Diabetes and Vices

Last Thursday morning, I finally willed myself to set the alarm for 4am and join in the Great Britain Diabetes Online Community Twitter Chat (#gbDOC). And I gotta say I wasn’t disappointed.

The topic was diabetes and vices. When I think of a vice, I instantly think of a bad habit. Something I use as an outlet to let off steam. Something that’s hard to break away from. Something that’s not good for me. So what is my main vice? Emotionally fuelled comfort eating. On a day where my diabetes management isn’t going well, my emotions take over my rational thinking. And I’ll eat. And eat. And eat.

The thing that fascinated me most was just how many other people’s vices were also food related. So why do I turn to food as my main vice? I think its a simple case of not being able to have those treats all the time with diabetes. It makes you want them more. Its like saying to a child ‘you can’t play with that toy.‘ They’ll end up wanting it more. They’ll chuck a tantrum. They’ll tell you they hate you. And they might even plan a rebellion to take it from you when you’re not watching. So bad blood sugar levels will give me the perfect excuse to turn towards those treats. Chocolate, potato chips, ice cream, lollies and biscuits. I’ll think to myself, ‘I’m trying so hard not to eat those foods and I’m still high – so what’s the point?’

Someone suggested that we weren’t being open enough about our non-food related vices. Well, that was an easy answer for me. Short answer: anger, shouting, slamming and punching. Long answer: read my post last week on Three Stages of Dealing With Hypo Grief (and trust me, its a good read!).

I think that if I didn’t have diabetes, my vices would be completely different (and perhaps not so food-related!) They might be things like drinking. Smoking. Gossiping. Swearing (well, I still do that sometimes…) But diabetes is such a big part of my life. I deal with it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days of the year. I think about it when I wake up. When I’m at work. When I’m eating. When I’m sitting in front of the telly. Even when I stir in the middle of the night. So, naturally, I have vices against my diabetes rather than other aspects of my life.

And, if my blood sugar levels were perfect 100 per cent of the time, I don’t think I would have any vices at all!

Join the Great Britain Diabetes Online Community Twitter Chat every Wednesday night at 9pm (GMT+1) by following the #gbDOC hashtag on Twitter.

7 thoughts on “Diabetes and Vices

  1. Thanks Frank for sharing and yes my vice is also food, but as I am only on Basal insulin I cant lash out and eat and eat.. so I over snack on coconut and tahini….and when I’m feeling really rebellious almonds. My non diabetic friends think I am crazy to complain about my almond addiction. Go fogure

  2. I really do think that food tops the list of most diabetic vices. We get trained from diagnosis to think that food is the enemy, and often we end up with BG numbers that support that idea. Maybe if we shifted from the mindset of food as the enemy to one of food as the drug we may be able to stop looking at food as a vice?

    1. To me it seems similar to dieting, where the focus is still on food… rather than a healthy living approach which would get closer to the root of an issue.

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