Posts filed under ‘technology’
Things are continuing to improve on the insulin front. I had a follow-up with both the dietitian and PA last Wednesday, and left with two prizes: an A1C of 5.8 (I was expecting higher) and an I-Port.
For those of you not familiar, the I-Port is a neat-o insulin delivery device that gives you one place to inject into for 72 hours, after which it is disposed of and a new one is installed. You inject into it rather than your skin, so there is no pain involved other than the normal sting associated with the insulin hitting your tissue.
I’m on my fourth day and second I-Port, and the novelty of feeling a bit bionic has not yet begun to wear off. I adore not having to hunt for injection sites, endure bruises, and remember to rotate. It’s too soon to say whether its having any affect on my BG control, but expect a full review and more photos after I’ve spent a bit more time with my new, button-esque friend.
I finally got around to installing Health Engage on my laptop. It shows promise, but a few major issues:
- The user interface is awkward. The food input mechanism would probably get easier as time goes on, assuming you eat the same things frequently.
- It’s a memory hog. If I leave it running on my laptop for more than 12 hours, even if its just sitting there idle, it starts gobbling up virtual memory. 512MB for 2 days worth of data?
- My biggest complaint: the teeny-tiny, non-resizable viewing window. It’s fine for inputting data, but not for viewing reports.
Overall I’m not impressed. I’d be willing to give it a chance if and only if I can import data into it directly from my meter (Freestyle Flash), but I don’t have high hopes that this will be possible since I am still on a Power PC-based Powerbook. I’d be interested to know if any diabetic Mac users out there with Intel-based macs have had luck using PC-only software and data management products with either Boot Camp or Parallels.
Another online tool I took a look at this week was MyCalorieCounter.com. It showed promise, but I never returned to use it because the features that I really needed (nutritional totals per-meal and per-day) are only offered to paid users. How am I supposed to decide if I want to buy your product if I can’t at least have a trial of the features I’m paying for?
So for now I’m sticking with iCal and the occasional FitDay for looking up carbohydrate content. I have a few more tools and websites to try, but I’m losing steam already and will probably just stick with what works, with the exception of giving CalorieKing.com a try for carbohydrate look-ups, and possibly trying the (gasp!) analog Glucograf data sheets recommended by Dr. Bernstein.
My current system for keeping track of what I eat, when I exercise and what my blood sugars are throughout the day is fairly simple: I create events for each meal, exercise and blood sugar reading in iCal on my Powerbook. (Click on the image to the left for a screenshot) Although it doesn’t give me pretty charts and graphs, it does give me this nice printout (see image to right) to take with me to the endocrinologist, then they can compare it with the charts they download from my glucose meter. I can also set alarms to remind me when to check.
The main problem with this method is that it doesn’t help me track how many carbohydrates I ingest at each meal. Although I keep an account at FitDay, FitDay is also flawed for diabetes tracking in that it only tracks your total carbohydrate for the day rather than at each meal.
Does anyone knows of an online-only system similar to FitDay specifically for diabetics?