Diabetes and the Workplace

Here’s where you can know your rights in the workplace. Even with diabetes, we may still have the need to be in the workforce, whether it’s for employer-based health insurance or because we just need the money. But did you know diabetes can be considered a disability?

A disability is defined as a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

Diabetes is a disability because it substantially limits major life activities such as the functioning of the endocrine system.

What are my rights on the job?

As a person with a disability, you are protected from discrimination because of your diabetes. You will be protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a federal law that prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities.

  • An employer cannot fail to hire or promote you because of your diabetes.
  • They cannot terminate you because of your diabetes (unless you pose a safety hazard).
  • They must provide you reasonable accommodations that help you perform the essential functions of your job.
  • They must not discriminate with regard to employer-provided health insurance.

You also have the right to medical leave to care for your diabetes. The Family and Medical Leave Act requires employers to provide up to 12 weeks of leave per year. This can be used for short term problems caused by managing your blood glucose levels or doctor appointments.

What are some accommodations I can request?

Remember these accommodations must be reasonable and not hinder the job description you were hired for. They may include, but are not limited to:

  • A private area to test your blood glucose levels or to administer insulin injections.
  • A place to rest until your blood glucose levels become normal.
  • Breaks to eat or drink, take medication, or test blood glucose levels.
  • Leave for treatment, recuperation, or training on managing diabetes (like diabetes education courses).
  • A modified work schedule or shift change.

To request an accommodation there is no magic words for it. Simply go to your employer and tell them what adjustments or changes are needed. This can also be done by someone else on your behalf, like your healthcare professionals.

What can employers do to help?

Employers can educate themselves on how to keep their employees healthy and maintain productivity. There are programs that can be provided through the employer-based health insurance too. They’re called the National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP) for people at risk of type 2 diabetes and Diabetes Self-Management, Education, and Support (DSMES) services for people diagnosed with diabetes.

The CDC has resources for employers to maintain healthy employees.

Please Note: These resources are for those living in the United States. I’m personally not too familiar with international resources but, hopefully, it shouldn’t be too hard to find. Look up the disability protection laws in your own country to see what protections may exist for you. Good luck!


References

American Diabetes Association
CDC
US EEOC
dQ&A
diaTribe

Type2diabetes.com

Mission

To empower patients and caregivers take control of their T2D by providing a platform to learn, educate, and connect with peers and healthcare professionals.

Type2diabetes.com

They provide the most accurate and relevant information on their blog. Their articles are contributed by physicians, patient advocates, and other healthcare experts. They encourage individuals touched by T2D to share their experiences with the community.

The website is brought to you by Health Union, LLC, an independent company that enables healthcare industry partners to reach and engage millions of people living with chronic conditions.

There are a number of topics including articles about mental health, T2D and COVID, as well as recipes. It’s another great source of information for diabetics to use.

Season Three: Episode Nine

MARCH 13, 2022

I have apparently gained two pounds since my last doctor visit on February 11. What a shame. I am currently 194 lbs. I’m a little disappointed in that since my lowest weight last year was 186lbs and since then it’s kind of gone up. It’s definitely because I’m eating more. I’ve been finding myself to be more hungry these past couple of months.

However, I have recently gone back to my job as a tour guide. We all got laid off when the pandemic started and now since our case numbers are lower, I feel a bit more comfortable to go back to work with them. It’s more active. I went on my first training tour on Friday and I walked over 8000 steps! I usually don’t walk more than 2000-3000 steps per day, 6000 when we’re doing the grocery shopping.

I can’t wait to get back to work with them. I really did love working for them and meeting new people from around the world. They’re kind of short staffed though which means I’ll be expected to do the longer tours that I didn’t do last time. But I’m looking forward to it.

I have my visual field eye appointment on the 21st. I’m hoping my visual field hasn’t changed too drastically since last year. I’ve never had to do that appointment until last year and I assume my diabetes is a bit of a concern for my eye doctor, which is totally understandable. I’m concerned too.

Please enjoy this picture I took while we were on tour at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park overlooking the glow of the lava lake in Halemaumau crater of Kilauea volcano.

I got the lab paperwork from my endocrinologist. I’ve got to do that a week before my appointment on April 7. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to let my ophthalmologist about my A1C as my eye appointment will be April 4. I’ll probably have to call them to update them on my newest A1C. I’m not looking forward to what it’ll be though.

And then my first dentist appointment in years will be on April 12. April is going to be a very active doctor appointment month. And I’m not looking forward to my A1C update nor am I looking forward to getting my blood taken. I hate needles!

Thankfully, the mask mandate for Hawaii should finally be lifted on March 26. At least I won’t have to wear a mask while I’m getting my blood taken and I think they’re also rolling back on social distancing and indoor max capacities. But I’m still a little scared about all of the rollbacks. I have lasted two years without getting COVID and I want to keep it that way.

