The Blue Balloon March 2017

Welcome to the March edition of The Blue Balloon, bringing you the latest news from the Family Centre.

In this edition, we launch the next exciting event in our Life Without Limits series: type 1 ultramarathon runner Roger Hanney is coming to inspire you! We've got an exciting school holiday program to share, a great Clinic Chat if you're thinking about insulin pumps, and the best part ... your chance to WIN A CAR!

Read on, and enjoy.

BIG NEWS! Your chance to WIN A CAR

DVG and Barbagallo have generously donated a funky, zippy Fiat POP to the Family Centre. Here is your chance to WIN BIG! Tickets are only $20 and the odds are FANTASTIC. Don't hesitate - buy your tickets now and support the Family Centre!

We are asking each of our families to sell just ten tickets each. The funds raised will help the Family Centre continue to support kids with type 1 with our programs, camps and services.

But wait, there's more! Help us sell raffle tickets and you could win family movie passes for a year, including 20 x adult passes, 20 x child passes, and four priority passes – that adds up to 22 movies for two adults and two children! Be sure to remind your friends and family to include your full name when they purchase tickets, so that you can go into the running to win.

Life without Limits: Ultramarathon runner Roger Hanney

Roger Hanney has been running the most exhilarating race of his life - the race against type 1 diabetes.
A true believer in the transformative power of endurance sports as key to keeping his mind and body fit, since his diagnosis Roger has run the grand-slam of desert ultramarathons in the Gobi, Atacama, Antarctica, Simpson and Sahara deserts. He’s also undertaken New Zealand's toughest mountain marathon, five 100km races, and Australia's iconic 100-miler The Great North Walk.
You'll feel empowered by Roger’s inspiring talk as part of the Family Centre’s 'Life Without Limits' series, which will be held at 6:30pm on Tuesday April 11 at the Family Centre.

This is an event for anyone impacted by type 1 diabetes - or anyone who needs some inspiration! Tickets are limited and only $10 - be quick to reserve your place.

Countdown to April School Holidays!

April school holidays are fast approaching, and we have lots on at the Family Centre to get your kids connected to the type 1 tribe.

Teen Cooking
First up, we've got a Teen Cooking Italian Extravaganza! We are busy developing a delicious Italian feast to impress our surprise celebrity restaurant reviewer. This man knows his food, so the stakes are high - but your blood glucose won’t be: we’re transforming your favourite carb-heavy Italian meals into luscious lower-carbohydrate alternatives. No high levels in sight! 

Teen Cooking is proudly supported by Nipro TrueCare Diabetes, and will be held on Wednesday April 12 between 11am and 2pm. Click here to reserve your place.

Kids in the Kitchen
At the Family Centre we love to make food, mess and new friends! Register your 4 to 11 year-old child with type 1 for a fun morning in the kitchen with their diabuddies. Mums and Dads can relax with a coffee, and siblings can play while the kids prepare a delicious and healthy morning tea for everyone to enjoy afterwards!

Kids in the Kitchen will be held on Wednesday April 19 between 9:30am and 11:30am. It costs $20 per chef, which includes morning tea for parents and siblings. Click here to register.

We're going to the ZOO!
We are taking our type 1 tribe to the Perth Zoo for a fun day out and a chance for our families to connect on Friday April 21. We'll have activities and lunch between 9am and 12:30pm, after which you're free to roam and enjoy the zoo! Cost: $15 per person which includes entry and a super morning of fun for the kids! Get in quick - register here.

March wrap: What we've been up to at the Family Centre

We made a new batch of Carbohydrate Counting NINJAS!
Whether you're on injections or a pump, counting carbs is critical. Our Carbohydrate Counting Workshop teaches carb counting using apps and nutrition panels, even for complex combined foods and recipes. Then we step things up, and teach you advanced insulin adjustment calculations. This is what our participants said:

