Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms Type 1 Diabetes

The T1D news show you've been waiting for! Long-time broadcaster, blogger and diabetes mom Stacey Simms interviews prominent advocates, authors and speakers. Stacey asks hard questions of healthcare companies and tech developers and brings on "everyday' people living with type 1. Great for parents of T1D kids, adults with type 1 and anyone who loves a person with diabetes.
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Jan 18, 2022

Diagnosed almost 60 years ago, Joanne Milo loves technology and helped start the popular Loop and Learn group. She’s also passionate about diabetes and aging.

It's hard to believe now, but many people diagnosed in the 1960s and 70s were told they wouldn’t live to age 40. Thankfully, that wasn’t true. But the medical world wasn’t prepared for them to actually live long and healthy lives. There is very little research or support for people with type 1 over the age of 50. Imagine when you get to 80 or beyond!

Joanne Milo is also the author of the book and blog “The Savvy Diabetic” and she has a lot to say about how we can all prepare better for emergencies or hospital stays.

Joanne's website - The Savvy Diabetic

More about Loop and Learn

This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Check out Stacey's book: The World's Worst Diabetes Mom!

Join the Diabetes Connections Facebook Group!

Sign up for our newsletter here


Use this link to get one free download and one free month of Audible, available to Diabetes Connections listeners!

Episode Transcription Below (or coming soon!)

Dec 17, 2021
Our top stories in the news this week: Congressional report on insulin pricing, SGLT2 pulled from EU market, Insulin-producing cells found outside the pancreas, Sugarmate returns & Miss America with #T1D joins Smithsonian display.
Join us LIVE every Wednesday at 4:30pm EST
Full episode transcription below:

Check out Stacey's book: The World's Worst Diabetes Mom!

Join the Diabetes Connections Facebook Group!

Sign up for our newsletter here


Use this link to get one free download and one free month of Audible, available to Diabetes Connections listeners!

Get the App and listen to Diabetes Connections wherever you go!

Click here for iPhone      Click here for Android

Hello and welcome to Diabetes Connections In the News! I’m Stacey Simms and these are the top diabetes stories and headlines of the past seven days. As always, I’m going to link up my sources in the Facebook comments – where we are live – we are also Live on YouTube and in the show notes at d-c dot com when this airs as a podcast..
In the News is brought to you by The World’s Worst Diabetes Mom, Real life stories of raising a child with diabetes. Winner of the American Book Fest Prize for best new non-fiction. Available in paperback, on Kindle or as an audio book – all at
New Congressional report from Democrats on the House Committee on Oversight & Reform keeping the focus on insulin pricing. It says Medicare could have saved more than $16.7 billion on insulin if it were allowed to negotiate like other health programs. This final report is the culmination of an almost 3-year investigation. Documents from Eli Lilly, Novo Nordisk, and Sanofi indicate these firms "raised their prices in lockstep in order to maintain 'pricing parity'. One particularly damning quote – a Novo Nordisk pricing analyst remarked, '[M]aybe Sanofi will wait until tomorrow morning to announce their price increase...that's all I want for Christmas',"
Surprising move in Europe – they’ve pulled the SGLT-2 inhibitor Forxiga from the market for people with type 1. AstraZeneca said the decision isn’t about safety but didn’t explain further. There are already concerns about an increased risk of DKA from SGLT-2 inhibitors in people with type 1.. that’s why they aren’t approved in the US.. but many advocates say the benefits outweigh the risks. The UK Chief Executive of JDRF, said it is "appalling" that the drug has been withdrawn, as quote "many people with type 1 are finding it an effective and useful tool to help manage their glucose levels."
The FDA issues a warning to Medtronic over it’s diabetes headquarters. This is related to a July inspection that led to recalls of the MiniMed™ 600 series pump, and a remote controller device for MiniMed™ 508 and Paradigm™ pumps. Medtronic says they are implementing a range of corrective actions and process improvements related to the observations, and will continue reviewing these actions with the FDA.
Here’s a new one. Israeli scientists have discovered that the human fetus makes insulin in its intestines before birth and say this means that adults may have a “backup” system that could be reactivated to treat diabetes. This is peer-reviewed research published in the journal Nature Medicine. These scientists say there’s a lot here they don’t understand and practical applications are a long way off but.. the hope is that some kind of medication could one day reactivate these cells in adults.
Good news Sugarmate fans! Late last week the app makers announced it would once again connect with Dexcom for US customers. They issued an apology and thanked users for their patience. Still working on re-connecting for those outside the US. This is all about changes to the Dexcom API, the way apps talk to each other.
Dexcom expands it’s physical presence, opening a second large facility in Arizona. Big celebration this week with a ribbon cutting ceremony at the 500-thousand square foot facility and a job fair. In looking into this story, I found that earlier this year the other Dexcom center was used as an indoor drive-thru Covid vaccination site.. a partnership between Dexcom, the Arizona Health Department and Walgreens.
Time Magazine’s Heroes of the Year are the scientists behind the COVID vaccines. While there are of course many people at work here, they highlighted four – including Dr. Drew Weissman who has lived with type 1 for more than 50 years. He and partners began working on mRNA science for vaccines in 1997, publishing a landmark paper in 2005. There’s a lot more to this story of course.. DiabetesMine ran a photo of Weissman almost a year ago, getting the vaccine and you can see his insulin pump on his belt.
Miss America memorabilia moves to the Smithsonian, including items from Nicole Johnson, the first Miss America with type 1 diabetes. Johnson posted about this on social media saying she was donating her insulin pump, swimsuit and letters from children with diabetes that she received during her reign in 1999. The exhibit will mark 100 years of the competition. Other items include a hearing-aid-compatible microphone used by Heather Whitestone, the first deaf Miss America of 1995 and the first swimsuit worn in the pageant.
New York Times article today about model Lila Moss wearing her omnipod during a fashion show a few months ago. They included a few other runway models with type 1 and got some quotes from JDRF.. nothing too new here but worth mentioning. One tidbit.. it’s not uncommon, these models say, for pumps and CGMs to be airbrushed out if the client or they wish it to be – they’re keeping their tech on for the shoots.
Before I let you go, a reminder that the podcast this week is my favorite things! I had a great time with this episode.. it’s short and fun I think – and I talk about accessories, storage, toys and more. Listen wherever you get your podcasts or if you’re listening to this as on a podcast app, just go back an episode.
Next week our predictions episode – DiabetesMine Managing Editor Mike Hoskins joins me as we talk about tech in the new year.
That’s In the News for this week.. if you like it, please share it! Thanks for joining me! See you back here soon.


Dec 14, 2021

This week… something completely different! It’s an episode all about my favorite things. With apologies to Oprah, this isn’t about the holidays – it’s a little late for that! And while some of this might make good gifts, this more of a season-less list. Just good stuff I like.

Couple of rules I set for myself: Nothing that needs a prescription. Nothing that I’m getting paid for. No one on this list will even know they've been mentioned until the episode goes live!

Hope you enjoy! -Stacey

Here are the links to everything I mention:

Keep it cool:

Frio wallets

Tempramed VivCap

Sticky stuff/application:

Skin Tac wipes

Stay Put medical patches

Benadryl spray and Flonase spray

Nexcare waterproof bandages


T1D3DGear (warning, profanity)

Casualty Girl pouches 

Disney-themed pouches 

Dia-Be-Tees shirts and stickers


Think Like a Pancreas

Raising Teens with Diabetes

Sugar Surfing

When I Go Low

Just for fun:

Heroic Kid (play d-tech for toys) 

I Heart Guts

New Rufus the Bear!


The Useless Pancreas (marketplace)

Highs and Lows Ring

Guitar Pick

Check out Stacey's book: The World's Worst Diabetes Mom!

Join the Diabetes Connections Facebook Group!

Sign up for our newsletter here


Use this link to get one free download and one free month of Audible, available to Diabetes Connections listeners!

Get the App and listen to Diabetes Connections wherever you go!

Click here for iPhone      Click here for Android

Episode transcription below:


Stacey Simms  0:00

Diabetes Connections is brought to you by... Dario Health – Manage your blood glucose levels. Increase your possibilities.By Gvoke HypoPen, the first pre-mixed autoinjector for very low blood sugar. And By Dexcom. Take control of your diabetes and live life to the fullest with Dexcom

This is Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.

This week, something completely different. It's an episode all about my favorite things. With apologies to Oprah, this isn't about the holidays, it's a little late for that. And you know, some of this might make good gifts. This is more of just something I've been thinking about doing for a long time. So I would consider this a bit of a seasonless list, just good stuff that I like. And unfortunately, unlike Oprah, I haven't hidden everything I'm talking about here under your seat as a gift. So I can't do that.

But I did set a couple of rules for myself, you're not going to hear me talk about anything today for which you need a prescription. Right, I'm not gonna talk about medical stuff, and nothing that I'm getting paid for. I will put the links for all this stuff in the show notes, but they're not affiliate links. So that means they go right to the product where I think it's most easily available. They don't go to a special link, you know, which tallies you up and then pays me. I mean, there's nothing wrong with that as long as everybody knows what's going on. And a couple of these folks may sound familiar, I've worked with them before, we have had partnerships and sponsorships with the mostly the booked clinic program. But I really just wanted this to be a fun way to share my thoughts. If you have a product that I mentioned. And the link is wrong or doesn't go exactly where you want it, please reach out. I want to make this great for you and easy for my listeners. So drop me a line Stacey at diabetes And maybe we'll get a thread going in the Facebook group to find out some of your favorite things. Because you know, Benny is older now and the products that we really needed, you know, like the super cute insulin pump pouches that he used when he was three years old, he does not use anymore. So I don't have recommendations for stuff like that. Maybe we can kind of get a list going and I can do a follow up in a couple of weeks or months for listeners but you really should be in the Facebook group. Anyway, if you're on Facebook, I know not everybody is so if you're there, come on over. Alright, so here are a few of my favorite things


let's talk about keeping insulin at room temperature. A couple of products I really like for that we don't have a ton of issue with this day in and day out. I do live in North Carolina and Benny of course is  outside quite a bit in the summer, he does go to summer camp. When we've needed to keep something at room temperature. We use a Frio generally these Frio wallets pretty standard in the diabetes community you probably know about them. What's nice is you can get them at CBS. Now, I think Walgreens carries them used to be online only. They're really easy to use. Please follow the directions. Don't be like me and oversaturate and then you can't get anything in the wallet. You have to just read the directions. You'll figure it out better than we did. But Frio doesn't keep it cold. It just keeps it cool. But we love Frio.

Close to edging it out. And the only reason it doesn't here is because of the price. And because it doesn't yet cover vials. But that's coming is the VIVI Cap. These folks reached out to me middle of last year, probably spring of last year and sent us a sample we decided to try it on Benny's trip to Israel. If you'll recall, my son went to Israel with his non diabetes camp last summer for a month. This included tons and tons of outdoor activity in temperatures that were in excess of 100 degrees. Quite often, he packed two bags, one was like the go bag, three days worth of supplies. And then the other bigger bag that stayed inside or in a refrigerated area, at least the insulin part of it did on the bus or you know, wherever they went, I have my suspicions as to whether it's stayed perfectly refrigerated the whole time, but only a little bit of insulin went into the desert with. But the idea was he would take a pen, we would use the VIVI Cap, and then he would just change the pen out continuing to use the VIVI Cap in his backpack. Whenever he needed more insulin. He had vials he had pens we use both in his pump. And it's always nice to have a pen in case you need to give yourself a shot something like that. So when he came home and this is so typical of my son went through his bag, for he did a great job with diabetes, but there must have been like a communications problem because he never changed out that insulin pen. He never needed to give himself a shot, which is probably why but he just always used the vials that I'd sent him with. I sent him with way too much insulin for a month but you know, you know mom's What am I gonna do? So upshot of this long story is that the one insulin pen that we sent to Israel with stayed in hot temperatures definitely in excess of probably 75 degrees around the clock, and certainly in excess of 100 degrees for several days at a time during the daytime. And what happened to it right it was with the VIVI Cap the whole time so we decided to test it out. You know how he supervised setting right? I wasn't going to let him use this pen and then jaunt off do overnights or whatever he was with us. And look, we would know right away if that insulin was no good. And guess what? It worked perfectly. It was fantastic. He was in range. I mean, he was really we were really watching obviously, right. But he was in range pretty much the whole three days. So it was fantastic. And I was definitely converted to VIVI Cap. That should be their tagline guys call me if you can stand the Israeli desert heat, right, you can certainly hang out a day camp in North Carolina this summer. They often have promo codes, discounts. It's more expensive than the Frio wallet. But it's also really durable and lasts for a whole year. And it has different sizes. So it will fit whatever insulin you're using. My understanding is that they are working on a similar bit of technology for insulin vials, and that would be great.


Let's talk a little bit about getting stuff to stick. I have a whole document about this. If you haven't seen it, it's been a pop up for a couple of months. It's been incredibly popular. So I haven't taken it down yet. But I'm probably going to move it over to the bookstore section. Do you don't have a bookstore section on the website, we're kind of creating a place to put documents a lot of stuff is free. There are PDFs, so we're gonna move that over there. But of course there there's my book to buy and there will be more later this year. But the getting stuff to stick is so personal. I think it's really hard right? Everybody's skin is so different. So here's what we have liked over the years could not keep anything on Benny skin with a Skin Tac that is the brand that we like we get Skin Tac from Amazon. Over the years we've gone from just using the little Skin Tac wipes to using the liquid bottle we used to liquid for many years. I think gosh, Benny was like 13 or 14 and he was like no more. I don't want that it's not portable enough. He's never home. So he uses the wipes. Now. He uses nothing to dissolve it. So I have no favorite product for that. He literally just rips things off his skin. I cringe every time but hey, it's not my body.

We like Stay Put Medical patches. That's the brand, Stay Put Medical just foyer for years and years. We had trouble in the water. I tried vet wrap I tried all the stuff that all the moms tell you to try. The Dexcom overlays that come free from the company are great, but it didn't work as well in the ocean, or with sweat, that kind of thing. So Stay Put patches really were fantastic for us. The story I always tell is Benny with a diabetes camp for a full week, right Saturday to Saturday. And then we went to the beach and we restarted the ducks calm. This was a couple of years ago. And it survived to Stay Put and the Dexcom survived a week of diabetes camp where they swim and sweat and you know, they're pretty gross for a whole week. It's hot. Again, as I said we live in North Carolina, and then three days at the ocean, sand and ocean. All that stuff that you get and it really did stay put. So I really love that they're big. He got an incredible tan line. That's one of the only downsides of it.

We used Benadryl spray, Benny had a brief time of having a mild allergic reaction. I think this was to the Dexcom G5 years ago and my husband came back from the store with over the counter Benadryl spray not Flonase requested, and it worked fine. So it's kind of a weird, favorite thing, but I haven't heard a lot about Benadryl spray, but I'll mention it here.

I also really really like next care waterproof Band-Aids, the brand doesn't really matter. I mean, it's just a Tegaderm bandage, but I'd like to mention it because you can get it at the drugstore or the grocery store. It's over the counter. Unlike a lot of the stuff that has to be ordered from your medical company or from Amazon, you can take a waterproof bandage and in a pinch, slap it over your Dexcom or slap it over an infusion set. I mean, you have to cut a hole into for the infusion set. But sometimes you can just slap it on top. We've done that and then gently pulled it off later to reconnect to the tube to pump. And it works great. I've heard a lot of people say they're afraid of doing that because they don't want to block the signal from the Dexcom people. We have done this many, many, many times I can show you photos. When we went to the Dead Sea in Israel, I did not want to take a chance of the salt. Right. It's so salty, corroding the transmitter. So we put a waterproof bandage over the Dexcom. And he left it on for a couple of days. I don't know the probably wasn't very comfortable, but he didn't seem to care. And it worked fine. So that's my in a pinch favorite thing at the beach


let's talk about cases and organization something that my son doesn't care about at all. And if I if this were me, I'm the kind of person that I love pouches and organization and cool stuff like that and he really doesn't care. But I will go through and tell you what I like. I am a huge fan of T1D3DGear. This is just a fantastic family in the diabetes community to begin with, and their stuff is awesome. So as you can imagine T1D3DGear, they're making stuff right they're printing it out on their 3d printer and it's everything from trays, which we do use, I love those makes your supplies really easy to find. And they've got different sizes for different brands to insulin protection vials, which I like a lot, and they will do custom colors as well, we've been so lucky, where's the wood that I can knock that we've never actually like dropped a vial, but I always put the vial we're using in the case. And that makes me feel so much better. It's just a really easy, it kind of looks like R2D2 in a way. I don't think that's by design, but it's really helpful and really handy and they're making super useful products. They also make the cutest ones like if your kid wants a unicorn or different options. I'll link up their website, as I mentioned,

Benny doesn't really like pouches, but I make him use them anyway because otherwise his diabetes bag is just a complete mess. So we like the ones from casualty girl, some of these have a bit of profanity, you know, all my diabetes stuff. You can fill in the blank there, but they have a bunch of really clean ones, obviously, you know, for younger children, even for my kid I don't like him carrying stuff in public that that has profanity on it, but they have some really cute stuff specific to diabetes, also personalized. They put names on it, and they were so nice. A couple of years ago we gave away a bunch of their stuff at friends for life, so I always like to recommend them. I also will recommend and link up Disney themed pouches that don't look super Disney. I know a lot of you especially friends for life people you're big Disney fans. I am too but I don't like to have like Mickey Mouse on my purse. I like it to be a little bit more subtle. And at red bubble. There's a bunch of people who will put together pouches you can see the samples. They just kind of hint at Disney so I have the small world pouch but it's just like a pattern that is featured in small world. It's not actually it doesn't say small world. I got Lea my daughter for Hanukkah. This year. I got her one that has the Haunted Mansion wallpaper on it. You'd never know unless you knew. So very cool stuff. It doesn't have anything to do with diabetes. But I love red bubble. They also have a fun bunch of diabetes stickers there. Oh, speaking of stickers. The best is Dia-Be-Tees This is my friend Rachel. And she has amazing T shirts. She is so creative. She's got great stickers, she made an ugly Hanukkah sweater for diabetes, because a couple of years ago, she makes these great, ugly Christmas sweaters for their diabetes steam. They say funny stuff on them. But I pointed out to her like, hey, everybody celebrates Christmas and she was immediately on it. My favorite stickers are the Tyrannosaurus Dex, get it and the Banting fan club that she made this year for Dr. Banting. Very, very cool stuff. And I'll link up to her Etsy shop.