Also the blog has reached 196 followers! I’m almost to 200 people who appreciate the information I share with them every week. I appreciate every single one of you always and forever. I love sharing my journey and the information I’m learning about diabetes with all of you.

If I can get to 300 followers, I will seriously consider trying to start a Patreon to help pay for the monthly and annual bills as well as bring more than just stickers to my blog shop. I’m thinking acrylic pins and window clings. Who knows really? It’s so exciting!

Thank you for each and every single one of you readers out there. Don’t forget to share my blog with your loved ones. And don’t forget that you are so loved and you matter, if not to the people in your life, then you are loved and matter to me. My inbox and DMs are always open, feel free to reach out if you need someone to talk to. I’ll be there.

14 Ways to Die

Author: Vincent Ralph
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Genre: young adult, thriller
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5/5


Trope: Culprit Isn’t One of the Suspects
🛑 Warning: One of the characters attempts to commit suicide 🛑


Comparing this book to my previously reviewed, A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson, I think this one was more of a thriller to me. This one is less mystery and more knife-wielding murderer. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I felt a lot of emotions while reading this book and the fact that the actual suspect was no where on my radar makes it a million times better for me.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves thrillers and young adult mysteries. It’s set in short, impactful chapters that keep the reader engaged and wanting to know what happens next.

I would definitely reread this book. It is going right in to my reread pile. I guess I should make a master list of the books I would definitely reread, although they’re all going to be 4+ star ratings so it’s a no-brainer this will be a reread.

I really did enjoy this style of writing with the short chapters. I almost didn’t put this book down the first day. It took me four days to read ONLY because I wanted to drag it out for as long as I could.

I really liked the concept of Jess trying to use the opportunity of a web show to try and solve her mother’s murder. Bringing light back to the serial killer and bringing all those who were left behind together to get their message out there. I was thoroughly invested in her story and wanting to find the killer.

I can kind of relate to Jess. I never lost a parent to a homicidal maniac, but I did lose my dad, unexpectedly to one of the many health conditions he suffered from. He was getting better, it seemed, and then one day, he was gone. It left a big gaping hole in my life. I was 19 when he died, so I at least got more time with my dad than Jess did with her mom. But I would give anything to know what really killed my dad. His death certificate just says “natural causes.” So many unanswered questions and I want to find the answers too.

I really enjoyed this book and I do look forward to rereading this one day. It has earned a spot on my shelf for good.


2022 Reading Goal

Book #10 out of 50

2022 Reading Challenge

None

Ruby Bridges

Does the name sound familiar? Do you remember the story of the little black girl who went to an all-white school and she had to walk through protests on the way to school every day? Let me enlighten you.


Born on September 8, 1954 in Mississippi to Lucille and Abon Bridges, Ruby Bridges would make history as the first African American student to integrate an elementary school in the South. Born in to poverty and the oldest of five children, she and her family would move to New Orleans in 1959.

The ruling of Brown v. The Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas would end racial segregation in public schools. However, southern states would continue to resist integration well in to the 21st century. The last school to desegregate was Cleveland High School in Cleveland, Mississippi in 2016.

In 1960, a federal court ordered Louisiana to desegregate. The school district the Bridges family was living in created entrance exams for African American students to see whether they could compete academically with their Caucasian counterparts.

That year, Ruby was one of only six students to pass the exam. She was the only one that would be attending the all-white school of William Frantz Elementary School. Her father had opposed to her attending an all-white school, but her mother was able to convince him to let her enroll.

Her first day of school was November 14, 1960. However, her first day was spent sitting in the principal’s office while white parents were withdrawing their children from the school. The next day, she was able to start her schooling in a class size of one with the only teacher in the whole school who was willing to teach her, Barbara Henry, a white Boston native. She ate lunch alone and played at recess alone, but never missed a day of school that year.

During this time, Ruby was seeing a child psychologist, Robert Coles, who studied the reaction of young children toward extreme stress or crisis. In 1995, he would write a children’s book called The Story of ruby Bridges.

Due to the amount of upset white people that protested Ruby’s enrollment in the school, she was assigned four federal marshals that would escort her and her mother to school every day that year. Every day, she would walk past crowds of white people screaming vicious slurs at her. Later in life, she said that the only time she was frightened was when she saw a woman holding a black baby doll in a coffin. The marshals would urge her to keep her eyes forward so she wouldn’t see the racist remarks on signs or the livid faces of the crowd.

The Bridges family suffered for their courage. Her father, Abon, lost his job and grocery stores would refuse to sell to her mother, Lucille. Even her grandparents were evicted from the farm where they had lived for a quarter-century.

The crowds outside the school would begin to thin toward the end of the year and by the following year the school enrolled several more black students. Many years later, her nieces would also attend William Frantz Elementary School.

