There’s always a Silver Lining…

I’ve been sick. You know, “praying for death” sick. 😦

Some evil “stomach bug” crept into my system and took over. You don’t want the details. My blood sugar was all over the place. I tried the “natural” route, but I was only able to live in one room in my house (…the room with the echo), so finally, I called my doctor who told me to only eat crackers, dry toast (if I’m hungry — which I’m not), and drink 1/2 water and 1/2 Low Calorie Gatorade for a few days, to avoid dehydration and to give my intestines a break. In the end (no pun intended), I was in the waiting room of a gastroenterologist. She sent me for a ton of tests, the results of which I won’t get ’til Thursday, if I’m lucky.

But, she also gave me a medicine that “calmed” everything down, in the meantime. Thank God!!! That pain was a killer — my poor body. She wanted me to eat more; the thought was disgusting. She added plain chicken, turkey, baked potato. Ugh. She was right, eating a bit more did help.

With every situation, we learn something, right? (Not that I haven’t learned this before…) When I have a stomach issue, I hate the thought of food — including, my addictive junk foods. It’s been 8 days now and I haven’t had a thought about (my drug of choice) sugar. Nothing, Nada. I feel like I’ve been in a rehab for carboholics/sugar addicts.

Do you know what? The Sugar Beast had nothing to do with my being ill but, I’m going to take advantage of this situation, grab onto my proverbial detox and hold on for dear life!

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Seriously, regardless of the results of the testing, I want to be done with sugar — SO DONE. Being sick just brought this to the forefront of my mind (again, I say again!). This Type 2 Diabetic’s plan is to do everything in my power to steer clear of it. I know, I know, we’ve all said it before.

I see this “Silver Lining” as a gift, and I’m going to wrap myself in it — like a soft, satin, protective shield. It will be difficult — if anything, I’m NOT naive. I know it’s really hard (at least for me) not to get dragged into a sugar feast, but, the way I’m looking at it, I’ve got a head start, and I’m grateful for it.

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I’ve got the motivation, now I have to get back to developing the habit...AGAIN. Every day really is DAY #1.

My sister’s birthday is coming and that will be my first “real” test. Wish me luck!

I take it back — no “luck” needed. 🙂

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ONE MORE DAY!

Yep, the Fourth of July is tomorrow! I’m grateful for the liberties we enjoy in the USA — life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We’re incredibly fortunate. The Founding Fathers certainly knew what they were doing, that’s for sure.

How do we celebrate the 4th? We raise the FLAG, think PATRIOTISM, and fire up the GRILL!

This can be a great holiday for T2D’s. Grilled foods are in abundance. The choices will be extensive. If you’re hosting a BBQ, you can make sure that the healthy choices are on your table. Google healthy salads — you’ll find some recipes you didn’t expect. Be sure to have a colorful bowl of  fruit on hand. Then, you’re all set!

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If you’re going to someone else’s feast, don’t go empty-handed. To keep yourself (and your blood glucose level) “safe,” arrive with one of those salads you googled and some fruit (just to be sure).

CAUTION: It’s not the fruits and vegetables that will “get” you. It’s the dressings. So use your trusty computer to find some fat free/sugar free choices.

I make sure I drink LOTS of water to stay hydrated.

You’re going to have a great time! I NEVER remember, so I’m saying it OUT LOUD: Remember the SUN SCREEN. 🙂

 

 

 

 

Dr. Visit…

Ugh. I’ve not been looking forward to this.

Last week I went for my blood work so my doctor would have it prior to my visit. Friday was my appointment.

She was thrilled. My blood work was great. A1C = 6.6. She was happy, I was disappointed, actually, amazed!  “If you saw what I’ve been eating, you’d never believe that’s accurate.” Dr. G responded, “It will catch up to you, you know that.”  Yeah, yeah. I didn’t respond — she’s ALWAYS right.

For awhile now, I’ve been taking two Metformin instead of three. My goal is to get off them completely. The ONLY way to do that is to stay on track — no diversions. Lately, I’ve been the Queen of Diversions! 

A little over a week ago denial crept in (with a vengeance). I actually ate potato chips and onion dip. 😦  It didn’t kill me, but what a stupid decision. And then there was the pie…cookies… Yes, I didn’t fall off the “wagon” I took a deep-dive plunge. Ugh.

The good news is, I’m back to healthy choices. If I have to have desserts, I’ll be heading to my sugar free Jello or small portions of fresh fruit.

Just remember there is such a thing as TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING (fruit can fall right into that category!)

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Monitor glucose regularly

Obviously, I didn’t do too much damage, or 6.6 would have been WAY higher. I absolutely do NOT want to go back to 3 Metformin/day, so I’m re-committing myself again to staying on track — DAMN IT! It’s all about accountability, as always. There’s no hiding those numbers and not taking my blood sugar, is just plain irresponsible. I’m determined.

I know that when I’m dedicated and determined, I get involved in a project using my hands. I know when I do the artsy/craftsy thing, I won’t snack/eat the wrong foods.

