Free Meter for Weight Loss

Free Meter for Weight Loss

Blood Glucose Monitor

It doesn’t hurt. Really!

Blood glucose monitors are devices that we tend to associate with diabetics. According to the CDC, in 1958, about 1% of the US population were diagnosed with what was then called Adult Onset Diabetes. Nowadays, the number is approaching 10% & it’s no longer just adults being diagnosed. This is along with the many more of us that are undiagnosed, or pre-diabetic. With the growing number of Type 2 diabetics, the shelves of our pharmacies display a huge range of these things, like they are the latest best-selling tech gadget for health. Even if we are fortunate enough to have avoided a diagnosis of diabetes, these monitors can be a useful tool to help us keep it that way. Along with being a useful tool to gain some insight on the impact of the foods we eat.

Many of us have impaired our natural feedback loops when it comes to eating. A diet overloaded with sugar and refined starch puts us on the path to obesity. Staying on that path can lead to metabolic syndrome and Type 2 diabetes. Checking our blood sugar levels periodically can help us identify how far down the road we are. And the results can provide some added motivation to change things. If you haven’t used a glucose monitor before, you’ll be fascinated to see what different foods do to your blood glucose levels. That big rib steak wasn’t so bad, was it? But, man, you should have seen my numbers after that pizza! And those cookies were off the chart!

While the correlation isn’t perfect, there is generally some decent relationship between blood glucose levels and insulin when it comes to carbohydrates. Among other things, insulin is released to prevent our blood sugar getting too high. While insulin first stores this energy into our muscles and liver, for more immediate use, it then stores the excess in the long term storage areas … our bellies and our bums! In other words, along with all the wonderful things it does, insulin is the fat storage hormone. This too is wonderful. But if we’re already obese, this probably isn’t what we’re looking for.

A meter won’t cure our obesity. But if you knew that a bagel or a muffin sent your blood sugar soaring, while a bacon and egg breakfast didn’t, how might you consider ordering your next morning meal? And how about that mid-morning snack of healthy yogurt that has 15g of sugar? Did you ever wonder what that might do to your blood sugar level? Keeping our blood sugar levels in the normal range is a good thing. The longer these levels are normalized, the less opportunity there is for storing more fat. A meter can help identify what foods increase our blood sugar so that we can think more carefully when choosing our next snack. An ongoing barrage of sweet treats throughout the day tends to maintain elevated insulin levels. And that may keep us in fat storage mode for the duration. That’s probably not where we want to be if we are hoping to lose weight.

In Canada, the manufacturers offer a “free” monitor with the purchase of a large box of 100 strips. Insurers may also cover the costs of meters and strips if you have a prescription. Most manufacturers have apps that link to their monitors now too. That can be good information to take along to your next doctor’s appointment.

A glucose monitor can be a relatively inexpensive tool to help us understand how our bodies interact with different foods. And it can help us reconstruct our diet to better achieve our goals.

I’d like to think that, one day, I will have repaired my natural feedback loops to the point where I no longer need an external device to tell me what my body is doing.



Let Them Eat Plastic!

Steel Water Bottle

Let Them Eat Plastic!

I watched a CBC Marketplace show the other day. It might have been a rerun of an older one, but it was all about plastic water bottles. We’ve all heard the horrible stories about plastic in the ocean impacting fish, whales, and so on but this one was about their potential impact on us. The show folk ran around buying brand name water from four cities across Canada and they brought them all to McGill University, in Montreal. Here, they ran tests on them to see if there were tiny plastic particles in the water we like to drink.

There were! It turned out these particles, though to a lesser extent, were in some glass bottled waters too.

For the most part, I choose to drink tap water. It runs through the filter on my fridge. Though I often hit the reset button on the change light when it comes up, rather than change the filter right away. As it turns out, some of these commercial water bottles are filled with tap water too. Sure, it’s filtered while being bottle but, sometimes, we’re just paying a silly price for tap water. And the environmentally unfriendly plastic bottle comes along for the ride. Who knew!

It seems that there’s so much of this stuff going around these days, & not just from water bottles, that it shows up in our oceans, lakes and rivers. And they can detect them in the fish we eat. So are we now eating and drinking micro-plastic particles?

Now nobody really knew if these plastic particles were doing us any harm. But that’s sometimes the case with such things, often for years, and then all hell breaks lose. While they figure all that out, we might be better off not drinking water coming in plastic bottles. It’s not that I have 100% faith in the water quality coming from our municipalities either. But if the bottled water is coming from the same source, but with added plastic particles, I think I’ll stick with the regular tap water for the most part.

I guess I’m a bit of a closet tree-hugger. I’m far too macho to be going around openly trying to save the planet. I want to pillage it and get rich! But while I do that, I’m going to dig out my stainless steel water bottle to remain hydrated! 🙂

Now I’m worried about the poor folk at the water bottling plant being out of work. Modern living is way too complex sometimes.

Note from yesterday’s post … the debreceni sausage wasn’t to my taste. I’ve had really good debreceni before, it’s just this one that I didn’t like. The recipe, however, was good so I’ll try it again with another sausage. Regardless, and in retribution, I behaved really badly afterwards. I ate lots of sea salt & caramel chocolate bark with my cherry ice cream. Twice! Oops!!!