Diabetes Pharmacist

Diabetes Pharmacist

information & education about diabetes & related subjects

Understanding Your Role as a Diabetes Caregiver

Posted in Diabetes, Diabetes Advice, Diabetes Conditions, Diabetes Recipes, Diabetes testing supplies, Diet and Diabetes, Exercise and Diabetes, Insulin Pumps, Tips for People with Diabetes

Quick tips for those getting started as a diabetes caregiver and understanding how to support a loved one with a recent diabetes diagnosis

caregiver

A diabetes diagnosis can be mind-boggling for both patient and caregiver. When you work together, the transition to a healthier lifestyle does not have to be overwhelming. The tips below can help you start the journey.

Educate Yourself

Before you can adequately help your loved one embark on this journey, you must understand the challenges of diabetes. Learn as much as you can by visiting sites such as the American Diabetes Association. You will also find blogs like those on Mayo Clinic’s site or Focus Express Mail Pharmacy are not only informative, but offer tremendous support in your time of transition. There are even blogs offering information on insulin pumps, A1C, nutrition, and more.

Communicate

As you and your loved one move forward it is important that you talk about how you both feel.  Provide positive encouragement along the way but voice your concerns as well. It is important that your friend or family member understands that their diabetes affects you, too. But it is equally important to learn to encourage the right way; without nagging. Doing so may cause them to be defensive and damage your relationship.

Form a Partnership

Doing things together makes everything easier. This is a terrific time to start exercising jointly. Consider joining a gym together or finding ways the whole family can exercise at the same time. For instance, have a family bike ride or take a walk after dinner.

Find healthy recipes the family will enjoy and introduce good nutrition for everyone. If you don’t live together, start a healthy recipe exchange and consider having dinner together once a week. You may find that both of your families start eating better.

You can also go to your loved one’s medical appointments. Two heads are better than one when it comes to listening to and remembering medical advice and asking questions.

These lifestyle changes will be healthy for all. The experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy are available to answer any additional questions that may arise. Simply call 1-866-403-6287, toll-free.

 

 

 

 

Transitioning Your Child to an Insulin Pump

Posted in Children with Diabetes, Diabetes Advice, Diabetes testing supplies, Insulin Pumps, New Devices for Diabetes, Tips for People with Diabetes

Transitioning your child to an insulin pump can be an overwhelming experience, but very beneficial in the long run given the flexibility a pump offers

child

Transitioning your child to an insulin pump can be overwhelming, but the long-term benefits are tremendous and there are many resources available to help both you and your child navigate the change. Here are some tips to help you through the transition.

  • Communicate. The most important thing you need to remember during this change is to communicate clearly to your child that the transition to an insulin pump is a good thing! The pump will allow your child more flexibility with meals, snacks, exercise, sleeping and more. Your picky eater can skip a meal or even have a snack as the pump allows for better control of blood glucose levels. You and your child can also choose together when to eat, when to exercise and when to sleep.
  • Convenience and Comfort. With a pump, your child can leave the embarrassing days of syringe handling behind. With a pump, insulin intake is easy and discreet. It can be done anywhere, at any time, since the process is very simple. After your child checks his or her blood sugar, he or she presses a few buttons and insulin is automatically delivered to the body. This can be particularly useful if your child has eaten more than originally planned since extra insulin can be taken with just the press of a button. Also, with a pump, there is less pain involved as daily individual injections are eliminated.
  • Improvement. A very important observation to make regarding this transition is that insulin pump therapy often results in a significant improvement in blood sugar levels, which can be sustained over many years.
  • Patience. It is important to realize that helping your child make this transition will take time as your child adjusts to the new system. While the transition will take time, the benefits and peace of mind will be worth the effort.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the insulin pump or helping your child make the transition from injections to an insulin pump, the experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy are available to help.

Call today toll-free  1-866-403-6287 or visit at www.FocusPharmacy.com

 

 

Trim the Fat, not the Flavor: Tips for Healthy Cooking

Posted in Diabetes, Diabetes Advice, Diabetes Recipes, Diabetes testing supplies, Insulin Pumps, Tips for People with Diabetes

Tips for those with diabetes to eat healthy and reduce dietary fat without sacrificing flavor including quick and easy to follow daily low-fat substitutes.

turkey

Hearing from your doctor that you need to change to a healthier diet as part of your diabetes treatment plan may cause some to have thoughts of eating cardboard, kale chips, with boiled chicken thrown in for protein. But times have changed and a healthy diet is now one bursting with flavor. Follow some of the tips below and you will likely find that you are enjoying succulent meals that tickle your tummy as much as they delight your doctor.

