Tuesday, 16 September 2014

DIABETES | How to measure BG (Blood Glucose) | mmol/l vs. mg/dl | Your normal vs Their normal


If you have been measuring your BG (Blood Glucose) at home, and checking on-line to see if your reading is low, normal, or high, but have been confused by the disparity in numbers between the two different types of measurements, then this post is for you! 

I have found some websites with the measurements 'translated' from mg/dl to mmol/l, and then mmol/l to mg/dl: CLICK HERE to see this particular comparative list, which is my personal favourite so far.

Or alternatively, click on the picture below and you will be taken to a page where you can enter the values and have them converted for you! *smiles*

It's charts and converters like these which have been lifesavers for me when trying to explain to people who go by a different measurement to mine, if my sugars are low, normal, or high. In Spain they go by mg/dl, and my BG reading device goes by mmol/l. Explaining to somebody who goes by mg/dl what my reading is in mmol/l, they think I have seriously dangerous low blood sugars, or as I like to call it, hipo-mode; when really, it could be anything from too low to too high. So this helps me explain, "I got 'X' reading which is the equivalent of 'X'.", without causing unnecessary alarm. And it's the same in reverse. If someone goes by the mmol/l reading, then my mg/dl reading will have them thinking that I have seriously dangerous high blood sugars, or as I like to call it, hyper-mode. So knowing which measurement I am using, and roughly what it's equivalent is, comes in very very handy!  And I'm hoping it will come in handy to you too.

Although, that said, listening to our bodies can be just important as taking and monitoring our BG readings on a regular basis. 

Health, is a relationship between you, and your body. If it's a good relationship, you'll be healthy. If it's a bad relationship, then you'll be unhealthy. Your body will only give you, whatever you give to it first. Treat it well, and it will treat you well. Of course, there are unhealthy things we might get no matter what we do, but I'm talking about the things that we can either choose to prevent, or choose to allow. I personally refuse to allow diabetes in.

It's been three days since I did my general mid-Sept update on here. I have since managed to lower my BG once again, back down to between 4.-something to 5.0 mmol/l which is roughly between 75-90 mg/dl, and I'm starting to feel a lot better again. I haven't been feeling sick for a whole day again, or experienced any drastic mood swings. I'm actually feeling very optimistic, despite everything. If you missed my previous post, and have no idea what I am talking about right now, then please CLICK HERE and all will be explained.

Anything above 5.0mmol/l or 90mg/dl, and I start to feel sick, my mood goes down, and all optimism and enthusiasm goes out of the window. (I guess this is my personal evidence for the relationship between sugar and emotions). They say that readings up to 110mg/dl or 6.2mmol/l, is considered to be normal. But, everybody's body (and 'normal') is different. Some people get dangerously high readings, and feel absolutely fine. Unlike me, most prediabetics don't even get any symptoms. It seems it all depends on the individual. 

I'm just figuring out what is right for me.  

This afternoon I was down to 4.3mmol/l which is about 76mg/dl, and I felt weak. I also felt hot and sweaty, so I checked my BG and like I said, I got 4.3mmol/l. I guess my body is just very picky about my glucose levels. I know how it feels to have elevated sugars, and today I learnt a bit how it feels if I go down a little too much.  It wasn't very nice, but I'm glad to have experienced it, as it's been a valuable lesson to learn. Hopefully I'll be able to identify it in future and never go too low. 

Such a huge part of our health journey is about listening to our bodies very closely, yet so few people do. After dinner, I read my BG every hour for three hours. I went from 4.3mmol/l before dinner, and then 6.7mmol/l an hour after dinner, 6.0mmol/l two hours after dinner, and then 4.9mmol/l three hours after dinner. I need to see my Dr at some point to be sure, but these highs and lows seem a bit excessive to me. I keep hearing that you should read your BG two hours after each meal, as that's when your sugars go down to whatever they are normally. Mine plummeted after three hours. Does this mean I have a slow metabolism? I have so many questions... And no, I won't measure it a fourth time. My finger tips are sore as it is! 

I am amazed at how these generalized readings dictate what is low, healthy, or high, for everyone in general, but then when you look at each person's low, healthy, or high, it's a slightly different story. Yet we are all boxed into these categories as one, with individualism being erased, and very little emphasis being placed on what is right for each person. This is then combined with a lifetime of very little being said or taught about eating healthy, yet we are expected to pull through no matter what. Most adult people rush through life, putting so many things before their health and well-being in general. I used to be one of them, and I can't believe it when I look at myself now. I used to mix healthy with unhealthy, and lie to myself that what I was doing was healthy. Now I see that mixing healthy with unhealthy, leads only to unhealthy. (Not to be confused with fat). I wish it would be compulsory for all schools everywhere to teach health and diet as an actual on-going subject from infant school, all the way up to college, and combine it with cookery classes. It's become far too normal to depend on fast food, ready-made meals and to even skip meals completely, while depending on stimulants such as coffee and cigarettes to get through the day. *tsk tsk* Coffee and cigarettes might not be my thing, now or before, but I've lost count of how many people swear by their dependence on things like that to keep them going in their day to day lives... *sad face* 

Before I end this post, I'd like to remind you that I have numerous links and videos on the right hand side of my blog. Please check those out as I'm sure you'd find them very informative! 

Until my next post, please stay healthy and happy! xox 



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