“The Problem We All Face” (1963) Norman Rockwell

During Ruby’s second year at William Frantz Elementary, she no longer needed to be escorted by federal marshals. She walked to school on her own & was in a classroom with other students. Ruby had paved the way for other African American children.

Ruby would go on to graduate from a desegregated high school, become a travel agent, get married, and have four sons. In 1999, she established the Ruby Bridges Foundation to promote tolerance and create change through education. She would also write a couple of books including a children’s book called Ruby Bridges Goes to School: My True Story (2009).

Today, at 67-year-old Ruby Bridges continues to be an activist in racial equality. There are two schools named after her, and there is a statue at William Frantz Elementary School dedicated to her. She was a symbol of the civil rights movement in her youth and now she is actively fighting for racial equality. She is a pillar of where the United States of America has come from and where it could go on to in the future.


References

National Women’s History Museum
Ruby Bridges
Hilbert College
Britannica

Promises and Pomegranates

Author: Sav R. Miller
Publisher: Self
Genre: dark romance, novel
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️/5


Spice Level: 🌶🌶🌶🌶/5 (Raunchy sexy time with dirty talking and kinks)


So in my opinion it was an okay book. But I mean I didn’t buy it for the story, you know what I mean? I liked how the book ended sure but let’s say I wasn’t paying attention to the story much. I saw someone talk about it on TikTok and I thought it would be an interesting read because I like the whole Persephone x Hades story, mostly because of Lore Olympus. However, this was like a reference that the characters are like Persephone and Hades. There may have been a few parallels between the two stories but not enough to really hook me in to the story so I settled for the spice. Which was kinky.

I wouldn’t recommend this book to Persephone x Hades enthusiasts nor would I recommend it to someone who’s in to spice unless you’re also in to kinks. Like blood and pain kinks. Which as it turns out, I’m not. So the two sells on this book for me were two total misses for me. But who knows, I’m not here to shame anyone on their kinks, these just weren’t mine.

I wouldn’t go out of my way to reread this. Some of the spice scenes were great but the story in between the spice was not very well laid out. It was a confusing storyline, it should have just been the two of them and them figuring out life together. Everything about her family was really sloppy so no I wouldn’t reread this one.

I enjoyed some of the writing in the spicy scenes but not so much everywhere else. There were a lot of plot holes in the actual story and I wasn’t sure what was going on with the blackmailing and everything. It was just very confusing.

Overall, it wasn’t a very great story but the spice was it’s saving grace (barely).


2022 Reading Goal

Book #9 out of 50

2022 Reading Challenge

None

7 Little Ways to Care for Your Diabetes

Whether you are newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes or have been living with it for years, you can make small changes to your life that could potentially turn your life around. You could come off the insulin injections, you could stop taking tons of medications, you could potentially reverse your diabetes.

Be warned, it will not happen right away. You will need to have patience and persevere. You need to set your goals, keep them in your heart the entire time. It will be hard. You will feel devastated and tired and frustrated, but you can do this. My favorite quote from wherever I had heard it, “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.”

1. Lose (Just A Little) Weight

As your body gains weight, it can have more difficulty regulating blood sugar levels with the insulin your body naturally produces. This leads to insulin resistance, your pancreas will produce more and more insulin to move the sugar from your blood into your cells. But it will become less effective and can cause damage to your pancreas.

Insulin promotes fat storage and weight gain. It causes an infinite cycle of weight gain, insulin resistance, more insulin production, more weight gain. But modest weight loss, 5 to 10% of your body weight, can lead to huge improvements. Just a 7% loss can improve insulin sensitivity by 57%!

2. Water Down Blood Sugar

The more dehydrated you are, the more concentrated the sugars in your blood become. Those who drink less than 16 ounces of water per day have a higher risk of developing elevated blood sugar levels compared with those who drank more. You can drink water, herbal tea, and milk. Coffee should be limited to three cups a day, caffeine can dehydrate you.

3. Try Exercise Snacking

Instead of doing 30 consecutive minutes of exercising, try to spread the physical activity throughout the day. Maybe three 10-minute walks throughout the day. Research suggests that these bite-size bits of activity can help control blood sugar better than one longer workout.

Don’t forget to do various types of exercise, like aerobics and strength training. Adults naturally lose 8% of their muscle mass every 10 years between ages 40 and 70, diabetes can double that. Try spending 10 minutes a day building strength by using weights, resistance bands, or body weight moves.Another 10 minutes doing aerobic activity such as fast walking, swimming, jogging, etc. Then another 10 minutes of stretching, which will improve joint movement and reduce chances of injury.

Walking as much as possible throughout the day matters!