  1. Go lighter by switching from ground beef to turkey or meatless crumbles. Turkey is lower in fat  without sacrificing flavor. You can season it the same way as beef and enjoy it just as much. Meatless crumbles are a vegetarian option which is equally low in fat, no cholesterol, yet full of flavor.
  1. If an apple a day keeps the doctor away then substituting applesauce for cooking oil will likely work just as well. When used in baked goods, you will never notice the replacement.
  1. Here is a great trick for replacing whole milk: Combine one tablespoon of vegetable oil (in liquid form) with one cup of fat-free or low-fat milk. Low-fat milk is lower in both trans-fat and saturated fat, and cholesterol than whole milk. By using this crafty combination, you will hardly notice the difference and save many empty calories.

Reduce even more fat with these additional savvy dairy tips:

  1. Butter tastes great but can clog your arteries. Pass it up for margarine which has no trans-fat and is low in saturated fats.
  2. You can also trim fat by using 1 cup of evaporated skim milk, 1/2 cup of low-fat yogurt, or unsalted cottage cheese versus heavy cream.
  3. Substitute 2 egg whites or 1/4 cup cholesterol-free egg substitute for one egg.

Trimming the fat does not mean you have to skimp on flavor.  As you embark on your new dietary lifestyle many questions may arise. Partner with your physician as your primary resource, but also know that the experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy are available to answer your questions regarding diabetes, insulin pump supplies, and diabetes testing supplies. Call them today, toll-free,  at 1-866-403-6287 and get ready for a healthier you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Diabetes and Retinopathy: What You Need to Know

Posted in Diabetes Advice, Diabetes Conditions, Diabetes Research, Diabetes testing supplies, Insulin Pumps, Tips for People with Diabetes

Retinopathy is the most common eye disease those with diabetes suffer from. Prevention lies in lowering the risk factors by managing your diabetes and your overall health.

 If you or a loved one have diabetes, you’re likely aware that it can affect a number of different areas of the body. One such area? The eyes. There are a few different eye diseases that those with diabetes can suffer from, including retinopathy. Read on to learn more about this potentially serious condition, including whether you’re at risk for it.

What is Retinopathy?

 You might be wondering what exactly is retinopathy? It’s actually the most common eye disease those with diabetes suffer from. It also happens to be the leading cause of adult blindness in America. It occurs when blood vessels in the retina change in some way. Sometimes, the vessels swell and allow fluids to leak in. Other times new, but abnormal, vessels grow on the retina’s surface. A healthy retina is crucial for good vision since it converts light to signals it sends to the brain via the optic nerve.

What are the Symptoms of Retinopathy?

It’s possible to have retinopathy and not even realize it since, at first, changes to your vision may be subtle and not painful. Over time, however, the condition often worsens and can even cause vision loss. The disease typically affects both eyes. When a portion of the retina – the macula – swells due to leaking fluid, macular edema occurs and can cause blurred vision. When new blood vessels grow on the retina’s surface, they may bleed into the eye and block vision. Since there are little or no symptoms of retinopathy early on, a comprehensive dilated eye exam is recommended at least annually.

How is Retinopathy Treated in those with Diabetes?

The National Eye Institute is continually researching retinopathy to better detect and treat the condition. Currently, no treatment is needed in the first stages of the disease, unless macular edema is present. In its most advanced stage, called proliferative retinopathy, the disease is treated with laser surgery. The technique involves using scatter laser treatments to help shrink any abnormal blood vessels. The physician burns the affected areas with thousands of tiny laser burns performed during two or more sessions. Although it can cause side vision loss and reduce color and night vision, it can preserve the rest of your sight.

What are the Risk Factors for Retinopathy?

While anyone with diabetes is at risk for retinopathy, certain factors increase that risk, including:

  • The duration of your diabetes
  • Poor control of blood sugar levels
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Pregnancy
  • Tobacco use

Prevention of retinopathy, then, lies in lowering these risk factors by managing your diabetes, your overall health, and keeping your blood sugar level in a healthy range. If you ever have questions about this, and other eye diseases, talk to your health-care professional.

The experienced staff at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy is also available to help you better manage your diabetes and answer your questions about diabetes supplies and insulin pumps. Take advantage of their expertise by calling, toll-free,  1-866-403-6287 or by visiting www.FocusPharmacy.com.

 

 

Your Insulin Pump Breaks: Now What?

