I have been type one diabetic (also known as juvenile diabetes) since the age of 8. Before my diagnosis, I was a healthy 8 year old girl just about to enter the 3rd grade. I played all sports known to man! You name it, and I wanted to play it. But on September 4th, 2002, my life was flipped turned upside down. It all happened, what seems like, overnight. I had all the tell tale signs of diabetes, massive weight loss, frequent urination and I was constantly thirsty. When I went into the doctor, I weighed 42 pounds (before this I weighed about 60lbs) and was using the bathroom 3 times every hour! When I arrived at the doctor the first thing that they did was check my blood sugar. The number? A whopping 513! This is 433 points over what the average blood sugar should be. I was immediately sent to the hospital where I was greeted by an endocrinologist and his entire team upon walking in the door.
Let’s jump to today; I have just celebrated my 12th “diaversary” (my diabetic anniversary), and my 11th pumpaversary (11 years being on an insulin pump). I am a very healthy and happy 20 year old college junior. I have not let diabetes slow me down in any way possible. I played 3 sports in high school (receiving high honors in all) and played volleyball my freshman and sophomore year of college, and now playing tennis at Olivet College (I play 2 singles and #1 Doubles with my sister as my partner). Many people let diabetes rule their lives and I vowed to myself, when I was first diagnosed, that I would not let that happen; I run my diabetes, it does NOT run me. Diabetes affects more than 8% of the U.S. population and that number is growing. It is also the seventh leading cause of death-but it doesn’t have to be a death sentence.
Next week I'll go over the difference between type one and type two diabetes.
Difference Between Type One and Type Two
There are different kinds of diabetes; there is type one, type two, and gestational diabetes. In general, people with diabetes either have a total lack of insulin (type 1 diabetes) or they have too little insulin or cannot use insulin effectively (type 2 diabetes). Type 1 diabetes (formerly called juvenile-onset or insulin-dependent diabetes), accounts for 5 to 10 out of 100 people who have diabetes. In type 1 diabetes, the body's immune system destroys the cells that release insulin, eventually eliminating insulin production from the body. Without insulin, cells cannot absorb sugar (glucose), which they need to produce energy. In type 1 diabetes, Symptoms usually start in childhood or young adulthood. People often seek medical help, because they are seriously ill from sudden symptoms of high blood sugar. Episodes of low blood sugar level (hypoglycemia) are common. It also cannot be prevented.
Type 2 diabetes (formerly called adult-onset or non–insulin-dependent diabetes) can develop at any age. It most commonly becomes apparent during adulthood. But type 2 diabetes in children is rising. Type 2 diabetes accounts for the vast majority of people who have diabetes—90 to 95 out of 100 people. In type 2 diabetes, the body isn't able to use insulin the right way. This is called insulin resistance. As type 2 diabetes gets worse, the pancreas may make less and less insulin. This is called insulin deficiency. The person may not have symptoms before diagnosis. Usually the disease is discovered in adulthood, but an increasing number of children are being diagnosed with the disease. There are no episodes of low blood sugar level, unless the person is taking insulin or certain diabetes medicines. It can be prevented or delayed with a healthy lifestyle, including maintaining a healthy weight, eating sensibly, and exercising regularly.
Blood Pressure Information (2)
Blood pressure is a measurement of the force applied to the artery walls as the heart pumps blood through the body. The pressure is determined by the amount of blood pumped, the force at which it is pumped, and the size and flexibility of the arteries.
-The top number of a blood pressure reading is the systolic reading. It represents the maximum pressure exerted when the heart contracts. Anormal systolic reading is 120 or less.
-The bottom number of a blood pressure reading is called the diastolicreading. It represents the pressure in the arteries when the heart is at restin the contraction. A normal diastolic reading is 80 or less.
Blood pressure is continually changing depending on activity, temperature, diet, stress, sickness, and what medications you might use.
There are several things you can do if you have high blood pressure. Although high blood pressure cannot be cured, it can be controlled. The following are ways to reduce your blood pressure:
-Reduce the fat in your diet andsodium in your diet.
-Get regular physical exercise and lose weight if needed.
-Reduce the amount of alcohol you might consume on a daily basis.
-If you are a smoker and have high blood pressure,
quitting smoking will notonly help lower blood pressure but will
help keep yourcardiovascular systemworking properly.
-If none of the above work for a certain individual, medications
can be used tomonitor high blood pressure
The Power of Follow Through
“What one does is what counts. Not what one had the intention of doing.”
- Pablo Picasso
I recently listened to the audio book, ‘The Promise of a Pencil’ It was the story of Adam Braun and his journey from giving a pencil to each child he met on a backpacking trip to the creation of a ‘for purpose’ organization, Pencils of Promise, that builds schools and provides education to children in countries where little or no formal education existed. (Currently the website states that 226 Schools have been built since 2009.) One of the more memorable quotes in the book is, “…..the single most wasted resource on earth is human intention.” WOW! I can think of so many times that I felt VERY passionate and motivated to take some action; whether that was related to giving of my time to a particular organization, beginning an exercise program, connecting with an old friend, or taking time to write in a journal. Then….time passes, passion wanes, and I’ve moved on to other things. But…not really…..these moments come back and I regret not moving forward on more of my intentions. I wonder how my personal well being, family, and community would be different…..if I had followed through. What’s possible if we followed through on our intentions?