Let's talk about books. I promise I won't talk about my book here. I talk about it enough. But I really would like to recommend some books that have helped us a lot over the years. My favorite, the one that I always recommend is Think like a pancreas A Practical Guide to managing diabetes with insulin. And that is by the amazing diabetes educator Gary Scheiner. He is out with an updated edition. So he did this book, it's got to be I don't know, Gary, I'm guessing 10 years old, but he does update it frequently. I think it's the third edition now. It's really a great source and resource to understand your diabetes and your child's diabetes better and more thoroughly, let's say then perhaps you might get these quick endocrinology visits, definitely better than the information you're getting on Facebook.

I of course love raising teens with diabetes, a survival guide for parents by Moira McCarthy that has not been updated for the technology that has come out since its publication. However, I don't think that matters. I think that there are so many wonderful ideas, thoughts and ways to recognize how tough a time it is for teenagers and come through that time with your relationship with your child intact. So I really recommend that I know Maura is working on updating it. But even still, it's so good because I think so many people with teenagers, even as we say all the time Oh, it's such a tough time. It's they feel so alone. I still I mean gosh, you guys I always wonder and I call Moira. She would vouch for me. And I'm like I'm not doing this right. It's hard. It's really hard.

I also love Sugar Surfing how to manage type 1 diabetes in a modern world by the amazing Dr. Steven ponder, I would be lying if I said we are perfect sugar surfers. But we have used a lot of the principles that are in this book. And it does help you understand so much about how everything works and the dynamic way of managing. You know before CGM. It's incredible to think how much Dr. Ponder was able to do. And now with the monitoring, it's really, really helpful. But I will say you can get this for free. If you're newly diagnosed, I believe it's the first three months it might be six months, I will link it up. But I'm telling you right now, if you get this for free when you're newly diagnosed, put it away for a couple of weeks at least maybe put it away for six months, because it's it's pretty advanced in my opinion, and you got to learn diabetes, you got to learn a little bit more about it before you start worrying about the Delta and other stuff that's in here. But I love Dr. Ponder and highly recommend that one.

I get asked a lot about children's books. And you know Benny and I read so many diabetes children's books, so many I mean how many are there in the market but we read them so often when he was little And my favorites probably aren't even available anymore. You know, Jackie's got game was about this kid who was trying it for the basketball team. And then he goes low. We loved Rufus comes home, which is about the JDRF. Bear, there were a couple of that diabetes kind of popped up into lots of picture books that we read if the person in them didn't have diabetes, or the animals in them. But I gotta be honest with you, I struggle to recommend children's books, because I'm not reading them with little kids anymore. And I think they're a really good judge, right? I do. Like when I go low, a diabetes picture Guide, which is a terrific book by ginger Viera. And Mike Lawson. And this is a terrific book, because both of those people live with type one, we had them on the show, you know, I've known them for years I full disclosure, but I think it's so valuable because as a parent of a child with diabetes, who doesn't live with diabetes herself, I don't have that kind of insight. And I really trust those authors to share that information and help a child kind of give voice to how they're feeling when they go low, that sort of thing. It's a fun, cute book, it's, you know, it's not serious. It's not scary. It's really great.

And I'm just gonna say, and don't be mad parents, if you're thinking of writing a children's book, just carefully consider it. Look at what was already out on the market. I talked to a lot of people who spent a lot of money to put these books out, you know, most of them are not published by a traditional publishing house. Some are but most are self-published. And that's great. But you know, gosh, there are so many out there right now that are very similar. So you know, we don't need a general explainer, please think about what the need in the community is, what's the unique need, you can fill? And I would say, you know, that's why I like when I go low, because it's written by people with type one, we do need them. I mean, the children's books are great. And there's some wonderful ones out there, but I'll tell you, what I'd like to see is some elementary school and tween level books. That's what we really need around here. We don't need another picture book, we need something that an 11 year old or an eight year old could read and see themselves in, you know, baby sitters club is the only thing I can think of where diabetes is there, but it isn't always the focus, it would be really nice to have something else like that. Frankly, I'd like to see that adult level book as well. There's a couple of authors that have written books were diabetes featured but isn't like the main point. But boy, it would be really fun to see that in like a blockbuster bestseller kind of book if they got it right of course.


Alright, let's talk about some just for fun stuff. years ago, Benny got his years ago on his 10 year diaversary. So five years ago, we gave Benny the I heart guts, stuffed pancreas. I heart guts is a company that makes they're so funny. They make stuffed animal type body parts, I'm sorry, they call them plush organs. And since we purchased a few years ago, they have a few more options on their website. They have socks, they have pouches, I was talking about pouches earlier, there's one that says party in my pancreas. But what I really like about this is you can get something for your kiddo with type one. But you can also find something for a sibling who doesn't have diabetes, right? If you're if you're just looking for something silly, I gave my daughter the heart, right? I mean, knock on wood, thank God, there's nothing wrong with her heart. But it was a symbol of my love for her. And while she thought it was kind of silly, you know, it's a way to include her. So diabetes isn't always you know, the middle of everything. And they I mean, this place absolutely cracks me up. There is so much here. They've got puns as far as the eye can see. So if your kid needs their tonsils out, if your wife is having a knee replacement, these are just really fun. And I may have to go and order a huge amount of the stickers.

One of the things I absolutely love is that a lot of businesses have popped up to make toy accessories for kids with diabetes. So you know, you've probably heard like Build A Bear has a diabetes kit, you can get that online. years ago, the American Girl doll kit kind of kicked this off. But there's a bunch of people in the community making this stuff. So I recommend heroic kid, and they make tiny little CGMs for your Elf on the Shelf. If you're into that, or you can put it on an American Girl doll. You can have a libre, they now make a bunch of insulin pumps. It's awesome. I love this stuff. I mean, I can't even imagine if we'd had a real real looking insulin pump for Benny when he was two years old that he could have stuck on his Elmo. Holy cow. So heroic kid is fantastic.

And the other thing for kids I wanted to share. And I I tell if you saw my newscast last week, we talked about this I broke this story in 2019. Jerry the bear, and Rufus the bear are now one, there can only be one, there was only one bear. And we talked about this when beyond type one and JDRF announced their alliance in 2019. I kind of jokingly asked like what happens to the bears? And they answered it with a straight face and said only one. We're gonna figure this out because it doesn't make any sense to have to, you know, we don't want to be spending money on this kind of stuff. So what happened is Rufus is now $22 which is a lot less than the starting price of Jerry. And if you're not familiar, I probably should explain. So Jerry, the bear is an interactive toy made by the folks at Sproutel, they have gone on to make things like my special AFLAC duck. They have, I think it's called a purrburl. It's like a little stuffed animal that kind of helps kids kind of calm themselves. It's interactive that way. And but they started with Jerry, the bear was their first product developed when these guys were in college. It's a really smart team. But Jerry is a teaching toy. And there's an app on he's evolved over the years and really looks great. And of course, now he looks like Rufus. So this is Rufus on the outside Jerry on the inside, and it's available for $22.

I'm gonna call this next category, miscellaneous, because these were just a couple of things that I wanted to make sure to tell you about. But they don't fit into many of these categories. And the first one popped up into my Facebook feed. But it looks beautiful. It's a ring. It's kinda like a zigzaggy ring. But it's called to my daughter highs and lows ring, it is only $36. It is cubic zirconia. It is sterling silver plated with 18 karat gold. So this is not a you know, super expensive super valuable ring. And that's fine. I think it's great for what it is, makes it a terrific little gift. And it comes with a card that says the ring stands for the highs and lows in life, wear it as a reminder that I will be there for you through all of them. That's pretty cool. And hey, moms, I mean, you can buy it for yourself. Even though we go through some highs and lows, they don't all have to be diabetes related.

I want to mention, this is very silly. But this is our miscellaneous category. And these are my favorite things. I think everybody who uses a Dexcom should have a guitar pick lying around. Because you've probably seen the trick to use a test strip to to pry the Dexcom transmitter out of the sensor for a couple of reasons doesn't work for us. I don't know if our test strips are weak or our transmitters are strong. But we have found that a guitar pick does the trick very easily. And I'll tell you the number one reason why we have to remove Dexcom transmitters, it's because then he will start a dead transmitter, or I'll start a dying transmitter. And he'll ignore all the notifications, we'll put the sensor on and clip the transmitter and then the transmitter is dead. So yeah, the guitar pick comes in handy to pry that out and then put the new transmitter in.

I also want to recommend a website not a product here but Useless is a clearinghouse for so many products. They've done an amazing job. We had them on the podcast earlier this year. But since I talked to them, they've added so much. So if you're tooling around and you're not sure even what you're looking for, like I need to get something that'll make stuff stick or I need something that'll they have these two categories, like what will make my kid happy. It's just a neat place to go and find a diabetes marketplace. So I'd like to recommend that because, you know, you go on Amazon, there's so many choices. But they've done a nice job of really trying to narrow it down and give us one place to go.

Alright, before I wrap it up here, I did ask Benny if he had any favorite diabetes, things to recommend. And he looked at me like I hit three heads. After thinking about it for a minute or two. He said, The silent button on my pump and Dexcom. So I can't say I blame him for that. I am happy that he has the vibrate only we wish every alarm could be silenced. We understand why they cannot be.

So there you have it. That's my very first favorite things episode, I will put a link in the show notes. For every item that I talked about here, I want to make it easy for you to find. Again, if you are haven't mentioned and you have a product and you're not crazy about the link I use, feel free to email me Stacey at diabetes or ping me on social media and we will figure it out. I want to make sure that people can find your stuff. And if you have your own favorite things that you'd like to list, I think I will put something in the Facebook group and maybe we'll share that in the weeks to come.

Thank you as always to my editor John Buchanan from audio editing solutions. Thank you so much for listening. A couple of weeks left in December, we are going to have these Tuesday episodes, as I mentioned, including kind of a look ahead to next year some predictions possibly. And I'm really hoping to get one more technology update for you in before the end of the year trying to get someone from Tandem to come on and talk about that R&D update that I spoke about in the news episode. Last week. They laid out their five year plan for new products and software. But I will see you back here on Wednesday for in the news or if you listen on podcast. That'll be Friday. All right. I'm Stacey Simms. I'll see you back here soon Until then be kind to yourself.


Benny  24:43

Diabetes Connections is a production of Stacey Simms media. All rights reserved. All wrongs avenged

Dec 3, 2021
It's "In the News..." the only diabetes newscast. Top stories this week include: #T1D oral insulin study moves ahead, FDA gives breakthrough designation to new SIGI tubeless pump, study shines light on PBM profits, China demands huge drop in insulin prices and Bigfoot Biomedical launches their Clinic Hub
Join us LIVE every Wednesday at 4:30pm EST

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Hello and welcome to Diabetes Connections In the News! I’m Stacey Simms and these are the top diabetes stories and headlines of the past seven days. As always, I’m going to link up my sources in the Facebook comments – where we are live – we are also Live on YouTube and in the show notes at d-c dot com when this airs as a podcast..


In the News is brought to you by The World’s Worst Diabetes Mom, Real life stories of raising a child with diabetes. Winner of the American Book Fest Prize for best new non-fiction. Available in paperback, on Kindle or as an audio book – all at You can also get a big discount right now at – use promo code celebrate to save $4


Our top story this week.. More good news for mice.. and maybe some day for people. Yale researchers are looking at an oral medication for type 1 diabetes. These lucky mice had metabolic function restored and inflammation reversed. There are a lot of studies going on to make oral insulin work – liquid insulin is destroyed in the stomach before it hits the bloodstream. This research involves a nanoparticle drug vehicle that can not only bring insulin to the pancreas safely, but the casing itself has therapeutic benefits. It’s made out of an acid that seems to reduce the rogue immune cells that destroy the beta cells in the first place. The team says that the nanoparticles could also be used to carry other molecules, which could help with other conditions.


A new tubeless pump is making its way through the US regulatory process. The FDA gives breakthrough device designation to AMF Medical’s Sigi (SIG-ee) Insulin Management System. This is a patch pump, like Omnipod, but it’s rechargeable and re-usable – you get two so you don’t have to go without while it’s charging.

It’s also an ACE pump, that’s alternate control enabled which means it can interact with CGMs and controller devices like smartphones. This designation isn’t FDA approval, but it should speed up the review. In the press release the company says, “Clinical study data has shown that Sigi™ is delightfully easy to use.” Which is kind of a nice thing to see in a write up like this.


Big news from the UK this week – they announced everyone in England with type 1 will be eligible for CGMs covered by the National Health Service there. This was preceeded by coverage for the Libre flash glucose monitor. That program was supposed to start at 20% but almost 50% of people with type 1 have opted in and the results in terms of better health and lower a1cs have really been outstanding. Next up, leaders there say they want CGM covered for anyone using insulin, regardless of diabetes type.


New research into insulin pricing is shining a light on the middle men.. many of us have known about PBMs for a long time. Researchers at USC found that drugmakers’ share of revenue from insulin sales has dropped in recent years — and a greater share is being siphoned off by pharmacy benefit managers, drugstores, wholesalers and insurers. In 2014, 30% of insulin revenue went to PBMs. By 2018, those same middlemen were receiving 53%. Terrific write up as usual by David Lazurs in the LA Times – he lives with type 1 and I always love his stuff. I’ll link this one up. The researchers here say since the PBMs are getting a greater share, there’s pressure on the drug’s manufacturers to keep raising prices so their own profits don’t suffer. It’s worth noting that these findings were possible because of newer state laws bringing greater transparency to insulin sales.


What works to bring down the price of insulin? Ask China. They decided a round of price cuts is due and as a result, 42 insulin products from companies in China and abroad took an average 48% price drop. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have been used in that country’s public hospitals. Lilly gave up the largest discount: After a 75% reduction, the price of Humalog went down to about $3 per pen. China has been making pharma cut prices for the last few years for other medications. This is the first time insulin has really been affected.


Bigfoot releases some information and reaction to their Clinic Hub. This is how endos and clinics use the data from the Bigfoot Unity System to support patients. Unity launched this summer – it’s their smart pen program. When you think about multiple daily injections whether it’s for type 1 or type 2.. it’s hard for health care providers to see what’s going on day to day.. are doses correct, when they’re giving, etc. Unity can also include CGM data. This is the launch phase of Clinic Hub.. Bigfoot says they’ve also added streamlined patient onboarding and more flexibility for patient updates and prescription management.


I’m including the Vertex news here.. we reported this back in October but you probably had everyone you know send you that New York Times article about a cure for type 1 – at least in one guy.. I won’t rehash everything here..  it’s about stem cells, one patient off insulin but on immunosuppressive drugs..  Personally, I’m very hopeful, but the Times write up overly simplified a lot of this, in my opinion. Good write up in Healthline that I’ll link to.


In the UK lots of attention on their Strictly Come Dancing competition… when it became apparent contestant Nikita Kuzmin wasn’t hiding the Libra glucose monitor on his arm. He wasn’t hiding much.. he took off his shirt for this performance. Loads of social media comments applauding him.. for both. By the way, his dance partner, Tilly Ramsey is the daughter of professional chef Gordon Ramsey.. and they were eliminated from the show this round.


quick reminder that the podcast this week is with the UK co-lead on diabetes, Dr Partha Kar. We had a great chat about access and their Libre program and his whole philosophy.. really fun episode. Next week you’ll hear from the folks at ConvaTec, they make almost all the pump insets and they have some great info for us all.

you can listen to wherever you get your podcasts or if you’re listening to this as on a podcast app, just go back an episode.

That’s In the News for this week.. if you like it, please share it! Thanks for joining me! See you back here soon.

Nov 2, 2021

Kenny Rodenheiser is a diabetes educator, and a big part of the Children with Diabetes community. But when he was diagnosed as a young teenager, he felt angry and isolated and wanted nothing to do with anything like a diabetes conference. Kenny talks about what changed his mind, his road to becoming an educator and his current role at Dexcom.

This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Check out Stacey's book: The World's Worst Diabetes Mom!

Join the Diabetes Connections Facebook Group!

Sign up for our newsletter here


Use this link to get one free download and one free month of Audible, available to Diabetes Connections listeners!

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Episode transcription coming soon

Click here for iPhone      Click here for Android

Oct 29, 2021
This week, In the News our top stories include: Israeli researchers test an implant for type 2 remission, a new sports study looks at kids with type 1 on multiple daily injections, a new camera app to turn your old meter into high-tech info, the Tidepool period project, type 1 in the World Series and more!
Join us LIVE every Wednesday at 4:30pm EDT

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Join the Diabetes Connections Facebook Group!

Sign up for our newsletter here


Use this link to get one free download and one free month of Audible, available to Diabetes Connections listeners!

Get the App and listen to Diabetes Connections wherever you go!