Posted in Insulin Pumps, New Devices for Diabetes, Tips for People with Diabetes

insulin pump minimed threshold suspend

 

Your insulin pump is a great tool to more effectively manage and regulate your diabetes. However, just like any other technological device, your pump can malfunction. The first thing to remember if this happens is to not panic!

If your insulin pump malfunctions, perhaps the alarms are malfunctioning or the buttons aren’t working properly, or if it breaks completely, you should contact your pump help line. If your pump maker’s help line is unable to help you troubleshoot your device and it looks like it is unrepairable, the manufacturer should be able to send you a replacement pump within 24 hours. In the meantime, you should always have a current prescription or a bottle of long-acting insulin handy that can be used in the interim while you wait for your new pump. However, before using your back up insulin, it’s important to check its expiration date. Yes, insulin does expire!

Once you have received your new pump and are ready to resume using it, remember, that long-acting insulin can stay in your body for several hours so it’s important to let it wear off before resuming normal pump delivery. If you have any questions or concerns about the proper wait time or what your routine should be while off the pump, contact your healthcare provider for instructions.

As soon as your new pump arrives, you must calibrate its settings with your appropriate rates and ratios. Make sure you write the proper settings down and keep them in a safe place before your current pump malfunctions so they’ll be handy in case of an emergency.

If you have any questions about your insulin pump or diabetes supplies, the experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy are there to help. Focus Express Mail Pharmacy has been helping people manage their diabetes for many years and their pharmacists and insulin pump associates are available at 1-866-403-6287 or online at www.FocusPharmacy.com.

 

 

Don’t Let Winter Prevent you from Working Out

Posted in Diabetes, Diabetes Advice, Exercise and Diabetes, Tips for People with Diabetes

Learn how you can help manage your diabetes by staying physically fit even during those long, cold winter months!

winter 2

In many parts of the country, wintertime means snowy sidewalks, icy streets, and freezing temps. Whether you experience it, or can imagine it, winter weather can make getting your workout in a little more difficult than usual. Nonetheless, exercise is important year round, even if you don’t have a diabetes diagnosis. So don’t be discouraged, and don’t let the sometimes-bleak winter season keep you from getting fit. Check out these four great ways to get your blood pumping this winter.

Walk Your Way to Health

What’s one exercise that can burn up to 200 calories in just thirty minutes? If you guessed walking, you’re right! Walk at a relaxed pace for thirty minutes and you’ll burn around 100 calories, while a thirty minute brisk walk can burn double that amount. This low-impact workout appeals to many because it essentially can be done anywhere and it’s an excellent way to control one’s weight. That means it can also help in managing your diabetes and preventing complications associated with the disease. When walking outside in the winter, just be sure to dress warmly and wear proper footwear when it’s icy!

Dance it out with Zumba

A very trendy workout option is Zumba, a popular exercise for anyone who loves dancing (and burning calories at the same time). Best described as social exercise, Zumba classes are ideal for those wanting to spend time with others while getting in shape. These classes are held indoors, so there’s no problem if it’s cold outside, and because they are popular, there’s a good chance you can find one or more classes near you. So lace up your ‘dancing’ shoes and give this somewhat new form of exercise a try. You’ll likely have so much fun practicing your moves, you will forget you’re also doing your body a favor!

Swim to Reduce Stress

Head to the nearest pool of water and you’ll instantly find yourself in the perfect place to get fit. Swimming happens to be the fourth most popular exercise in the U.S. and serves as an excellent aerobic workout for your whole body. It reduces your stress levels, gives your joints a break from the pounding of other exercise, and is actually fun too. If you’re not a fan of swimming laps, try a water aerobics class and still enjoy the benefits of water based exercise. Another bonus? Indoor pools at many gyms are heated so you’ll also take the chill off while working out!

Go Find Hidden Treasure

So you say you have a hankering for the outdoors? This last exercise option might just be your pick then. Geocaching is a treasure hunt of sorts that involves a little technology since you’ll need access to Wi-Fi and GPS. Your smart phone’s GPS should easily suffice. Just take your family (or take a solo trip!) and go find the treasures hidden in your area as shown on the official Geocaching website. You’ll all learn a little more about problem-solving and teamwork while enjoying the benefits of being active and being outdoors. You really can’t go wrong with this year-round activity, so bundle up and give it a try.

Just Stay Active!

Diabetes is something you manage year-round and staying fit should be as well. Thankfully, winter doesn’t need to threaten your workouts. Just choose one of the activities above to stay active and, in turn, help manage your diabetes. Make your pursuit of fitness a goal this year and before too long, you may discover you actually enjoy it.

