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Making the Low Go...

When I was first diagnosed, my mom made a little pouch for me to hold a pack of lifesavers. She would pin the pouch into all my pants and shorts. As I became more daring, I would take a couple lifesavers each day. My mom would ask why I ate 2 or 3 lifesavers and I would say, “because I had a little reaction.” (this mostly happened when she stocked my pouch with butter rum lifesavers. Or when I could sneak a little peak through the end of a regular pack and see that the white one was on the end. Then I would always eat that one) Honestly, how could I ever really know when I was low. Urine testing wasn’t accurate and that was the only reference I had. I said that I felt low, and my parents treated me. They didn't have me run to the bathroom to do a urine test. (since it wouldn't give good information anyway!) I might have been low my entire childhood. No wonder my grades were never very good. I was probably hypoglycemic (or hyperglycemic) through a good part of elementary school. :-)

When I was a kid, I used to love using regular pop for a low. As a child, the only diet pop available were Tab, Fresca, and Diet 7up. I used to stand in the convenience store oogling over the choices of regular pop. Oh, how I longed to have a swig of Tahitian Treat or Orange Crush. As a kid, my mom used to let me have some pop to treat a low.

I’m pretty boring when it comes to treating lows now. I guess the boring part comes from figuring out what works best, and sticking to it.

If I’m low in the middle of the night, or early morning, I drink Juicy Juice small apple juice boxes. Depending on the number, I might have a packet of GU energy gel too. Don’t get me wrong... I have no intention of expending energy in the middle of the night. I use that because it’s simple and easy to eat. Just rip open the package, squeeze the contents in my mouth, done.

Dixie carries GU packets in her vest. When I first got Dixie, I tried a couple different items in her vest. Most things ended up melting or being too bulky for her to lay on. GU smooshes flat and I can keep a couple packets in her vest. I use GU when I need something quick during the day.

At school, I keep juice boxes, GU, gatorade, and fruit snacks. I use different combinations of the three things depending on my number, time since/until a meal, and how much time I have to treat.

I try to avoid eating for lows whenever possible. Dixie helps with that. She will often alert to tell me that I have too much insulin on board. (because of some wild a-- bolus or guessing at carb counts for mixed foods) When that happens, I have figured out how much/how long to turn my basal rate down. When Dixie alerts and I’m in the 70s, I will usually not eat, I’ll just turn my basal off for a half hour. I use Gatorade or Powerade sometimes when I just need “a little something.” (for an alert from Dixie in the high 60s, I can take a couple swigs of Gatorade, turn my rate off for an hour, and coast)

Those are my preferred low strategies. Thanks to Dixie, I can make more subtle adjustments to my basal rate to anticipate or prevent a low.

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