Episode transcription below:

Click here for iPhone      Click here for Android

Hello and welcome to Diabetes Connections In the News! I’m Stacey Simms and these are the top diabetes stories and headlines of the past seven days. As always, I’m going to link up my sources in the Facebook comments – where we are live – we are also Live on YouTube and in the show notes at d-c dot com when this airs as a podcast..
In the News is brought to you by Real Good Foods! Find their breakfast line and all of their great products in your local grocery store, Target or Costco.
Our top story: Lucky mice but will it work in people? Israeli scientists say they have a one-time implant that brings blood glucose into non-diabetic range. The implant is healthy tissue grown in a lab – the glucose dropped by an average of 26-percent and stayed there the four months of the study. The engineered cells absorbed sugar, improved glucose levels and also improved absorption in other muscle cells. Long way to go before this is tried in people.
Sports and kids with type 1 can be a tough balance, especially on multiple daily injections. A new study called the Car-2-Diab trial looked at what changes work well for teens during exercise. There’s a lot here, so I’d urge you to follow the link I’ll provide, but basically everyone in this small study experienced overnight hypos and some high BG just after exercise. The most common fix was a drop in total basal insulin. These researchers say sports and type 1 have a – quote - “irreducible level of confounding factors.” Which.. from personal experience, I can say.. I agree.
Big new study about Medtronic’s 780G pump, available in Europe and in front of the US FDA right now. This looked at 3200 kids age 15 and younger. Time in range was 74% overall and overnight 82%. The 780G uses the Guardian Sensor 3 as a hybrid closed loop where you still bolus for meals. Overall these kids saw a 12-percent bump up in time in range.. which is a better boost than Medtronic’s first hybrid closed loop system, the 670G.
Good write up about adults with type 1 which make up more than half of all new cases of type 1. This summary in the ADA publication Diabetes Care shows that there are big differences between adult and childhood onset, many of which aren’t understood. This also points out that misdiagnosis occurs in nearly 40% of adults with new type 1 diabetes, with the risk of error increasing with age.
New app to retrofit a regular old blood glucose meter and make it a bit more high tech. Computer vision technology developed by University of Cambridge engineers can read and record the glucose levels, time and date displayed on a typical glucose test.. it does this with just the camera on a mobile phone. The technology, which doesn't require an internet or Bluetooth connection, works for any type of glucose meter, in any orientation and in a variety of light levels. The app is called Gluco-Rx Vision. You think about a lot of the services and programs that have popped up that require Bluetooth and remote monitoring – this helps people take advantage without having to buy a new meter.
Tidepool gets a boost for it’s Period Project… from Amazon. The Tidepool Period Project is trying to address the unmet needs of people with diabetes who menstruate. This funding from Amazon Web Services will go to supporting prototype concepts and user interface designs at Tidepool. There’s not a lot of data on diabetes and periods despite the fact that we all pretty much know anecdotally that there’s a lot going on in terms of glucose levels and hormones. Kudos to Tidepool for gathering this info for future research.
More to come, including diabetes in the world series.. But first, I want to tell you about one of our great sponsors who helps make Diabetes Connections possible.
Real Good Foods. Where the mission is Be Real Good
They make nutritious foods— grain free, high in protein, never added sugar and from real ingredients—we really like their breakfast line.. although Benny rarely eats the waffles or breakfast sandwiches for breakfast.. it’s usually after school or late night. Or sometimes it’s dinner. You can buy Real Good Foods online or find a store near you with their locator right on the website. I’ll put a link in the FB comments and as always at d-c dot com.
Back to the news… And it’s sports news! As of this taping the Atlanta Braves have won Game 1 of the World Series.. with Adam Duvall getting a 2-run home run. We’ve high-lighted Duvall here before.. he was diagnosed with type 1 at age 23. We’ve seen a lot of posts on social media of him taking the time to meet with families during the season, signing autographs and taking photos with his pump. Good stuff.
And finally.. Just as the newest Apple watch was released - without blood glucose monitoring.. rumors are already swirling about the next version of the watch. As we’ve said.. you’ll know it’s real when they start clinical trials.. but Dexcom’s Chief Technology officer talked to me this week about their new agreement with Garmin and looked ahead to the G7 and possible non invasive blood glucose monitoring. Interesting stuff you can listen to wherever you get your podcasts or if you’re listening to this as a podcast, just go back an episode.
That’s In the News for this week.. if you like it, please share it! Thanks for joining me! See you back here soon.

Sep 14, 2021

The term “Walmart Insulin” has always referred to cheap, older formulations. But now an agreement with Novo Nordisk means Walmart is selling own branded version of Novolog. It's the very same insulin, with a much lower cash price.

What does this mean for us as customers and for insulin pricing overall? Stacey speaks to Michael Burke, Walmart's Director of Brand Pharmacy Merchandising. They talk about who can get Relion Novolog, how much it costs, what your endo needs to know and how insurers are reacting.

LA Times article Stacey mentions

More info about Relion Insulin

Dear Dr. Banting (we need your voice!)

This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Check out Stacey's book: The World's Worst Diabetes Mom!

Join the Diabetes Connections Facebook Group!

Sign up for our newsletter here


Use this link to get one free download and one free month of Audible, available to Diabetes Connections listeners!

Get the App and listen to Diabetes Connections wherever you go!

Click here for iPhone      Click here for Android

Episode transcription below 

Stacey Simms  0:00

Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dario health. Manage your blood glucose levels increase your possibilities by Gvoke Hypopen the first premix auto injector for very low blood sugar and by Dexcom take control of your diabetes and live life to the fullest with Dexcom.

This is Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.

This week, the term Walmart insulin has always referred to cheap, older formulations until this summer, a new agreement with Novo Nordisk means Walmart is selling its own branded version of Novolog.


Michael Burke  0:38

real sense of pride for us at Walmart to hear the great feedback. Our pharmacists and pharmacy teams are very excited about the product and how they can help support patients.


Stacey Simms  0:50

That's Michael Burke, Director of brand pharmacy merchandising for Walmart. We'll talk about who couldn't get this, how much it costs. Why now and what's next.

This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Welcome to another week of the show. I am your host, Stacey Simms, and we aim to educate and inspire about diabetes with a focus on people who use insulin. My son was diagnosed right before he turned two back in 2006. And my husband lives with type two diabetes. I don't have diabetes, but I spent my career in broadcasting and that is how you get the podcast

earlier this summer. As many of you probably remember, Walmart announced its new agreement with Novo Nordisk it is selling the same insulin that they make under the Walmart brand. So it's called ReliOn Novolog. And it's sold at Walmart and at Sam's clubs. This is not the older $25 so called Walmart insulin that includes older versions such as regular and NPH, which can be used safely if you know what you're doing very rarely used in pumps, and very rarely prescribed as a matter of routine. They're not the standard of care for modern day diabetes. But people do certainly use what many of you refer to as Walmart insulin, they still do use regular and NPH. But the vast majority of people who probably listen to this podcast and are regularly seeing an endocrinologist and have been diagnosed, let's say within the last 30 years are probably using novolog, humalog, And the the newer, you know, faster acting insulins. So because Walmart is selling novolog, we might have to change what we mean when we say Walmart, insulin.

And now that the dust has settled a bit, I thought it would be a good idea to find out how it's going and what it really means for people who use insulin. Unfortunately, I don't think it's changed the marketplace a lot. What it did prove, at least to me is that the retail price of insulin with or without insurance is as arbitrary, as most of us suspected. I mean, pardon my cynicism here. I do appreciate the folks from Walmart coming on to talk about this. And I appreciate that they're doing something I'm sure this new pricing will help some it is $73 though for a vial when the estimated cost of producing that vial is maybe four to $6. So it is still quite high. And that is the cash price. By the way with insurance as you'll hear it is likely a lot lower. So going in, please know and most of you already know this bottom line, ask your doctor, Ask your pharmacist, make sure you are getting the insulin that costs the least for you according to whatever plan you have.

There are so many hoops to jump through to ensure this if you don't have great insurance, you may want to go to get that's a clearinghouse put on by beyond type one. And all it really does is bring all the coupon programs together. So it's one place where you can find out what you can get get I will link that up in the show notes. We used it because as you'll hear in the interview, and I've shared this before, our current insurance does not cover the insulin that my son uses and wants to keep using and we needed to use coupons for that it did help us if you're struggling if you can't find these resources post in the Diabetes Connections Facebook group, you're more than welcome. We have a lot of great people who can help you figure this out. But you know, do what you need to do. as frustrating as it may be. Don't ration your insulin if you if you can possibly help it. I know that sounds ridiculous to even say that. But look, one in four people in this country do ration their insulin. So maybe there's something that we can do to kind of help you. As I said, jump through those hoops.

Alright, Michael Burke, Director of brand pharmacy merchandising in just a moment, but first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dario health and we first noticed Dario a couple of years ago at a conference, Benny thought being able to turn your smartphone into a meter was pretty amazing. And I'm excited to tell you that Dario offers even more now. The Dario diabetes success plan gives you all the supplies and support you need to succeed. You'll get a glucometer that fits in your pocket unlimited test strips and lancets delivered to your door and a mobile app with a complete view of your data. The plan is tailored for you With coaching when and how you need it and personalized reports based on your activity, find out more, go to my forward slash diabetes dash connections.

Michael, thanks for joining me a lot of information to get through and I appreciate you coming on. Thank you so much for having me. Let's just start with kind of an explanation, if you wouldn't mind, take us through what Walmart is doing here, what's the new version of insulin that Walmart is selling,


Michael Burke  5:28

we have recently launched analog insulins we can get into here in a second, the difference there, but it's an extension of our current line of insulin. So the insulin that we've had at Walmart for some time now is the human insulin, or the novolin products, our extension and new launch now is an analogue insulin, which are the newest version of fast acting insulin, and can help better regulate someone's blood glucose levels, very excited that we were able to get into this. It's been a large topic in the industry for a while on why we were just at human insulin as a private brand offering, and what more we could do so very excited that we got into the analog insulin, as it is the insulin to be used for a type one diabetic, and preferred in most cases and type twos.


Stacey Simms  6:19

Can you share a little bit about what happened here? Because this isn't something that Walmart could just do, right? This is a version of Novolog. I mean, this is an agreement with Novo Nordisk, can you kind of take us through what the process?


Michael Burke  6:30

Yeah, so we have had a long standing relationship with novo, they are the manufacturer of our human insulin, the Novolin ReliOn products that we've had on the market. And so with the changes of recent in the industry and a real focus, I'd say from across the board, from legislation to patient advocacy to patients, manufacturers, to pharmacies, to prescribers. There's been a large focus over the last two years on what more can be done in the space and so it allowed us an opportunity to work with novo and expand what we already had on the market is a private brand offering and bring a new private brand and new ReliOn offering in the Nova log in Nova log mix, both in a flex 10 and vile and offer a lower cost option for patients who had struggled with affordability to this point.


Stacey Simms  7:24

This is a branded insulin so you get ReliOn a brand novolog only at Walmart, am I Is that right? Is that how it works?


Michael Burke  7:32

Yes. So like everything healthcare, it's got to be confusing, right. So novolog is the branded name. That is the FDA filed and and trademarked products from Novo Nordisk. What we have done is partnered with Novo Nordisk to launch a ReliOn novolog and to ReliOn novolog MCs, same product manufactured by Novo Nordisk manufactured here actually in the US and comes off the same production lines is the same insulin, the difference being that it is branded with Walmart's private brand of ReliOn which enables us to bring that in house to self distribute to our stores help support our customers. So it offers us the opportunity to cut out some of the middlemen lower the cost, but still the same great product manufactured by Novo Nordisk still the same as their branded Nova log and Nova log mixes, just with a private brand twist from Walmart.


Stacey Simms  8:33

So this was announced in late June, as I remember, how has it been? Is it out now are people able to purchase it? What what's the roll up in like


Michael Burke  8:42

it is. So we started with the novolog vials and the Nova logs mix in our ReliOn brand, or sorry, the Nova log vials and the Nova log flex pins in our private brand of ReliOn. And then this last month, we were able to launch the mix in ReliOn flex pins and vials. So the regular novolog has been out a little bit longer. We're seeing really good traction, cut wonderful feedback from from patients, prescribers, various members of the industry, and has been really good reaction to this point, have a real sense of pride for us at Walmart to hear the great feedback. Our pharmacists and pharmacy teams are very excited about the product and how they can help support patients. We've heard lots of testimonials on where we've been able to save patients money and where patients were able to come to us and afford their insulin and not make different choices. And so it's for us been it's been wonderful since launch. Now. We're gonna keep that momentum going and make sure that we're reaching as many patients as we can and providing as much value and access as we possibly can in the insulin space.


Stacey Simms  9:50

It's some interesting questions for my listeners, if I could bring them to you. And the first one was, is there a limit to the amount that you can purchase per person per A month,


Michael Burke  10:00

there is not so these products, the newest launch the lion novolog and ReliOn Nova log MCs are prescription required. So as long as there's a valid prescription, there is no minimum or maximum that a patient can get dispensed at a time, a little bit different than our human insulin, which did have some limits on how much you could purchase at a time without a prescription, just due to some varying risks in an inability to keep in stock.


Stacey Simms  10:29

You've mentioned the mix a couple times what is the mix


Michael Burke  10:32

of it's a 7030 mix of analog insulin. So it's a fast and intermediate acting. And so for some patients, it is a better way to manage some of their peaks and valleys is to use an analog mixed insulin rather than just a single type of analog insulin and fast acting.


Stacey Simms  10:52

Is there is that again, pardon my ignorance is there isn't there a 7030 human insulin This is different or this is


Michael Burke  10:57

there is Yes, okay, insulin is a bit of a rabbit hole in the various types of insulin There are also mixes within them. So there are also long acting insulins. And there's some mixes in long acting or the parental insulin, their seeming insulin, which were the original insulins on the market that have mixes as well, and the analog insulin had mixes. And it's really just helped provide variety for patients and prescribers, that may not be seeing the right results with a single insulin, sometimes mix. Depending on what type of mix it is, is more beneficial and in lowering blood glucose, maintain the proper levels. Sometimes it's helpful in some patients without peaks and valleys. And I struggle with that


Stacey Simms  11:41

I just didn't realize it's my ignorance, I didn't realize that there was a 7030 analog. Alright, another question from the group. And another question, are they going to encourage providers to prescribe? Or is this solely an option for people with high deductible plans slash no insurance.


Michael Burke  11:57

So wherever there was a prescription, we will process whatever type of insurance where our goal is to have the lowest cost for a patient we possibly can. So may that be on our private brand insulin Navy on a brand or a different branded insulin? Every time a prescription comes to the pharmacy, we we do our best to make sure that we're going to give the lowest price. So our branded insulin continue to have some coverage today, our private brand does as well. So best opportunities is for patients to work with our pharmacy teams and make sure that they're getting the right Insulet at the lowest cost possible for them.


Stacey Simms  12:30

So I'm going to ask you a question you may not be able to answer and that's fine. But for clarification, so my son, our insurance currently covers novolog and doesn't like he doesn't prefer it. So if I were to get a prescription and go to Walmart, would my doctor have to write it for novolog? Would they have to write it for ReliOn novolog? Would I have to know could I possibly be saving more money if my doctor knew about ReliOn or does the pharmacist look at this at Walmart and say oh you want Nova log but it's gonna cost less if you use the ReliOn version


right back to Michael answering my question but first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by g Vogue hypo pen and you know low blood sugar feels horrible. You can get shaky and sweaty or even feel like you're gonna pass out there are lots of symptoms and they can be different for everyone. I'm so glad we have a different option to treat very low blood sugar Jeeva hypo pen, it's the first auto injector to treat very low blood sugar tchibo kaipa pen is pre mixed and ready to go with no visible needle before Jeeva people needed to go through a lot of steps to get glucagon treatments ready to be used. This made emergency situations even more challenging and stressful. This is so much better. I'm grateful we have it on hand, find out more go to Diabetes and click on the G book logo chivo shouldn't be used in patients with pheochromocytoma or insulinoma. Visit chivo slash risk. Now back to Michael Burke answering my question about how much the pharmacist can do for you if you bring a regular old Nova log prescription to Walmart.


Michael Burke  14:10

Yes, for a no blog prescription or ReliOn Nova log private brand is interchangeable by the pharmacy or by the pharmacist. So a patient who has a current Nova log prescription or pharmacist can check to see if our private brands through insurance or other means would be a lower cost for that patient and can do that interchange themselves for those products so just know belong to our private brand over log. If a patient has a prescription for a another type of analog insulin that is not interchangeable with our private brand insulin. The pharmacist can verify insurance coverage for the patient and work with the prescriber on if it's appropriate to switch to private branded Nova log or to remain on the inside there. On today, so we can interchange with the novolog branded products themselves. But for other products, there would be a conversation between the pharmacist patients and prescriber to make sure they're getting the right insulin at the best cost for them.


Stacey Simms  15:15

Mike, you're going to have to forgive me as we move forward, we're going to start moving into more of a cynical part of the questions here, because as you've already alluded to problems is the rabbit hole. And we know I mentioned Nova log and human log, I mentioned that our insurance doesn't like human log to the point where and I've shared this story in the show, my son has done really well with it for many years. So when we changed insurance, I did not want to change insulins. So we took a it took a long time and some fighting, but I was able to use the coupons for human log, and we get human log for about $35 a month for all of the insulin that my son needs, which would be less, I believe, then if I were to use my insurance coverage, and get novolog or ReliOn at Walmart, I still feel like even though this will save some people some money, it just kind of feels like we're moving pieces around on the board. I guess my question would be for Walmart is how did you arrive at this price? Did you have to do you know? Did you have to set it a certain way to get the deal with novolog? This is gonna sound terrible. Do you throw darts at a board? I mean, who does for some people, it's going to be more expensive than what they're paying now. And I get some people will save money. But how did you come up with the price.


Michael Burke  16:29

So for us, we are one piece of the equation. As we've mentioned, healthcare is very complicated, especially the financial flows of healthcare. And so Walmart is one part of the financial equation as the dispensing pharmacy. We also have a distribution network and other assets that we utilize within Walmart. And so what we have done is taken all of our assets, tried to remove as many of the middlemen as possible. And put all of that back into the customer savings, customer pocket. We can't control all the levers there are in healthcare, but where we can we put it right back into the customers price, we truly mean it and Walmart and especially Walmart, health and wellness of the lives better and save money, right? Save money live betters Walmart from from the core, that's the only way that we could do so was was to take where we could remove some of the excess costs, and put it into that cash price, very complicated on the back end of who's making what decisions on formulary, and additional savings and eligibility for manufacturer discounts and coupons and on down the line. We can't control all of those. But what we can do is continue to take whatever we can out of that cost that inflation cost in the insulin and put it right back in to the cash price. And in that effort, hope to continue to drive down the overall cost of insulin to the marketplace.


Stacey Simms  18:06

Can you share? Is this an exclusive contract with Walmart? This was another question from one of my listeners, do you In other words, could other providers like Express Scripts? Or even Amazon You know, one of these folks that's getting into the pharmaceutical, you know, medication supply side? Could this be a first step toward other people doing something similar or is this exclusive,


Michael Burke  18:27

so the ReliOn private brand and exclusive for Walmart, that is our our trademark brand at Walmart for insulin and diabetic supplies products. So others couldn't utilize our ReliOn but we hope that this is part of other stepping up and and also looking to see how they can impact the space, how they can drive down costs. For us, it would be a great win if there was competition in the space. And we started to see insulin prices across the board come down because the competitive market only benefits the patients. And that's what we're looking to do. So we'd be happy if others were able to get in the game and figure out different ways to drive down costs for customers. Because at the end of the day, if there's an affordability issue, we won't be able to curb the growth of diabetes.


