Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Looking for the Money Tree

20 grams of carbs per day did not last long. I did really well the first week and started dwindling over the second week and really haven't done well the third week. Although I must give myself credit. I haven't gone back completely to my old ways but I'm not as cautious as I was. Having Phillip around during the day really keeps me on my toes. We also have been going to the gym regularly since he's super motivated and training for his 1/2 marathon a week from this Sunday and the 1/2 Ironman in May. The 4.0 mph in under 30 minutes was taking it's toll on my body so I had to slow my pace down before I hurt myself.

I can tell you this though. I've never wanted a baby as bad as I do now. Right now I would do anything to start another round of shots but I know it's not a good thing for my body. We did get another bill in the mail Monday that said we owed the Dr.'s office $250 for managing my five day cycle in December. Since I had two ultrasounds done in those five days they count that as enough to charge us the fee since the Dr. was looking at my results. Total bummer. But I guess that's the game we are dealing with these days.

Has anyone ever seen where money grows on trees? If so, could you let me know where it is.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

A Few of My Favorite Things...

So I haven't been totally faithful when it comes to 20 grams a carbs a day. I figure since I was having hundreds of carbs a day before that if I keep it under a hundred or less a day then I'm golden. We'll see how well my theory works. I'm doing pretty good keeping up with the exercise so that's a plus.

Since I'm a super picky eater I've found a few things that I can still eat to soothe the cravings I used to have. Hershey's makes sugar free candy. The regular Hershey's miniature flavor is actually pretty good. It doesn't taste fake at all. They also make Mint chocolate sticks that are really good. Edy's makes a slow churn ice cream that is 1/2 the fat and 1/2 the calories and it truely taste the same as regular ice cream. I still can't indulge as much as before but it does the job. We just trick ourselves and eat our ice cream out of Emma's snack bowls.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

12 Step Program

Hi. My name is Ashley and I am insulin resistant. I am in the anger stage this morning. Mad at the fact that in June when I met with the doctor that he didn't tell me to come back the next day for my bloodwork and come having fasted. This more than likely would have shown me having the insulin resistance 7 months ago and we would have saved a lot of heartache and a tremondous amount of money.

God is good and he has a plan for me. I must concentrate on that.

It all started with breakfast this morning. I opened the pantry door and proceeded to look at any and all things that I could eat for breakfast, anything that called themselves a breakfast food, and then to anything edible. EVERYTHING was over 35 grams of carbs per serving. Hmm...this is going to be even harder than I thought. "Philllllllliiiiiiipppppp" I yelled. "What in the world can I eat? Will I ever be able to eat again?" He suggested meat. Meat Meat Meat! Can we fit any chocolate in with all that meat? I settled for an egg and cheese omelet. I have to say it was pretty tasty. Touche Phillip. Can you be my personal chef from now on?

So Phillip and I went to the gym this morning excited about my new exercise regime. He was more interested in seeing how fast I had to walk to meet 2 miles in under 30 minutes. So I was first to hop on the treadmill and started cranking up the speed. 3.2 mph was around a 17 minute/mile pace. Ok. I'll speed it up a little. 3.5 mph. A little better but not by much. 3.7, 3.8, 3.9! No dice. 4.0? BINGO! I was hopping and holding on to the bar on the treadmill for dear life trying not to fly off the durn thing. I'm supposed to do this for how long? 30 min until I get to 2 miles? Oh dear. This is not going to be pretty.

So Phillip hops on the treadmill next to me and proceeds to stretch, bend, twist and turn. He looks at me and waves. I smile back. He cranks his speed up until he gets to a 4.0 mph pace and looks over at me, taps his earbuds signaling me that he wants to talk. "Hey, this 4.0 mph isn't so fast!" I pushed him off his treadmill and was done with him. J/K! I glare at him and put my earbud back in. He says, "Hey! You must just have a shorter stride than me. Good job! Keep up the good work!" Thanks buddy! As I'm rounding out 5 minutes and my legs are cramping already.

I completed the work out but it wasn't fun. I guess that's why Dr. Lucas suggests me only doing this 3 days a week. I'm surely not going to want to go back tomorrow and do it again.

