Friday, June 15, 2012

Standing In For the Pancreas

Through having diabetes I must take the place of the pancreas and live out the actions in my day to day living of what the pancreas would normally do if it were functioning normally. In this I must stand in place for the pancreas. For supporting the body at maintaining the blood sugar levels, I must manually inject insulin into the body so that the sugar within the blood is able to move from the blood stream into the cells and not raise too high causing health problems.

This is an extensive process and includes quite a variety of variables, such as the food that I eat, whether it is a mono or complex carbohydrate, when/how much I sleep, how much I exercise, any illness that I run into, any stress that I cause for myself, insulin dosages my life style and life habits, with each variable having a varying affect on the others. Suffice it to say, I had no idea that the body managed this without the awareness of myself as the body. It manages so much for us to keep us alive without us even knowing!  Shows how much knowing gets us.

So lets take on one point right now and move with insulin dosages. When I was diagnosed I was on 2 types of insulin ( I still am on two types but one is a different type than what I started out with). One type of insulin I used lasted 12 hours and one that lasted four hours. Both types of insulin has a spike in the effectiveness to time ratio meaning that when I inject the insulin that lasts for four hours (Rapid) it works its `hardest`, `best`, after 2 hours after injection. So when I eat and inject insulin to be able to transfer the sugar within the blood stream into the cells, I must be aware/consider that after 2 hours is when the insulin is going to be working it's hardest, and to be honest I was never told WHY insulin peaks, only that it does peak and I must deal with it. Through research I found that the insulin molecule starts out as a hexamer,

With that variable taken into consideration, if I end up going low an hour after injection (low meaning below 4 mmol/l of sugar within the blood) I know that I am going to have to still monitor my sugar levels and I usually expect to continue to go low when this happens because the insulin has not reached it' s peak performance yet, I then have to eat more or I must eat again when I go low again. The pancreas manages the blood sugar between 4 and 8 mmol/l all the time every time excreting enough insulin perfectly every time one eats to always keep it in that range, there is no need to consider any spikes, or insulin rates, or how much one eats, or if one has ate too much or if the pancreas has secreted enough insulin because that is all managed automatically with or  without our awareness or consideration of what it in fact does.

And let me tell you, in order to keep the blood sugar between 4 and 8 all the time takes a great deal of effort,  I must check my blood sugar almost every hour to make sure that I regulate it if I were to attempt to keep it at 4-8 the entire day. I say that it is impossible to maintain it at 4-8 all the time because once I eat it takes 15 minutes for the food to start to be broken down and the nutrients extracted, so in order for me to be 4-8 at the end of the four hour duration of the insulin being active;  the first hour I must be around 12-13 in order for the insulin to reach it's peak and descend with the blood sugar ending up at 4-8 at the end of the time that the insulin is effective. There is the insulin pump which constantly injects the rapid insulin into the body at a constant rate at a slow pace, with the ability to inject a large dose of insulin when one eats, but this as well works on rapid insulin which still has the peak effectiveness which still boils down to having to go high at first in order to maintain the blood sugar levels later on. To cross reference this, I tested my sister's blood sugar after she ate quite a bit of candy because I wanted to know that from that large amount of candy, if the blood sugar would go above 8 on a non-diabetic, so I tested her sugar level and it was 8 on the spot, which was cool feedback for me. In this I have to take the responsibility for the pancreas, take responsibility for managing the blood sugar level to assist me in staying alive. To consider that the body does this unconditionally no matter what we do is quite cool = it does this to support us even when/as we abuse the body with what we ingest.

The second type of insulin lasts 12 hours with a spike after six hours. This insulin was called NPH. What this insulin does is regulate the blood sugar throughout a 12 hour period with me injecting it every 12 hours. Why it regulates it over the 12 hour period is because the liver will produce a hormone called glycogen that will inevitably heighten the blood sugar throughout time without any insulin to act as the transmitter for the sugar to pass into the cells, that is why the insulin is designed to last 12 hours - because the liver is consistently producing this hormone. Again this is another variable to consider as it must be the right amount for the specific person and if too much one will end up going low quite frequently throughout the day, if too little one is quite high throughout the day. As well, it must be considered where you inject it, and whether or not you go too deep or not deep enough when injecting into the skin. Too deep, you hit muscle, it hurts, and causes the insulin to act too quickly, too shallow and one does not hit the layer of fat beneath the skin causing the insulin to not follow the desired effect, in addition to this, where on the body one injects also has an effect, wherein each part of the body will have a different amount of fat which the insulin must move through to work effectively, causing the amount of fat to slow down the rate of effectiveness.

What I am getting at within this blog post is that the body is specific in how it operates and functions in order to keep us alive within the body so that we have the opportunity to live here on Earth, and that when we take away a single aspect of the body only then we realize what the body actually does for us, what the body is capable of, and how hard it is to manage the body the way the body does through external means. This is to give a perspective on possibly what you were not aware of, to show how much the body does for us each day and each time we eat, and most of the time we are not considering the body, most of the time we are up in our heads, thinking , worrying about emotions and feelings, in this missing the body and it's amazingness and what is does to keep us alive even if we are abusive assholes. We must consider the body, the physical, and all it does for us to live here in the physical and stop considering the mind, as shown through me, I had not an iota of an idea what it took to manage the body, but through creating diabetes within myself I had to see, and in this seeing; realize the body does much more then what we are aware of as we supposedly `live` our lives.

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