Stacey Simms  19:17

I'm curious, again, this this might be a ridiculous question. But with your answer in mind, do you have an agreement with novo in terms of how low you could get that cost? Because I mean, let's be honest, if you knock the cost down, it's set. What is it? 7288 per glass vial or 8588 for five flex pens, if you could knock that down to $35. I mean, you basically corner the market, no coupons or anything like that. Was that even discussed?


Michael Burke  19:44

Our focus is always on? How can we drive the lowest cost lowest price possible? We'll continue to focus on that. Like I said, there's only so many of the financial levers in healthcare that we own at Walmart and so we will continue to do our part To to take out everything we can from our end to make sure we're driving down prices and costs. But we only own so many of the levers. So we continue to look to novo and other partners to help us continue to drive those prices down


Stacey Simms  20:15

with the pricing that I just mentioned a moment ago. Are any coupons accepted for that? If people have novolog coupons? Are they good for ReliOn novolog? Or is that something completely separate?


Michael Burke  20:26

Yeah, that's completely separate. That's for qualified programs for their branded product. We don't have those Today, on our private brand product, what we continue to look at is, is how do we take the cost of those programs and put it right back into our pricing, because every day transparent, low prices, what we're looking for, as you mentioned earlier, the different insurance coverage, and copay assistance and discount cards and manufacturer discounts on down the line just makes healthcare so complicated for the average patient. And so our goal is to not continue to build those additional steps and needs and trapdoors and not put that pressure on our patients to need to go out and hunt and find those. But rather continue to put that right back into our cash price and make sure that we're offering as low as we can price on these insulins, in a transparent way, that that will continue to be our focus, just making this more complicated isn't going to help patients with affordability, access, continue to simplify a very complicated healthcare arena, especially insulin is to the benefit of all of our partners.


Stacey Simms  21:44

Just to be clear, the end, the prices that I mentioned, is that someone who doesn't have insurance, that's just a cash price.


Michael Burke  21:51

Yes, that is that is our cash price. And that is the starting price. So if a patient has insurance, or different type of coverage, that we will process and see their eligibility and what their coverage will do, and where that will bring down the price. We're seeing pretty good coverage so far since launch across the board. But you know that that continues to change. And as you said, there are different formularies and different pricing tiers out there. So that what we say is the highest you're going to pay for that box and vile and those prices, but we'll try to do everything we can to run insurance and check for every possible way to save money from those prices.


Stacey Simms  22:32

Here's another question from my listeners, are there any plans to offer the in pen cartridges, which is a different product, then no, then flex pens,


Michael Burke  22:41

we don't have that today, we continue to look in the space for for whatever we can can continue to offer and do but today, we do not have that as a as a product offering


Stacey Simms  22:51

any plans to do this with other insulins, you know, long acting or different brands or humalog or Tresiba.  You know any other types of insulins that are out there,


Michael Burke  23:01

we continue to look for opportunities, kind of across the board, from our generic team to our specialty team to the branded team that I'm on, to figure out what are the best ways to save our customers money and make sure that they can be adherent to their medications. So I can say that we'll continue to look at opportunities. Diabetes is obviously a growing issue in the United States. It continues to create barriers for our customers, our patients, our families. So we'll continue to invest time and effort in the space and make sure we're doing everything we can to do our part to help increase access, decreased costs and support our patients in their journey and diabetes.


Stacey Simms  23:42

I appreciate you taking on my questions. I mean, I know you hear the frustration in my voice and my listeners comments and questions, because it just seems and I can't say this is Walmart's responsibility. But it just seems like we've been told for years and years that you know, the price is because of research and, you know, development and and then to just suddenly say, Well, you know what, we don't need to sell it for $300. We can sell it for 7288. It kind of seems absurd from where we all sit. And I know it's complicated. And I guess there's no question here, Mike, but I could just say to you, please, as you move forward, I know everybody needs to make money. I know that's how the system is. But if Walmart really wants to, you know, improve lives, improve access, please keep pushing to lower the prices, because it does make a difference. One in four Americans is rationing insulin right now. And while this helps, it also points out how frankly broken the insulin pricing system is. So I appreciate you doing what you're doing. And I appreciate you taking these questions on. And really just thanks for listening to me talk about that as well.


Michael Burke  24:44

Yeah, I appreciate your time. I appreciate you having me on. Like you said, we're here as Walmart to continue to do our part. We're invested in making our communities healthier, both from a customer standpoint and employee standpoint, community standpoint. So thanks for having me. I'm glad to talk to you I understand the frustration. I've lived in this world for a long time. So I've lived in the frustration, I feel it. I'm a pharmacist myself. And this has been a very complicated space that, quite frankly, we'd love to add some light to and make easier, make more affordable and continue to drive better outcomes for patients.


Stacey Simms  25:22

Mike, thank you so much.


Michael Burke  25:23

Appreciate you having me on and tell you we'll continue to do our part.


Announcer  25:33

You're listening to Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.


Stacey Simms  25:38

More information at Diabetes Of course, there's a transcript along with each episode now. And I will link up more information about the Walmart program. I'm also going to link up a column I thought was fantastic. From the la times by David Lazarus. He wrote all about this earlier in the summer, when it first came out, he lives with type one, he gets it. And it's an interesting look at the marketplace and what he thinks with Walmart entering what he thinks it shows about the price of insulin. He's a great writer, I'd love to have on the show sometime. But I'll link that up.

Alright. Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dexcom. And you know, it is hard to remember what things were like before we started using Dexcom. I mean, I really haven't forgotten, but I guess what I mean, it is so different. Now, when Benny was a toddler, we were doing something like 10 finger sticks a day. Even when he got older, we still did at least six to eight every day more when he wasn't feeling well or something was off. But with each iteration of Dexcom. We've done fewer and fewer sticks. The latest generation the Dexcom g six eliminates finger sticks for calibration and diabetes treatment decisions. Just thinking about these little worn out fingertips makes me so glad that Dexcom has helped us come so far. It's an incredible tool, and Benny's fingertips are healthy and smooth, which I never thought would happen when he was in preschool. If your glucose alerts and readings from the G six do not match symptoms or expectations, use a blood glucose meter to make diabetes treatment decisions. learn more, go to Diabetes and click on the Dexcom logo.

Before I let you go, a couple of housekeeping things please send me your dear Dr. Banting audio if you have not heard me talk about this, I am collecting from you what you would say to Dr. Frederick Banting, the man credited with the discovery of insulin. Of course, there were many people helping him. But the Banting House Museum has an exhibit of print, dear Dr. Banting letters, I thought it'd be really fun to do an audio version. So let me know. I'm gonna link it up in the show notes. There's a whole blog post on Diabetes, about how to do it's very easy, just use your phone, but you got to get those three by the end of September.

And looking ahead, I'm doing a little bit of where are we going because we're starting to go places again, a little bit here. And there. I've got some virtual and some in person stuff coming up Delta permitting. So the virtual stuff I'm really excited next Tuesday. So if you're listening as this goes live, it was Tuesday, the 21st my JDRF local, but I think this is open to everybody nationally, and I'll put this in the Facebook group JDRF is starting something for older people with type one and I say older very judiciously because I believe I'm in this group with not with the diabetes, but in the older. You know, basically there's a lot of issues that people are facing as they hit, you know, middle age and older age. And it's not just Medicare. I mean, you know, but there's a lot of questions people with type one may have. And interestingly, I do a lot of research for this show my listenership very dedicated older folks. Again, I'm in this category now as I'm turning 50 in the month of October, but we're interested in issues pertaining to type one in their health as they get older. So I'm doing all of this to say next Tuesday, the 21st jdrf has a an online event that you can join in, I'm going to be doing a little bit of my in the news for this group. But it's going to be news that I have curated that is all to an older crowd. And I'm probably going to do it for 6065. And up I think that the the insurance, you know, cut off there makes perfect sense to try to find things that work for that group. But there is a Facebook group, I believe that they started as well. So more info on that.

And then later in October, we've got the shep podcasts conference out in Scottsdale, Arizona. That's the other group that I take part in quite a bit. I'm helping them out. It's women podcasters. Obviously, big group really excited to hang out with them. And we'll see in terms of you know how many in person events happen in the weeks and months to come? Hopefully they start picking up again, but lots of virtual stuff going on as well. So if you want me to come speak to your group online or in person, please let me know. I'm always excited to do that. And we gear it to you know, whoever I'm talking to parents or adults with type one, whatever you need.

Thank you, as always to my editor John Bukenas from audio editing solutions. Thank you so much for listening. We've got in the news live on Facebook every Wednesday at 4:30pm. Eastern and then that becomes the in the news episode. You can listen to right here every Friday. So we'll see you back here soon. Until then. Be kind to yourself.


Benny  29:59

Diabetes Connections is a production of Stacey Simms Media. All rights reserved. All wrongs avenged

May 25, 2021

Big news for Bigfoot Biomedical as the US FDA approves their insulin pen cap system called Unity – which also includes a CGM and an app. CEO Jeffrey Brewer explains what Unity is all about, gives us an update on Bigfoot’s pump system and opens up about his family’s story – his son was diagnosed almost 20 years ago.

Plus, in Stacey's first in-person diabetes meetup since COVID, she observed something very interesting about the newer families.

This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

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Episode Transcription below: 

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Stacey Simms  0:00

Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dario health. Manage your blood glucose levels increase your possibilities by Gvoke Hypopen, the first premixed auto injector for very low blood sugar and by Dexcom help make knowledge your superpower with the Dexcom G6 continuous glucose monitoring system.


Announcer  0:24

This is Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.


Stacey Simms  0:29

This week, big news from Bigfoot - FDA approval for their insulin pen cap system called Unity, which also includes a CGM and an app. CEO Jeffrey Brewer says their bundle approach is a bit like Apple’s


Jeffrey Brewer  0:42

Apple takes a bunch of different pieces, some of which they licensed and some of which they make and integrates them into the most usable package that actually is going to be accessible to the most people. That's the way we think about it as well.


Stacey Simms  0:56

Brewer shares what Unity is all about gives us an update on Bigfoot’s pump system and opens up about his family story. His son was diagnosed almost 20 years ago,

plus my first in person diabetes meetup since COVID, where I got good news beyond just seeing my people. This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Welcome to another week of the show. I am always so glad to have you here. You know, we aim to educate and inspire about diabetes with a focus on people who use insulin. And when I started Diabetes Connections in the summer of 2015 this week's guest Jeffrey Brewer was my second guest, it is hard to describe what the diabetes technology situation was six years ago. If you were around then you probably remember especially this podcast audience, you know, I tried to talk about it, as I mentioned in the teaser, had a meetup last week with some local parents, which was fantastic. And I'll tell you more about that later. And a mom of a child diagnosed in January of this year asked me what DIY was all about. she'd heard about loop he heard about do it yourself. She wasn't quite sure what it was all about. So that was a long and winding conversation.

If you are brand new, and you want to learn more, I recommend searching out the we are not waiting episodes of this podcast. And you can easily search those up at Diabetes There's a search box on the upper right. It's a very robust search of our almost 400 episodes now. And you can search we are not waiting as all one word. I've put that in all of those kind of DIY open APS CGM in the cloud. You know all of those types of episodes.

I know that six years ago, this pen cap system is not the Bigfoot FDA approval many of us thought would come through First, if you've been following this story for a while Bigfoot was founded in 2014. It was under a different name. It got the Bigfoot name in 2015. But it was founded by a small group of dads of children with type 1 diabetes, including Bryan Mazlish, who got that nickname Bigfoot via reporter looking for the elusive person Bryan who had developed a do it yourself closed loop which his wife and son with type one were using, and the initial headlines for Bigfoot, were all about bringing that closed loop system to market you can go back and see their initial funding press releases, which say things like you know, “the funding will support final development activities for Bigfoot’s Smart loop, automated insulin delivery service, the world's first Internet of Things medical device system delivered as a monthly service.”

Bigfoot Unity, which is what we're talking about today is going to launch as that monthly service. It's such a great idea to cut down on the complexity, it's going to help so many people on multiple daily injections, but I know that this podcast audience leans very much into the pump closed loop give me all the tech news group. And I think it's important to acknowledge that that said, My guest is Bigfoot CEO Jeffrey Brewer. His son was diagnosed with type one in 2002 and as the former CEO of JDRF. Brewer led the artificial pancreas project there. In life before diabetes, Brewer founded and led startups including city search and

We will find out all about Bigfoot Unity in just a moment but first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Gvoke Hypopen  and you know low blood sugar feels horrible. You can get shaky and sweaty or even feel like you're going to pass out there are a lot of symptoms and they can be different for everyone. I'm so glad we have a different option to treat very low blood sugar. Gvoke Hypopen is the first auto injector to treat very low blood sugar fever. Gvoke Hypopen  is pre mixed and ready to go with no visible needle. before Gvoke, people needed to go through a lot of steps to get glucagon treatments ready to be used. This made emergency situations even more challenging and stressful. This is so much better. I'm grateful we have it on hand. Find out more go to Diabetes and click on the Gvoke logo. Gvoke shouldn't be used in patients with pheochromocytoma or insulinoma visit Gvoke Glucagon dot com slash risk.

Jeffrey, thank you so much for joining me, I really appreciate it.


Jeffrey Brewer  5:05

Thanks for having me. Glad to be here.


Stacey Simms  5:07

So I looked back at my notes, you were my second guest on Diabetes Connections back in the summer of 2015, talking about the big plans for Bigfoot and holistic systems, and then lots of things that you said at the time you couldn't really talk too much about. And now here we are. So first of all, thanks for being my guest way back when when, you know, probably have three people listening, I really appreciate that.


Jeffrey Brewer  5:29

Well, thank you, and thanks for sticking with us maybe took us a little bit longer than I had hoped. But we're finally here to be able to offer something to people with diabetes, that we hope it's going to improve life and make it a little easier.


Stacey Simms  5:43

Definitely. Well, let's talk about that. So we're talking about Bigfoot Unity, would you mind kind of going through who it's for what it does, this is a system that is going to help people who are on multiple daily injections. So what is big for Unity?


Jeffrey Brewer  5:57

Yeah, so as you know, had Bigfoot developing a range of solutions to help people whose lives are dependent upon insulin to live safely and, and hopefully better lives. We are in this journey, focusing first on multiple daily injections, basically, intensive insulin therapy, once a day, have a basal insulin, and then given shots at mealtimes, or for corrections of rapid acting insulin, that particular therapy, which about 3 million people in the United States today do on a daily basis, about half people with type two diabetes, about half people with type one diabetes, but it's really the same therapy, we have developed a system that we believe solves a lot of the problems that therapy has, when it comes to the ability of people to determine the right dose for themselves on an ongoing basis, and also for health care providers to support them in doing so over a long period of time. I


Stacey Simms  6:53

totally understand because years ago, my son wanted to take an insulin pump break, he has used an insulin pump, since he was two, really six months after diagnosis, we got him on a pump. And we were so frustrated. Because not only did we have to do all the math manually that the insulin pump had done, there wasn't. And this was really before, there were lots of apps and things, there was no way to do all the stuff that the pump does in terms of insulin on board, and that kind of thing. So I assume that those are just a few of the features that Unity will provide


Jeffrey Brewer  7:23

some of the things that a pump does BigfootUnity will help to support your right that for people taking shots, it's mostly a glucometer, a piece of paper with some instructions and a couple of insulin pens. There isn't a lot of technology involved in those people's lives right now. And what we've done is develop a package of technologies that includes some devices, and some software that is knitted together for ease of use, to make life convenient for the person to first of all, be prescribed the therapy to be trained how to use the therapy easily and safely, and then to over time be supported by a healthcare provider who has the responsibility of supporting many of these patients, we are bringing technology to a population of people who I think have been largely overlooked, because most of the innovations have been focused on pumps. And that's really been focused on type one and also focused on very highly engaged people with diabetes that frankly, had to do a lot more in order to support the therapy and seen by doctors who are very excited about the technology. But not everybody sees a clinician like that. And not everybody wants to put everything into their insulin therapy that maybe a pump would require.


Stacey Simms  8:42

So take me through a little bit of it if you could, when I looked at it, I was kind of making notes that I wrote white cap black cap. So the white cap is for the fast acting and that gives you a dose, like a pump would say here's the suggested dose.


Jeffrey Brewer  8:56

Sure Bigfoot Unity is a bunch of different things together at the centerpiece of the system is these taps that are going to be for the particular insulin that a person is prescribed, whether it is an insulin made by Novo Nordisk or Sanofi or Eli Lilly, we have caps that fit all the different disposable insulin pens for both the basal insulin and the rapid acting insulin. First of all, you get these caps that fit the insulin that you've been prescribed. You also get a couple freestyle Li braise, you get a blood glucose meter that talks to the caps as well. You get in this first time experience kit, everything down to the pen needles and the alcohol swabs that are going to be used for parasite before you put on a sensor, literally everything that you need in order to initiate multiple daily injection therapy with the exception of the Insulet itself. It's all in this box. So this box comes to a person with diabetes in their home. We train them to use the system through a digital interface that we've developed support. onboarding to our system but also for people who are cgmp may never have bought a CGM before will literally through a zoom interface, walk them through the first experience with CGM, and then train them on the whole system. And the centerpiece of the system, as I said, as these caps, which basically do a simple thing they keep track of when you last gave yourself insulin. And they do calculations that are necessary in order to recommend how much to take based on your doctor's direction, very simply on the blackcap, which is focused on the basal insulin, you have one button, and you can only press the button and cycle through screens.

