Hannibal Regional Blog

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Our blog offers content about healthcare, healthy living and the culture at Hannibal Regional.


Low Blood Glucose

Hypoglycemia means your blood glucose is too low. Because a drop in blood sugar can happen quickly, it is recommended to always have simple carbohydrate snacks available to correct blood glucose. You might have sweating or cold, clammy skin, dizziness, shakiness, or tingling feeling, fast heartbeat, headache, confusion or irritability. If you are feeling any of these symptoms, always check your blood glucose right away. If it is too low:

1. Eat or drink 15 grams of fast-acting carbohydrate (1/2 cup fruit juice, 3-4 glucose tablets)

2. Recheck blood glucose again after 15 minutes. If it is still low, repeat Step 1. Check again after another 15 minutes. If it is still low, contact your healthcare provider immediately.

3. Once your blood sugar rises, eat a small snack if your next meal is not in the next 30-60 minutes.

15-grams of Carbohydrate Snacks:

  • 1 medium fruit
  • 6 oz light yogurt
  • 3 cups popcorn
  • 4 small gingersnaps
  • 5 vanilla wafers
  • 1 ounce pretzels
  • 10 baked potato or tortilla chips
  • 6 saltines
  • 3 squares graham crackers
  • 1 granola bar

Reference: American Diabetes Association (2016). Living Well With Diabetes. (n.p.)


Complications of Diabetes

The full impact of diabetes is often overlooked. While some individuals with diabetes have physical symptoms and noticeable signs of high blood sugar, some are asymptomatic (showing no symptoms). High blood glucose damages both large and small blood vessels. Damage to these vessels can lead to complications that affect the whole body.

Stroke, heart attack, nerve damage (neuropathy), eye disease (retinopathy), kidney problems (nephropathy) and peripheral arterial disease are some of the complications of diabetes. You can reduce your risk of complications by controlling your blood glucose. Blood sugars can be managed through dietary adjustments, increasing physical activity and/or taking medication/insulin as prescribed. Your health care team will work with you to create an individualized plan to meet your needs.

Hannibal Regional Weight Management and Diabetes Center has two outpatient dietitians to help guide you to better eating. Contact us by phone at 573-629-3382 or by email at megan.kemp@hrhonline.org to learn more about our nutrition services and/or to schedule an appointment.


High Blood Glucose

Hyperglycemia means your blood sugar is too high. You might experience increased thirst, increased need to urinate, increased tiredness and/or blurred vision. If you feel any symptoms, check your blood glucose right away. If it is too high:

1. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.

2. If you take insulin, you may need to adjust your medication. Regularly follow-up with your healthcare provider to better manage your blood sugar. Self-medication is not recommended. Always ask your healthcare provider if wanting to make any changes to medication doses.

3. Check blood sugars at least every 4 hours to make sure your glucose is going down. Call your healthcare provider if it doesn’t go down after two checks, or if symptoms get worse.

Reference: American Diabetes Association (2016). Living Well With Diabetes. (n.p.)


Diabetic Friendly Breakfast Ideas

Healthy Breakfast For most busy individuals and families, meal planning is not always high priority. Quick and convenient foods can be high in fat and calories but they can also be well-balanced and nutritious. Most women need about 3 carbohydrate choices per meal while most men need about 4 carb choices per meal. Keeping this in mind during meal planning can guide you to better eating. Here are some diabetic friendly meal ideas that require little to no preparation or cooking.

Breakfast Meal Ideas:

(1.5 cup) High Fiber Cereal = 2 Carbs
(1 cup) Skim or 1% Milk = 1 Carb
(1) Hard-Boiled Egg

(2) Whole Wheat Toast = 2 Carbs
(2 tsp) Whipped or Light Butter (Made with Canola or Olive Oil)
(1) Greek Yogurt = 1 Carb
(1 Cup) Berries = 1 Carb

(1 Packet) Flavored Oatmeal = 2 Carbs
(1/4 cup) Nuts or (2 Tbsp) Peanut Butter
(1) Small Banana or (1 Cup) Sliced Strawberries or Blueberries = 1 Carb

(2) Whole Wheat Toast = 2 Carbs
(2 Tbsp) Peanut Butter
(1) Small Banana = 1 Carb

(2) Whole Wheat Toast = 2 Carbs
(1 Slice) Cheese
(1) Scrambled Egg
(1) Tomato
(1) 5.3 oz Light Yogurt = 1 Carb

Blog post provided by:
Megan Kemp, RDN, LD


Type 2 Diabetes and Foot Care

When you are diabetic, you are at a higher risk of developing foot problems overtime. The good news: with routine care and good habits, you can keep your feet healthy.

Keep your blood sugars in your target range. Diet, exercise and/or medicine can help you manage your blood sugar levels.

Check your feet every day. Look at your bare feet for any cuts or blisters. Use a mirror or ask someone for help to check the bottoms of your feet.

Keep your feet clean. Wash them every day and thoroughly dry them, especially between the toes!

Use skin lotion to keep your skin soft and smooth. Rub a thin layer of lotion on the tops and bottoms of your feet, but not in between your toes.

Trim your toenails regularly. Be extra careful not to cut yourself. Use clean nail clippers and cut your nails straight across.

Wear shoes and socks at all times. Never walk barefoot. Make sure your shoes and socks aren’t too tight and fit well.

Keep the blood flowing to your feet. Put your feet up when sitting. Aim to be more active, whether it be walking, swimming, doing chair exercises. Don’t smoke.

Blog post provided by:
Megan Kemp, RDN, LD


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