All The Accoutrements…

When people think of Diabetes, they usually associate its treatment with the injection of insulin. Or should you happen to have Type-2, an oral medication such as Metformin or something similar. But realistically, if you’ve had Diabetes for several years or more, the safe bet is that you’re now taking medication beyond the basics that people associate with Diabetes. This isn’t necessarily to treat something that’s already an issue; sometimes it’s simply a preventative measure, which can be important in order to try and lengthen one’s lifespan and increase one’s health.

This doesn’t necessarily involve medications, either. There are a number of specialists, medical professionals and appointments you need to keep in order to maintain your body and health. I suppose that I can start with the basics, since every Diabetic needs to do it anyway. Testing one’s blood sugar. If you’re on pump therapy with a CGM, you can get away with testing three or four times a day. You’d think CGM would circumvent this need, but you actually need to test frequently in order to keep the CGM properly calibrated. If you’re NOT a pump user and take manual insulin injections, well… I used to test anywhere between five to twelve times during a normal day. But testing my blood and taking insulin is the first requirement.

Next, I take a multivitamin. Depending on who you ask, some people believe a multivitamin is either a daily “requirement’ of their diet or they believe that they get everything they need from a genuine diet and that you shouldn’t NEED a multivitamin. Well, the jury is still out on whether a vitamin supplement delivers any benefits or not. In fact, most studies straddle the fence in terms of whether it’s useful or not. My family physician has always recommended that I use a multivitamin and I’ve stuck to that for years.

Basically, a multivitamin contains a cocktail of the daily vitamins, minerals and essentials that can help boost your diet. It’s no secret that the every day person’s modern diet often falls short of providing ALL the nutrition one needs. Plus, one thing to consider is that B vitamins can help reduce stress and anxiety, which is a nice plus. Of course, I get a massive boost of B vitamins every day from the energy drink I have in the morning. But I digress…

The next item on my list is Ramipril. This is an oral medication I take everyday as a preventative way of maintaining my kidney function and blood pressure. I don’t know about y’all, but my kidneys are rather important to me! And the issue with Diabetes is that uncontrolled blood sugars will damage the blood vessels, which result in lowered kidney function. High blood pressure will also affect the kidneys, which is why Ramipril is a nice “catch all” in order to maintain kidney function. Do I have high blood pressure? No. Except for when I catch Nathan doing something he isn’t supposed to. But prevention can often be more effective than treating the damage.

And then, we have Crestor. This is an oral medication used to treat high cholesterol and prevent heart issues through the lowering of the same. Unfortunately, I can admit that for a few years running, my cholesterol has been on the high side. Crestor helps to reduce the aforementioned cholesterol, thereby ensuring better cardiac health. During my last specialist appointments, I’ve come back down to normal levels. It was mostly diet. Exercising and positive diet change can almost eliminate the need for this medication, although it can be useful as a preventative measure as well. Even more so than my kidneys, I kinda need my heart to keep going’…

I get a yearly physical. This is also a requirement of my current job, though I can easily appreciate the preventative nature of this, as well. A yearly physical allows a person to catch any developing conditions before they become a problem. I like to think that I know my body pretty well, but when you consider that chronic headaches can be a sign of brain cancer, it stands to reason that getting checked once a year even if there’s nothing “out of this world” can be beneficial.

Last but not least, we have the specialists. Besides seeing an optometrist, I also see an ophthalmologist for examination as well as my eye injections and I see my endocrinologist every six months to a year, depending on where I’m at with my A1C’s and my pump usage. That’s just the usual stuff. Job requirements have also required me to visit neurologists and other specialists I’m sure I simply can’t remember.

If all that was needed was a quick injection of insulin every day and testing one’s blood, Diabetes management would be a breeze. But in reality, it’s an intricate mosaic of pieces that need to be held together in order to provide the colourful image that is me! (I’m sure my friends and family are peeing themselves a little from laughing, right now) ☯

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I am a practitioner of the martial arts and student of the Buddhist faith. I have been a Type 1 Diabetic since I was 4 years old and have been fighting the uphill battle it includes ever since. I enjoy fitness and health and looking for new ways to improve both, as well as examining the many questions of life. Although I have no formal medical training, I have amassed a wealth of knowledge regarding health, Diabetes, martial arts as well as Buddhism and philosophy. My goal is to share this information with the world, and perhaps provide some sarcastic humour along the way. Welcome!

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