What Do You Wish They Knew?

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I got some good news last week. I’ve been invited to speak to health professionals in Louisiana and to people with diabetes in Alaska. And they’re paying me! Now I have to figure out what to tell them, so I’m asking for your advice.

Many professionals only know what they are taught in school. They really don’t know what it’s like for a person with diabetes or other illness to manage and cope. I’m really excited about the opportunity to educate them and hope to do more of it. I want to make a good impression.

In your opinion, what are the most important things for nurses, diabetes educators, and doctors to know? What are professionals doing that works for you? What doesn’t work? Do they help you self-manage, or do they stress you out and make you feel like a failure? I’d like to give them a couple of tips from our community.

I’ll be talking with people with diabetes in Alaska. If you had one piece of advice to give folks who share your condition, what would it be? What’s your second choice?

I’m also doing a workshop for couples on managing diabetes as a team. I’ve written about that here, but I’ll only have an hour. What are the key points? Do you have any tips for couples?

In this blog, I’ve written about hot topics I’d like to discuss with the professionals and the people with diabetes. These include dietary issues, such as the carb controversy, Mediterranean diet, and intuitive eating. Also, general health concerns such as early use of insulin, how tight control should be, and how important weight is. I’d additionally like to talk about my favorite topics of stress, inflammation, and of course, sex. Finally, I’d like to stress the importance of sleep apnea, and talk about “polypharmacy,” or putting people on too many drugs.

How does that sound? Is it too much? What am I missing? Should I perhaps have more about complications?

Taking Care While Traveling
I’m really excited about these opportunities, but I don’t want to make myself sick. These are two long trips and two long days of presenting on back-to-back weekends. How well will my body hold up, and how will I manage Fairbanks in February with my disabled self?

I’ll have my wheelchair, but it will still be hard. Aisha is coming with me to Louisiana, but I’ll be on my own in Alaska. What can I do to protect myself?

The programs are February 19 in Lafayette, Louisiana, and February 27 in Fairbanks, Alaska. If you live near those sites, come see me!

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