Getting Bizzy in the Kitchen with Type 2 Diabetes
Elizabeth Velatini is an Abbott Spokesperson and this content was sponsored by Abbott, the makers of FreeStyle Libre 2—a Founding Partner of Beyond Type 2.
Getting Bizzy in the Kitchen with type 2 diabetes (T2D)
Just one look at My Bizzy Kitchen will have your mouth watering. The blog is a haven for food lovers everywhere and at the heart of it all is Elizabeth Velatini—aka Biz. To say that Biz is a foodie would be an understatement. Her blog features pictures of homemade sliders, popcorn chicken, red velvet ice cream and countless other amazing recipes.
Along with her love of food, Biz also manages living with type 2 diabetes (T2D). Diagnosed at 30, Biz was at a health fair, where a blood test came back with her blood sugars in the 500s. At the time, she had started a weight loss program with her sister and noticed the pounds had been falling off, no matter what she was eating. Looking back and knowing her father had also had diabetes, it was clear what the cause was. But Biz doesn’t let her diabetes get in the way of her love for food and acknowledges that technology is a major game changer for how she monitors her blood glucose levels. The blogger is particularly fond of her continuous glucose monitor (CGM), the FreeStyle Libre 14 day system. “I have to say, having the FreeStyle Libre 14 day system has changed how I manage my diabetes. It’s given me more information than I ever would have had when I was using test strips. Before, my insurance would cover 100 test strips a month, and I might have checked my blood glucose just once over the weekend… Now, I can test 100 times a day if I want, it’s incredible,” she says.
A Whole New World
Biz had never used continuous glucose monitoring technology before, but with the FreeStyle Libre 14 day system, there was practically no learning curve. She says, “It’s so seamless—everyone’s got a phone. I use the FreeStyle LibreLink app* and I love it. It’s kind of nice that I can check my blood glucose, and no one really notices it at all… I’m kicking myself that I didn’t try this sooner. It is so easy, and it doesn’t hurt at all.” The food blogger started chronicling her culinary adventures to have a written account of her life, leaving something behind for future generations of her family. For the last 11 years, she’s been writing nonstop and while her blog is centered around food, she makes it no secret to her followers that she lives with diabetes: “It’s always been present… Usually, when there are things that I learn about diabetes, that’s when I start talking about it. I figure if I am learning something new, I think that’s good knowledge for people to have. That’s when I talk about it the most.” Biz loves interacting with people on her blog and has gotten a lot of feedback from people who want to know more about CGMs. “It’s opened a lot of eyes. I thought using a CGM was going to be more complicated than it was. I don’t know why. I was overthinking it, because I’m just not technologically savvy. But it’s so easy, and I just don’t know why everyone with diabetes doesn’t have one.
Making Life Easier
When she’s busy in the kitchen, Biz doesn’t have time to drop everything to test her blood glucose levels. “Using the FreeStyle Libre 14 day system, I love not having to stick my finger while preparing food. I can just scan to get a blood glucose reading and keep going.” Since starting on her CGM, Biz’s A1c has dropped nearly a full point, and she says that the technology also helps her to be more proactive than ever before: “That’s the thing, because I can check my blood glucose levels so often, I can prevent the spikes from even happening. I don’t have to think twice about where my test strips are, or getting them out, or having to deal with that in restaurants or anything like that. Not having to excuse myself from the table for a fingerstick is a game changer.”
* The FreeStyle LibreLink app is compatible with NFC-enabled smartphones running Android OS 5.0 or higher and iPhone 7 or later running iOS 11 or later. Use of the FreeStyle LibreLink app requires registration with LibreView, a service provided by Abbott and Newyu, Inc. The FreeStyle LibreLink app and the FreeStyle Libre and FreeStyle Libre 14 Day reader have similar but not identical features. Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol, when symptoms do not match system readings, when you suspect readings may be inaccurate, or when you experience symptoms that may be due to high or low blood glucose. When using FreeStyle LibreLink app, access to a blood glucose monitoring system is required as the app does not provide one. † Fingersticks are required for treatment decisions when you see Check Blood Glucose symbol, when symptoms do not match system readings, when you suspect readings may be inaccurate, or when you experience symptoms that may be due to high or low blood glucose.
Indications and Important Safety Information
The FreeStyle Libre 14 day Flash Glucose Monitoring System is a continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) device indicated for the management of diabetes in persons age 18 and older. It is designed to replace blood glucose testing for diabetes treatment decisions. The System detects trends and tracks patterns aiding in the detection of episodes of hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia, facilitating both acute and long-term therapy adjustments. Interpretation of the System readings should be based on the blood glucose trends and several sequential readings over time. The System is intended for single patient use and requires a prescription.
CONTRAINDICATIONS: Remove the sensor before MRI, CT scan, X-ray, or diathermy treatment.
WARNINGS/LIMITATIONS: Do not ignore symptoms that may be due to low or high blood glucose, hypoglycemic unawareness, or dehydration. Check sensor glucose readings with a blood glucose meter when Check Blood Glucose symbol appears, when symptoms do not match system readings, or when readings are suspected to be inaccurate. The FreeStyle Libre 14 day system does not have alarms unless the sensor is scanned, and the system contains small parts that may be dangerous if swallowed. The FreeStyle Libre 14 day system is not approved for pregnant women, persons on dialysis, or critically-ill population. Sensor placement is not approved for sites other than the back of the arm and standard precautions for transmission of blood borne pathogens should be taken. The built-in blood glucose meter is not for use on dehydrated, hypotensive, in shock, hyperglycemic-hyperosmolar state, with or without ketosis, neonates, critically-ill patients, or for diagnosis or screening of diabetes. When using FreeStyle LibreLink app, access to a blood glucose monitoring system is required as the app does not provide one. Review all product information before use or contact Abbott Toll Free (855-632-8658) or visit www.freestylelibre.us for detailed indications for use and safety information. For full indications for use and safety information, see more here.