So afterwards we head over to the grocery store to pick up some low carb items. We go to the deli to get some more MEAT! I ordered some BBQ chicken and I look at the nutrition guidelines and it has 3 grams of carbs in it! Urgghhh! White American cheese- 1 carb. Doesn't take long to add up to 20 grams total for the day. Just to make sure it wasn't 20 grams of carbs per meal we called the nurse and yes it is 20 total for the day. One Coke has like 30 some grams. If you ever get bored and want to feel some sympathy for me take a look at your labels on the food in your pantry. It's pretty sad. Anyways, I came home and had a sandwich on 1/2 of a tortilla. Tonight for dinner? Cheeseburgers with no bun!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Insulin Resistance

The verdict is in. We went to my follow-up appointment today with Dr. Lucas. My bloodwork showed that I have insulin resistance. It also showed that my liver is working 3 times harder than a normal liver should. Being pregnant would put a tremedous amount of work on my liver on top of it working 3 times harder than it should. This could cause me to have HELP disease which is dangerous and can even be deadly to either me, the baby or both.

So my course of action is this. I can have no more than 20 grams of carbs a day and walk at least 3 days a week 2 miles in under 30 minutes. He says that walking and walking only works a major muscle in the body that helps break down insulin enzymes. Hopefully next time you see me you'll being seeing a skinnier me! :)

What is so hard about all of this is not the exercise. It's the 20 grams of carbs a day. I LOVE LOVE LOVE carbs. I love rice, pasta, french fries and chocolate. Phillip and I came home and were looking on the internet and my mouth is still hanging open in shock to how many carbs are in the various things we looked at. Things such as soda, sauces, obviously things with bread, etc. It'll be quite the challenge.

Here's what Webmd had to say about being insulin resistant.

Insulin Resistance and Diabetes

If you have pre-diabetes or diabetes, chances are that you’ve heard of the medical term insulin resistance syndrome or metabolic syndrome. Insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome describes a combination of health problems that have a common link -- an increased risk of early heart disease.

The cluster of medical conditions that make up the insulin resistance syndrome or metabolic syndrome places a person at risk of developing type 2 diabetes and atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). It is estimated that 70 to 80 million Americans have the combination of diseases caused by insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome.

Diseases caused by insulin resistance include the following:
Type 2 diabetes
High blood pressure
Abnormal cholesterol levels
Heart disease
Polycystic ovarian syndrome

What Is Insulin Resistance?

Normally, food is absorbed into the bloodstream in the form of sugars such as glucose and other basic substances. The increase in glucose in the bloodstream signals the pancreas (an organ located behind the stomach) to increase the secretion of a hormone called insulin. This hormone attaches to cells, removing glucose from the bloodstream so that it can be used for energy.

In insulin resistance, the body's cells have a diminished ability to respond to the action of the insulin hormone. To compensate for the insulin resistance, the pancreas secretes more insulin.
People with this syndrome have insulin resistance and high levels of insulin in the blood as a marker of the disease rather than a cause.

Over time people with insulin resistance can develop high sugars or diabetes as the high insulin levels can no longer compensate for elevated sugars.

What Are The Health Components of Insulin Resistance Syndrome?
The health components of insulin resistance syndrome include:

Impaired fasting glucose, impaired glucose tolerance or type 2 diabetes. This occurs because the pancreas is unable to turn out enough insulin to overcome the insulin resistance. Blood glucose levels rise and diabetes is diagnosed.

High blood pressure. The mechanism is unclear, but studies suggest that the worse the blood pressure, the worse the insulin resistance.

Abnormal cholesterol levels. The typical cholesterol levels of a person with insulin resistance are low HDL, or good cholesterol, and high levels of another blood fat called triglyceride.

Heart disease. The insulin resistance syndrome can result in atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) and an increased risk of blood clots.

Obesity. A major factor in the development of insulin resistance syndrome is obesity--especially abdominal obesity or belly fat. Obesity promotes insulin resistance and negatively impacts insulin responsiveness in a person. Weight loss can improve the body's ability to recognize and use insulin appropriately.

Kidney damage. Protein in the urine is a sign that kidney damage has occurred, although not everyone uses this component to define the insulin resistant syndrome.

How Is Insulin Resistance Syndrome Diagnosed?

There is no simple test to diagnose insulin resistance syndrome. Rather, your doctor may suspect the syndrome if you have the following health risk factors:

More than one parent or sibling who has type 2 diabetes, hypertension or cardiovascular disease.

Obesity or overweight (BMI -- body mass index -- above 25).

More fat around the waist than around the hips (an apple shape).

Age greater than 40 years

Gestational diabetes when pregnant.

