My A1c is


I knew it was going to be high, so it’s not a shocker to me. She wants to put me back on Metformin, 500mg twice a day. I don’t have a problem taking Metformin, it doesn’t give me the side effects that it does some people i know. But that is all she wants to do right now. The rest is up to me. I called the Diabetes Education dept where I work and talked to my DE Geri…she is great, I really love her. As soon as she gets the referral paperwork from my Dr. we’ll sign me up for a class. I want my hubby to go with me, as his A1c was 6.9. He does not want to go, but I want him to see what could happen if I continue on the way WE are going. Carbs are our big thing…pizza, burgers, potatoes, fried food…blah. But I am trying to think of things this way: Is that cookie, apple fritter, brownie, french fry, etc. worth losing my eyesight over? A foot or leg? Kidney function? NOPE, it is not. Yes it may taste good right now, but in the long run it’s not worth it. If I am finding myself wanting to stress munch, I will just have to find another way to work out that stress. God knows I need all the help I can get to stay motivated!

Are you still using any kind of insulin, or did that go away with your prior endo? I’m a little surprised with an A1C that high that Metformin is all she’s recommending for now.

I am glad that you are feeling motivated to take action. That’s the biggest, hardest step with this disease, believe it or not. Just doing the things we need to do, so that we can keep doing the things that we enjoy: having a long life with loved ones, friends, and family, and pursuing our dreams.

Start by taking some simple steps: Keep a journal, or even an excell spreadsheet. Test your blood sugar before you eat, and after… Note how many points you rose, and how many grams of carbohydrate you consumed… Note how fat may affect your spikes, or even protein. Become your own little detective. No DE will be able to do this legwork for you, or learn what meals are the most appropriate to your body, per your glucose response. This is something that is very, very individual… and we only learn it by testing, testing, testing. :slight_smile: But you CAN do this… And you CAN figure it out… And yes, you CAN make brownies that won’t kill you! You can join recipe groups here at TuD, and many which are moderate to low carb in content. It is, after all, the total amount of available glucose (which mostly comes from carbohydrates) which most critically affects our blood glucose control. Have you ever been to the Blood Sugar 101 website? It has soooo much information. Check it out when you have the time. It was written by a well respected member of our community, and it has all you need to know to get started… :slight_smile:

Good for you! An A1c of 13.1 is an average BG of 329. That’s dangerously high.

I’m with you. No food is worth it. You’ll feel so much better eating healthier & having better control of diabetes. That will help keep you motivated.

Keep us posted.

Sarah, no I’m not on insulin anymore. It drove me crazy…I gained 40 lbs and I hated it. I was surprised too that Metformin is all that she prescribed, I guess she wants me to just do it with diet and exercise. My DE told me about Victoza, so I’m checking it out.

Lizmari, thanks for the encouragement, I’ve been through all this before, so I am re-learning, re-affirming, and doing more research…I will check out that website!

Gerri, that is going to become my mantra…it’s not worth it. Especially my eyesight…I’ve got to see everything…I’ll probably have a grandbaby in a couple of years, and I really really don’t want to miss that!!

Unfortunately weight gain usually goes along with a sudden increase in glucose control… by any method, not just insulin.

You can do this though… the consequences of not taking care of yourself are far worse than gaining a little bit of weight.

Nancy, yep it would be wonderful if he would go with you to the class, but if he doesn’t, you go yourself, get the information and then cook only, yes I said ONLY, the foods that are healthy for both of you. Unfortunately, I’ve found with three men at home most of the time, I am responsible for the planning and execution of meals. Even though they are better cooks, they take the fry method and that’s just not good enough for me, nor for them. There are so many neat cookbooks out there, some for free if you sign up for other things, that you can get some good yummy things going on, if you take the time to look. I’d be happy to send you some of mine…PM me and let me know if you want them or not. Good luck.


Also with you on our eyesight. The first thing I asked the doctor when I was diagnosed was if I was going to be blind. Of course, I didn’t know then about all the other potential complications, but vision loss still scares me straight. Best thing I did was get Dr. Richard Bernstein’s book Diabetes Solution.

Nancy, I am on Victoza and am doing pretty good on it. I could not handle Byetta. You will loose your appetite on it. Join us or follow us over on the Victoza group. The big thing too is that you will loose your carb carving. It may be worth a try for you. Look into it.

Like me you are probably reactive Hypo glycemic and as soon as you get done with one carb, two hours later “Nancy needs another carb”. Recognize this is not your fault but your bodies signaling mechanism. Thats where a medication like Victoza really helps.

If you go very low carb I think you will see a pretty dramatic reduction in your A1C in 6 months. Good Luck, check back in and let us know how it goes.

What I would convince myself of, if I had an A1C of 13, is that those foods don’t even taste good right now. They taste like poison, like ashes in the mouth. I assure you, also, that if you really buckle down and go much lower-carb you will lose your carb cravings in a week or two. Purge your house, stock up on things that are not going to kill you in short order. Can you build in some exercise to deal with stress instead of turning to food?