So you press the button. first screen says this is when you last took the dose. So it could have been say 23 hours ago, and it's time to take another dose, you press the button again, and it's going to tell you how much you should take. And that's what you were prescribed by your healthcare provider. And what can be updated in the cloud, by your healthcare provider. Rapid acting cap, the white cap is got some additional functionality, but still works the same way. It's got a screen on it, and then you press the button, the first screen is going to have when you last gave a shot, which is particularly important for stacking insulin as you refer to insulin on board. This is one of the big challenges that people who are on shots have is that they don't have a record of when they last took the shot. And so actually making sure that they don't treat the same high glucose reading too quickly, and then end up with too much insulin and end up low. This is something that we help with by actually keeping a person from stacking insulin. So you press this button, it's going to tell you when the last took a dose, if within three hours, you had taken a dose previously, it's going to lock out a correction. And therefore you're not going to make that mistake. This cap also interfaces directly with the freestyle library to or a blood glucose meter, and basically takes that data and directly translates it into a correction dose if you are taking your correction based on again what your healthcare provider had prescribed. So whether it's a correction factor or a sliding scale that was written down on a piece of paper, you don't have to remember or do any calculations, it basically just takes the number from the libri and turns it into here's how much insulin I should take. And if I had previously taken insulin that keeps me from over insulinizing and stacking insulin


Stacey Simms  12:16

over insulinizing? Is that an actual word?


Jeffrey Brewer  12:22

Yeah, I think I heard that from one of the researchers one time, so


Stacey Simms  12:25

we're claiming it if it's not, it's a rage bolus or it’s over-insulinizing


Unknown Speaker  12:29

There you go.


Stacey Simms  12:30

I didn't mean to interrupt you, sorry.


Jeffrey Brewer  12:32

No, no worries, the next step, after you take a correction, maybe you're going to have a meal. And having recommendation for how to dose from mealtime. It actually turns out that small, medium and large is a format that a lot of people are able to understand and work with in terms of how to take carbohydrate content and actually correlate that with an insulin dose. It's actually the minority of people, even in type one, but certainly with type two that carb counts. And so thinking about this in a different way, and a simpler way, where you have maybe small medium and large buckets, and a corresponding number of units for insulin that shows up right on the pen cap. If you want to add the two together, you are going to click the button again. And then it's going to basically add a correction to whatever the meal bolus would be, you're going to pick that value that you're choosing as a patient, because we're not deciding for you, we're just telling you, here's what your doctor would recommend based on all the calculations that you usually would do, if you had to do them. If your doctor were sitting there with you, this is what he or she would recommend you do. But if you know more, because for instance, you know, you're going to be exercising vigorously later, and you want to protect against hyperglycemia a person might decide to take a year or two less. But basically we're going to get them all the information that we can take it and make it actionable for them take as many steps out as we can to just get them to the answer they want. Because I don't actually think people want to know what their blood sugar is. They want to know, what do I What should I do? How much insulin Should I take. And so every step we can remove, and every thing we can take out of this equation to make it easier for people to stay healthy and take the right amount of insulin and then forget about diabetes for another four hours until another meal. That's what we're trying to do. And we're trying to do that for people who take shots, which is most of the world in terms of multiple daily injection therapy is the preponderant therapy for intensive insulin usage.


Stacey Simms  14:28

I appreciate you going through so granularly, I have learned that my listeners really like the deep dive anytime there is something new. So thanks for walking us through that. And you've mentioned the CGM. Let's talk about this. This is all integrated with the Libra when people use the Libra does it alert?

Right back to Jeffrey answering my question but first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dario health and one of the things that makes diabetes management difficult for us that really annoys me and Benny isn't actually the big picture stuff. It's all the little tasks adding up. Are you sick of running out of strips? Do you need some direction or encouragement going forward with your diabetes management with visibility into your trends help you on your wellness journey? The Dario diabetes success plan offers all of that and more No more waiting in line at the pharmacy no more searching online for answers. No more wondering about how you're doing with your blood sugar levels, find out more go to my forward slash diabetes dash connections. Now back to Jeffrey Brewer answering my question about using the abbot libre here, does it alert an alarm?


Jeffrey Brewer  15:40

Very good question. So the way the library works is it gives data in two different manners. One is you take the pen cap and you swipe it over the library. And it gives you an on demand reading for what your glucose is at that particular moment. And that's the value that is used in order to calculate any corrections. But there's another way that libri is communicating, which is directly through Bluetooth to the smartphone. Because we have an app on the smartphone. And that's monitoring. For instance, for hypoglycemia, you have a couple different ways the library is working in order to support a person with diabetes, it's either directly on demand to make the calculation on the pen cap or go into the phone for monitoring for hyperglycemia. These are particular capabilities of the library to


Stacey Simms  16:27

his delivery that is in big for Unity. Are there any different features? Or is it the same one that people can buy separately?


Jeffrey Brewer  16:34

Well, it's the same libri puck. So the sensor itself, the part that you wear on your body, it's the exact same one that gets prescribed and fulfilled at the pharmacy or wherever else a person gets their lead rays. The difference is that we're not using the reader that avid makes, or the app that avid will have on the phone, the libri in our context is talking directly to our pen caps and to the app on the phone. So it's fully integrated into the system. This is an amazing thing that avid has given us, which is the ability to make it very, very simple for the end user such that you don't have to apps you have to worry about all the training is comprehensively designed such that I learned to use the library and the context Bigfoot system, one training one app, one company that's gonna support the whole system, Bigfoot, and then all the data that gets captured, whether we're talking about insulin data or glucose data, and then made available to clinicians in a unified interface to support them in adjusting the therapy over time.


Stacey Simms  17:38

Well, this may be a really dumb question. I know that the Libra you scan with the phone, when it's separate from Bigfoot in Bigfoot Unity, do you scan with the pen? Or is it just automatic,


Jeffrey Brewer  17:48

it's with the pen, you scan. That's actually the only way you can get right now what's my glucose reading from the CGM is through that NFC interface on the library puck. And one of the key design elements that we felt very strongly about is that you don't have to open up an app on a phone, in order to give yourself a shot. Literally, you're just carrying that pen which you would have with you for meals during the day, it already has the pen cap on it. So you don't carry another device and you're wearing the Libra on the back of your arm, all you have to do is wear the Libra Ray, and then scan that Libra with the pen cap, then it tells you what to do. And no opening an app on the phone, no unlocking the phone, selecting an app opening and navigating through pages, that adds too many steps. And it's frankly, peep something people don't want to do. So we tried to make it as close to what they're doing today, which is you've already got a pen that you're carrying around, we're not adding another device, you don't have to add any additional steps, all you got to do is wear the LIBOR rate and we take that data and then make advice as to what to do.


Stacey Simms  18:54

You know, one of the issues with pens is that they'll switch you insulin brands. So you know the insurance when your will cover human log the next year it wants you to take novolog and the pens aren't the pens different the caps fit and the different pens geoffry.


Jeffrey Brewer  19:08

The pens are different between the different manufacturers. And then some cases from the same manufacturer, you have different designs, different diameters and geometries and clearance for the needles. What we've done is besides designing different pen caps for all the different insulins, we have basically supported this as a service offering. So when you're using Bigfoot, if you didn't buy a pen cap, you are a customer for the entire offering. And if you get switched by your insurance company from humulus, novolog or back, we're just going to send you the new pen cap that fits the insulin that you're currently prescribed, which is we think one of the big challenges that people have and we've heard and we wanted to make sure that that was an easy transition for people.


Stacey Simms  19:54

That's great. And you've already mentioned the way it's packaged, but I'd like to just talk about that. Little bit more I remember. And it was either when we first talked in 2015, or you know, some point very early on that you all were adamant that this was not going to be piecemeal. And you were also going to make it easier for people to purchase things all together. So this is, this is a terrible way to describe it every in my head, I sort of think of those boxes, the subscription boxes, people get right with my kids, it was like, you'd get little fun comic book stuff in them, right, or you'd get a subscription box of exciting bath luxury items. This is obviously not that this is a box with everything in it, right, everything comes together.


Jeffrey Brewer  20:34

That's right, when you first initiate therapy, you don't have to go and get a prescription filled, really braise a prescription field for a blood glucose monitor for test strips for lancets. For pen needles, basically, it's all there in the box. And it's trained and set up in a unified fashion. That frankly, just makes it easier to learn. And it makes it more convenient. And we thought that's an important part of the customer experience. There's a lot of blaming, that takes place of the patient in the world that says, Well, people just aren't working hard enough. They're not doing the things that their clinician told them to do. If they were everything would be better, and diabetes wouldn't be a problem. And frankly, we just don't agree with that. We think that it's too complicated, it's too hard. And that it should be easier. So one of the things that needs to be easier is all the different supplies and getting those and making sure you have the right supply. Having access to the tools is something that needs to take place in order for you to be able to successfully use the therapy, we figure if we make that easier if we make it easier to remember things or you don't even have to remember things because we remind you or we descend them to you without you having to remember all that kind of stuff, I think really adds up to a better experience easier and more convenient use of the system, we firmly believe it's going to end up in better results. Because it's just people are going to do things that are more convenient and easier for them to do. So we make it as easy as possible.


Stacey Simms  22:03

any issues getting insurance and Medicare coverage when it's all bundled like this. I mean, I'm asking is did Bigfoot have any issues getting it? And is it covered for people now?


Jeffrey Brewer  22:13

Why Yeah, there's a lot of innovation that we're having to undertake in order to be able to deliver this to people. One of the aspects of innovation is that we're working through clinics, or endocrinology practices. And this is how we deliver the solution, the clinician will prescribe and then bill for not only the system, but the services of the clinician to use the system and support the system for the person with diabetes. And then when bill comes in, it comes from the clinician. So in order to make this simple, so that there aren't all these different prescriptions. And there aren't all these different places where you have to get all the different pieces, we're working through the clinician. And in this case, there are already codes that are available called remote physiologic monitoring codes that support the treatment of chronic disease and tools in order to support better treatment in chronic disease. And so we're providing these tools to the clinician, and then the clinician basically delivers them through to the patient. And the billing relationship is between the patient and the clinician. All of it gets simplified and makes everybody's life easier. What we're doing is covered by Medicare and private payers more broadly, because we didn't go and get a code for Bigfoot, what we did get is a plan to go and use codes that are already there that clinicians can access in order to reimburse both for what we're providing, and for the services that they have in order to support the effective usage of the system


Stacey Simms  23:46

looking forward, because of course, we can never just let something come out, we always have to see what's next. You know, we talked a lot about interoperability is Unity, going to integrate with different cgms or different systems down the road is that in the plans,


Jeffrey Brewer  24:00

not in the immediate plan, what we did is we said, we're going to pick what we think is the best CGM for what we're trying to do, which is simple, easy, cost effective and very scalable across a large population. And the library has some very unique capabilities that that we feel very much support what we're trying to accomplish. And so we did a deep partnership with avid, as I said, they've given us the ability to integrate their sensor into our system in a way that other systems are not integrated closed loop systems. Today, you have a company that sells you a sensor, you have a company that sells you a pump, they have different apps on the phone that are going to govern, you know their respective products, they're going to be uploaded to clouds that sometimes require clinicians to look into different places to see the full picture for data. We're doing something much simpler. Describe what we're doing is more like what Apple does. Apple takes a bunch of different pieces, some of which they licensed and some of which they may integrates them into the most usable package that actually is going to be accessible to the most people. That's the way we think about it as well. There are other sensors out there and great options for other sensors. We're not trying to say you have to switch to us if you're happy with your other solution. We're trying to go after a population of people who literally don't have any solutions today and are feeling pretty ill served. We think that with all the people out there that are still to use CGM are still to benefit from CGM and the kind of tools we put around CGM. We don't see ourselves as competing with others. We're just trying to get the goodness that we believe we've created out to people who who need it,


Stacey Simms  25:39

I got a question from a listener I meant to ask we were talking about scanning depends. And that was, if a person can still use the the libri, to reader and the librelink app to scan the sensor. Or once you do this, if it is only linked with Bigfoot system?


Jeffrey Brewer  25:53

Well, in order to get the benefit of the system, you need to use the pen caps, because that's where the data is captured. That's where the recommendations get made. And it works best in the context of the Bigfoot system.


Stacey Simms  26:05

So you can't you can't link it to two different things. In other words, you couldn't use the reader and the pen.


Jeffrey Brewer  26:10

Not at the same time, you could use the library separately with a library reader and a librelink. app, but not at the same time.


Stacey Simms  26:20

I'd love to get an update Jeffrey, if you could on what I believe is called Bigfoot autonomy, which was the pump system that we did first talk about all those years ago? Can I ask you what the plan is for that, or what you could share with us about it, it is called Bigfoot autonomy, right?


Jeffrey Brewer  26:35

That is the name that we have picked for it. Yes, autonomy and Unity Unity use for the shots and autonomy is for the pumps, we have, as you know, a pump ourselves, we have developed and done clinical work for algorithms that we have utilized for closed loop insulin delivery. And we've also developed the full package around how to deliver it as a single thing, using a libri. In a very parallel fashion to what we've done with a foot Unity, we had to focus on one product in order to launch the company and to establish ourselves. So we picked this path because we think it gives us the opportUnity to reach the most people most quickly that frankly, don't have other options available to them. And we think we're going to be able to establish a reputation in the marketplace. In the future Bigfoot autonomy is going to complement Bigfoot Unity and present another option for how people can have insulin therapy. That is something we're committed to down the road.


Stacey Simms  27:34

So the people that were very enthusiastic, there's this this whole commUnity that was you know, the DIY commUnity and the we are not waiting commUnity, they should not look at Unity and say, well, Bigfoot has stopped with the pump, right? They shouldn't think that this is not going to go forward. It's not still in the plan.


Jeffrey Brewer  27:51

Well, the plan is always and will remain that we're offering choice and selection of different opportunities for people that have different needs. Just as Medtronic today, in acquiring the companion in pen now realizes it's not about pumps or pen, it's about both, we've been saying the same thing for quite a while, we're just starting with the pens, and then expanding to the pumps, versus everybody else is now interested in pens and started in pumps, it's really the same thing. It's a different way of serving a particular part of the population that has different needs, pumps are great. And they can deliver a lot of value and a lot of quality of life. However, they're not going to be right for everybody. And there's going to be a lot larger population of people who will still take shots for the foreseeable future, especially globally. And so it's not a matter of either or it's both in our minds,


Stacey Simms  28:43

if your son is living with type one for almost 20 years now. And of course, I think most people got familiar with your name when you were at jdrf really pushing the artificial pancreas program. I wonder if you could just take a second to give us some perspective, because I don't know about you. But my son was diagnosed in 2006. And it almost seemed like for the first eight years, maybe even 10 years, there just didn't seem to be that innovation on the commercial side of things. And now, I feel like I know it's it's not there's no cure. I know it's we're not there yet. But I do feel like the technology is finally working hard. You know, we're doing things for my son. And it's not just pump technology, as you said it's pen technology. And I feel like at least he can do a little less work.


Jeffrey Brewer  29:25

I feel the same way. There's been a tremendous amount of progress from 2002 when my son was diagnosed in 2012. There wasn't much of any progress. It has been accelerating in recent years. And I give a lot of credit to jdrf and the work that the volunteers supporting jdrf did to advocate to the executive branch to the legislative branch and then directly to the FDA, we were able to establish a very strong platform for collaboration and the way the FDA has prioritized the innovation in diabetes. enabled it with some clear rules of the road. I believe that's what made it all possible. There has been development of technologies that weren't mature before. But if they didn't have a path through to the marketplace, through the FDA process that worked, we wouldn't benefit from all these things. So it has been a journey. And I think it's been, you know, development of technology. It's been developed in the regulatory practices. It's been greater familiarity and openness amongst clinicians, and also the payers who see value and these tools for patients. So a lot of things that had to change, healthcare is much more complicated and difficult to work in than what I previously did in my high tech career. But it's much more rewarding, because I think it's now having a big benefit and a lot of people and we're happy to join the party, as Bigfootbiomedical.


Unknown Speaker  30:47

Do you mind if I ask how your son's doing?


Jeffrey Brewer  30:48

Yeah, he's actually doing very well with his diabetes, I will tell you that between the ages of like 15 and 22, it was kind of rough. It was a very similar story that I heard from many parents when I was a CEO of jdrf. It's a really challenging condition to live with adolescents and young adults. But he sort of found his way through that, and now has refocused on taking care of himself. And the tools are better now, to enable him to do that. So I think that it's gone hand in hand, his maturation and the development of these tools. And you know, I think he's in a good place. And hopefully, we can make it better over time. You know, it's


Stacey Simms  31:27

funny, I'm not quite sure this is gonna come out appropriately. So I'll try to be careful. But it's kind of nice to free in a way to know that even the head of jdrf. And even the guy at Bigfoot has a kid who was a teen, and struggled. And I know that sounds weird. I don't wish anybody to struggle. Like I wish all the kids went through this, and we're fine. And everybody was the poster child. But I appreciate you sharing that.


Jeffrey Brewer  31:50

It's important because I don't think that people talk about it enough. How hard it is for families, how hard it is for the kids, and how young adults, their brains are just not meant to cope with a responsibility like this. It's just not right. It's not something that they're ready for. And, you know, so nobody should be surprised that it's very hard. And it certainly journey. I think it'd be better if people understood that from the beginning, you know, because some people yeah, you're right, they think it's just my kid that's having this trouble. But it's not, it's that this is really, really hard for any family. And it frankly, is the rare family, where you have just a completely well adjusted and easygoing kid with type 1 diabetes. That's the rarity, not the norm. We're a company that stems from the patient experience, you know, my knee through my son, obviously, it's not the same thing as having it. But you know, having a child that grew up with it, a lot of people at Bigfoot have insulin requiring diabetes and know what it's like to live with this drug. I think it's given us a really great perspective on some of the softer aspects of the experience have been missed by some of the medical device companies, things about making it easier and less stressful and just more convenient. Because when you got to do something every day, multiple times a day for the rest of your life, it's just a different kind of thing. And even small benefits to simplicity can have a huge impact and adding up to much less burden, emotionally or intellectually. And I think that all adds up to better lives. We can't point to any one thing about Bigfoot Unity and say, this is the thing that really makes the difference. It's really a bunch of different things that are really holistically designed to as a system, the sustainable and usable on a daily basis. And I think that's really the future of chronic disease and, and we're glad to be able to help tell that story.


Stacey Simms  33:45

Well, thanks for spending so much time with me. I really appreciate you going through it. And I'm sure we will talk again soon. Jeffrey, thanks so much for being with me.


Unknown Speaker  33:57

You're listening to Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.


