State of my health address

Back in December I posted Am I getting any healthier? and 10 months later, I’m still wondering. I’ve seen a doctor twice since then. I saw a urologist in January to repeat a procedure than I had gotten done a year before and he started me doing a little weekly procedure (non-surgical) on my own to keep the condition from reoccurring. I’m not going to get into the specifics here.

I saw my regular doctor again in March for what I thought was to be my annual physical but with all the tests they had done relating to the January 2008 urological procedure, my annual physical is now in December. So the March visit was just a hypertension/pre-diabetes follow-up. No blood was drawn this time so I really don’t know where I am with my cholesterol, triglycerides and all that. I’ll have wait until December.

I have been keeping a close watch on my blood pressure, blood glucose, and weight, being all techie and entering it all into spreadsheets with charts and everything. A couple weeks ago, I started pulling my monthly averages together and started seeing some trends. Modifying the spreadsheets to track the averages made the trends even more clear. I noticed that over the course of this year, my blood sugar has been averaging out a little higher than it should have been. This is despite watching my carb intake and trying to adhere to a sensible diet.

I noticed that my blood pressure had been making a slow, steady rise over the first few months of the year but has been dropping since around May. For the last couple of months it has averaged below 120/80. Maybe the doctor will lower the dosage of my medication. I still seem to get “white coat syndrome” when I see a doctor or dentists.

I also saw a trend with my weight. I had dropped from about 210 pounds last April to about 180 by the end of the year. But when I looked closely at my monthly averages I could see that since February, when I was down to 175 pounds, my weight had been steadily increasing, hitting 182 in August. I now see to be at a plateau of 180 pounds but it’s starting to drop again.

Lately, I’ve been reading up on things like glycemic index and glycemic load as I try to determine what carbohydrates I should and shouldn’t be eating. That’s helping. I’ve almost completely cut out all soda pop (even diet) and sweets. The biggest diet challenge seems to be changing Tina’s shopping habits, getting her to buy healthier products. It’s also a challenge to get her to cook smaller portions. I think she cooks for 4 out of habit.

Exercise is still a major hurdle. I working on establishing a regular yoga practice. I’ve been taking a weekly class which gives me a good workout but getting myself into the habit of doing it at home hasn’t been easy. I’ve never been fond of the usual forms of exercise or sports. But I find yoga very appealing in that it seems to be a holistic approach and non-competitive, even on a personal level. Still, the hardest part of any journey is getting off your butt to take the first step.

I’ve got about three months before I see the doctor again. I want to have my blood sugar and blood pressure under control, my cholesterol in balance, and my weight down to 12 stone (168). It’s achievable.

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