At Focus Express Mail Pharmacy, we’re here to answer all your questions about diabetes as well as insulin pumps and other diabetes supplies. We have experienced pharmacists ready to help you manage your diabetes as we’ve helped others just like you over the years. Simply visit us at  www.FocusPharmacy.com or call, toll-free,  1-866-403-6287 today!

 

How to Recognize Type 1 Diabetes in Your Child

Posted in Children with Diabetes, Diabetes, Diabetes Conditions

If you are concerned that your child might have Type 1 diabetes, use these warning signs to help you recognize a potential diagnosis.

 

 children with diabetes 3

 Diabetes in children is unfortunately all too common. The condition occurs when a child’s pancreas no longer produces the insulin and , in order to survive, insulin must come from an alternative source. It can sometimes be difficult to recognize diabetes in your child, given most kids who have diabetes do not have another family member with it. If you are concerned your child might have diabetes or if you’re a cautious parent, use these warning signs to help you recognize a potential Type 1 diabetes diagnosis in your child.

Weight loss. This might seem contradictory to your pre-conceived ideas around diabetes, but in children, rapid weight loss can be the first sign of Type 1 diabetes, despite eating more than usual to relieve hunger.

Constantly thirsty. This condition happens because a child with undiagnosed Type 1 diabetes is constantly having fluid pulled from their body tissues as their blood-glucose levels rise. The result is extreme thirst. Another indicator is that your child may especially crave sweet, cold drinks.

Frequent bathroom trips. If you’re noticing your child take more bathroom trips than normal, this can also be a telling sign of Type 1 diabetes. Urination is more frequent when there is too much glucose in the blood.

Fatigue. Becoming easily tired can occur quickly if your child’s cells are deprived of sugar. This is another warning sign.

Irritability or unusual behavior. Children with Type 1 diabetes can become moody or irritable quickly as a result of unbalanced and/or low glucose levels in their system.

If you recognize any or all of these signs in your child, you should consult your healthcare provider immediately.

If your child is diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, the experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy are available to help. We are available 24/7 to answer your questions. Specifically, our expertise is in diabetes and  the medications and supplies needed by a person with diabetes. Contact us today at 1-866-403-6287 or visit us at www.FocusPharmacy.com

 

 

 

 

Fix it and Forget it Diabetes-Friendly Recipes

Posted in Diabetes, Diabetes Advice, Diabetes Recipes, Diet and Diabetes, Tips for People with Diabetes

There’s nothing better than coming home to the smell of a home-cooked meal! One great way to do that is to use a crock pot to slow cook all day while you go about work or play. Here are some diabetes-friendly crock pot recipes so you can enjoy the delicious taste of a home-cooked meal while helping you to manage your diabetes by eating healthy.

beef brisket in ale

Beef Brisket in Ale

This simple recipe is perfect for game day sandwiches. Combining delicious brisket with beer, this meal serves 10, making it great for a party. This recipe is tasty with or without a sandwich roll.

Crock Pot Chicken Cacciatore

This recipe for a classic comfort food is simple and easy with only seven ingredients. With only 170 calories plus 16 grams of protein per serving, this light meal is sure to keep you full. Pair with a side of whole wheat pasta to complete a diabetes-healthy meal.

Winter Minestrone

Chock full of winter vegetables, this soup makes for a low-calorie, healthy meal and is perfect at the end of a cold, winter day. Enjoy the tastes of the season with butternut squash, potatoes, fennel bulbs, garlic and kale or spinach in this savory soup.

Spinach, Chicken, and Wild Rice Soup

This flavorful, creamy soup only has 216 calories per serving and serves six. Change it up by swapping out the chicken with leftover turkey.  Fresh spinach adds a great source of magnesium, which aids in a healthy immune system, to this meal.

Sesame-Ginger Turkey Wraps

This is a diabetes-friendly take on an Asian favorite. Packed with flavor, this recipe makes 12 servings, enough to feed a crowd or save for a future meal. Don’t have turkey on hand? Make an easy swap with chicken instead.

 

Do you have questions about diabetes? We can help! With more than 50 combined years of experience with insulin pumps and over 100 combined years of experience with diabetes supplies and prescription medications, Focus Express Mail Pharmacy experts are available to help you with your diabetes management. Give us a call or visit us today at 1-866-403-6287 or www.FocusPharmacy.com

 

Avoiding Type 2 Diabetes as an Older Adult

Posted in Diabetes, Diabetes Advice, Diabetes Conditions, Diabetes testing supplies, Diet and Diabetes, Exercise and Diabetes, Tips for People with Diabetes, Type 2 diabetes

The chance of a type 2 diabetes diagnosis increases with age, but it’s never too late to make lifestyle changes to improve your overall health and beat the odds.