I thought my A1c was hiigh at 8.9 You beat me! My Dr gave me one of those royal goings over b/c of it. Just try and exercise as much as you can & stay away from what sounds like all those good tasteing foods! LOL!

Nancy. If it’s any help my A1c was 13.1 at diagnosis. I was able to get it down to 5.6 in 6 months. The biggest help to me was the Blood Sugar 101 website. There is a link at the bottom of the page for the “How to Lower Your Blood Sugar Flyer” In a nutshell you test frequently and eliminate foods that make your sugar spike. It meant giving many favorite foods (I used to live on potatoes), but I gained energy and mental clarity. My high sugars kept me in a perpetual fog. Some people reduce their carbs gradually but for me cold turkey worked better. I have one advantage over you in that I live alone and so was able to keep temptation out of the house. I can honestly say I don’t feel deprived, there are all kinds of good things I can eat. I also take 2000 mg. of Metformin and don’t think I could have been successful without it. I also find that the frequent testing helps me keep my motivation up. For me reading other folks struggles and triumphs on TuDiabetes helps me keep motivated. Hope this helps, you can do it!!!

It’s really good to know that I am not alone, nor am I the only one who’s A1c has been this high. Thank you all so much for the words of wisdom and encouragement! I will keep you posted, I’m sure I’ll need to blog about this roller coaster.

@Pauly…I am hoping she will let me try Victoza. I did try Byetta for a while, and did really good at first…sugars down, weight off…but then I started being sick all the time, so had to quit. I can handle a little nausea, but I was tossing my cookies every day.

Your husband’s A1c is not normal. He has diabetes, but apparently hasn’t been diagnosed yet? Perhaps the doctor called it prediabetes, but with an A1c that high it IS diabetes and he should be on Metformin too.

The ADA has determined that an A1C value of 6.5% or greater should be used for the diagnosis of diabetes.

"A truly normal A1c is between 4.6% and 5.4% " (Please see this link)

Here’s a page on testing to determine if you have diabetes, not as accurate as a lab, but it might wake your husband up:

What you need to ask him is: Do you love me and want me to be around a long time? Do you want me to be healthy? And do YOU want to be healthy too? Don’t you want us both to be around for our grandkids?

You can also let him know that high blood sugar leads to ED in men. That usually shocks them into paying attention. Its a sad fact that it takes that kind of shock to wake them up. Until he cares about his own health, chances are, he won’t be too concerned about yours, not enough to make changes anyway.

Your doctor can raise the metformin dose after you’ve been on it for a while. That’s the starting dose and its not going to be enough by itself. They can’t raise it too fast or you will get gastric problems.

You can also reduce your carbs - you can still have pizza, just not regular pizza. There are low carb pizza recipes on the internet and they aren’t hard to find. Try cooking lower carb for both of you, just don’t tell him its low carb, LOL. For burgers, get the smallest buns you can find, whole grain, and just have one, not two.

Fries - you need to cut way way back. Try to reserve them as an occasional treat, and in very small quantities. I know its hard, these are the foods I enjoyed too. Still do, just not as much or as often, and not quite in the same way.

There are lower carb potatoes you can get, and I think new spuds are lower in carbs than older ones. There are low carb pastas that are worth a try. Just don’t have huge servings, because that will not help.

I’d recommend getting an accurate scale and start weighing your carbs, so you know exactly what you’re getting. That way you know when you need to cut back and how much. When you see the Diabetes Educator ask for a referral to a dietician. That’s who will help you the most with food and carbs. Learn to carb count if you haven’t already.

I think a combination of cutting back on carbs, and gradually increasing your metformin is definitely worth while, just be patient, and make sure the doctor increases your metformin dose in about 3 or 4 months. Exercise will help too.

I also recommend that you look into Levemir. Its a basal insulin that is not as likely to cause weight gain. It could really help you get things under control.

I strongly urge you to try Levemir in combination with Metformin, eventually taking the metformin at all meals and the Levemir twice a day for best effect.

An A1c of 13 is way too high, and very dangerous,as I’m sure you know. You are at a greatly increased risk for kidney damage, retinopathy, nerve damage, dementia, heart attack and stroke, not to mention infections and possible gangrene. I really hope you can turn this around.

Good luck, and wishing you the best. Please don’t give up, and do everything you can to get your A1d down.

PS> If you even suspect that the metformin will start to bother you, take it with some sugar free yogurt and a full glass of water before your meal. That seems to neutralize the gastric distress for most people. There is also a time released form you can switch to if necessary.

Best of luck to you, I recently got my highest Ac1 level, I’m on Metformin 2 500’s twice a day, been doing that for a year now, But I agree your husbands is high too, normal level highest is 6.3 I believe, I’m not a big carb eater, just a crappy eater, nutritious at the beginning of the month when we go food stamp shopping then by months end it’s a lot of processed stuff, but we try I think it’s harder for me because I’m alone here most of the day so I don’t have enough restraint when I think I want something, but I took up crochet and knittting and it helps a lot. I hope you can your husband find something that works for you, and best of luck to you both.