I know that when I sit and watch TV, I’m putting myself at risk. Gigunda risk!!! I become bored and troll the cabinets for something “bad.” Rarely do I find anything, because I don’t buy the foods/snacks that I know I shouldn’t be eating. I wish I could tell you that I give up and go back to watching the tube. That would not be true. There are times when I cave. I’ve walked and driven to the corner store or the gas station for a candy bar to “tide me over.”  (I sound like a drug addict. Well, sugar IS a drug!) .

Diabetes sucks. Yes, it does. BUT, there are worse diseases, that’s for sure! So, I’ll be grateful and get back on the bike and do the right thing — one day at a time.

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This disease is one heck of a roller-coaster, that’s for sure. Better days ahead.

Back to DAY #1!

 

If Vegetarians Can Do It, So Can I!

I recently read an article in Prevention Guide. The theme was Sugar Detox Made Easy — yeah, right! 🙂

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I keep telling myself, you’ve done it before, and you can do it again. That’s absolutely true, so what’s my problem? Maybe, my issues are because I’m doing the same things over and over and expecting different results. Isn’t that the definition of INSANITY!

My answer to that dilemma is to branch out, in terms of my research. I bought this magazine sometime in January. I’ll admit to skimming it; like that ever worked… This time around, I read it cover to cover and back again.

Author Aviva Patz wrote, Your Step-by-Step Detox Plan. In fact, she had a slew of helpful hints to formulate an action plan. Action Plan? I didn’t sign up for an Action Plan. However, her program consists of things to DO to help in dealing with diabetes, to overcome the addiction. She talked about the importance of writing down a Manifesto. WHAT? C’mon, I’m a busy woman. I don’t have time for this nonsense! And then, the little voice inside me reminded me that I always have time to eat cookies, and cakes, and candy, Oh, My! Developing a manifesto took about three minutes, and consisted of writing the pros and cons of quitting sugar, and the same for NOT quitting sugar. She recommends keeping your notes nearby for when that temptation creeps in.

Ms. Patz talked about replacing the addictive food with something palatable but not as unhealthy. Example: Fruit — still sweet, so it will stomp out the cravings, while eating healthy nutrients. (Be careful. There is such a thing as having too much of a good thing.) Easy does it — fruit will absolutely effect your blood sugar levels. The goal is to maintain a balance.

I’ll be writing about Patz’ article for a number of days. She presents some great healthy alternatives to poor choices, and I’ll be passing them along to you.

Of all her suggestions, one jumped out at me — why didn’t I think of this??? She suggests that we don’t use the words “I can’t” when sugar is offered to us. Sounds like my usual, “I can’t have dessert, I’m diabetic.” waaa, waaaaah, waaaaaah, poor Kathy… Instead of the “poor me” response, Patz advises us to simply say, “I don’t eat refined sugar.” Simple, to the point. She compares the dilemma to that of the VEGETARIAN who easily states, “I don’t eat meat.” She’s right! It’s a choice — OUR choice! It makes perfect sense. It’s empowering. The decision is ours and the words, “I can’t,” give away our power and weaken our resolve. It’s brilliant! Obviously, this is an easy change in behavior and will likely end with the person offering the sweets to back down. Sounds good to me. No more pity party when the host cuts the cake.  🙂

“I don’t eat refined sugar.” Period!

My sincere thanks to Aviva Patz for an article that was not only motivating, but also made sense.

Mother’s Day — my FAVORITE!

Very delayed posting — my apologies.

I love Mother’s Day, thanks to my two children. 🙂

For many years, we’ve been having Mother’s Day “Events,” meaning — no present needed. God knows I don’t need anything! What could be better than time with my kids? It’s an awesome day; they plan it, tell me what to wear, and I meet them in the city, or they pick me up. It’s one surprise after another.

Every year is a mystery of culture and epicurean delights. Where we dine and what we eat is always surprise, but my children are very “diabetes-aware,” so the choices are typically in line with good health. Thanks, kids!

One year it was a visit to the Morgan Library and Museum, in NYC, for the Bob Dylan Exhibit — I’m a major fan, so I loved every minute. The exhibition was packed with his compositions, writings, instruments — it was spectacular! They recognized and shared my respect for this musical genius. It was a wonderful day.

Another year we went to the Butterfly Exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History, which was sheer joy. Butterflies are the symbol of serenity and who doesn’t need more of that? [Don’t panic! Lunch did not include a butterfly entree.]

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The expectation was to move through the Butterfly Room, enjoy the beauties, make our way toward the exit and leave the exhibit. I “may” have cheated a tad when we got to the end.

Instead of exiting, I turned, moved back to the beginning of the exhibit and made my way through again. (I just couldn’t leave — they were too beautiful; dressed in bright yellows, oranges, reds and blues, with black accents.) My chickadees followed suit and we laughed as the exquisite butterflies flew around us, landing on our shoulders, arms and legs. It was amazing!