Stacey Simms  34:03

Lots more information about Bigfoot. I will link it up in the show notes at Diabetes I have been hearing some weird things about Apple podcasts player recently and some of the other apps that feed off of apple. If you're having any trouble getting links, or even listening to the show. Everything you need is a Diabetes transcripts of every show. And always please get in touch with me I can usually help you find what you need. Because these are pretty information, dense episodes. And if you prefer to read, I want to make sure you get the info. And if the app isn't helping you then we can help you in a moment.

Something really amazing about my recent diabetes, parenting meetup, I met some new families and it was really unusual their experience and what they're doing for the rest of us. It's complicated, but I'll tell you in just a minute. First Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dexcom. And when we first started with Dexcom back in December of 2013, the share and follow ups weren't not an option. They hadn't come out with Technology yet. So trust me when I say using the share and follow apps makes a big difference. I think it's really important to talk to the person you're following or sharing with. Even if you're following your young child, I'm telling you, these are great conversations to have, you know, at what number will you text? How long will you wait to call that sort of thing. That way the whole system give everyone real peace of mind, I'll tell you what I absolutely love about Dexcom share. And that is helping Benny with any blood sugar issues using the data from the whole day and night. And not just one moment, internet connectivity is required to access separate Dexcom follow up to learn more, go to Diabetes and click on the Dexcom logo.


Okay, it was jumping out of my skin last week, because I had my first diabetes parent meetup since COVID. I think the last one might have been January or February of 2020. Many of you know I run a very large Facebook group for parents of children with type one in the Charlotte area, I think we have almost 1000 people now when we were starting to pull from all over the state because I have come to find out it's a pretty unique group. If you have a local group that you run, or you're part of what makes it unique is mine is based on meeting in person, I try to really stress and set up you know nothing official, I'm not with any organization, I just say hey, let's meet for coffee here, I stress the idea of let's get together in person, let's get the kids to meet let's get the parents to meet. And it can be kind of hard because not everybody I have found is as I don't know if enthusiastic is the right way to put it or pushy or not shy, maybe it's just I'm not afraid of rejection. If I set up a coffee and I invite you know, the whole 1000 people group, and five people show up or one person shows up, I'm still really happy. And I've come to find out that not everyone feels that way. So don't be shy. Just put your stuff out there, get people to come and meet up with you. It will change your life. It really helps me 14 years into it, I think more than anybody else who comes to these things.

So I set one up, we only had two people come I'm telling you these things are still amazing. But they were both newer diagnosed families. One had a nine year old daughter diagnosed January of 2021, just this past year, and the other had a 16 year old boy who was diagnosed last summer. And it turns out and I knew this before we met we the kids have some mutual friends. And they're both wrestlers. So Benny knew this other kid as well. But what was amazing to me is that both of these families were already enrolled in clinical trials. And they had been presented with this option. So early on. Now we do not live in an area where clinical trials are present. I mean, I've talked about this on the show before it's we've never been able to get in one. We live in Charlotte, North Carolina, most of North Carolina trials and tests and things are in the Raleigh area over by the Research Triangle, or they're in Virginia, at UVA, or Florida. And that's really the closest to us. So that's where these two families both went for separate trials, both at University of Florida health both I believe at trial net, I may have the exact place but both with Dr. Michael Haller, who we've talked to several times before on this show, one of the kids that the 16 year old is in the Teplizumab trial, the other is in the ATG trial. I'm not going to go into detail on both of these, we've actually talked to Dr. Haller about both of them on the show before. So I will link that up in the show notes as well.

But I'll tell you what the ATG trials you've just started. So it's a little too early to tell anything. And of course, this is just with one person. So we should be careful about drawing conclusions. But the 16 year old wrestler, holy cow, so he was diagnosed last year, it's almost a year I believe in In fact, when this episode comes out, it might just be a year. And this is a 16 year old kid. So a teenager who uses probably a lot of insulin, right big kid healthy kid. And I want to say the dad told me that his daily basil is four units. And they're struggling using a pump because he gets such low doses of insulin. They're trying to figure out what to do. Now, who knows, because as I said, it's early on, but it seems to be the thinking that the diploma has really helped make this first year of diabetes, very different than what most 15 or 16 year old kids go through in their first year of diabetes. I'm going to talk to the family. I'll probably circle back around with Dr. Haller again. Because I think that their experience and honestly, it has not been an easy experience. This isn't you know, you go down to Florida, you take a pill you come home, it's a very intense, but brief experience, but they do go I believe, every six months. So I'll tell you more about that as we get there.

But I really wanted to bring up with how amazing that these newer families are helping in this way. Obviously they want to help their own children, but they also understand that this is helping the greater commUnity. These are opportunities that did not exist. 14 years ago, when Benny was diagnosed that did not exist possibly, you know, 10 years ago, we have to pull him up in front of the FDA right now. This is really interesting to me, and I know it is to us. You're listening if you're listening this far into the show, certainly, but man and I know I also live in a more affluent area people have more access to health care and to doctors who know about this stuff. But Wow, I was surprised so happily, so To hear that and and to see that their entry into the diabetes community was also an entry into studies that will help everybody you know whether this stuff works or not, it all helps. So I really appreciate it.



Okay, before I let you go update on events, my next event is not in person, we're still on zoom for a lot of us but getting in person for more, which is so exciting. On June 5, I'll be speaking at Camp Nejeda. They have a great event for adults with type one, I will link this up in the show notes. And in the Diabetes Connections Facebook group, I'm talking about telling your story and advocacy. So this is more about how to get the media to listen when you want to talk and also maybe just about blogging and speaking Yeah, blogging still Sure why not in podcasting, and tik tok and Instagram, but talking about your story, and advocacy. That's what I'm going to be talking about there. If you're listening in the Charlotte area, we are doing another D parent meetup. That's This Week. If you're listening as the episode first goes live, it'll be Thursday evening. So drop me an email or hit me up on social and I'll give you all the details. And of course, every Wednesday, Diabetes Connections in the news, join me 4:30pm Eastern Time live on Facebook for a very brief five, six minute newscast about what's going on in the diabetes world, all types of diabetes, and that's replayed on social through the rest of the week. And the response to that has been great. So I am going to keep doing it. I'm having a lot of fun with it. All right. Thank you as always to my editor John Bukenas from audio editing solutions. Thank you so much for listening. I'm Stacey Simms. I'll see you back here next week. Until then, be kind to yourself.


Benny  41:40

Diabetes Connections is a production of Stacey Simms Media. All rights reserved. All wrongs avenged

Apr 29, 2021

Dr. Stephen Ponder coined the term "Sugar Surfing" in 2013 to describe a real-time, dynamic system of managing diabetes. In this "Classic" episode we take a deep dive into what Sugar Surfing is all about and get Dr. Ponder's perspective on everything from parenting teens with diabetes to how he feels after 50+ years of living with T1D himself.

Dr. Ponder is the medical director at Texas Lions Diabetes camp where he’s volunteered for almost 40 years and in 2018 he was named Diabetes Educator of the Year

It’s hard to believe now with CGMs and closed loop systems, but the thinking you’ll hear Dr. Ponder talk about was pretty revolutionary in the early 2000s. This interview is less than a year after he published his book.

Sugar Surfing info (including how to get a free book if newly diagnosed)

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Episode transcription below 


Stacey Simms  0:00

Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Inside the breakthrough a new history of science podcast full of did you know stuff.


Announcer  0:11

This is Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.


Stacey Simms  0:17

Welcome to a classic episode of the show. I will be so happy to have you along we aim to educate and inspire about diabetes with a focus on people who use insulin. I'm your host, Stacey Simms, and this time around, I'm revisiting my first interview with Sugar Surfing Dr. Steven Ponder. Dr. Ponder has lived with type one for more than 50 years. He is a pediatric endocrinologist and a certified diabetes educator. Sugar Surfing is about real time management of diabetes. Dr. Ponder coined the term in 2013. But it was a long time coming, a lot of research, a lot of work.

It's hard to believe now with continuous glucose monitors and closed loop systems. But the thinking that you're going to hear Dr. Ponder talk about was pretty revolutionary in the early and mid 2000s. This interview comes less than a year after he published his book sugar surfing and by the way that is still free for newly diagnosed people, newly diagnosed families. And I will link up more information about how you can get that in the show notes over at Diabetes

So what is Dr. Ponder up to these days? Well, he has become a frequent and welcome guest on this show. I last spoke to him for our New Year's Day episode when health care providers were getting the COVID vaccine that was such a joyful show. I loved being able to talk to them some of the first people in the country to get the COVID vaccines and he was one of them. Dr. Ponder is the medical director at Texas lions diabetes camp, where he has volunteered for almost 40 years. And in 2018 he was named the National Diabetes Educator of the Year he also founded a free medical clinic for children all children, not just those with diabetes, our original sugar surfing interview in just a moment.

But first, this episode of Diabetes Connections is supported by inside the breakthrough surprising stories from the history of science. Dan Riskin, digs deep and entertains as he connects those old stories to what modern day medical researchers are facing. As you know, 2021 is the 100 year anniversary of the discovery of insulin that is arguably the biggest scientific discovery in Canadian history. This series examines that moment and many others through the lens of Canadian researchers trying to find what's next for the fight against diabetes. I love this podcast I have listened to every episode I highly recommended search for insight the breakthrough anywhere you find podcasts, and a good time to remind you this podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Dr. Ponder, thank you so much for joining me.


Dr. Stephen Ponder  2:50

Thanks for having me today. Appreciate it.


Stacey Simms  2:52

Yeah, it's I'm excited to talk to you. But before we talk about sugar surfing and some of the listener questions 50 years with type 1 diabetes this month, how are you doing? And do you remember your diagnosis?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   3:03

Oh, very much. So I was nine years old when I went into the hospital. And I was having fairly mild symptoms, increased urination, you know, weight loss and so on. Parents were puzzled by that took me to my pediatrician. And I don't remember all the details. I do remember getting poked a few times. And lo and behold, later that day, my mom was getting was called by my pediatrician. And I was admitted to a local hospital in an old fashioned ward of all things with four beds. They were they were not separate rooms at that point in time. And I was managed for about nine to 10 days in the hospital. Interestingly, by today's standards, I never saw a pediatric endocrinologist. Of course, there were not many of them in existence in the in the 1960s outside of large, you know, academic institutions. But I was managed by a pediatrician my entire childhood.


Stacey Simms  3:55

You were managed by a pediatrician. That's fascinating. What was the treatment? What was the management like?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   4:01

Well, not unlike a lot of people today you know where you'll hear stories where the doctor or the nurse handed down a lemon or an orange to practice injections on I really fell into that classic model where that I was given a piece of fruit to inject my insulin into practice. We did have plastic needles back then but the reality was I was sent home with glass syringes and reusable needles which were about 2625 to 26 gauge which by today's standards were huge. In terms of both length and and and width. And I took one shot today of a what what doesn't exist anymore and insulin call lanti le n te the closest thing that comes to it is his mph insulin, the cloudy mph and even many of your listeners won't even know what that is anymore in this day and age but I was treated with lenta insulin for gosh about 15 years until I started medicals School in 1980. And my first endocrinologist who put me on the path to multi dose insulin therapy, and very quickly after that insulin pumps,


Stacey Simms  5:09

Wow, that's amazing how much the practice must have changed what led you to become a pediatric endocrinologist?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   5:15

Well, I think that diabetes camp when I went to camp in 1981, it was kind of interesting. The person who ultimately would become my mentor was doing a research study for one of the insulin companies that were just rolling out biosynthetic human insulin, up until then we were using animal insulins. And during that study, his research nurse asked me this innocent question about diabetes camp. And she said, Oh, by the way, Steve, we have this camp for kids with diabetes. And I had actually gone to camp, not the same one. But I'd gone to a camp a couple of years after I was diagnosed. So I said, Sure, why not. And I said, it was about that much commitment. And after I went to the camp, in 1981, I just found my calling, I went back every year, and I have been going back every year since and, and about 25 years ago, actually became the medical director of the children's diabetes camp in Texas at the Texas lions camp. And that pretty much sealed my fate in regards to becoming a PDA, pediatric endocrinologist. The friendships I made, and the people I was able to, in some ways, I suppose influence. And it's been something I'll continue to do until I can't do it anymore. And I go back every year, I've spent several years of my life in the town where this camp is located. In fact, we recently, about 10 years ago, they just recently purchased a home not too far from there, which I may well retire to at some point in the future. You know,


Stacey Simms  6:52

this is the time of year when a lot of families have already signed up for summer camp for diabetes camp, but there may still be people on the bubble trying to figure out is this the year we do it? What would you say to them? Why is it good for kids? And what about the reluctance of cash? You know, I think it'd be home sick, are they gonna be taking Well, you know, care for as well as I can do at home?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   7:12

Well, I think it depends on the camp, the camp that I work at, serves children with special needs during the rest of the summer. And so they're very accustomed to taking children whose parents are, have been generally reluctant to let them out of the home. And these are children and they have visual problems, hearing problems, physical disabilities, cerebral palsy Down syndrome. And so they're extremely capable and competent. And getting the young boys and girls involved very quickly. In fact, as soon as the children are dropped off, they're whisked away to be, you know, to a playground to be active, to get settled into their, their banks and so on. They have really taken it to a fine art to the ability to keep kids from being homesick. Now we take kids that are aged eight to 15. At this camp, and, and yes, there's always a little bit of that at the beginning. For some of the eight year olds, not always, but some of them may struggle a little bit. But they are generally within a day or so just right in the swing of things if not just in a matter of hours into the swing of things. So I think we've we've not had to worry so much about that. Now my medical staff, we take about 75 people on the medical staff and we have 220 campers in two separate sessions. So 440 total, and we have a very high level of competency in that group too. Many of them are former campers, their medical professionals, nurses, doctors, you know, endocrinologist and volunteers. So we I think we've done a pretty good job over the last 35 years refining the methods to keep kids engaged, happy and active to the point that when they go home a week later, there are many of them or would like to say a little bit a few days longer.


Stacey Simms  8:52

I think diabetes camp is fantastic. My son is going to have his fourth year fifth year he'll be he'll be a fifth year camper this year. And it's been amazing the friendships he makes the the kids he stays in contact with and the empowerment this camp is where he did his first inset it's where he moved his Dexcom to a different location it's it's just so great for those kids to kind of figure out who they are I think two away from their parents. I'm a huge supporter of summer camp I think that's great.


Dr. Stephen Ponder   9:20

It's a wonderful experience all the way around and and and it forges some great friendships as you've already mentioned, that can continue well after camp especially I suppose in this day of social media era of social media. The the campers can stay in touch but you know,


Stacey Simms  9:34

don't get me started on the group texting that goes on my kids go to a different a longer summer camp later in the summer to them the group texts that are going it's crazy. But let's let's talk about sugar surfing. You have really hit a nerve I think in a great way with so much of the diabetes community. Sugar surfing and I'll ask you to better explain it but it seems to me is about learning how your body reacts and really Staying on top of your diabetes, more so so that you're I guess less reacting less to what's going on trying to predict more. And instead of making big changes all day long, trying to kind of nudge your blood sugar here and there, am I am I even close?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   10:15

Oh, you're absolutely right. That's exactly what it's about. It's management in the moment, as I say, in the book, once you look at blood sugars in a dynamic fashion is something that's constantly shifting and changing, you come to the same conclusion that you have to make anticipatory judgments as well as reactive judgments. And in a perfect world, half of your control is what you plan. The other half is what you have to react to what you have to do based on unexpected occurrences. And that's just life in general. So I think you can take a lot of the things you know about life in general and apply them to diabetes, you just have to be comfortable, or develop a sense of comfort with the various forces that you have at your disposal, that can move your blood sugars around whether it's insulin activity, the food you eat, the types of foods, the amount you eat, when you eat them. And when you boil it down. Diabetes Care is nothing more than a series of informed choices. At the beginning, those choices are in some ways made for you, or at least you're instructed to make these choices a certain way. But many people find that very limiting, and they want to break free of that. And many of them have and have done that well before I wrote this book. And whether they call it sugar surfing or have some other term for it. They're making more management decisions in the moment, which really improves their control and helps him better steer their their glycaemic trend lines in a more normal fashion.


