very thin, polished, and spring-loaded.

Blood glucose test strips are part of the method that is used to measure blood glucose levels. The test strip is placed in a blood glucose meter to read your blood glucose levels by having blood dropped on them or drawn into them. Some of the blood glucose test strips below are meant to be paired with specific meters, while others can be paired with the meter of your choice. Now, some meters use blood sampling discs that are loaded once for multiple tests.

Blood Sugar Testing

Blood sugar testing and blood glucose monitors is important for diabetics because their bodies do not process blood sugars properly. Since a diabetic cannot break down sugar molecules, the sugar cannot be absorbed by the muscles and organs and stored for later use as energy. Learn more about sugar molecules interactively.

Hypoglycemia (Low Blood Sugar)

Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) is a serious condition in which a person has a dangerously low amount of glucose in their bloodstream. Remember glucose is the fuel of the brain cells and the body’s cells. The real danger is the brain is running out of fuel. It will shut down if quick action is not taken.

Many Diabetics are well aware of the risks and they use Diabetes Insulin Pump of having too much glucose in their blood stream (hyperglycemia), but some are unaware that having too little glucose is also dangerous.

Diabetic Coma

A Diabetic coma is a condition in which a diabetic lapses into a coma due to complications relating to diabetes. In most cases, low blood sugar is the primary reason why an otherwise health patient might lapse into a coma as a result of Diabetes. However, other conditions, such as ketoacidosis or nonketotic hyperosmolar coma occur.

Low Blood Sugar (Hypoglycemia)

Low blood sugar (also known as Hypoglycemia) is a condition found in Diabetics that is characterized by low blood glucose. When your blood sugar level drops well below normal, your muscles and brain are starving for the energy they get from glucose to function properly. Low blood sugar is most often a side effect of insulin and other Type 2 Diabetes medications.

Emergency Glucose/Glucagon Kits

All Diabetics that use insulin and diabetic strips, especially children with Type 1 Diabetes, should have access to an emergency glucose kit, also known as a Glucagon Emergency Kit. When a Diabetic misses a dose of insulin, takes too much insulin, or, for any reason, has a very low blood sugar level, the person can lose consciousness and go into shock.


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Type 2 Diabetes – Making the Most of the Lazy Days of Summer

Summer is in full-swing, which means that the lazy days of summer are officially upon us! Whether you’re summer plans involve relaxing by the pool with a good book and cold beverage, snacks of diabetes, getting some sunshine at the beach, or driving the kids from one summertime event to another, here are some tips to help you make the most of these lazy days while staying healthy and energetic!

Get in the Water:
The summer is filled with activities that are centered around water. From water sports like sailing to simply jumping into the crystal clear pool waters you’ve been dying to test out, it’s time to take advantage of water rather than sunbathe near it!

Swimming and water aerobics provide some of the best outlets for toning your entire body using water for resistance (rather than those clunky weights at the gym). Or spend some time in the water with your kids next time they jump in the pool…you’ll be surprised by how toned your arms can get from tossing them into back flips!

Walk that Beach: Just about everyone takes a few days to get down to the beach each summer. Next time you’re at the beach, don’t just watch the sand crabs; get out and enjoy the sand yourself! Walking or running with diabetic footwear in sand not only helps to tone your leg muscles (the softer the sand, the harder it is to walk and the more calories you’ll burn), but it will ensure that you get at least a little bit of cardio in between bouts of wave watching and book reading. Be sure to apply sunscreen before you head out for a walk; just 30 minutes in the bright summer sun is enough to burn your skin and scalp.

Don’t Just Wait in the Car

If you’re like many parents and you think that the summer has come down to a series of waiting periods while your children complete their summer activities, you’re not alone. But next time your child has a soccer practice, dance lesson, or art class, don’t just wait in the car; get out and exercise!

Dress for the occasion in workout clothes, or simply keep some sneakers in the car if you don’t have time for a full-on workout. While your child practices soccer, walk or jog around the field. If your child is taking a dance lesson, take time for yourself to run around the neighborhood where the dance studio is.

With the high prices of gas these days, it’s more cost effective to stay in the vicinity of the lesson rather than going home and coming back after your child’s activity anyway. You’ll usually have about an hour to yourself to get active and keep your weight down, or pull in other parents to work out together while you wait.

Always Have a Snack On-Hand Like Sugarfree Desserts

Almond Snack It’s easy to gain weight in the summer with the level of physical activity decreasing in the hot sun while the number of ice cream stands generally goes through the roof. In order to put cravings at bay, make sure to always have a healthy snack on hand for you and your family. Almonds and dried fruit are excellent, healthy choices and they last in even the hottest of cars.

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Yoga Helps Reduce Diabetes Complications

Yoga has been widely studied as a means to help reduce (and sometimes eliminate) many diabetes complications. Some of these side effects include reduced blood flow, kidney failure, urinary failure, and blindness. Many researchers believe that practicing yoga and daily aid product regularly can help to stimulate blood circulation and massage internal organs, which can provide long-lasting physical benefits to individuals suffering from diabetes.

Additionally, exercise (including yoga) can have long-term benefits for diabetics. Physical exercise has been proven to reduce stress, decrease body fat, stimulate organ functions and blood circulation, and decrease blood sugar levels.

Yoga and other forms of exercise have been shown to have a positive impact on every type of diabetes, including Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.

3 Yoga Postures

Yoga is an ancient practice of bending, stretching, and challenging the body to hold certain postures for a prolonged period of time. There are several different types of yoga, including Bikram (hot yoga), Hatha yoga (body balancing), and Ashtanga (rigorous) yoga. Each type of yoga provides different benefits and postures. However, all yoga styles are similar in that they massage the organs, develop muscles, and increase blood flow and oxygen levels throughout the body.

Yoga has clear physical and mental benefits for Diabetics. Some yogis (yoga teachers) even believe that practicing yoga regularly can reverse many Diabetic symptoms, including increased hunger, weight gain, poor circulation, and stress.

There are some easy-to-practice yoga postures that are especially beneficial to Diabetics. These postures massage the pancreas and glands, which help to regulate blood sugar levels. They also help to stretch the abdomen and spine. If you have just a few minutes a day to dedicate to yoga practice, check out these postures:

Yoga Pose Half Moon

• Half-moon – stand with your feet touching at the heels and toes. Reach your arms over your head sideways and link fingers. Extend the index finger of each hand, as if pointing to the ceiling. Slowly bend towards one side of the room from your belly button to the tips of your fingers. As you deepen the bend, push your hips in the opposite direction of the bend. Be sure to keep your arms and legs straight while pushing your fingers and heels in opposite directions.

• Cobra – lay on the floor, belly-down. Place the palms of your hands flat on the floorYoga Pose Cobra underneath your shoulders. Make sure your arms are parallel from the shoulder to the elbow and elbow to the wrists. Look to the ceiling, stretching your eyes and head upward. Slowly lift your torso off of the ground so that it meets the ground at your belly button. Remember to breathe deeply in this pose to strengthen and lengthen the spine and torso.

Yoga Pose Bow

• Bow – with your belly on the floor and eyes stretched towards the ceiling, reach both arms out to your sides. Bend your legs at the knees towards the ceiling and reach down to grab your heals from the outside of your legs. Push your legs towards the ceiling, lifting your torso as well. Rock towards your chest as much as possible. Try to hold this pose as long as you can.

One of the many benefits of yoga is weight loss as you develop your muscle mass and burn fat.
typefreediabetes.com recommends using an body fat scale to track you fat-burning progress.

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