4. Muscle Up With Protein

Protein is important for maintaining muscle and stimulating several hormones that contribute to blood sugar regulation. Focus on fish, white-meat chicken, plant-based sources, and lean cuts of beef. Make sure you’re eating protein at breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

5. Get Vaccinated Against COVID-19

People with diabetes, obesity or both are at increased risk for severe illness and death from COVID-19. Research suggests that COVID can worsen diabetes by causing damage to the pancreas and system-wide inflammation that increases insulin resistance.

Even if you get COVID after having been vaccinated, it should indirectly result in less COVID impact for preexisting diabetes. You can get a milder case of COVID with the vaccine. Also don’t forget to stay up to date with your other vaccines as well.

6. Don’t Focus On Sugar

After being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes for the first time, people often go to extremes, like drastically limiting carbs. But too few carbs can lead to fatigue, nutritional deficiencies and dangerously low blood sugar. Women should aim for 30-45 grams per meal and men should get 60-75 grams.

Proper nutrition is so important after a diabetes diagnosis, meaning consulting with a registered dietician or certified diabetes care and education specialist is very important.

7. Let The Meds Come As Needed

It’s common for people who are trying to their diabetes to feel like failures if they can’t get off their medications. Even if you do manage to come off your medications, medications could still play an important role in your life, like insulin. Don’t feel defeated by the amount of medications you have, hopefully one day, you’ll knock them out. You can do this!


References

AARP Magazine, Dec 2021/Jan 2022

Season Three: Episode Eight

MARCH 6, 2022

I have my next PCP appointment this week for a refill of my prescriptions. I wish I could get an earlier appointment with my endocrinologist. I’m wondering, the mask mandates in Hawaii are supposed to go away by the end of the month. Supposedly. So does that mean my doctor will no longer do telephone appointments. Does that mean I have to fly to Oahu for my appointments again?

I mean I’d love to go to Oahu and stop by Ala Moana Center for sure, but the price of flights are ridiculous right now. The cheapest round trip being just under $200 per person. And I don’t like to go to Oahu by myself so obviously my husband would go with me.

I could do a travel reimbursement for our flights. That would have to go through my endocrinologist’s office to put the request in for me and then hopefully it gets approved. But knowing HMSA they’ll probably only reimburse if we take the cheapest flights, which means first flight in the morning and last flight in the evening.

Usually we take an Uber or Lyft from the airport to the doctor’s office because it’s quicker. Then it’s a decent walk from there to Ala Moana for lunch and some shopping. Then we take the bus back to the airport.

The last time we took the last flight out of Honolulu, the bus didn’t run after 6 so we had to take the 4:30pm or thereabouts. And we waited at the terminal for HOURS, it was so freaking boring especially because we took Southwest and that side of the terminal all the shops close early. Lame.

I’m not going to lie. I don’t really want to fly to Oahu for my appointments. It’s really draining and I hate flying. The motion sickness is unreal. Plus that’s a whole day that we’d have to take off and with the way things are going, I’m still afraid of COVID. But only time will tell I guess.

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder

Author: Holly Jackson
Publisher: Ember
Genre: young adult, mystery, thriller
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5


Trigger Warnings: Suicide
Trope: Culprit isn’t one of the suspects


It was such a great mystery book. I never expected the story to go the way it had. It was a roller coaster of mystery and intrigue. It was really crazy. I definitely loved how Pip goes around and starts uncovering the truth about Andie and it was just wild.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who likes a good mystery with a lot of twists and turns. Begrudgingly, there’s a little bit of romance but at least our main character knows she needs to solve the mystery first before getting into a relationship. But yes it’s a great mystery and even for a young adult it was a great read.

If you are sensitive to suicide, please note there is a murder made to look like suicide involving pills. If that is a trigger for you, maybe it’s best not to read this book. You’ll pretty much be able to question whether it really was a suicide, which obviously not, but just in case. Be warned.

I would definitely reread this book AFTER I read the rest of the series. I like rereading entire series in completion so if the rest isn‘t really a reread, I might not reread this one. But I absolutely loved it and would love to read again.

I enjoyed this mystery writing style very much. I am in love with twists and turns and the totally unexpected. Being close to solving the mystery only for something completely different popping up that throws everything out the window. Love it!

It took four day for me to read it and it’s because I had to force myself to put the book down. I used to love reading books in a single day, but I don’t feel like I’m digesting the whole book if I read it nonstop for a day. So I’ve been trying to stretch the reading out. Maybe a couple reading sessions a day or next chapter put it down and pick it up again tomorrow. I’ve got other things to do these days. But I still loved this book and couldn’t put it down without struggle.

I like to think that I’d be just as driven as Pip in solving this case and I would be just as devastated as the suspects families once the case was solved. I might even become obsessed with solving a case. But Pip’s uncertainty about who she is and yet the certainty that she must solve this murder, that’s pretty relatable.

Great book, great characters, great mystery. I will definitely go on and read the next book in the series and hopefully come back and reread A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder.


2022 Reading Goal

Book #8 out of 50

2022 Reading Challenge

None