I’ll Take the High Road and I’ll Take the Low Road and I’ll Be Frustrated Afore Ye

Does everybody who participated in the big feast last Thursday have their BGs back down? I don’t know if I do or not. For one thing, I’ve been doing my part getting rid of leftovers. For the other, my blood glucose has been in its “high” state for a few weeks now. So if I’m a bit high, I have no idea what to blame it on.


They seemed to be behaving a wee bit better yesterday. Maybe it was just on the agenda — or maybe it was because I’d finished up my part in getting rid of the corn casserole, the asparagus casserole, and most of the noodles, and moved on to the green beans and whatever was left of the turkey.

Then, this morning, I zipped up from the 120s to close to 200 on a small banana before the insulin took hold. Go figure.

It’s really annoying. And frustrating. It’s as though I’m insulin sensitive (relatively speaking) for a while, then become insulin resistant for a bit. Then back to sensitive, back to resistant, etc. I alternate between running low and high. There’s no rhyme or reason to it.

I thought I had it figured out recently, pinning it on a drug I take off and on for phantom pain. It seemed that, when I took the drug, my blood glucose ran low and, when I didn’t, it ran high. But I’ve been taking the medicine all along and my glucose switched from low to high. Scratch that theory!

Back in my younger days, I could count on my blood glucose dropping about one week out of the month. Good ol’ hormone fluctuations! Do you have hormone fluctuations after menopause? Is that what’s causing it?

Is it because I got a new pump? (It’s still awesome, by the way.) I need to (finally) come up with a set of basal rates for my high periods and another set for my low excursions. I love that today’s pumps let you do that.

I do need to send a couple of week’s worth of my numbers to my endocrinologist. He requested that…oh, three weeks or so ago. I’m not really good at writing all of that stuff down and had lost the transmitter to my continuous glucose monitor (CGM). However, I got my new monitor last Friday and fired it up on Sunday, so I can do a printout for him in a couple of weeks.

The new CGM is much better than my last one. Same manufacturer; next generation model. Mine is pink. I tried to take a picture of mine for you — lousy numbers and all — but it didn’t want its picture taken. Either there was a big glare on the screen or the screen would go blank just as the camera went off. Shy little thing. But you can see it here: www.dexcom.com.

It can be a colorful little thing, with graphs that turn red under 80 (which is where I have my “low” number set) and yellow over 180 (my “high” setting). I try to keep the graph a dull black.

Being able to see what your glucose is as often as every five minutes helps keep me on my toes when it comes to trying to control my Type 2 diabetes. (Frankly, you can never really control it. Diabetes sometimes has its own agenda. All we can do is the best we can.)

I need to send a note to my endocrinologist and ask if he has any ideas why I go from high to low and back again. And again. And again. Although, as I recall, he’s scratched his head over it, too.

Does anybody else out there experience this? Do you have any theories? Or even answers?

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  • Brad

    I also have this problem. I am Type 1.
    I can eat the same thing every day and one day my glucose will be around 110 the next it will be 250 or higher. I or my Dr. have figured it out. It is very frustrating. I take shots and at this time I cannot afford a pump. Which we think would be a great help with this problem.

  • Margaret Delmar

    Hi yes i recently lost 40 pounds and my numbers are in the 200 im so frustrated myself my doctor may have to put me on insulin im thinking stress in my case is the culprit and i do agree hormones too. I hope you feel better dear

  • Carol A

    My blood pressure can go up 20 points within two minutes just by reading the bad news on the web news sites. So I strongly suspect that my BG does the same and that stress accounts for the changes that can’t be accounted for by food intake. I have yet to test that theory by actually taking blood tests both before and after some stressful incident, though. Someday I will.

  • Jon Hart

    Great reading and you’re not alone in your quest for peace of mind. I too was searching for articles on the effects of anesthesia on BGLs, stumbled on this site. I’ve been elevated post some eye surgeries (a grim tale in itself). I had one two days ago and have been doing better than prior surgery’s. Up until today then it kind of jumped up in the 240 range. The anesthesiologist told me it would probably be elevated after my last surgery and it was. This time I had delayed reaction, over a day? But he told me not to chase it with insulin, but it’s stressful to me all the same.
    I’ll bet your pump is cool. I can’t afford the high tech devices but dated a woman yrs. ago before I was diagnosed who had a Medtronics pump so I understand the technology. I think I would really like the trending ability of the continuous reading BGL metering. It would seem that just knowing whether your level is raising or falling would help anticipating future short term actions.
    Like you just when I think I’m doing everything right with diet exercise and dosing, like it’s an exact science (A1C- 6.2) this hideous disease proves to me it’s a mysterious art form and bucks me on that pesky roller coaster ride. It leaves me thinking darn, is this meter broken or something? Not!

  • Virginia Balascio

    I just started reading this blog. Very helpful and makes me feel better since I too am up and down, one day to the next. No real rhyme or reason for it. I use a Flexpen and my Dr thinks I need to take a pill at lunch. Not sure what to do.