The Rollercoaster is Out of Control
Gestational Diabetes is frustrating! You are working hard as you can to control your blood sugar and take care of that little one growing inside you. You finally feel like you have this Gestational Diabetes thing down and BAM, one high reading puts you on the rollercoaster.
You are stuck in your head… telling yourself how disappointed you are in yourself and angry you are for letting this happen. Your numbers are high and then low and it does not seem to matter what you eat, you feel out of control. You become more stressed everyday. You want to stay diet controlled but this rollercoaster ride is going to seal the deal.
I totally did this. I STRESSED and WORRIED and STRESSED and WORRIED…
And you know what? Stress signals your brain to release cortisol and epinephrine (AKA adrenaline) to boost your energy levels. How do they increase your energy levels? You guessed it… by increasing your blood sugar.
So what can you do you get off the rollercoaster? Here are four tips that helped me get off the blood sugar rollercoaster:
1) Identify Stressors and Put it on Paper: Sit in alone in a quiet space and make a list of everything that is causing you stress… both internal and external. For me, as well as many women that I have work with, the most significant sources of stress are internal and self-induced. My internal stressor list included everything from believing that I failed as a mother, to fear of a stillborn baby, to a belief that if I had one high blood glucose reading , I was a complete and utter failure—The process of writing them ALL down allows you to acknowledge and articulate your stressors, fears and uncertainties.
2) Eliminate, Reframe, and Manage Identify stressors on your list that could be eliminated, avoided, or reduced. Decide what you have control over. Identify those that are internal and could be less stressful by reframing your perspective of the situation. Come up with a plan to manage what is remaining.
3) Log Stress Levels: Stress is sometimes so difficult to identify. Make a habit of writing your stress level (1 to 10) in your blood glucose log when you have a high blood sugar reading. Also, note what is causing you the stress. Remember stress can be worrying, lack of sleep, illness, project at work, a fight and so many other reasons. Over time you will figure out what stressors make your blood sugar rise and be able to manage them.
4) Chill: When you are stressed, have erratic blood sugars, or feel like you are “in your head,” find something that releases your stress and allows you to sort your thoughts. I find taking walks, prayer, venting to my sister, and crying are my most effective means.
What are the stressors in your life right now?
What do you do to relieve stress?
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