Wednesday, February 20, 2013

(almost) Wordless Wednesday

I take an art class every wednesday evening.  I am learning to paint using watercolour.  I enjoy it very much.  It is alot of fun.  Myself and 3 good friends are taking this together.  It is a relaxing evening in the middle of a usually jam-packed week. 

I've taken up another hobby.  Knitting.  Yup knitting.  Just scarves, but my
husband still makes fun of me.  He calls me "granny".  I told him young(at heart) people knit too!! 

I also find knitting to be relaxing and I can do it whenever and wherever I have a few minutes of free time!!! 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Flu Revisited

Today I will revisit a topic that I have talked about before.  The Flu. 

While my family and I have not had the "flu", we have been passing a wicked cold back and forth.  Since before Christmas.  Not so fun.

There have been quite a few people I know and some I work with that have had the flu.  And from what I hear, it has not been pleasant.
Recently I received an email regarding that post.  Allison Morris told me about a graphic that she helped to create which takes a detailed look at the flu and the things we can do to stay flu free!  

The original post and graphic appear at  The website is full of interesting information on a variety of topics relating to education


The Flu and You

Posted on February 04, 2013
Nothing puts you behind the schedule of your daily life quite like getting sick—missing out on even a day or two of school or work can set you behind much more than you'd think. And when it comes to getting sick, few things can get you down as hard as the flu. The flu comes in a few different shapes and sizes, and none of them are your friend. It's no surprise then that the words "flu season" strike fear into the hearts of many, especially those who are more susceptible to it. Some years aren't as bad, but the winter of 2013 has been hit particularly hard by a strain of the nasty bug, and who could forget the swine flu epidemic from a few years back? For college students living in close quarters, colleagues sharing cubicle space, or even larger families all in the same house, transferring germs back and forth can be unavoidable, and quickly lead to the spread of the flu virus. The following infographic takes a look at just how many people get the flu, as well as how it affects us from year to year. Between medical expenses and the expense of lost time, the flu can have a serious impact on every aspect of your life.
Flu Infographic

Saturday, February 02, 2013

a carb is a carb. or is it??

Pasta.  Who doesn't love pasta.  If I ask my son in law what he would like
me to make him for dinner, he'll say "lasagna".   Ask my oldest daughter and her answer will be "chicken parmesan with penne".  Aubrey, my 3 year old granddaughter "loves spaghetti". 

I love pasta.  I enjoy a plate of spaghetti and meatballs with a lovely sauce. I also love lasagna with a nice ceasar salad.  However, pasta does not always love me.  My blood sugars sometimes tend to soar a couple hours after eating pasta.  I don't usually have any bread, be it garlic bread or rolls, with my meals.  Not a big bread eater.  So the only thing causing this rise is the pasta.

I've noticed advertising on some of the blogs I read  for a "low carb pasta".
A while ago I tried to see if I could find a store that sold it in Canada.  At that time, I wasn't able to find it anywhere in Canada.  

Well for some reason, this "low carb dilema" came back to me the other day.  I was actually looking for a sugar-free pop that we sell at work, called Zevia.  We only sell it in single cans so I was looking for a place that sold it by the case.  I came across an online store here in Ontario   You can purchase online and they will deliver or you can go into their store.  The store is a little less than 2hrs from my home.  My husband, the truck driver, goes to Markham a couple times a week so I was contemplating having him drop in and pick up some for me.  It is made with Stevia, is all natural and comes in lots of flavours.  

While perusing their product list, I came across the very pasta that I had previously looked for!  Dreamfields Pasta.  Claiming to have only "5grams of net carbs".  Hmmmm.  Net carbs.  What exactly are net carbs?? I looked at the nutrition label on the package.  I must say I was a little confused.  If you look to the right of the Nutrition Facts there is something called "Carbohydrate facts".  When looking between the two, I see the Total Carbs and the Fiber, but I don't see anything called "Protected Carbs".  What exactly are they and where do I find them on the label.  

Turns out that "protected carbs" are, according to Dreamfields,
"Carbohydrates that normally would be digested but are not digested due to a physical limitation. The added fiber and protein blend in Dreamfields creates a protective barrier to reduce the starch digestion in the small intestine. When the unabsorbed or protected starch reaches the colon and is fermented it provides many of the same benefits as fiber."

According to the Carbohydrate Facts on their boxes of pasta, they have found 31grams of these "protected carbs".  This is done, apparently through their "patented formula and unique manufacturing process"  which  "protects all but 5 grams of carbohydrates from being digested."

So, if my glucose usually goes up after eating regular pasta and bolusing according to the number of carbs per serving (which by the way is approx 63gr per serving),  did that mean that I would only bolus for 5gr of carbs per serving?  Didn't seem possible.  More research.  

I googled "bolusing for Dreamfield pasta" and found numerous results.  One from a forum topic at TuDiabetes.  Another here  from a pump forum.  Most people had various results.  Some bolused for the full amount of carbs on the box, and some for just the 5gr of carbs.  Some went high and some went low.  Some mentioned that they stayed "in range" for the first couple hours and then spiked at hour 4-5.  

I even found a blog where there was some "scientific" research done showing that Dreamfields pasta and regular pasta did not differ much when it came to blood sugar spikes.    There is even a 3 part interview with the President of Dreamfields questioning some of the Diabetic aspect of their pasta.  None of the tests they did included Diabetics or pre-Diabetics.   Hmmm.  Isn't that who this product is marketed for? 

I may have to send my hubby to this Low Carb Grocery after all.  I'll get him to grab me some all natural 0 calorie 0 carb pop, and some Dreamfields Pasta.  I'll give it a try myself.  I'll bolus using the full carb reading on the box.  Take some BG readings and then a week later, I'll do it again only bolusing for the 5gr of "net carbs" and see what happens.  I'll keep you posted.  

Have any of you tried this brand of pasta?  Do you use it regularly?  How do you bolus for it?   I'm interested in any feedback, good or bad.