A history of a condition called polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).


Are a member of certain ethnic groups (Latino, Blacks or Native American).

The current epidemic of obesity in children also puts them at risk for the development of the insulin resistance syndrome.

What's The Treatment for Insulin Resistance Syndrome?

Specific prescribed medications such as Glucophage (metformin), Actos (pioglitazone) and Avandia (rosiglitazone) are all approved to treat the insulin resistance that occurs with type 2 diabetes. These drugs make your body more sensitive to the actions of insulin. Multiple drugs, such as cholesterol-lowering drugs or anti-hypertensive drugs are usually necessary to treat the different conditions that are part of the insulin resistance syndrome.

Is Insulin Resistance Syndrome Preventable?

Yes. If you live a healthy lifestyle, you may be able to avoid getting insulin resistance syndrome and associated diseases. Here are some tips to prevent insulin resistance or metabolic syndrome:

Exercise. Try walking 30 minutes a day for at least 5 days a week (exercise can be divided into 3 separate periods of 10 minutes each)

Stay at a healthy weight

Eat right. A healthy balanced and caloric restricted diet is recommended.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

20 Questions

I've felt like a total hypochondriac the past week and a half. Here's the story.

My sister and I always groaned as my Mom drilled us and played 20 questions before giving us any type of prescription medicine. "What is your name? What is your date of birth? Is the medicine in the bottle the correct medicine and does the color look right?" We used to be impatient and couldn't understand the 20 questions. Up until now I couldn't figure out what the big deal was. Sorry Mom. :)

I know the holidays are known to be somewhat emotional and the time of year when people are more likely to be depressed. I didn't feel like I qualified for any life threatening illness and I certainly don't have a bad life to be upset over. No one recently has passed away. So why so blue? I know my last cycle was canceled 8 days into the thing but I decided that I was ok with that several days ago. I am ok with it right? Not really. So I spent Christmas Day somewhat tense and on an emotional roller coaster. Overall it was a great day. Emma couldn't want for anything and it was awesome being able to share in her excitement. She still keeps asking for more presents today! lol

The emotional roller coaster came from the withdrawals from the hormone shots I was taking. I only took five days worth of them. How can they effect me this much? I don't know but they did. I now feel guilty thinking that my mood swings from the medicine could have hindered me spending the day with my family and really celebrating Jesus' Birthday. How terrible am I?

The day after Christmas I woke up and felt a little bit back to normal. Whatever normal is for me these days. We came home from my parents Thursday but still wasn't feeling 100%. I'm usually not a nap taker but I was the next few days. I just couldn't get enough sleep. I felt drained and dizzy. I had a headache but those are fairly normal for me especially after coming off the hormones. I tend to get really bad headaches that probably are considered migraines so I didn't think much of it. I started thinking what in the world could be wrong with me. Alieve just wasn't touching it this time. Could I be diabetic now? I am more prone to getting diabetes being that I have PCOS. I should call Dr. Lucas and talk to him about testing me.

A few days later I still feel bad and Phillip and I decided that it's time to call the Dr. We made an appointment for January 3 to talk to him about what's going on with my treatments and where we stand. Yesterday, I had a headache all day that I couldn't shake so I went back to our medicine cabinet to get some more Alieve and shook two pills out of the container. Something hit me. These are not the same Alieve that I took out of my travel bottle. OH NO! WHAT IN THE WORLD DID I TAKE? (I'm now back in the day standing in front of my Mom playing 20 questions.) The ones I took at my parents house over Christmas were long and skinny. Sort of like the Tylenol that I had in their except that they were blue just like the Alieve pills.

BINGO! CASE SOLVED! We keep a bottle (the same size as the Alieve bottle) of generic Tylenol PM in the medicine cabinet. When filling my travel bag with Tylenol and Alieve I must have grabbed the Tylenol PM bottle instead of the Alieve bottle. I never checked the bottles and which one I grabbed. The color of both pills were the same blue. That's why I was feeling so groggy, sleepy, moody and still with a splitting headache. I have no idea how many Tylenol PM's I had actually taken over the course of several days.

What a combo. Tylenol PM plus withdrawing from hormones! I must have been a blast to be around! When it comes to taking medicine, I'm a delicate flower. I can't take ANYTHING that makes you sleepy because it'll knock me out for at least a day and a half. What a moron I am.

I can guarentee I'll be playing the 20 questions from now on. Sorry Emma! :)