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Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery Wrapped in a Panda Bear.

Was it the food I ate?

The timing of the pre-meal bolus?

The amount of insulin I took to cover the meal?

The insulin:carb ratio I employed to calculate the dose?

What the hell made me so high after lunch yesterday? *

Diabetes can be like a set of nesting dolls, with each influencer nested neatly inside of the next one, looking deceptively like the previous one.  Finding the root of a problem can require a lot of variable unraveling.  It’s a riddle wrapped in a mystery wrapped in a … a panda bear.

*  I was high because I miscalculated my lunch bolus.  Damn you, elusive spinach carbs!

12 Comments Post a comment
  1. Courtney #

    There are carbs in spinach?! Learn something new every day 🙂

    01/22/14; 10:45 am
  2. Darnit, I guess all that fried spinach I’ve been eating isn’t as good for me as I thought 🙂

    01/22/14; 5:09 pm
  3. Molly #

    I am so confused.. I have been on an insulin pump for 3 months now.. If I am high after lunch (258) but my pump is telling me that I have insulin on board (apparently enough to cover whatever the high is).. What do I do? Take insulin to bring the high down, or just “ride it out”. I gave myself 1 unit. I am confused and actually a bit freaked out because I am trying to bring down my A1C and I read on here that you never let yourself get over 140? I probably live my entire life over 140!

    01/22/14; 5:28 pm
    • Whoa – I am over 140 mg/dL plenty. I have my CGM alarm set to go off at 140 mg/dL in efforts to keep spikes at a minimum. It’s a personal decision and one I made after I was accustomed to the data flow. (Your diabetes may vary!) For me, if I’m high after meals it’s usually because I’ve under-bolused for the meal or I didn’t bolus ahead of time enough to have the insulin take action at the right time. It’s a delicate balance/imperfect science and I suck at so much of it. Have you talked with your doctor about your needs? Start by consulting with your medical team. They’ll help you adjust to pumping – no medical advice to be found for miles on this blog. 🙂

      01/22/14; 10:45 pm
      • Dan #

        Hi Molly and Kerri,

        Kerri your personal comments are stop on. I respond in a similar manner.
        My is a different suggestion. Ask your health care provider to supple the various internal setting values within your pump. A short list is as follows: Your 24 personal basal rate settings, Insulin to carb ratios over the 24 hour period, and insulin sensitivity are just a few. Life is like the ebb and flow of ocean waves. The waves and their force vary over time. Hope this helps and as always have great day.

        01/23/14; 10:39 am
      • Molly #

        Thanks Kerri.. Yesterday was a particularly terrible day, I went from 250 to 300 later on and just felt horrible. I couldn’t understand what was happening and then I looked at the calendar.. PMS! I dialed up a temp basal (+20%) today and feel much better. I think a lot of this confusion is being new to the pump, I am doing basal testing, but feel like there is never a day when I am either not stressed, not exercising vigorously, or not in some kind of menstrual cycle timing when my basal test will mean much. I called my diabetes nurse (she is in 1.5 days a week?) and I am seeing her next week. It took me a while to dial in my MDI program, but with the pump, there are so many variables that I would love to take advantage of, but don’t know how to use them!
        Ugh frustration.
        Thanks for your reply.

        01/23/14; 5:07 pm
  4. DennisD #

    Spinach has carbs? I’ve always [well for the 57 years since I’ve been on insulin] calculated spinach at what we used to call “B veggie”, minimal carbs; live and learn.

    Yeah, keeping all the variables of insulin needs in the mix can be a full-time job; and add to the factors you mention, the change in air temperature. For me, I always need more insulin during cold weather and less when it is constantly hot.

    I do hope you can get your BG to levels that you think are reasonable.

    01/22/14; 6:04 pm
  5. Christine #

    And another nasty factor. Being sick. I have been fighting a bad sore throat and high BG’S for almost a week now.

    01/23/14; 1:04 am
  6. Kristine Vindenes #

    Hi Kerri 🙂

    I totally relate to this as I’m so often confused why my bg went so high after lunch in the canteen when I almost didn’t have any carbs on my plate and thought I had been good in math. I have half my plate with salad and the rest with egg/meat/fish and I sometimes wonder if they put sugar on the salad before they add it to the salad bar….

    I’ve figured out after a while that my stress levels at work are directly related with my high bg’s and that apparently I’m more stressed after lunch…….. I’m still trying to find the “groove” with work/diabetes, hopefully I’ll find it in not too long 🙂

    Love your blog <3

    01/23/14; 5:46 am
  7. June S. #

    I love your analogy – using the nesting dolls!!!

    01/23/14; 8:57 am
  8. This panda bear riddle will be on my mind the rest of the day, probably week. Oh, and I also had no clue spinach had carbs. What an educational riddle, this was… (glad you figured it out, btw!)

    01/23/14; 12:06 pm

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