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Living with diabetes comes with its own share of challenges.  That’s where the Diabetes Village comes in!  As a diabetes coach, I’m excited to share my knowledge and experience to help people with diabetes live their life to the fullest.  Here on our blog, you’ll find tips and tricks for living with diabetes, and helpful information from someone who knows exactly what you’re going through.  So dig into the content here, and feel free to comment with any questions you may have!

Should I Invest in Diabetes Education?

How would you feel if you knew that you could improve your A1C, reduce the risk of complications, decrease the risk of diabetes-related distress and depression, reduce diabetes-related hospital admissions, and spend less money on diabetes through one action?   Would you be interested in finding this magical success formula? No, it’s not a medication or even that magical at all. These are the research-proven benefits of diabetes self-management education (DSME). Accepting the reality that diabetes is a self-managed disease is both empowering and burdensome. With diseases where medication alone is the primary treatment, the responsibility of your personal [...]

The Comprehensive Guide to Living with Diabetes

Shock, disbelief and outright denial are common responses to a new diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes (T2D). How did this happen?  What can I do about it? I feel fine….for the most part. Can diabetes be reversed? T2D is one of the most commonly-seen conditions in primary care medical offices and affects almost 10% of the US population or roughly 30 million Americans. Additionally, 79 million adults have impaired glucose tolerance or “pre-diabetes,” which is defined as elevated blood sugar that does not reach the mark for an outright diagnosis of diabetes. Read below for a comprehensive guide to [...]

How to fix high morning blood sugars

Q: I've had diabetes for 15 years and struggle with high fasting blood sugar. They are usually between 130 and 180. I'm on oral medications. I've tried everything to get it down and have not had any success so far. Getting fasting blood sugar under control can be especially challenging! High fasting blood glucose (BG) numbers tend to lead to overall higher BG levels throughout the day, so it's important to try to figure out and address the root cause.  But first, what goal blood sugar number are we targeting for the morning fasting time? In general, glucose values [...]

Best Doctor for Diabetes

 A question that I get asked often is, “Who is the best doctor for diabetes care?” What most people are really asking is, "Should I stay with my primary care physician (PCP), or should I see an endocrinologist?" Do I need a diabetes specialist? The answer is.... it depends on a variety of factors.  Let's state the obvious first. Primary care docs are well-trained to diagnose and manage diabetes. All physicians vary in their bedside manner, time spent with you, and how much they stay up to date with the fast-changing world of medicine. But PCPs know and [...]

Comprehensive Guide to Hypoglycemia

One of the biggest fears people with diabetes face is hypoglycemia, a blood sugar low. And rightfully so, because the most severe forms of hypoglycemia lead to seizures, coma and in the worst cases, death. Every person with diabetes (and under ideal circumstances, their family members) needs to know how to recognize and manage unpredictable hypoglycemic episodes. Let’s agree on some definitions first. What is hypoglycemia? Simply put, hypoglycemia is when your blood glucose (BG) dips below normal levels. Experts disagree on whether 60 or 70 defines a true low. It is very helpful to be aware of how [...]

How to Cut Costs and Save Money on Diabetes Drugs

The cost of brand name prescription medications in the United States is outrageously high.  To say the root of the problem and potential solutions is complex is an understatement! And regardless of the cost of drugs, diabetes is an expensive disease.  From frequent office visits to medications to supplies to labs and monitoring, the dollars add up quickly. In 2013, the ADA issued a statement estimating the cost of living with diabetes.   “People with diagnosed diabetes incur average medical expenditures of about $13,700 per year, of which about $7,900 is attributed to diabetes. People with diagnosed diabetes, on [...]

Choosing a Glucometer: Does it Really Matter?

For the newly diagnosed person, choosing a blood glucose meter is no simple task. If you walk down the glucometer aisle of any pharmacy, you’ll see at least 5 different brands and probably 20 different styles of glucose meters.  Knowing some basic features to use as a basis for comparison is helpful. Blood drop size, cost of meter and cost of strips definitely covers the basics, but there are also bells and whistle features (memory, syncing to a smartphone, downloading ability, etc.). In addition, some meters allow “alternate site testing,” meaning that you can use somewhere besides the fingertip (think [...]

Preventing Diabetes Complications Through Wellness Exams

If you’ve lived with diabetes for very long, you know that once a year you’ll have a comprehensive medical exam to get a big picture view of your health and stay on top of preventing diabetes complications.  While it may seem unnecessary to have all of those labs and other tests done, the annual office visits are actually quite important. They can identify early signs of organ damage and even head off complications before they start. Keeping the macrovascular (heart disease) and microvascular (kidneys, eyes, nerves) damage in check goes a long way toward ensuring you live well with [...]

How to Successfully Manage the Stress of Living with Diabetes

The heaviness and stress of living with diabetes is understood in full measure only by the person experiencing it. Family members who see the burden of daily decision-making required by their loved one with diabetes may also have a pretty good idea of what’s involved, but they are not affected in the same way.   How does a person with diabetes (PWD) manage day after day to cope with the stress that the illness brings? What are some secrets of not only getting to your A1C goal but not letting the strain of diabetes bring you down? Knowing how [...]

5 Insulin Myths You Should Know

There are plenty of myths about what insulin does or doesn’t do. (No, it doesn’t cause blindness or loss of limbs.) We’ll disprove those another day. Let’s bust a few myths about the how-to’s of using insulin! Myth 1: Insulin must be stored in the refrigerator at all times. This is only needed for pens or vials being stored for future use. For the pen or vial you are using this month, it can be left at room temperature for up to 30 days. (The 30 days is the manufacturer’s recommendation. They can only guarantee purity and full potency [...]