Every Day Is Mother’s Day & Father’s Day

Daily T1D Inspiration, Publications

I can honestly say that my mother and father saved my life. I would not be here today if they were not by my side. During a scary, worrisome time in my life, both of my parents provided an enormous amount of love and support in different ways.

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My mother is my best travel buddy, my protector, my personal advocator, my number one cheerleader, and my soulmate. She was the only person first hand to witness my traumatic and life-changing diagnoses of type 1 diabetes. When I was 23 years old, my mom and I decided to take a mother-daughter summer trip to travel all across Europe. I began the trip excited and enthusiastic, but progressively started to get sicker and sicker. I had no energy, quickly lost a ton of weight, constantly drinking water like a camel, and urgently going to the bathroom like a racehorse. With my symptoms getting worse every day, I would have never had gone to the hospital without my mother’s natural intuition, guidance and support.

There we were in a foreign country where I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and taken to the ICU for days to bring my body out of diabetic ketoacidosis. My mom sat with me, holding my hand, as the doctors poked and prodded me with needles and IVs. We shared many tears wondering why this had to happen and how our highly anticipated trip made an unforeseen turn.

Once I was released, I started my new life as a type 1 diabetic. I had to reteach myself everything while trying to travel the rest of Europe. I had to quickly learn how to eat, exercise, manage daily stress, administer my own injections, and know what my body feels like when my blood sugar is high or low. My mom was there for me every step of the way, adjusting to her own feelings and figuring out how she could help me. When I experienced one of my first low blood sugar moments while walking around ancient Pompeii, my mom was there to sit me down as I was shaking and sweating. She was the one to help feed me candies to bring my blood sugar back up and to rest with me until I was ready to continue the tour.

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During that summer, my mom and I were able to travel to five different countries for two months without seeing an American doctor. We were just surviving on our little knowledge of type 1 that we taught ourselves through online research and scarcely talking with my father, who was back in the United States. We pushed through our tough times and continued to think positively as the challenges of traveling and my disease tested us. I would have never been able to do any of that without my mother’s consistent support, unconditional love, intuition, and the will to keep moving forward beyond my disease.

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At the same time, my father played a huge role in my survival as a fellow type 1 warrior, my teacher, my protector, and my role model. He has been living with type 1 for 20 years and I truly feel so unbelievably blessed that he understands everything that I feel: the complications, the frustrations, the depression, the good numbers, the lows, everything.

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When my mom and I were traveling, I had very limited access to talk to my dad to tell him about my devastating news. The only way I was able to talk to him was stumbling across internet cafes where wifi was available, which wasn’t that common. But I did my best to keep in touch with him. He was able to explain to me what was happening to my body when my blood sugar was low or high. He taught me how certain kind of foods react to my blood sugar and how to figure out my own carbohydrate-to-insulin ratio. He told me how to get over my fear of needles and how to correctly take my insulin shots. He taught me how crucial it is to listen to your own body and to understand what it needs. Across different continents, he was able to teach me all of this and more, giving me confidence in understanding my disease.

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Thanks, Mom and Dad, for your positive outlook. Knowing that I have you both in my corner at all times reminds me that I can conquer anything that I set my mind to.

(Article published on Further Food here)

Genteel (The Gentle) Painless Lancing Instrument

Products I Love

Can you think of a time where you have used the words: lancet, painless, fun, and cute all in the sentence? I can’t. Until now..

One day I was scrolling through my Instagram feed and ended up on a rabbit trail leading me to Genteel’s Instagram page. I quickly became really interested to discover this new lancet that is painless! After looking at all the pictures and videos, I was sold, I just had to get one! So I did. I loved it so much that I wanted to talk about it and review it so others can discover its painless, fun way to test your blood sugars too!

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Us Type 1 Diabetics usually test our blood sugars on our fingertips up to 10+ times a day. The instrument (a lancet) that we typically used to prick our fingers to test are spring loaded needles to poke and draw the blood. Yes, poking our fingers every time hurts every time. This is because there are an abundance of pain nerves very close to the surface of our skin in our fingertips. So the typical lancet needles poke to through the skin and into those pain nerves every time. We stab ourselves to get that little drop of blood to know what shape our blood sugars are in. I am now 25 years old and it still hurts me. I can only imagine what little children feel when they prick their fingers and have it hurt just as much too.

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However, this all changes with my new Genteel lancet! Genteel uses a vacuum technology to draw the blood out without the painful feel of the prick! It is amazing! I don’t feel anything at all and little kids wouldn’t either! I saw a video on the Genteel’s website that had a mother test her child with Genteel while the child was sleeping and the child didn’t even wake up!..That’s how comfortable it is. I feel more confident as I use it because I do not have that sense of hesitation and anticipation of the pain like I do with the other lancing instruments. Another cool thing about using Genteel is that you can successfully, painlessly test from many parts of your body, not just your fingertips. You can give those fingertips a rest and test else where! You can test from your fingertips, palms of your hand, arms, stomach, forearms, shoulders, thighs, calves, hips, and chest.