A Yankee Game was the scene of yet another Mother’s Day — more laughter. Hot dogs made me very happy.  (I know! I know!) Only one.

I adore the Bard, so on one special Mother’s Day my kids took me to the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens to see the Shakespeare Garden. It was outrageous. The names of plants, flowers, and herbs are weaved throughout his writings and no less than 80 of them were in bloom. It was outrageous. Both interesting and beautiful!

THIS year I was treated to a stop at the New York Historical Society, where my favorite presidential idol stood on the steps in bronze, hat and all! Lincoln is a major favorite of mine.   IMG_0025

Knowing that I’ve been talking about going to Cuba, my children filed that information away for this occasion. So, when we arrived at the Museum of Natural History,

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I realized that was our destination. It was obvious, because an enormous sign hung from the side of the building proclaiming the “Cuba Exhibit!

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What an outstanding exhibit! There were so many components. There were displays related to music, art, food, the Coral Reef, cigar production, and the list went on.

The produce cart (above) was filled with fruits and vegetables. It seems to me that on a trip to Cuba, I’d be able to stay on the T2D track in terms of dining options! Can’t wait to go!!!

Colors flashed around the exhibits, and it was obvious that the Cubans appreciate art in every form. Modes of transportation were on hand — most of the visitors had an interest in the “old cars!” VERY cool.

We were hoping to eat at a Cuban restaurant, in keeping with this Mother’s Day theme, but we spent so much time “in Cuba” and missed our reservation. Some examples of Cuban food that was displayed at the exhibit are:

We ate vicariously!  🙂  In fact, we had a late lunch at the museum and yes, I stayed on track. Didn’t even have dessert — which for me is HUGE!

Museum-going is also a great way to get in those steps. That was a 10K day!

We’ve had some great Mother’s Days in years gone by — the Tenement Museum, the Rubin Museum, Museum of Art and Design. One year we ate at “The Burger Joint” in Le Parker Hotel Meridian, (Hard to make healthy choices there, but a glass of water ahead of time definitely helped.), THAT was crazy and a LOT of laughs. I dare you to find it! If you’re successful, be sure to sign the wall.

These are only a few of our many adventures but, they’re always a surprise and mostly healthy food choices. GREAT fun!

I’m convinced that drinking water before eating reduces cravings and helps me to make proper choices. I seem to feel “fuller” after drinking eight ounces of H2O.  I think that feeling of NOT being ravenous, helps to keep me sane when perusing the menu. What are your thoughts on that?

 

 

 

Mindfulness! …or not.

Sometimes we just get involved in doing whatever nonsense we’re doing. In other words, not paying attention to what’s important (good health, for instance). I was just online, checking my e-mails, Facebook, listening to a TED Talk, etc., etc.  NOT doing more important things — like making dinner for instance.

All of a sudden, I felt like garbage — you know the feeling, if you’re diabetic. When I got up from the table, my legs felt heavy. I looked at the clock — 7:30. When was lunch? Did I eat lunch? Ugh. Of course, I checked my blood sugar immediately because, like any long-term diabetic, I knew where it was. The glucometer read 68! Now, for many of you, that sounds great, right? For me, when I go below 100, I feel crummy — weak, clammy. I couldn’t care less what the “norm” is. I know what’s right for me. Low blood sugar is no joke.

I don’t know when the last time was that I had orange juice in my refrigerator. WAY too high in sugar. However, I bought it last week because I had a hankering for Chicken a l’orange. The remaining OJ has been sitting in there ever since. So, I drank a glass and almost immediately I felt like myself again.

As soon as my glucose level rose, I cooked dinner — salmon, spinach and beets. I’m back to “normal.”  🙂

The topic of this post is MINDFULNESS for a reason. Not being mindful about what I’m doing is usually what gets me in trouble. We all do it — misplacing things, losing track of time. The importance of mindfulness, I’ve learned, can’t be stressed enough. Focusing is imperative. I’ve learned that being aware — acutely aware — makes for a more balanced life.

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That lack of mindfulness is what caused my blood sugar to drop. NO excuse for that. The good news is that, because it happened, I’m reminded to pay strict attention and be mindful in EVERY area of my life. Scheduling healthy meals and staying on track HAS to be uppermost in my thoughts. Get with it, Kathy!

Gotta go — my salmon’s ready! Yummmmm.

 

Valentine’s Day Massacre?

NOPE! Not this year. I haven’t gone near a store that sells those Satan-colored, red, heart boxes filled with poison!

I made it through the day with ease, actually. Busy schedule and didn’t have time to make any extra stops. I’d love to say it was my self-control, but that would be a lie.

TOMORROW, now that’s a day that will require self-control. I love a sale, and you know they’ll practically be giving away those chocolaty delights. Deep breaths! Use your HEAD!

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Luckily, tomorrow’s another day that’s pretty full, so I’ll have to just stay out of the stores and pray that they run out FAST!  🙂

Healthy choices, Kathy. Healthy choices!  Keep those numbers under control.

 

*Check out last year’s Valentine’s Day post, folks.