Disclaimer: This post might skeeve you out. If you’re one of those people, than you should probably be the first to read it because it’s 2016 and we’re a progressive society and talking about the one thing that privately unites almost every woman around the world every 20-some odd days is supes, supes importante. It’s not a faux paux. It’s not “disgusting”. It’s science.
I am not a medical professional. But I am an expert in lady problems, that’s for damn sure. And on this month’s edition of, “Here, I got you a present! It’s made of blood and pain and suffering! Hope you like it!”, I made a huge discovery: my period dramatically effects my blood sugars. I got my period how many years ago? And diabetes how many years ago? I just made this connection. Unlike some of the more obvious trends (ie. adrenaline spikes), this is one of those patterns that might not be immediately obvious to every gal out there. It could possibly have something to do with the fact that, well, when your insides feel like they’re on fire and exploding and punching you simultaneously all while you’re trying not to ruin your underwear, you’re a little preoccupied.
But ladies, let me tell you. Hormones are the cheekiest little bastards when it comes to blood sugars. Yes, men have hormones too, blah blah blah, but this specific experience is totally unique to not just women as a sex, but every woman individually. For some, their time of the month drives their sugars sky high in a frustrating way, only adding to their fatigue, nausea, and (totally excusable) bitchiness. For many of us, we only need 70-80% of the insulin we typically inject to stay in a safe range. There’s nothing more nerve-wracking than waking up 60, looking at my Dex, and realizing that I’ve been hovering there for hours. Luckily, I woke up to this trend this month, so last night I took a stab at adjusting my basal rates*. For my trial run, I set a 7-hour temp basal just get through the night worry-free. It ended up working like a charm, and it got me thinking: this is something we all need to talk about more openly with each other.
I know that chatting about period stuff outside of your safe circle of besties and confidants can be uncomfortable. But it’s definitely something worth bringing up with your doctor if you think your Auntie Flow is impacting your blood sugar.
Stress, anxiety, nervousness, lack of sleep, and allllll the other hormonal fluctuations can have a big impact on our insulin resistance at any given time. Be aware of change. Don’t get down on yourself. Don’t fight your body on its natural ebbs and flows. And if it’s bothering you, and taking away from your day to day, speak up!
*IMPORTANT: do NOT adjust your basal rates without consulting your doctor first, or learning how to do it with their supervision. ‘Tis not something to mess with if you’ve never done it before. I’ve had 6 years of practice and know my insulin resistance very well.