Type 1 Nation Summit Hosted by JDRF

This coming Sunday,here in Dallas, JDRF is hosting the Type One Nation Summit.

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When I went to my first Type One Nation Summit this past year,it was educational AND inspiring!  I wouldn’t say I had gone through a time of “Diabetic Burnout”, but I (wrongly) thought that since I had lived with diabetes for so much of my life, I didn’t really have anything new to learn.

Of course, I was totally wrong!  There is always something knew to learn, because there are new treatments on the market and big ideas on the horizon all the time!  Although I expected that my endocrinologist would keep me in the loop of anything and everything important, that was not the case.  If we want to really stay on top of our health, we have to be our own advocate.

Besides all the information I learned from attending the event, it was great to meet so many other Type 1s and/or the people who love them!  Who knew there were so many of us out there?  Sometimes, we wrongly start feeling like, “I’m the only one…” But that simply isn’t true.  Hearing other people’s similar stories, and just hanging out all day is such a great feeling.

So if you’re wanting to hear all about all that’s available to best live with Type 1 Diabetes right now, and learn about the exciting things on the horizon, and meet a bunch of cool people, then this event is most certainly the place to be Sunday, May 1st. Hope to see you there if you live anywhere near the Dallas/Ft. Worth area! Details from JDRF are listed below.

Summit Summary:
The JDRF Greater Dallas and Greater Fort Worth-Arlington Chapters are excited to be hosting TypeOneNation, an educational and inspirational summit designed for people who are impacted by Type One Diabetes (T1D). We will provide education, connection and support for those living with T1D, their families and their alternate caregivers. We will have fun and meaningful activities for children (5 -10) and teens (11-16). Guests will be able to choose between various learning tracks and 13 speakers throughout the day. An exciting keynote speaker will be featured during lunch. Our key industry partners will be in Resource Row where participants can learn about the latest in resources and technology.

Logistics Overview:

Where: Sheraton DFW, 4440 West John W Carpenter Freeway, Irving, TX 75063, (972) 929-8400

When: Sunday, May 1, 2016, 11:00 – 5:30

Cost of tickets:  $25 per adult, $15 per youth 16 or under

Registration: www.TypeOneNationNorthTX.eventbrite.com

Cookies on Occasion

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Often, neighbors or friends (one just last week, as a matter of fact!) will say, “Oh I made cookies the other day, but I didn’t bring you any because I know you can’t eat them.”  As the above image implies, I can eat cookies, as long as they don’t contain any poison.

I don’t eat a lot of cookies.  Or cupcakes. Or cakes. Or other sugary concoctions. I don’t indulge in them often, but I do occasionally treat myself.  There is no morning more exciting than when my husband surprises me with blueberry donut holes!

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donut holes. because a hole of something doesn’t count, right!?!

The reason I eat these foods only on occasion rather than at every meal, is because I am a human being- And no human being was meant to eat these foods in abundance.  They shouldn’t be a big part of anyone‘s diet, right?

Even if you’re a non-diabetic, sugary foods (as well as all foods that consist of carbohydrates, but that’s a whole other post for another day) cause your blood sugar to spike.  If you’re non-diabetic, you have a well functioning pancreas that has cells that squirt out insulin as needed to lower that spike in your blood sugar.  (I realize the phrase “squirt out insulin” isn’t very scientific, but I am not a scientist so it’s fine.) The healthy pancreas is such a fine tuned machine that it knows just exactly how much insulin to squirt out, and it knows exactly when to do it… Amazing!

As a person with T1 diabetes, an auto-immune disease that has destroyed the cells in my pancreas that produce insulin, I have to inject synthetic insulin anytime I eat food with carbohydrates (one example would be sugary foods), and my goal is to mimic what a fully functioning pancreas would do. Sounds relatively simple, but actually, it isn’t.  It’s hard to know exactly how quickly the food I consume is going to spike my blood sugar, and how quickly the insulin will take effect. There are so many variables that change- on any given day, and on given minute of that day. It’s a difficult balancing act.

Since I save sweet treats for somewhat rare occasions, they’re that much more exciting and delicious to me when I indulge.  If I ate donut holes every day, not only would I put on a lot of unhealthy extra weight, but the donut eating events would become less special.  My taste buds probably would get so use to the sweet taste, they’d start taking it all for granted.

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less is more

I like to keep it simple: The less sugar I consume, the less insulin I have to take, and the less margin for error I have when it comes to my dosage.

Sugar negatively affects our teeth, our bellies, our blood vessels, our hearts, our mood, and some people think it even attacks our brains. I remember taking Mom to a nutritionist during her cancer treatment. When she was listing off the types of foods we should avoid, at the top of the list was sugar. She referred to it as “toxic” and told us that sugar  feeds cancer cells.  I’m not sure that’s exactly true, but I’m not a doctor, or a nutritionist.  All I know for sure is that sugar gets a LOT of bad press.

So, just like other fun or delicious things that may likely be bad for me, I consume sugar mindfully and in moderation. Not just because of my T1D, but because I am a human being!

Let’s Not Get Overly Alarmed Over this Dexcom Recall

By now, anyone who uses a Dexcom CGM has most likely received a certified letter regarding the problems with alarm on the display device.  I got mine about  a month ago.  Some of the display devices have an unreliable alarm. I followed the instructions to check mine, and as I already knew, it works just fine.  I thought it was nice that Dexcom was going to all of this trouble about something that for me at least, isn’t even a big deal.  In the letter, they also said they had alerted the FDA about what was going on.  I felt like Dexcom was being very cautious and doing right by all of their customers.

Then yesterday I saw this FDA recall announcement, which might just look alarming to some…FullSizeRender 2Especially that part that says this is a Class 1 recall, “The most serious type of recall.  Relying on this device may cause serious injury or death.”  That is pretty dramatic. You can read the full FDA post here.

But can I please voice my two cents about all of this?

First of all, the “brains” of the Dexcom system have not been recalled.  Most people who use the Dexcom 5 use their iPhone as their display device.  I like to use both, during different circumstances.  And although my alarm does work on the Dexcom device, it’s about the least important thing the Dexcom provides for me anyway.  I usually try my best to silence all alarms. I look at my Dexcom display very often during the day, so I don’t need an alarm going off when my blood sugar gets out of range.  At night, I prefer my iPhone as the alarm anyway because I have a choice of alarm sounds, and I can adjust the volume. (Calmer, and quieter for me, please.)

So yes, they’re recalling all of the Dexcom display meters, and asking that everyone check to make sure theirs in working order.  But I have a feeling, the majority of them are just fine.  And the as for the ones that aren‘t working, Dexcom will send out a replacement.

So really? What more can we ask of a company?  If there seem to be any problems, they alert the public.  The alert the FDA. And they make amends.

Dexcom has changed my life for the better, and given me far better control over my blood sugar than I ever thought possible.  I can’t imagine ever going back to life without my Dexcom.

Check out this recent article that not only talks about this current alarm problem, but also the exciting updates.  This recall is just a hiccup. Dexcom still has my gratitude and support.