Let’s face it – whether you’re newly diagnosed or have had it for years, diabetes is a complex and sometimes overwhelming disease. But you don’t have to navigate it on your own, Brook is here to demystify diabetes and support you on your health journey with our 4-week kickstart challenge:
Welcome to Week 1, where we’ll get back to the basics about diabetes and start finding out what works best for you and your day-to-day life.
Understanding your blood sugar levels is key to keeping those numbers in your target range. So, a foundation of blood sugar management is logging blood sugar in the Brook app.
To log your blood sugar, you’ll do that from the main Brook channel. You should see an orange + in the lower right. Tap that and you can select blood sugar to log. If you don’t see the orange +, tap “Care Circle” in the top left, and then “Brook” to reach the main Brook channel. If you sync your blood sugar meter directly to Brook, it will automatically log readings for you.
There’s a lot of myths floating around about diabetes. Let’s debunk a few.
Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects more than 34 million Americans. It’s estimated that 88 million more people have prediabetes, many without even knowing it. There are multiple types of diabetes, but we’ll be covering the most common one, type 2.
Want a little more background about how diabetes develops? Check out this video:
The short answer is: we don’t really know for sure. Research has shown that multiple factors seem to contribute to insulin resistance occurring. These factors can include:
Over the next few weeks we will be going through the actions you can take to become more sensitive to insulin and bring your blood sugar into a safe range.
One of the first steps for diabetes management is monitoring your blood sugar regularly. This typically includes lab tests at healthcare appointments that measure both a fasting blood sugar and Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c or HgA1c). The A1c test measures the percent of hemoglobin (part of the red blood cell) that has sugar attached. Red blood cells have a life cycle of around 3 months, so a higher A1c means that blood sugar has been higher during that time. We can lower our A1c with consistently keeping blood sugar in a healthier range. Generally that range is 70 – 180 mg/dL or 3.9 – 10 mmol/L but you and your healthcare provider might customize it.
If directed by a healthcare provider, you may also need to use a home glucose meter to see what your blood sugar is like at various points throughout the day. This may include one reading (usually before breakfast) or multiple readings (typically before and after meals).
If you’re also managing your blood sugar using medication, taking prescribed medications consistently is an important part of your care plan. On Brook, you can set up your medication schedule by entering when you take certain medications by time of day and days of the week. Brook will save that information for easy logging. You can even set up reminders so you can easily remember which medications to take and at what times. We can even remind you when to test your blood sugar.
Want to show your doctor your progress? You can get a printable report from Brook on how you’ve been doing for the last 30, 60, or 90 days. The report includes things like blood sugar readings, activity, sleep, and more. To get your Doctor’s Report, open the Brook app and tap “Care Circle” in the upper left, then tap “Create Report.” Choose the time frame and enter the emails you want to receive the PDF report. To generate a doctor’s report you’ll need to make sure that you have the diabetes care plan marked in your profile.
on September 23rd, 2020. Heather is a Certified Diabetes Educator, has been a Registered Dietitian for over 12 years, and is Brook's Health Director.