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With Genteel, you can pick from many colors what color you want it to be. I got the pink one! The Genteel lancet also comes with contact strips where you can control the depth of the vacuum’s penetration of how much blood you want (I use the #2 option). It comes with lots of easy to read brocheaurs and instructions of how to use it. The website is very helpful too for video instruction as well as a 24 hour help line to chat with Genteel directly.  It also comes with its own carrying case to put your new lancet, meter, and other diabetic accessories in. And my favorite part- it comes with tons of FUN stickers to decorate and customize your new Genteel with! I just love how Genteel makes it cute and fun for diabetics to test and use this device! Of course I just HAD to decorate mine with the unicorns, dolphins, rainbows, hearts, and stars stickers provided.

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I love my new stylish lancet and I definitely recommend it to all children, teens, and adults. Painless, customizable, and easy- what’s not to love?!

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Here is a little video of how I use mine:

Banana Date Smoothie

Diabetic Tips For Working Out, Drinks, Snacks

Soothing comfort is what I think of when I have this smoothie. For us T1Ders this smoothie is a little more on the sugary side of drinks. However, I love this smoothie for after a long workout where I need those extra carbs and sugars to get my numbers back up. The protein in it helps restore and rebuild all the those sore muscles that you have just finished working out. The potassium from the banana helps enhance your muscles’ strength, metabolism, electrolyte functions, and water balance. And the flax seeds give you fiber and tons of Omega-3s that you need.

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I got this recipe is from Further Food, here is their recipe:

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Throw all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Ready to enjoy!

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Per serving: 18g sugar

No Bake Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites

Dessert

Have you ever wanted to eat a whole tub of cookie dough and not get sick from it?! I’m pretty sure that is everyone’s dream. I think one of the hardest things in life is resisting from eating all of it! Well, I got somethin’ here that will make you ever-s0-happy. I found this recipe from Further Food (original recipe here), that created these irresistible cookie dough bites. What I loved about this recipe is that they are made with simple ingredients, low carb, low sugar, and contain only natural sweeteners. They instantly help solve that sweet tooth craving feeling with little bite sized cookies that make it perfect for portion control.

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Here is Further Food‘s recipe:

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup gluten free oats
  • 5 medjool dates
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons almond butter (I used Justin’s almond butter)
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Handful or more of dark chocolate chips (can use dairy free chips, sugar free chips from Lily’s chips)
  • 1/2 tablespoon warm water (or more to make it more doughy)
  • Optional: For sweeter dough (I think it is sweet enough with the chocolate chips), add 1 tablespoon sweetener of choice (coconut sugar or maple syrup)

Directions

  1. In a food processor pulse the gluten free oats until flour consistency.
  2. Add the medjool dates and pulse until well combined.
  3. Add the following ingredients: vanilla, almond butter, and sea salt. Pulse until the mixture reaches dough consistency. If the mix is not sticking together, add 1/2 tablespoon of water.
  4. You can add the chocolate chips to the food processor and give it a quick pulse or mix them in by hand.
  5. Roll the dough into small balls. Store in an air tight container in the fridge or freezer

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Per Serving: Calories: 96; Total Fat: 4g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 21mg; Potassium: 71mg; Carbohydrate: 15g; Fiber: 2g; Sugar: 9g; Protein: 2g

Vegan Broccoli Fritters

Main Dishes

Lately I have personally vowed to not eat beef anymore for my own moral reasons in that I love cows and feel guilty eating them. I never really loved beef burgers anyways so it wasn’t that hard of a change for me anyways.  I have been looking for an alternative healthy sort of patty that I could eat, besides your typical veggie burger, and I found this Vegan Broccoli Fritter recipe from Further Food that I fell in love with.

I made these for the first time and loved how easy it was to cook. I took my first bite and was SO surprised with how much flavor they had for being vegan! So naturally, these fritters have how become one of my favorite things to make. Whether you are vegan or not, you will still love these fritters as much as I do.

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Here is Further Food’s recipe:

Ingredients

  • Egg replacer (1 tablespoon flaxseeds and 3 tablespoons water)
  • 1 head broccoli
  • 2/3 cup chickpea flour
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • Olive oil (for cooking)

Directions

  1. Prepare your egg replacer and set aside.
  2. Steam the broccoli for a few minutes until fork-tender. Mash up broccoli with fork.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the broccoli pieces with all the other ingredients and mix well until the mixture feels like it will hold together.
  4. Make around 6 patties.
  5. Heat about an inch of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Place fritters in the skillet (don’t crowd the pan; only cook about 3 fritters at a time), reduce heat to low and cook fritters on each side for about 2/3 minutes until golden brown.
  6. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Serve hot!

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Per Serving: Calories: 216; Total Fat: 16g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 11g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 412mg; Potassium: 432mg; Carbohydrate: 15g; Fiber: 5g; Sugar: 3g; Protein: 6g