Life By the Numbers

Saw my endo on Thursday for my every-three-months checkup.

My A1c is a respectable 6.2, which she was ecstatic about, but which I still found rather deflating. I’m aiming for 6.0 or less, cause 6 and under is a “normal” person’s blood sugar. Yes, I’m being obstinate (the goal for diabetics is to have an A1c under 7.0. What can I say? I have high standards. I also had a 5.9 six months ago, so I know it’s possible).

She found my reaction hilarious, because she’d just congratulated somebody for having an A1c of 8.6 (down two points from their previous one!).


Anyway, we went over the bloodwork that I had done 3 months ago as a part of trying to get my pump. Everything looks lovely except… well, I knew this one was coming at some point.

My “good” cholesterol numbers are high (which is good), but my “bad” cholesterol numbers are borderline high (which is bad). If I wasn’t diabetic, she said she wouldn’t have been concerned about it, but I need to drop about 30 points to get to where I should be, optimally.

Horrific cholesterol runs in my family (I think I remember hearing I had an uncle with numbers in the 400s). She wants under 200. I’m at 219. She knows what my diet and exercise schedule is like, and once I told her about my family history she was like ahhhhh… you know, I know you’ll hate to hear this, but I really think we should go with a low dose of Lipitor.

And yes, I do hate to hear it. I knew it was coming, of course. Bad cholesterol runs in the family, and it was only a matter of time before somebody did a blood test where mine showed up. Taking action now means fewer complications in the future. Diabetics die from complications – organ failure of one type or another, heartattacks in particular. So doing what I can to avoid placing undue burdens on my heart would be, you know, a good thing.

I asked her what I could do, dietwise, to help this along on my own. Ideally, I’d do the lipitor now, alter my diet, go off the lipitor for six weeks, and see if I’d managed to get it under 200 on my own. She gave me the name of a nutritionist that I can work with up in Centerville. Dropping 30 points through diet alone – after looking at what I eat already – probably isn’t feasible. At best, she said I could likely drop about 10 points through diet alone. But let’s be honest here, people: I eat a shit ton of full-fat dairy products and meat. Sure, I eat lots of vegetables, too, but meat and cheese and other dairy products are a mainstay of my life. These are foods I let myself eat as much as I want (and it likely the reason that, though I work out regularly, my weight stays the same).

Eliminating animal fat is going to be a big part of the diet change. That’s going to hurt. I went ahead and took out butter, red meat, and took out all cheese but low-fat mozzarella on my own, and I’ll be switching to egg whites over time. I’m using up the last of the whipped cream in the fridge, and will need to keep to my 0% fat yogurt religiously. This will also mean dumping sour cream.

I’ll be replacing some of the meat I’m eating with beans and tofu and fish, which I don’t mind. I already have turkey bacon on the weekends, and you know, there’s some stuff I’m just not going to give up completely. Like bacon, yo.

So I’ll be working on moving that over over the next few weeks and then seeing the dietician sometime in the next few weeks as well.

I need to make a habit of cutting out some of that animal fat on a regular basis. Cheese and steak should be treats, not everyday fair.


And don’t even get me started on the Chipotle burritos.


Diabetes: not fun, people.

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