What a great course. I have already started putting it into practice. So great to meet the other parents too!
It was a great session!
What a fantastic session. I would highly recommend it to all T1 parents. Thanks!
Keep an eye out on the Family Centre's website and in our Facebook group for our next Carbohydrate Counting Workshop.
We went to Penguin Island!
We took 50 kids, mums and dads on a day trip to Penguin Island, where we explored, connected with nature, dipped our toes in the sparkling ocean, and made heaps of new friends! At the Family Centre, we believe that people with type 1 must find their tribe to thrive - that's why we create opportunities for our families to connect and forge friendships through our community events. Peer support is a key pillar of sustainable and holistic diabetes management, and the Family Centre's events help develop supportive networks that break down the isolation that living with type 1 imposes on kids and families.
We educated your support networks
Explaining diabetes to people around us can be challenging. Diabetes is complex and changeable, and often parents and people with type 1 are tired, feel unwell, or just can't face the emotional load of talking type 1 - even with people who love us. However, developing strong support networks that understand type 1 and know how to talk to us with knowledge and compassion can help people with type 1 really thrive.

The Family Centre's March Solutions Forum focused on 'Educating your Support Network'. The Family Centre hosted more than 50 grandparents, family, friends, teachers and neighbours of people with type 1. Amy and Bec talked about the technical aspects of managing diabetes: glucose monitoring, insulin, and recognising and treating high and low blood sugar, and the emotional challenges of living with type 1. We especially focused on 'Diabetiquette': how to talk about type 1 in a compassionate way. It was a fun, interactive, and occasionally emotional evening, with lots of information and shared stories.

Attendees said:
Technical AND everyday human impact: hugely important.
I liked the funny stories - even though you struggle you can still be optimistic about something that can be frightening.

Very informative and eloquently delivered.
Conversations were pitched at everyday language, speakers were warm and held my interest.
I liked the way you broke down and explained the complexity of type 1 so I could understand it.

Keep an eye out for our next Solutions Forum, with a brand new topic coming up in May!

To pump or not to pump?
Clinic Chat with Amy Rush CDE APD

Patients and parents of kids with type 1 often ask me, ‘Should we go onto an insulin pump?’ . Choosing to use an insulin pump is a decision to think through carefully. If you’re thinking about pumping, consider the following:

What an insulin pump can do for you
Inconspicuous boluses
Pumping makes bolusing quick, easy and discreet. For all the guy sitting next to you knows, you could just be sending a text!

Insulin pumps allow you to be super precise with doses, with bolus increments of 0.05-0.1 units, depending on the brand and type of pump.

24-hour basal manipulation
Pumps can come closer to mimicking non-diabetic background insulin than injected long-acting insulins, by allowing for different hourly basal rates. For example, if you need more basal to handle morning insulin resistance, but less after exercise, you can simply program this into your pump. Temporary basal patterns can help with surprises, like unplanned exercise.

Virtual diary
The pump stores all your bolus and alert information in an easily accessible, downloadable format.

One injection every three days
If kids react badly to injections, or can’t inject themselves at school, pumps can help. Insertion sites are changed every three days.

Links to CGM
The pump can act as a receiver for a Continuous Glucose Monitor data. Some pumps have a ‘low suspend’ feature, where CGM alerts the pump to an impending hypo and the pump responds by stopping insulin delivery. Once the CGM detects a return towards target blood glucose, the pump resumes insulin delivery.

More things to think about:
Space junk
We call it 'space junk' - being connected to an electronic device 24/7 is not for everyone, and you need to be ready for it.

Conscientious carbohydrate counting
You must be able to confidently count carbs before you can pump, because the pump needs your carb count to deliver accurate bolus. If you’re thinking of getting a pump, speak to a dietitian for some one-on-one carb counting education, or consider the Family Centre’s Carb Counting Workshops.

Delivery failures - act fast
Pumps contain only rapid acting insulin, which is used to meet both meal bolus and basal (background) insulin needs. If insulin delivery is affected by a kink or bubble in the tube or a site failure, the rapid-acting insulin in your system won't last for very long. If you don’t notice the delivery failure quickly, lack of insulin can lead to high blood glucose and ketone build up. You can mitigate this risk by testing often, and checking for ketones and pump issues if unexplained high blood glucose levels occur.

You still need to know how to use your insulin pen!
There may be times where you need or want to go back to injections, for example for contact sport or an aquatic holiday – or just to take a pump break. It is important to remember how to use an insulin pen and calculate bolus and correction doses.

Private health insurance and wait lists
Pumps are expensive medical devices and private health companies require a fair bit of paperwork. Make sure you start the process early if you have a deadline for when you want your pump. If you’re 16 or above, you can drastically reduce this waiting time if you get a private Credentialled Diabetes Educator to do your pump start.