Stacey Simms  11:43

Well, let's see if we could get kind of specific if you don't mind. I'm curious, like, how would you tell someone, here's how we're going to use sugar surfing to make your morning and your breakfast, a little bit more smooth, would you mind maybe taking us through that, like you wake up at a certain blood sugar and you're going to eat something for breakfast and how you might handle that?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   12:03

Well, a lot of the principles behind sugar surfing are things have been taught for many years, they include, you know, waiting a sufficient time after you take your insulin, to better time it or get it in synchrony with the food you're about to eat. Also understanding the glycaemic or the the fingerprint, if you will, of the meal of the food you're about to eat as well. So you have to match those two things up, you know, I use metaphors a lot. And I will say this to the young children, that, you know, a football quarterback that's throwing a football to the wide receiver is actually throwing the ball to a spot that there's no person at at that particular point, it's released. And you're trying to do the same thing with between timing food and insulin. If If food is the ball, and the wide receiver is the insulin, you know, the the quarterback, that is the patient needs to lead, you know, lead the inflammation of the lead a little bit before you throw the food at it. And in a practical way, what's your surfing, when you're looking at the trend line on your continuous glucose monitoring device, you will often want to wait for a band or an inflection point downward. That generally occurs anywhere from 10 to 15 to 20 minutes, maybe longer, maybe shorter. After that insulin dose is given such that the downward force that insulin is being seen on the glucose trend line, then the when the food is consumed, then it's more likely to be matched up or synchronized with the rising force, if you will, of the sugar that comes from that particular meal, assuming there is a lot of carbohydrates and you have to then adjust that insulin dose according to what you understand about those that particular food. And to be more specific for breakfast, I promote the concept of the top 10 list. And this is not David Letterman perspective. There, everyone has a top 10 favorites, everything you have a top 10 favorite breakfast, the top 10 favorite lunch and dinner. And that can easily be determined over the span of several weeks, you could actually count well how much how many times they this person he decided the other thing anyway, focus on your top 10 list. So if you if you enjoy a certain type of cereal, or oatmeal or toast or pancake or whatever you have for breakfast, then determined over time. And this is through observation, determine what effect those nosepieces meals have in general on your blood sugar, how soon they respond, how how aggressive they tend to be. And then you design an insulin regimen that best matches those and you use your trend line on your sensor to give you the best idea of how well you're matching those two things up to the point that you minimize the rise in the blood sugar. You want to prevent the spike that occurs after the after you eat what most people make the mistake of doing and they've been taught this and it's not always their their fault is they've been told it is to take their insulin at or after they eat. Now while that works fine for a child or toddler who you don't know will finish their meal if it's an older child or an adult who can easily you know, complete the whatever they've been had food put in front of them, then they should be timing their insulin with their food better with the goal to be to minimize the rise that occurs afterwards. Now, that's what the a one c elevations come from. And most people that are down in the six, seven and 8% range is what happens to their blood sugar after the not so much what they are before the. And I'll use this example a lot with people, if I was teaching somebody how to hit the golf ball, and I gave them the proper stance and positioning and so on the right clubs and all that, and I left and strike the ball and 100 times, yet, I never let them see where the ball landed, I'm not sure I'd make them a very good golfer. And that's in a sense what you're doing, you need to see where all that effort really leaves you. And if you're not checking a blood sugar in the next two to three hours after a meal, which a lot of people don't, or they've never been told to do, then you're setting people up in some ways to fail, because the assumption is that the doctor has given you some sort of ratio or some sort of formula. And they've told you to measure certain amount of food. And if you only do those two things correctly, you'll basically hit a hole in one every time and I think anybody who's done this for any period of time knows that that's just not true. And you need to have a different way of looking at this and that you may have to steer it even as it's moving. And that's a more advanced sugar surfing method is is trying to steer the direction of your your trend line after you've already taken your insulin and after you've already taken your food. But I'll tell you I do it all the time. You know,


Stacey Simms  16:31

I use it a little bit because that is you say that, and I'll put this back in here. It's a little bit more advanced, you want to be careful with this stuff. But how do you do that?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   16:39

Oh, well, you know, it's observation, it constant observation, I glanced at my sensor track anywhere between 40 and 50 times a day. It's not unlike you glancing at the dashboard of your car, when you're driving home, or looking in the rearview mirror, you're constantly scanning your surroundings as you're moving forward. And you have to take that same principle with you. When you sugar syrup. I mean, if you're surfing, you have to be well aware of your of your surroundings. So you just can't act three or four times a day. When you take an insulin dose and or eat food and expect to have the tightest control possible. You have to decide how willing Are you are her how able are you to be more aware of what's going on in the moment. As you see something trending up or trending down, keep us keep more of an eye on it and decide do I need to step in and alter the direction of my my trend line. I mean, as we're talking right now I'm looking at my sensor and I'm straight line at 96. On my particular sensor I've been I've been in my zone between 70 and 140. For the last several hours, I'm pretty much a straight trend line. But when I start to slowly drift down or slowly drift up, I pay a little bit more attention to that. And I want to see if it is is it approaching a threshold that I've decided in advance that I'm going to act upon. And I change those thresholds all the time based on the circumstances if I'm outside doing lots of intense work, I may want to run a little bit higher, and I'll tolerate a blood sugar of 161 7182. So I'll have a bit of a buffer underneath me if I'm if I'm you know doing a lot of yard work or doing a lot of exercise. Yet when I'm in the office like I am now I like being around 100 between 80 and 120. And I did steer the line in that fashion. And I do it through frequent glances and audit. A lot of times it's just looking at the sensor plot. And that's it, I do nothing else. I just stopped looking at it a couple a few seconds ago. And but if I saw something trending down, I'm going to preempt or act in advance of developing a low, I'll do the same thing in advance of what I think will become a high. Now do I sometimes over treat or prevent do too much? Yes, I've done that in the past. That's when I was just beginning this. But I've learned to use much smaller quantities of both insulin and carbohydrates to steer this line, I don't have to take 15 grams treated low, I can prevent a low with four grams. And I use things that are easily available. sips of juice, glucose tablets that have four grams of carbohydrates. So I've used these units of currency if you will. And I've learned how to use these to make small steering moves in the direction of the line of blood sugar. And that's really what sugar syrup is all about is steering that line, which everyone has. And nobody has a straight line blood sugar everybody, everybody's blood sugar line moves with or without diabetes. And I say this in the book, I say it in my workshops. The only person with a straight line blood sugar is a dead person, always on the move. And you just have to learn how to steer it. And the continuous glucose monitoring technology is a paradigm shift in diabetes management.


Stacey Simms  19:43

Let's talk about the CGM. I have to tell you in the last we've used it for a little bit more than two years and it really has changed our management and just like what you're going to talk about here in that when you see it going up. You can take a little bit of action or when you see it going down. Do you need a CGM of some kind of sugar, surf and You know, is that something that really has changed your way of even looking at management.


Dr. Stephen Ponder   20:06

When I first came into sugar surfing through the concept of what I call frequent pattern management, we did a research project a few years ago, we published in 2012, and diabetes care. This is a randomized control trial, where we developed the technology which would share information every night, with families, electronically, they their blood glucose meter was a wireless ahead of wireless modem, it would upload to the cloud, and every night, it would send all the information back in a very colorful format for families to look at. But we did a year long study where we wanted to see what the impact of that that frequent feedback would have on on on behaviors. And we found that we saw improved control. with patients who got that regular feedback rather than taking the time and effort themselves to go download or print something out or write things down in a logbook. And such, we use a control group where they everyone else just did that, they just they would do that whenever they felt like it. But that frequent follow up that frequent exposure to the data, improved control by a full percentage point, if there anyone sees or over 8%, at the beginning of the study, after a year, it had dropped and stayed stayed down about 1%. If it was seven and a half, or below, I'm sorry, it is below eight. That is they improved by about a half a percent. And this was with zero physician interaction with just getting information back in their hands. So this is a very, very preliminary version of what you could call CGM, which is, and that's really hyper frequent pattern management, because you're glancing down at that sensor. Now, that depends on the human being that using that data, you know, yes, it's recording every several minutes, it's giving you a data point, but somebody still has to look at it. And somebody still has to make decisions about what to do with that information. And then they need just like Kenny Rogers, you know, you know, walk away, run, hold and fold, and that sort of thing. That's what you're doing with with this information, you're making decisions in the moment. The fact of the matter is, they see that people are making decisions all day long with your diabetes. This is in the book, there's a study a few years ago that showed the average person without diabetes makes 221 choices a day about food. And so that's just about food, much less whether you have diabetes, and you're worried about food. So choices are the currency of control. And as you're making these choices, you're not always going to make the best choice, you're always gonna make the right choice. But you hopefully you're somebody that's wise enough to learn from those choices, and make better choices the next time. So it's a constant series of self improvement steps that you're doing with sugar surfing, it's not that the doctor gives you or issues you a set of directives that are somehow magically going to keep you in control. Those are starting points Don't get me wrong, I think dosing algorithms and so on, are all right, but they're not an end all be all. In fact, I have a hard time giving them out to patients now because I don't believe them or use them myself, other than just as a starting point. And I can't and I say that as a caveat, the family that said, Listen, I'm going to have to do this because you have to have your school orders for your child that a nurse will have to administer, I can't expect the nurse to be able to nuance things like you can as a mom or a dad or as a teenager. But I have to do this, it's part of what I have to do now. But it kind of pains me a little bit that I have to do this because I don't believe in it anymore, like I did a number of years ago, because of the dynamic nature of how diabetes can be controlled. Now you can get reasonable controls, don't get me wrong with with your with your algorithms, your carb ratios and your correction factors and so on. But, but you really can, you can take it to a whole nother level. And I get my keep it once he's down to 5% range. Now, by doing this in a dynamic fashion, you can get a good respectable 6% to 10% a one c by doing it old school, you want to call it that way. But you want to take it to a higher level and get down to the five or even to the normal. Below that it takes a lot more, you know, attention to detail. And and and sugar surfing.


Stacey Simms  24:00

Well let's let's grab a couple of questions that I took from social media for you about that exact point. This one is these are mostly about kids. But I think they're they're relevant overall. So this person says, if you want to employ just a couple of techniques with a child to increase in range time, what would they be? I don't this is her. These are her words. I don't want to go insane and spend every moment thinking about and evaluating my child's diabetes we want to live but I'm willing to make some changes.


Dr. Stephen Ponder   24:29

Absolutely. That's a great question. The first thing that I find with any patient I see when they come to see me new and they've been taken care of somewhere else is that they do the they don't do as good a job in timing the insulin and we touched on touched on that a little bit earlier. Many folks will come in and they may have been very well trained. They're very well motivated, but there's still dosing insulin after the fact. And if you see the impact of impact of that, on the rise of blood sugar that occurs after the meal, you will quickly say well, we need to do something being different, we need to take that infant ahead of schedule and we can. Now depending on the child, if there's somebody you, you know, who will reliably consume the meal they have in front of them, then then go for it. If it's somebody, you're not sure that they'll eat the whole meal, if they're on an insulin pump, there's some tricks you can play, like, extend the bolus over 30 minutes or 45 minutes. That said, once you know that, they're not going to complete the meal, you can still aboard the rest of that dose, and they can get about half of it that way. So there are all sorts of tricks you can play if you're using pumps. Now, if you're doing shots, you have to just be certain that that child is going to be able to consume the carbohydrates that are put in front of them. And, and I think that's an important that's an important tip and sugar surfing, is timing, timing is everything. The other is checking blood sugar Two hours later, whether it's with a sensor with a meter, and correct anything that's out of range, and you want to use a golf metaphor for that. That's what that's like having part three part four Whole Again, my feeling is nobody has a hole in one with every every insulin meal combination, that two hour reading gives you an opportunity to do a corrective dose to steer that blood sugar back toward your your, your target number, which in turn will lower that a one c because you'll spend less time up in the higher range which again, will contribute to a higher a one c value.


Stacey Simms  26:20

I like all the golf metaphor is you got to come to Charlotte and I'll take you out we'll play some golf, do you? Alright, so the next question is, can I ask? She says, Can you ask Dr. ponder about basil rates and we didn't talk about this yet at all. But she goes on to say I know he doesn't advise we use too many. But I find that my child a teen does better with about five basil rates, especially at least two overnight to account for the morning rise. Can you address that?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   26:49

Well, basal rates are our habits have a purpose behind them that sometimes they have. Some people use them in a different way. Let me just try to explain this. In the way a basal rate should work is just to keep you steady at whatever level your blood sugar is after your mealtime insolence, or your corrective insolence have gone away have dissipated. In other words, he just keeps you steady. However, some people use basil rates to offset indiscriminate eating and snacking that people don't vote for. And so as a result in in the Western world, we tend to run basil heavy, as opposed to maybe in some other parts of the world. In Japan, for example, they run rather basil light, there's less between meal snacking that goes on in some cultures. And there was a study done a few years ago that looked at basil insulin needs in and Japanese children, it found that they were about 30 to 35% of their total daily insulin dose, which flies in the face of you know, the general rule of thumb, which is you take about half of your daily insulin dose is a basil, insulin. So I think that I think there's a general tendency for people to look at blood sugar patterns, and just try to adjust basal rates rather than just to steer them around in a moment. There are there are increases that occur in blood sugar's overnight. And I agree, growth hormone and cortisol, which is another hormone that you produce early in the morning upon awakening can steer your blood sugar's up. And if you're trying to anticipate those in advance and, and and give additional infant espressos that has been something that's been done for many, many years, but generally speaking, most people can do well with either one, two or three basil rates. And a good friend of mine who you may have interviewed Steve Adelman is notorious for saying that anyone with more than three basil rates needs a new endocrinologist. And he can say that he's an he's a, he's an adult endocrinologist with type 1 diabetes almost as long as I've had it, and very well known and respected in the community. And I certainly adhere to his recommendation. Now if I if I see a new patient, it's on five or six basil rates, if I can tell them if you don't eat breakfast, which is what you should be able to do and your your blood sugar's in range. If your base rate set correctly, you'll stay in range more times than not over the next several hours until the next meal. But if all of a sudden you're you start dropping or start going up, well, your basal rate may not be set, right? You may be thinking that it is but it really isn't. But just think about the original intent of a baby, right is to keep you steady. It's not supposed to bring you down, it's not supposed to let you go up. It's just supposed to keep you at where you're at. As soon as the other insolence that would move you up and down, have gone away. And so if I wake up if I'm if I'm traveling through the night at 200, you know, between, say, I go to bed and I go up to 200 at midnight, and I'm at 200 in the morning, my basil rates, okay, that's perfectly fine. It's just that I didn't correct that that height and bring it down. It wasn't that it was going from 200 to 300 to 400. That would have said it was not enough or it was going from 200 to 100 to 50. Over six hours, that would be too much, but that it would just stay steady. That's the purpose of the base rate. It's different versus a bowl with insulin. So the the individual injections of fat that the insulin I know blog, blogger Piedra that used to maneuver up and down another metaphor, a pilot told me that they perfectly understood this concept of sugar serving. He said, you know, he's cruising at 30,000 seats. And you know, he that's what he's that's his cruising altitude. And if he wants to go down to 28,000 feet, he has to take action to make that happen or go up from 28,000 to 32,000 feet in his in his jet airplane, he said, I totally understand the concept of maneuvering, various levels in the base rate is just maintaining altitude, that's all it is. So these rates are sometimes misunderstood. And they're, they're overdone and some people, but I've gotten to the point of just letting people play on the rates they are. And if they can, if they live up to the original intent, and CPU steady in the absence of food, or exercise, then then that's fine. But I find a lot of people don't find that's the case, they find it when they don't add the foods and all the facts in there that the base rate really isn't what they need, they need to be on something more simple. And I try to simplify that whenever I can.


Stacey Simms  31:06

That's really interesting. And while we were talking there, I grabbed my phone, because I take pictures. Anytime I change a pump setting, I take a picture of it, because then I always have it with me, even if my kids pump is not with me, I have I have six programmed into my son's insulin pump. But the funny thing is that three of them, well, four of them really are about the same as the one you know before. So I really, if I really wanted to, I could get it down to three. Tomorrow. That's funny, I never even thought for some reason I never even thought about that. But they're but they're separated by point 0251 of


Dr. Stephen Ponder   31:39

them very subtle, it remember, it takes about an hour and a half to two hours before any, any rate change has a significant effect on blood sugar. So what happens is, if these are very close together, they may essentially just be blending into each other. And there's there's wobble in a pump rate the pump is not, you know, it's accurate up to a point. But even it has some variability built in. And if you factor in air bubbles, and you know, the sides may be leaking, there's there all sorts of things that, that make our diabetes prone to having variants in it, and plus the meters themselves, the sensors aren't 100%, but they at least give you a trend. foods are digested differently every day. There's so many variables. And it's in chapter five of the book, you know, false idols, there's so many variables in our control that you have, you can do nothing but just steer within a range. And I think that's the bottom line whether my blood sugar is exactly right now as I speak 93, or whether it's 95, or whether it's 90, Israel irrelevant to me, it says I'm trending straight, I'm in a zone, which allows me to function normally do my job, have this conversation with you, and not have a worry that I'm going to be dropping in the next 15 minutes or start spiking up in which time I'd have to excuse myself and take a small dose of insulin to prevent that.


Stacey Simms  32:58

Let me ask you another question. And this will be more of a personal one. For me. I did get a question about teenage boys. This one wants to know, what should a teenage boys a one c be? And I'll let you answer that. I think there's a lot of variability there, too. That's so personal. But my question is about teenagers. My son is 11. And he was diagnosed before we turn to so of course, we went through many years, and we did everything. He has a lot of independence. He takes care of himself beautifully when he's on his own. But the last year, really less six months, we've seen some of this teenage goofiness that I've heard from other people sneaking in, in terms of well, I forgot to check. I didn't bring my stuff. And you know, with the hormone levels, we're seeing blood sugars that we haven't seen in quite some time. I'm curious what you tell parents in your practice, you know, what do you do when you're super enthusiastic kid who is very responsible? And does everything suddenly? Is this stinky teenager who's in a different mindset? Frankly, it really it does seem to happen to so many people.


