Wednesday, October 03, 2007

change of heart

So yesterday was a tough diabetes day. I know. As I've said before, I can't dwell on what should have been done. I just have to deal with the now.

I missed my morning workout again! In order to make it worthwhile, I ended up doing odd chores around that house that just needed to be done. While doing that, I ran into a commercial for byetta, the drug that the specialist wants me to start using. I started looking it up online and found a few interesting tidbits here. This is the company that makes byetta.

I then called my insurance company to find out if it covers byetta. There's some good news and some bad news. The bad news: byetta costs way more than the meds I take right now. The good news: my insurance covers 80% of the cost because it's considered a diabetic supply and not a medication. Therefore, depending on the dosage, the byetta will cost me $40-$50/month max (as opposed to $15/month I pay right now). Additionally, it won't affect the $2000 allowance my insurance gives for medication. This is something to chomp on.

Technically, my blood sugars (hemoglobin A1C) are at a good range because they're in the 6 range. However, the specialist wants it to be in the low 6 or below 6 range. Even with exercise and diet, I'm not sure I can make the range. The lowest I've ever been was around 6.2, and the specialist wants it to be even lower. The best way for me to be in that lower range is to ultimately lose weight.

One of the positive side effects of byetta is that it suppresses the appetite, making users lose weight. (In fact, some Beverly Hills doctors have been prescribing it to patients for weight loss, which is a total no-no. Byetta is not a weight-loss drug, it's a diabetes drug! But what Beverly Hills bitches want, Beverly Hills bitches get!) I need to talk to my specialist more about this. I'm thinking of maybe going on it for a year. Should I get an appropriate amount of weight loss, I'm thinking of getting off it and going back to my old medication. I just don't want to be addicted to or be dependent on byetta (which is what some people have experienced).

I'm not even sure if this or any drug can actually suppress my appetite! ha ha ha! However, it will at least inspire me to jump on a healthier train. In the end, if I choose to go on byetta, I don't want it to be a permanent thing. Feel free to share your thoughts on this, please :)

On a challenge note, it's only been three days and it's not so bad. I had a dentist appointment today, and it's next door to a Filipino restaurant, which I went to. I did their standard buffet. Let me tell you, it was hard not having a taste of the lumpia, pancit, lechon and fried chicken. But at the same time, I commend the place for having stuff that could work within my challenge. I had some rice with meatloaf, kaldareta (sans potatoes) and a ton of veggies from the stir-fry. To satisfy my sweet, I took a few bites of the coconut milk from the guinataan, and downed the meal with about three glasses of ice water. It was a well-balanced meal and I didn't feel like I needed to roll out of the restaurant. I also didn't eat a dozen plates worth of food. Yea for me! UGH! I hate being a foodie. Not a good thing for diabetics!


Animae said...

So I'm reading this book called What You Need to Know to Keep Diabetes Away by Gretchen Becker (she also has a book on Type 2 Diabetes). The whole thing is a series of short advice vignettes. Most of it is on the "practical, common sense" side, but is always a good reminder, especially if you're like me and tend to want to throw all health advice given out the window!

Anyway, your post made me think of Chapter 17: Don't diet, be a gourmet. The main thing she says is "Whereever you are, seek out the best food, not the largest portions.... A gourmet doesn't even bother with inferior food like fast-food burgers or fries.... Diets are for other people... embark on a lifelong quest for small portions of the very best food you can find. You're a gourmet."

From one foodie struggling to keep this disease at bay to another... I'm rooting for you!

Joanne said...

Hi Mae!

Thanks! Actually, Gretchen Becker's book on type 2 diabetes was the first book I bought when I was first diagnosed. Eventually, I passed it on to my brother, but I'm not sure he actually read it. It's a great book and came highly recommended. Next time I see you, you'll have to bring that book so I can take a gander at it. I may buy a copy for my sister so she can pass the knowledge to the kiddos.

After a day of bitching and moaning, my better senses kicked in. I figure that diabetes treatments are changing every day and there's no reason for me to not explore better options. When the specialist first suggested going on byetta, I took it a little personally - like she was suggesting that I was doing a poor job at maintaining my health. In reality, she wasn't saying that at all. She was simply being a medical professional giving me professional advice. Besides, if my insurance covers a good portion of it, there's no reason for me to not try it.

Thanks for cheering me on. I really need it :)

p.s. I'm meeting your cousin next week :)