Does pumping lead to better control?
Research evidence does not overwhelmingly suggest that pumps lead to a lower HbA1c compared with multiple daily injections. As a clinician, it’s my view that patients get out of pump therapy what they put into it, and the same goes for injections.

Talk Talk Talk
Don’t just go with the first pump company you speak to. Do your research. Speak to others in the type 1 tribe who live with pumps already. Get their opinions, ask lots of questions, and speak to an educator for an unbiased overview of what each pump company can offer you.

To pump or not to pump? That is the question, and only YOU can answer it!

Meet our March D-Legend, Brie MacDonald

My name is Brie MacDonald and I am 8 years old. I have had diabetes for less than a year. I was diagnosed in August 2016. I didn’t feel so bad when I was diagnosed, I just lost weight.

At first I felt different, having diabetes. But now I know that it’s not just me with diabetes I feel a lot better. I have friends with diabetes now, I met them through the Family Centre. I went to the Halloween Party and to the Christmas Party and I saw some of my friends there. I am excited to go to more events at the Family Centre and to be in the calendar next year.

I did my first triathlon in February this year at Cottesloe. I was very quick. Really for me it was just a blink and it was done!

At the start line I was really excited. You didn’t really have a choice if you were ready or not, you still had to go because the organiser just said one minute … ten seconds … five four three two one – GO!

I had to swim 75 metres in ocean. I was lucky because it wasn’t very wavy that day. Before I got to the end of the swim I saw lots of seaweed so I flipped over and did my backstroke because I don’t like seaweed.

My favourite part of the triathlon is the bike, because I like biking it’s my hobby and I do it all the time. I ride my bike around the house and to the park and also around the park. My bike is white and bit of pink. I had to ride for three kilometres in the race so I am glad I ride my bike all the time.

I had to run one kilometre at the end, although it was kind of a walk because I was tired. My sugar level went high because I was so excited at the start, and scared that I might not finish the race. When I get excited or scared my sugar level goes high.

The triathlon took me 24 minutes. After the race my sugar level went back down and I was glad about that.

My next triathlon is the Weetbix Kids Triathlon in April. My goal for this one is for my Dad not to mess up my test strips. It was a disaster! When I got to my bike in the race, my Dad was ready to check my sugar but he didn’t realise that he put the strip the wrong way round in the meter, and that’s why I came last in the run part.

My other goal is for my sugar level to not go up. Maybe I need to get a bit less excited, I will take deep breaths and try and think ‘OK Brie, this is another normal day swimming at the beach and biking and running’ and maybe my sugar won’t go up.

My advice for other kids with diabetes is you can do anything you want except eat things with a lot of sugar. Even with diabetes you can do all kinds of sports!

Recipe of the Month: Spinach and Feta Parcels
Spinach and Feta Parcels
These are easy to make, full of goodness and great for lunchboxes!
Serve hot or cold.
Makes 4 serves.
500g frozen spinach, thawed and water squeezed out
6 eggs, beaten
½ red onion, finely diced
250g softened cream cheese, broken up with a fork
200g feta, crumbled
½ cup fresh mint, chopped
Salt and cracked black pepper
6 filo pastry sheets, cut in half lengthways (you will be making 12 parcels)
Olive oil spray
Preheat oven to 180°C.
Spinach and Feta Filling
Place the spinach and all other ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
Mix gently, leaving some cream cheese and feta lumps.
Filo parcels
Spray filo sheets with a small amount of olive oil. Place a large spoonful of spinach and feta filling in the middle of the first sheet. Fold up the bottom of the filo paper to start to make a triangle, then roll up. Continue with the remaining 11 sheets of filo.
Place each parcel on a baking tray lined with baking paper and spray with oil.
Bake for 15-20 minutes turning once to ensure golden on all sides.
Nutrition information per serve (serves 4)
Kilojoules – 2110
Protein – 26.4grams
Fat – 35.6grams
Saturated fat – 20.7grams
Carbohydrate – 16.7grams
Fibre – 3.7grams
And finally, our Meme of the Month!
That's all folks! Stay tuned for our next edition of The Blue Balloon. 
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Type 1 Diabetes Family Centre · 11 Limosa Close · Stirling · Perth, WA 6021 · Australia

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