Basics and Beyond

Think Like a Pancreas: Chapter 3, Your Cheat Guide!

The type of diabetes you have is defined by what caused it, not how it’s treated. 

  1. Type 1 - The kind caused by loss of the ability to produce insulin
  2. Type 2 - The kind who has insulin resistance i.e. can’t utilize insulin properly.

As a Type 1, your body has (for some reason) attacked itself, destroying the insulin producing beta cells. Possible triggers of Type 1 include viruses, major stress, environmental toxins, exposure to certain foods, and genetic markers. 

As a Type 2, the body is stressed (due to poor lifestyle choices) and becomes insulin resistant. 


Major factors that lower your blood sugars are: insulin and physical activity. 

The heart of truly understanding diabetes is the hormone insulin. What’s insulin’s job?  To lower blood sugars. To facilitate the movement of nutrients—particularly glucose, out of the blood stream and into the body’s cells where they can be burned for energy.  When you don't have enough insulin, or body cells cannot use the insulin properly, blood sugars rise.

When injecting, be mindful that the source of injection affects the action of the insulin. In order of most rapid to slowest absorption: tummy [fastest] —> arms —> legs —> buttocks [slowest]. 

Physical activity is your BFF when it comes to lowering your blood sugar. Working out makes your body more sensitive to your insulin by shuttling sugar out of your bloodstream and into your cells. When your sedentary, your muscle cells aren’t burning a lot of energy. When your moving, cells can easily do their job, i.e. lower blood sugars in an efficient way!

Major factors that raise your blood sugars are: carbohydrates and stress hormones. 

What you eat is the foundation of blood sugar control. Carbs are the biggest player when it comes to the biggest response in blood sugar rise. While proteins and fats can and will affect your blood sugars, they are minimal. Diets that are primarily [high] fat and [high] protein, blood sugars are affected more. 

Glucose, sucrose [table sugar], fructose [fruit], lactose [milk], and starches [breads, chips] each have major effects on your blood sugars. High consumption of these = less control over your blood sugars. 

Stress [emotional & physiological] raises your blood sugars. Did you know the liver serves as a storehouse for glucose? The liver will secrete glucose back in the blood stream if triggered by stress hormones. Anxiety, anger, excitement, pain, sickness, each stress the body because of the stress hormones secreted. Keep healthy and practice mindfulness to decrease your stress load!

Until next week.....