The older you get your chance of being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes increases. Approximately 25 percent of adults over the age of 60 have Type 2 diabetes; however, it’s never too late to make critical lifestyle changes to minimize the likelihood of a diabetes diagnosis. It’s a new year and the perfect time to adjust your everyday habits that could have a big impact on your total health.

 One of the most important things you can do to manage your health is maintain a healthy  weight. Being overweight substantially increases your chance of developing Type 2 diabetes along with several other health problems including cardiovascular disease and stroke.

To help you lose weight and continue to maintain a healthy weight, consider these tips:

  • Maintain a healthy balance between caloric intake and physical activity. Burn more calories than you eat!
  • Eat breakfast every day. Forcing yourself to eat breakfast helps you avoid over eating throughout the day and balances out your total daily caloric intake.
  • Keep a record of what you eat along with your physical activity. This helps you better understand how your food intake and exercise affect you, while helping you to work towards a healthier balance.
  • Choose healthy foods in your diet including whole grains, cereals, fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as lean cuts of meat.
  • Avoid breads, grains and heavy starches.
  • Get active! Physical activity enhances your overall health by reducing your stress, lowering your blood pressure and your blood glucose. This can significantly lower your chance of getting Type 2 diabetes. Working out doesn’t have to be boring! Try swimming, dancing or hiking.

Remember, it is never too late to make important lifestyle changes that can enhance your overall health and lower your chance of a type 2 diabetes diagnosis. You can do this! If you already have diabetes, the experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy are here to help. We are available to answer all of your questions about diabetes and diabetes supplies including insulin pumps.

Call us today at 1-866-403-6287 or visit us at www.FocusPharmacy.com..

 

 

Important Insulin Pump Information for First Time Users

Posted in Diabetes, Exercise and Diabetes, Humor in Diabetes, Obesity and Diabetes, Tips for People with Diabetes, Uncategorized

Your insulin pump is a powerful tool to help you more easily manage your diabetes. It delivers a small, continuous stream of insulin to your body day and night and is programmed to match your body’s needs.

insulin pump ring

 

Now that you’ve decided to start using an insulin pump, you should take a look at this list of things that you need to be doing.

1.Find the right insulin pump for you- There are different insulin pumps for different lifestyles. You need to make sure you do your research so you find the right insulin pump for you.

Things to consider when looking for an insulin pumps:

  1.  Ease of use: Is the screen easily visible? Are the buttons easy to find and press?
  2. Capacity: How much insulin does the pump hold? Is it enough for you?
  3. Appearance: Is the pump the right size and weight for you?
  4. Features: Are there special features – like temporary basal settings – that you are looking for?
  5. Customer service: What kind of support does the company offer? Is it available 24 hours a day?

There’s a lot to consider, so be sure to find answers to all of these questions.

 2.Determine the placement of your pump

You’ll want to figure out where you want to wear your pump. Although it is often worn around the hip area, you have options and should change your site every two to three days. Some good locations on your body to put your pump include your lower abdomen, lower back, back of your legs, and your hip area.

3.Take precaution when exercising

You will have to work harder to stay within your target range for blood glucose while exercising. Make sure you understand how the type of exercise you take part in can affect your blood glucose. Exercise that requires bursts of energy may actually increase your blood glucose levels while endurance exercise may lower it. Make sure you understand how your workout will change your blood glucose level.

Also, do your research so you can understand how your pump can help you manage your blood glucose while exercising. Some pumps, for instance, can deliver an extra bolus of insulin. Know your pump and how it can work best for you and your lifestyle.

4.Check your pump regularly

Make sure you check your insulin pump to confirm it is working correctly.  Start by checking your infusion site for irritation. Changing your injection site every two to three days will help prevent irritation

You should also monitor your insulin pump to ensure that the basal program is running, that there is no error message, and that you are receiving the correct doses.

 5.Stay calm if your pump malfunctions

Prepare for potential pump malfunctions by keeping a troubleshooting guide on hand at all times to reference. Print out a copy of it to keep in your car or luggage and think about saving it electronically on your phone and laptop. If you suspect a mechanism malfunction, contact your pump company immediately.

Still have questions? We are here to help. The experts at Focus Express Mail Pharmacy  have been helping people manage their diabetes for many years and are available to answer questions about diabetes, insulin pumps, and supplies. Simply call our friendly customer service reps toll-free at 1-866-403-6287 Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm eastern time. You will always get to talk to a real person.