T Nation

Suspect Diabetes


#1

Recently I've begun to suspect that I might have diabetes. First of all, I'm a very clean person and I eat a diet that contains very few sugars. I only eat stuff like candy and pastries maybe a few times a year. Even so, I've had reoccurring yeast infections for years, which neither a series of doctor-prescribed medications nor over-the-counter treatments have solved for any length of time. Recently, I noticed that my gums are starting to look weird and bleed when I brush them. I don't have money right now to go to the doctor, so I read up on gingivitis, started treated for it with antibiotic mouth wash +brushing and flossing 3x a day, and it appears to be clearing up.

Also, my energy levels fluctuate A LOT in terms of whether or not I've eaten recently, I seem to go through phases of constantly having to drink water, and when I'm tired or haven't eaten my vision gets blurry.

However, I have always had low blood pressure and a low resting heart rate, a low BMI, and a medium body fat percentage (it hangs out around 20-25% and keep in mind that I'm a woman). My body responds in a regular amount of time to exercise and I haven't had problems dropping my body fat percentage when I follow a low-fat, high protein, medium carb diet.

Based on the above, I'm not sure whether or not the repeated infections and other symptoms are really cause for concern in terms me having diabetes. The problem is, I don't have medical insurance or very much money. The question is: does anyone here have diabetes or know much about it?

If I have mild diabetes, which considering I'm not passing out, seems most likely, would it really be worth it money-wise to go in and get tested for it? Is there a cheaper way to test for it on my own? If I did get tested and it was mild, wouldn't the doctor just tell me to start eating a diet to control it?

If it's most likely that the doctor would just tell me to eat a diet to control the diabetes because it's not that serious, what harm would be done if I just skipped the doctor and went right to eating the diabetic diet?

On that note, I've seen a lot of information out there about how diabetics are supposed to eat low-glycemic carbs. Then I also see other information saying they shouldn't be eating many carbs to begin with. What's the deal? Who do I trust here?


#2

I have Type 2.

Yes you should get tested. It's a blood test testing for HbA1c. The doctor will then advise whether you are normal, pre-diabetic or diabetic. This test shows a 3 month profile so fasting is not really necessary and you can't alter the result by not eating prior to the test.

After trying low GI, changing diet, all sorts of exercise I can say that low carb, high protein, moderate fat and heavy lifting 3 times a week is the best way to keep blood sugar levels in check. Heavy lifting means compound exercises at 6-8 or 8-10 or 10-12 rep ranges.

Doctors don't know much about treating Diabetes. Honestly. You have to manage you. Watch your diet, exercise regularly and you can keep it under control. I've reduced my medication over the years and if I compare now to 6 years ago (when I first contracted it) I monitor my macros, log my lifts, and supplement correctly. Supplements that I'd recommend would be fish oil, multi-vitamin and magnesium. However I've experimented with everything from ALA to Fenugreek.

If you need more details just ask.


#3

I was diagnosed with type one 5 months ago.
The thing is that your symptoms are not unique to diabetes and could be a bunch of other different things. You could always buy a meter and some test strips and test your blood sugar when you get up in the morning and after meals a few times and see what happens.
I doubt its type one since you would probably not be alive right now, I went from feeling fine to being as weak as a kitten and insatiably thirsty in a month. I think squatting was the only thing keeping me going at that time; the extra insulin sensitivity from that probably allowed me to make the most of the little insulin my pancreas was still giving me.

The thing you have to realize is that you dont go from being normal to being a type two diabetic at the drop of a hat, insulin sensitivity (or lack therof) is a continuum. You only "become" a type two diabetic when you become so insulin resistant that you're body cant keep up. Its possible that you could be just insulin resistant enough for it to be a problem but not bad enough for it to manifest itself in blatant, extremely noticeable symptoms.

I would say buy a meter and test. If anything is even a little abnormal than see a doctor. This is something you do not want to fuck with.


#4

I just bought a blood glucose testing kit and am trying this, because as I said, I can't afford to go to the doctor:

http://www.phlaunt.com/diabetes/14046889.php

I just tested myself. I haven't eaten for about 5 hours and I'm at 90 mg/dl . Here goes the potato.


#5

What will the doctor do for me if I'm only mildly insulin resistant or even pre-diatbetic. From what I've heard, they just set up a plan to "monitor your diet" and with my budget it's kind of like "Well shit. I could do that at home."


#6

The thing that alarms me is that you said youve had problems that made you suspect this for years, although you will still have to do the same thing regardless of any damage done to you're body. The thing is though, you might not have diabetes and this could be caused by a whole different problem that you will want to get investigated.


#7

I've only known that diabetes was connected to infections for a couple of months, since a friend of mine with the same condition was tested for it and told me. None of my doctors throughout the years who knew that I I had recurring infections even suggested it.

