Thursday, May 3, 2012

Hi Sugar, Honey, Sweetie....

I frequently call my wife sugar, honey or sweetie. Don't all of us call our loved ones by those names? Our spouses, children, close friends, dates, etc. Even our pets may share those titles, when they behave themselves. Our youngest cat is named Sweetie!

It seems that all humans are obsessed with sweet tasting things. Foods and drinks sweetened with sugar, candy, ice cream, soda pop,....the list is endless. Since we like things that have a sweet taste, it seems natural that we would use names like sugar, honey and sweetie to describe the feelings we have for our loved ones. I used to tell my wife that if I kissed her several times in the same day I would have high blood sugar and need extra insulin.

It seems a shame that sugar is one of the things we diabetics have to avoid, or exclude from most meals and snacks. I totally avoided sugar every day for many years. The only rule my parents were given when I was diagnosed in 1945, was to not give me any sugar, or foods sweetened with sugar. I stuck with that rule for many years. I ate raw sugar when I dropped too low, but avoided candy, cookies, cake, and ice cream unless they contained artificial sweeteners. Eating things containing sugar might have become addictive and I might have cheated and eaten my way into DKA. The artificially sweetened foods and drinks tasted very good to me while I was younger because I was not familiar with the taste of foods sweetened with sugar, so I could not make a comparison. The number of carbs in the artificially sweetened foods is sometimes as great as those sweetened with sugar, but sugar causes a faster spike.

In more recent years I have found that eating things containing sugar will not hurt me under certain circumstances. I cannot have sugar at breakfast or in the evening because I am not getting enough exercise to compensate. My exercise during my gym workouts or on my long walks always occurs in the afternoons. I can have an ice cream cone (24 carbs), a Hershey bar (26 carbs), a Payday bar (25 carbs), or other treats before exercising. I have learned that 24-28 carbs is just right before exercising. It is perfect for gym workouts, but I need one unit of insulin before taking a walk. The walks are less exerting. If I exercise longer than usual I need a few jelly beans to compensate. This has worked very well for me for a few years now, but for my first 60 years I was still avoiding sugar sweetened foods.

I still avoid sugar unless I know it is not going to hurt me. If I want a candy bar, or ice cream, then I know I am going to need at least an hour of exercise. My desire for sugar is an incentive for exercising. Since exercise is very good for us, I suppose this is a good thing. Do you agree, sugar?

Do you allow sugar in your diet? If so, how do you compensate for it? If you eat sugar sweetened foods or drinks, and do not exercise, how do they affect your control?


  1. My first dog that was my very own dog was named Sugar - I didn't name her though! I don't eat it very often but I do eat it once in while - holidays and special occasions. I can't exercise like I used to, so I compensate with insulin and watch for delayed highs.

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  3. Same here Kelly, I use sugar very sparingly, and only when I need it.