A couple of weeks ago, on a boat ride with strangers, I noticed one of the passengers brought with him no-sugar happoshu or low-malt beer. The passenger was a Caucasian male in his late 20s or early 30s. I asked if I could check the food label as I wanted to see if the beer was no-carb as well. As he handed the can to me, he volunteered that he was drinking no-sugar beer because he is pre-diabetic. I was taken aback by this disclosure because he was not embarrassed about his condition, unlike other non-Japanese Type 2 diabetic or pre-diabetic individuals I’ve met. In fact, it seemed to me that he was more embarrassed by the fact that he was drinking no-sugar beer than he was by the diagnosis, and that his condition was a poor excuse for not drinking regular, proper, beer. Continue reading
When it comes to food, I consider myself lucky in that I have no allergy or intolerance, apart from lactose. Of course, being diabetic, I have to minimize, if not avoid, carbohydrates (especially simple carbs) to have better control of my blood glucose. That said, I can choose to indulge if and when I wish; of course, with full knowledge of its effects. This is the case with rice. I generally do not eat rice because rice of all sorts, white, brown, red, polished and unpolished, raises my blood glucose really really quickly. But now I have to avoid rice for another reason. It seems that I have developed an intolerance for it. Continue reading
I had recently performed in a summer recital which my teacher mounts annually for her students. Although preparing for the recital can be stressful, I look forward to performing every year. This year, I was especially excited because I would be singing a really famous Italian aria which for years my husband had been asking me to learn. My excitement spilled over to what I would wear, what make-up I would use, and even to what color I would paint my nails. I actually had my nails done, something I’d never even bothered to do in the past recitals. I wanted to look my best. Continue reading
I’ve been doing some retail therapy lately and been so thrilled to be able to buy decent tops in Tokyo. A few years ago, even after my weight loss, my choices of blouses in Japan were limited to a handful. These days, though, I have found more shops carrying wonderful Large size tops. What I find remarkable is the fact that I’m now comfortable asking, “Do you have this in Large?” Continue reading
My peaceful hiatus from the online diabetes community was disturbed by the uproar started by the misleading, ill-informed and insensitive tweet by the CEO of Crossfit and the equally misleading, ill-informed and insensitive responses to that tweet from certain members of the diabetes community. For those who are not aware, let me summarize. The inconsiderate and ignorant CEO tweeted the image “Coca-Cola Open Diabetes” which clearly insinuated that sugar causes diabetes and that therefore those who drink too much Coke (or have too many sugary things) brought diabetes upon themselves. This tweet drew indignation from the diabetes community. Sadly, the indignation included the equally inconsiderate and ignorant response “Learn the difference between Type 1 and Type 2” from an alarmingly large number of Type 1 diabetics (represented by a pop music personality) or their parents.
Like many, I was incensed with the Coke-related tweet. Continue reading
Note: Day 6 of DBlogWeek. If you have been blogging for a while, what is your favorite sentence or blogpost that you have ever written? Is it diabetes related or just life related? If you are a new blogger and don’t have a favorite yet, tell us what motivated you to start sharing your story by writing a blog? (Thank you Laddie of Test Guess and Go for suggesting this topic. I don’t think I’ve ever written anything that I can say is my all time favorite. Often I read someone else’s article, essay, novel, blog post, or interview, and I think “Man, I wish I had written or said that!” It took me a while to garner enough courage to blog. Envy and frustration made me do it. Continue reading
Note: Day 5 DBlogWeek. Taking a cue from Adam Brown’s recent post, write a post documenting what you eat in a day! Feel free to add links to recommended recipes/shops/whatever. Make it an ideal day or a come-as-you-are day – no judgments either way. (Thank you, Katy of Bigfoot Child Have Diabetes for this topic.)
Pardon me for deviating from the topic but I thought this DBlogWeek prompt would be an apt opportunity to answer a question I often receive from friends and strangers, diabetic or not: What do I eat for lunch? I get this question because I live and work in Tokyo, where rice and noodles are among its staples. Since I do not bring my own lunch to the office, many wonder how I manage. Actually, it is not that difficult to find suitable dishes and restaurants in Tokyo, which is among the world’s top food meccas. In most cases, rice is either served in a separate bowl or placed at the bottom of the bowl (as in rice bowls). Instead of describing food options, which I’ve done before (here), I’ll let you see for yourselves some of the reasonably priced choices available at restaurants and food courts near my office.
Note: Day 4 of DBlogWeek. Today let’s talk about changes, in one of two ways. Either tell us what you’d most like to see change about diabetes, in any way. This can be management tools, devices, medications, people’s perceptions, your own feelings – anything at all that you feel could use changing. OR reflect back on some changes you or your loved one has seen or been through since being diagnosed with diabetes. Were they expected or did they surprise you?
Type 2 diabetes is not a moral failing. It is not a result of lack of willpower and resolve. It is not God’s punishment for gluttony and sloth.
Note: Day 3 of DBlogWeek. Yesterday we kept stuff in, so today let’s clear stuff out. What is in your diabetic closet that needs to be cleaned out? This can be an actual physical belonging, or it can be something you’re mentally or emotionally hanging on to. Why are you keeping it and why do you need to get rid of it? (Thank you Rick of RA Diabetes for this topic suggestion.)
Last month, I did some spring cleaning and found several books, as well as printouts of articles from different so-called health websites, about diabetes. I love books and it pains me to throw them away but those books on diabetes which were hiding in my diabetic closet did not deserve to be seen or read by another person, so I dumped them in the garbage bin. I wish I have the power to burn all copies of those books, punish their authors and prevent those same authors (and others who want to follow in their footsteps) from peddling their quackery, and the power to do the same to their Internet equivalents.
Note: Day 2 of DBlogWeek. “Many of us share lots of aspects of our diabetes lives online for the world to see. What are some of the aspects of diabetes that you choose to keep private from the internet? Or from your family and friends? Why is it important to keep it to yourself? (This is not an attempt to get you out of your comfort zone. There is no need to elaborate or tell personal stories related to these aspects. Simply let us know what kinds of stories we will never hear you tell, and why you won’t tell them.) (Thank you Scott E of Rolling in the D for this topic.)”
When I started blogging about diabetes, I decided that I will not divulge my blood glucose and A1c numbers. I will talk about trends in my blood glucose, results of exercise and food on my BG, and lessons learned from my numbers but not the numbers themselves. This was not the case when I first discovered the DOC. When I first joined diabetes online communities and forums, I was enthusiastic about posting my numbers just as many others happily put up theirs. I even considered adding my A1c numbers to my signature. I wanted to inspire others. But after a few months of doing this, I noticed certain undesirable changes in me. Continue reading