I'm not close to dying and can't afford to go into more debt because I already have a pile of it sitting on my head. I have no way to pay for a doctor or pay off a bill. So I'm doing what I can at home and waiting until I'm in a situation where I have health insurance. However, I just found out that having a doctor test for diabetes can make some insurance plans refuse you if it ends up on their records. Maybe I should move to Canada.

If I have concerning glucose levels from several of these at-home first-thing-in-the-morning tests and eat-carbs-and-take-tests-at-timed-interval-tests, I will go in. But a lot of times, in my experience, doctors haven't done much.

Also, I noticed that you didn't even answer my question. What will the doctor really do for me that I can't do at home? I really do want to know that.


#8

90 is okay. Fasted glucose is 8 hours.


#9

My glucose 1 hour after eating 70g of potatoes is 100 mg/dL . That seems pretty good.


#10

warning: I'm in the middle of finals and my diet is not great. Alright, it's terrible. But I'll be honest.

Today I had a breakfast sandwich consisting of two slices of colby cheese, bread, and two easy-over eggs cooked with no oil (just a spritz of cooking spray). Lunch was a 12inch cold cut sub from subway with all of the veggies and chipotle sauce. Then there were the potatos and I'm planning on having chicken with a bunch of steamed broccoli for dinner.

Yesterday was the same breakfast, homemade chicken nachos for lunch, and chicken and popcorn for dinner.

The day before that I had Shepherd's pie for dinner and I can't remember what I ate before that.

On better days, I do eggs for breakfast, lunch varies, and normally meat and either a carb and veggies or just veggies.

But the bottom-line truth is that I'm not consistent and my diet varies a lot. I can't eat the same food day in and day out, with the exception of dinner, which normally is either steak, chicken, or hamburger, some carb, and a veggie.


#11

Oh, and here's another weird thing. My yeast infection has never been "raging". For about 9 years now, each time I make it into the doctor's office they tell me "You have a few yeast cells in there. I only saw a couple. It might even clear up on its own." (yeah right!) I've been into a doctor for it once in the last year and consistently for the first 5 years of that 9 years. It's always been the same "just a few cells". This last one tested for Candida glabrata, in addition to candida albicans, and I haven't heard back from her, so I'm assuming the glabrata test was negative (she also said I only have a few candida albicans cells, which they complete the testing for while I'm there). Right now I'm taking a pro-longed series of fluconazole for the candida. I've been on it for three weeks now and I think it's helping a little (relief of symptoms on most days) but I don't have a microscope and a gram stain kit to check.

I do get all of the symptoms for it though, which vary with my monthly hormone fluctuations. Speaking of fluctuations, I'm in the middle of one right now, which might have to do with the mouth infection. That too is very slight- the skin on the inside of my four front bottom teeth seems to be the only area that's affected, but the symptoms in that area were pretty apparent.

I think it's all very weird, but the doctors haven't seemed concerned and I don't have a lot of money to throw down the drain on random tests which will probably turn up negative.


#12

Ok. This is weird. My blood glucose 2 hours after eating the potatoes is now 80 mg/dL. That's 10 mg/dL lower than it was after I went without eating for 5 hours.


#13

3 hours after eating the potatoes, my blood glucose is now at 75mg/dL, which is 25 mg/dL lower than it was before I ate them. I feel really hungry, have a slight head ache, and can't really think well. I'm going to eat a big dinner and take it in the morning.


#14

And now it's 73 mg/dL . That seems low. It should be interesting to see what it's at when I test it in the morning. It also said on one website that hypopglycemia (which also may be a possibility) can be caused by hypothyroid, and one indication of this is temperature in the morning, so I'll also take that.

At the very least, any future doctor of mine is going to have a lot to work off of.


#15

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#16

If your blood glucose drops below 70 i would watch out and get treated ASAP for diabetes


#17

Especially if youre the type of guy who gets tired after eating.


#18

I get really tired, depending on what I eat.

I couldn't test the fasting level this morning because I stayed up all night finishing a paper and drank some coffee with honey in it at some point. My diet is really terrible now that I'm looking at it.

I had 1lb of shrimp in sweet and sour sauce, a scoop of peanut butter (just because it sounded yummy), and a ton of broccoli for dinner. My blood glucose went up from 73 to 159 in about 10 minutes after eating that and stayed around around 120 for most of the night. It's now in the 80s. I really have no idea what that means but maybe someone on here does.


#19

Really? Two tablespoons of coconut oil? Keep in mind that I'm not moving around very much right now. I did my "maintenance exercises" halfway through the night and that's probably as much exercise as I'm going to do in one day before finals.

I'll try it. I don't think gaining a few lbs is really a big deal even if that is too much.

I'm going to have to try to find a way to make yogurt taste different if I'm going to eat it every day. As I said, I can't eat any food for numerous days on end without eventually feeling disgusted by the thought of it.


#20

Yea, no way you have diabetes. Keep in mind that glucometers are only required to have error less than 20% so its far from perfect. Dont unnecessarily freak yourself out.
Listen to MODOK.