Dr. Stephen Ponder   33:55

Oh, it's actually very normal. That's that's the normal process of adolescence, you know, they, they're no longer you're smiling little kid, they're they're trying to establish their own identity. And one of the first things they do is to start to you know, they're spending more time out of the house or spending time with peer groups, they get into that phase where they want to be like everybody else, and then you don't know what you're talking about. It goes you go through that phase. Now, some people go through that more than others. Some don't seem to go through much at all. But you know, the listeners here are going to, if not in their own families, no other families for you know, the teenagers were just doing great as children, and then they just totally lost interest in any of their diabetes care or their diabetes management No matter how much they knew. And intelligence is not really the issue so much. It's, it's it is a lot of things that that are very unique and very individually as you said, even within a family you can have two or three responsible adolescence and then one that's just totally, you know, irresponsible, even though they they grew up very well adjusted, and they We're very well supported. That's just the normal process of of growing up as a team. I'll say one other thing, though, and I want to make this point clear. You know, a lot of people can can get comfortable with the two year old that grows up to be 11, doing all these things and and the parents can then start to be backing off of it, perhaps more than they should. And I always use this this example. And it's kind of silly example, but I tell parents, would you let your 11 or 12 year old kid with diabetes, pay your bills for you? or drive a car? I mean, some of these 13 year olds are physically capable of reaching all the pedals and driving a car, they have better reflexes in the rest of us. Would you trust them to do that? Well, most parents who say, Well, of course not. And my comeback is, well, you'll trust them with a life threatening disease, but you won't let them pay your bills, you won't let them drive your car. And so it's kind of an interesting conundrum there. It's because you've been lulled into a sense of security, that they've been doing this so long that because they can do the act of doing this, the actions of doing this, the sound of how they had the maturity to do it. It's like me saying, you know, because I hammer a nail a sock aboard, and I'm a carpenter, the carpenter is a set of skills and experience. It's not individual actions, all strung together in diabetes, because it's involving actions like taking a shot, checking a blood sugar, logging something, and even recognizing something higher low, that's a little bit different than organizing things and working through a problem and solving a problem. Most kids are concrete thinkers, up till about age 16. Now, a lot of them can be shown how to do things. And through practice, and coaching, they can learn how to solve most problems. But if you feel a raw concept that a teenager, without any background, just the concept, most will struggle very, very hard to kind of put an answer together to that all but just a small few. That's because kids are concrete thinkers, and about 25% of adults are concrete thinkers as well, that's been proven in the medical literature for years. Diabetes Care, especially surfing does require a lot of abstract thought, you know, those lines that you see on your sensor plot represents something that you can't see feel or touch, you know, if you're measuring the amount of sugar that's, that's present in the four liters, five liters of your blood, and how it's coming and going. And there, there are entry points and exit points. And that's a very abstract thought when you think about it. And you're trying to say, what are the forces that I can use to influence the rate of entry or exit of glucose into that closed space called the bloodstream, even though knowing the body for sugar and other places you're not measuring the sugar in the liver, you're not measuring the sugar in the in the muscles, and that's where some of your sugar pops up in your blood. It's when you stress, you're shoving sugar out of your liver and muscles in your blood. Likewise, it doesn't measure the count the amount of carbohydrates in your gut because they're still in your gut being absorbed and digested, you're just measuring within that bloodstream. In a sense, that's what matters, obviously, because your brain needs drawn sugar, but you're just not you're a flux manager in Sugar Surfingall about managing flux, and drift. And I say that in the workshops, it's in the book. That's what you're doing flux is a rapid upward or downward swing, a blood sugar's drift if something more gradual or slow, and how you learn to do that over time. And as you develop more skills and confidence is what determines your abilities as a sugar surfer. In the end, Dr. Ponder,


Stacey Simms  38:19

let me devil's advocate for just a moment about the the advice to parents. And I guess I'm going to ask you to play a little psychiatrist here. It hardly seems fair to parents, that at the time, when you say they're not ready to drive a car, right at 11, or 12, or 15, or or operate heavy machinery, why would you let them handle their diabetes? It's not fair that that's the age at which they seem the most resistant to input from parents. So as a parent, we know how do you balance that kid who wants to, you know, who's saying to their parents leave me alone, I've got this. And I get dumber as my kids get older, apparently, I know, a lot less than I used to know, according to them, how do you do that? As a parent? How do you say I'm going to help you I'm going to oversee this just when they're pushing back?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   39:03

I think the hardest part is when somebody's managing a child from age two onward. The person who really owns that diabetes is at that point is the parent. And when you're trying to make that transition and letting them manage that, oftentimes, the parent may may take an emotional response, like, well, gosh, you're messing up my diabetes that I've worked so hard to take care of all these years, and they're going to make mistakes, they're going to fall off the bicycle, you got to put them back on. The thing to do is, and I'm not saying you, the parent does everything until they're 16. In fact, on the contrary, that parent needs to become a sharer, they need to be sharing those responsibilities with the kid. And in fact, they should be there with them not to not to lecture them, not to tell them what they're doing wrong, just to be there to support them. And that's that's a very difficult balancing act for some parents who become accustomed to handling all the decision making, judging everything that goes down and in telling the child what to do and child's obviously pushing back. That's the whole point of adolescence is to break away from the family. And diabetes is caught in the middle of that. So the research and this is this is work that's been done by Barbara Anderson and others, good friends of mine is that shared responsibility up until around age 16 is the key doesn't mean doing things for them. But being there with them, you're still providing them the supplies, you may still be reminding of the things, but you need being there and letting them do it with your you know, with your guidance, or maybe your just your presence is all as necessary, especially, for example, in your case, your 11 year old sounds very capable and very potentially independent. But he would still benefit from having you there in the room, when you're when you're, you know, checking blood sugars and our dosing or making dosing decisions inside you have any questions and he doesn't well, then fine, but at least you know, it's been done. And it's and it's a shared responsibility. He also knows you care, at that point is as well, as opposed to saying, Hey, this is your responsibility, you gonna live with this rest of your life, I've heard that a million times from people that, you know, parents would want to drop that off and a 10 or 11 year olds lab, expect them to man up or woman up to do this. And all they're doing is, is setting a kid up to fail long term. Yeah, they may do it for a few months, or maybe a year or two. But at some point, that adolescent phase kicks in, and they start taking they started risk taking doing some, some experiments and so on. And that's what adolescence is about it is about risk taking. And that risk taking could include skipping insulin doses, eating more food, not checking blood, sugar's all those things, you know, and it can, if the parents aren't there, at least to support them, that's more likely to occur. That's, that's what I've seen over the 30 years, I've been doing this.


Stacey Simms  41:43

Thanks for talking about that. I think that is a really, really important piece of information to keep in mind. And you know, you are a pediatric endocrinologist. I know so many adults do so well with sugar surfing, but I want to pick your brain for one more question if I could, for the parents. And that is, it seems to me, you know, I am I am not a medical professional. But it just seems to me that there is more fear out there for parents than evolute when my son was diagnosed nine years ago. And I think some of that has to do with social media and how things kind of get spread and and rumors get started and different things get out there. But what do you tell your patients, parents about fear? And I guess I'm talking about, you know, overnight, checking every hour or letting kids go on sleepovers or things like that, or even just the the kind of fear that isn't specific in that way? Do you talk to your parents, your patients parents about that?


Dr. Stephen Ponder   42:34

Oh, yeah, I completely agree with you. The rise of social media allows one isolated story at any point in the globe, to go viral, and then frighten everyone else on the planet. You know, in regards to the you know, the one that everybody worries about is the severe hypoglycemia, the so called dead in bed syndrome thing. And then I see this all the time on social media. In fact, I've gotten out of several groups for that out there, because it just does nothing more than whips people up into, into a frenzy that this is going to happen to their child. I've been taking care of kids for 35 years, and I have had people that have passed away from diabetes that are friends that were adults, and some of them that are from two or three of them are eight to say this, we're from suicide. Another was from another was was from severe hypoglycemic event, this individual also had some other hormone deficiencies that made them more prone to have a problem, they were an adult as well. But in general is exquisitely rare. In some cases, and this is never discussed, you never see the details and the stories. Sometimes, some of these kids, these kids can have struggle with their control may not have the proper education or training. Some have some haven't. But you never know. And you really can't question that when when when you get a story like that online. So you have to just take it at face value that such and such loss your life and in there's no way of escaping the fact that that's tragic, completely, totally agree nobody should lose their life to this disease under any circumstances in childhood or even young adulthood In my opinion, but it does happen. People, you know, people have bad outcomes, but it's not something that hangs over my head every night. I try not to hang it over anybody else's head in my practice, and but it really does define people's concerns. I do know that that same fear is oftentimes leveraged as in a way to raise funds for diabetes as well. That's something I've been long critical of. And I've said that to many parents in the privacy of the clinic room that that you know, being told it we're gonna save you from disease we're gonna kill your kid really upsets me quite a bit because my goal for anybody with diabetes is to live a normal life you know, it has nothing to do with a one sees it's really being able to be the person you want to be the God meant you to be. And that's what What I aim for and anything I can do to help you achieve that through coaching knowledge, that's sugar serving whatever, people have to make their own choices, but I've not found fear to be a good motivator. In the long term for for achieving that goal. It's really trying to empower people to teach people they can take charge of this if they want to. But it's their choice. And I'm totally a believer in choice. It's all riddle to the book. It's all choice choice choice. I managed people who have chosen to do only so much with their diabetes, as much as many people listening to this and think that was the otter crazy, it happens all the time. And there are other people who, who spend their whole day managing this. And, to your question earlier about, you know, maintaining sanity, yes, you have to maintain a balance in your life, you know, watching your diabetes constantly throughout the day is not normal. You've got to have some balancing point out there, whether you're a parent or an adult with diabetes, but but fear is my one of my greatest


enemies. And, you know, the, quote, the famous, you know, Roosevelt, you know, you know, all we have to fear is fear itself. And that's very true. My parents were not fearful of hypoglycemia when I was a kid, but we didn't maintain the kind of control we're trying to maintain now, either. And so there was never a thought given about passing away. The fear back then was complications. And privately, my parents, and I even thought that I wouldn't live to see, you know, young adulthood. That was what they knew back in the 60s, because it's all based on information from the 20s 30s and 40s, which was not terribly good at that point. But over the years, I've learned what that was all, you know, that was all just myth and misconception on my part, because now, you know, now I've had it for 50 years, and I hope to have it you know, for many more years to come, I have beat this disease, anybody who's lived any length of time has beat this disease. In fact, I use this I say this to parents all the time, in the in the natural world order, I should have died 50 years ago, I should have you know, without insulin, but thank God that we I live in the era that I live in, I live in the country la live ended, I have access to the supplies I need. And I have the intelligence and the access to the resources, not that not everybody has I realized in this world to take charge of this but but missing element is that desire to do so. And I've been fortunate to have that desire. And I try to, I try to promote that, that attitude with anybody I come into contact with, whether it's a patient or a friend, or an acquaintance that has diabetes, but ultimately, we all have to make our own choices. And we all have to live with the consequences of those choices.


Stacey Simms  47:37

That's fantastic. I mean, what a statement as you're celebrating or marking, I'm not quite sure what the word is. But I'll say celebrating 50 years with type one, what when, when you look to the future here, what excites you? I know, are you testing a new kind of insulin? Do you look at different kinds of equipment, what what excites you about diabetes care, and in the next 50 years,


Dr. Stephen Ponder   47:59

my feeling is that the more we can educate, teach and provide support to people with diabetes, the better off the world will be, I'm seeing a troubling trend of late have more of an emphasis on technology and devices and new drugs, as opposed to investing more time and quality education, self management education, because it said before, you know, it all comes down to the choices we make, hey, I'm using a new insulin now that just happened to come out recently. It's an insulin degludec it has a much smoother action curve for me as a type one adult, I don't have any glows at night are even close to lows at night, which is one of the known consequences of that medication. downside is it's a new drug, which means it's more expensive. I'm excited about all the work that's going on with you know, encapsulation projects for islets were for artificial pancreas is and so on. My only concern is cost of these things and costs in terms of investment in time to the patient as well as money, and who will pay for these things. And I foresee there being almost this this multi tiered level of patience in the future of people, the haves and the have nots, as as our cure, quote, unquote, you know, becomes more and more costly. But you know, I say this to parents all the time about the word cure. The word cure is Latin, it comes from the word Curie, which actually means to care, that to be concerned for or to attend to. And in that literal sense of the word cure. I've been curing diabetes for 50 years and anybody who's still alive listening to this, and has diabetes has cured diabetes since they were diagnosed. The Romans never really understood disease in the sense that we understand it today. So they just felt that if they just took care of you just you know attended to your needs, that you would your body would would heal itself. And in a way, you know, the daily care I've been taking since March 1 1966. In terms of insulin dosages, checking my blood sugar or urine sugar back in those days in some fashion and making some decisions primitive as they were back in the 60s 70s and 80s, more advanced as they are now in the in the in the in the new millennium, is why I'm still here. And that plus the grace of God that I've not had an accident or had some other illness befall me. Those are the things that and I'm very thankful that I'm just happy I wake up every morning, I really am grateful when I get up every day, knowing that I beat this disease for half a century, and there are people that never had diabetes that haven't lived that long. And I live longer than so I have nothing but grateful I am nothing but grateful. I don't waste my time, being resentful being mad at this disease. I'm totally at peace with it. I know people still struggle with it, who are listening to this. I can't tell them they should be at peace. That's something yet that's a very personal thing to say. But I am I'm very much at peace with this. And if I pass Tomorrow, I will say I thought that my life was well lived with or without diabetes.


Stacey Simms  51:05

Dr. Ponder, I can't thank you enough for joining me, I was looking forward to an interesting discussion about blood sugar maintenance techniques. And instead, I just feel like talking to you has been a light today. Thank you so much for sharing so much time with me and with my listeners. I really appreciate it.


Dr. Stephen Ponder   51:23

Thank you. Thank you much for your time as well.


You're listening to Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.


Stacey Simms  51:36

I told you at the top of the show that Dr. Ponder has a free copy of sugar surfing for newly diagnosed families for newly diagnosed people. And that information is at Diabetes, Connections calm or hopefully linked up in the show notes as you listen on different podcast apps. One of the funniest things for me going back and listening to these older episodes. This is five years ago now is the terror in my questions about the teen years and Benny Benny is 11 years old when this interview happened. He is now 16. And I gotta tell you, middle school was the hardest. You heard me talking about there but is a Wednesday inching up and it's insolently it's going way up and his brain fog. And that was all in middle school. I can't say it's been completely smooth sailing since then. Because when is diabetes ever smooth sailing, but it certainly wasn't the, quote teen years as much as the tween years for us that were an issue. Of course, we're not at the teen years yet. So I probably shouldn't say anything, I'll knock some wood and will knock on my head and all that good stuff. All right, coming up next week, I'm going to be talking to a family with a child diagnosed during the pandemic. Can you even imagine? It's hard enough to have your toddler she was three years old, this little girl diagnosed at all. But when you can't meet up with other families in person, you can't go to conferences, you're isolated at home. There's so many families that this happened to in the last year. And I'm grateful that they decided to share their story. So we will be talking about that next week. thank you as always to my editor, john Buchanan. It's from audio editing solutions. Thank you so much for listening.


Unknown Speaker  53:02

I'm Stacey Simms.


Stacey Simms  53:03

I'll see you back here in just a couple of days until then, be kind to yourself.


Benny  53:12

Diabetes Connections is a production of Stacey Simms Media. All rights reserved. All wrongs avenged

Dec 22, 2020

It's our annual game show!  Based on NPR's Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me, Stacey invites panelists to try their hand at diabetes trivia, bluff the listener and limericks. This was first presented at the Friends for Life Virtual Winter conference where the audience played along via online BINGO.

Watch the show on our YouTube Channel

Special thanks to our panelists: Lauren Lanning, Justin Masterson and Chelcie RIce!

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Episode transcript (beta version - check back for proof read version)


Stacey Simms 0:00
Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Jeeva Chi popin the first premixed auto injector for very low blood sugar, and by dexcom take control of your diabetes and live life to the fullest with dexcom

Announcer 0:16
This is Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.

Stacey Simms 0:22
Welcome back to another week of the show. I am your host, Stacey Simms, we aim to educate and inspire about type 1 diabetes by sharing stories of connection, a different sort of episode this week, because this is one of our game shows. I do these periodically for live audiences, usually at conferences and that sort of thing. And this year, we have kind of like everybody repurposed things for virtual. And so this time around, it was friends for life and their virtual winter conference. A couple of quick things. If you prefer to watch this is on my YouTube channel for the show. It's just Diabetes Connections over on YouTube, I will put a direct link in the show notes. And while it is kind of fun to watch these things, you don't really miss that much just by listening. In the trivia section. I will say there are three questions that are show and tell. But I do describe what the guests are seeing. I think you'll easily get it even if you're just listening. As always contestants are selected at random from the Facebook group from Diabetes Connections, the group, so make sure to join me over there because we do this now a couple of times a year, especially with everything virtual and people on zoom. It's so much easier to record these than in the past. I still really love doing it live and I hope to do that someday again soon. But in the meantime on with the show, recorded in November, and played at friends for life the first weekend of December 2020. Welcome everybody to wait, wait, don't poke me the diabetes Game Show. If you have heard the NPR version of Wait, wait, don't tell me. This is our version. So we apologize to NPR in advance. In this session, you are going to meet some terrific people living with diabetes or who have diabetes in their families who have gone above and beyond to help the community and we're going to have a laugh or two, probably at their expense. Wait, wait, don't poke me. We'll feature trivia bluff the listener and much more. But before we get to the games, let's get to our panelists. We'll do a quick intro and then we will get started. So first let me bring in Justin Masterson. Justin Hi, I first met Justin, when we were talking on the podcast about his walk a mile cards and exercise and empathy, a teaching tool to help those with diabetes understand a little bit about what people with diabetes go through every day. Justin's daughter was diagnosed with type one when she was five. She was diagnosed on her birthday. Yeah, he is in charge of strategy at seek a market research firm. Fell old is your daughter now just

Justin Masterson 2:55
she just turned 11. So her birthday was just a few days ago,

Stacey Simms 2:58
when she was really diagnosed on her birthday.

Justin Masterson 3:00
it well. She fell on her birthday, but we got there the next morning. So it was technically the day after but she's now been six years and and living very well.

Stacey Simms 3:11
That's awesome. All right. Well, we will hear more from you for sure. I want to bring in Lauren laning and Lauren is a familiar name and face to many people and friends for life. She's been there usually at the first timers since the very first ffl in 2000. She used to run registration at the elementary program now she leads the moms and the first timers. Lauren's daughter Monica was diagnosed in 96. And she has been I can say first and amazing at these muffle meetups. We've been doing boring. The muffled meetups have been awesome. Thank you. Oh, I

Lauren Lanning 3:45
love them. It's great. It's great being able to connect with the fit.

Stacey Simms 3:50
Yeah, so your daughter was diagnosed in the 90s. How was she doing now?

Lauren Lanning 3:54
She is doing great. She's 20 she'll be 27 in a couple weeks. And she's at p in PA school at Stanford right now. Gotta brag. Wow.

Stacey Simms 4:04
Yeah, go for it. That's awesome. And rounding out our panel is Chelsea rice. I Chelsea, he was diagnosed with type one as an adult at the age of 25. He's been part of the diabetes community since I can remember. Chelsea is a stand up comedian who doesn't just talk about diabetes, of course, but he has been honored by diabetes forecast Magazine as one of their people to know and he has brought much needed education and humor to groups like healthy voices and Chelsea, your you've really found a talent this year for making soap. I've been seeing all this beautiful soap.

Chelcie Rice 4:37
Yeah. I've been locked in the house for quite some time. And so, you know, you get stuck with the phone in your hand and you get started looking at YouTube is like, you know, you take a shower, like you make stuff. So it's I mean, and that was like I and it's something that I that I do, if I see something that I get interested in Figure out. How do you make it? So that's how I even started. That's how I started baking. barbecuing. All this stuff is just like I just, you know, try to figure out okay, how do I do this? And so it just, I just picked it up and is is really kind of easy. And the funny thing is when I started just posting pictures, I was like, hey, how can I buy something like you know what I put in his name? I'd be like, you don't even know me.

Stacey Simms 5:29
The soap looks gorgeous knows. I actually thought it was I thought it was food when you were first.

Chelcie Rice 5:33
Yeah, no. That's the funny thing about soap is like, I mean, people talk about it. Okay, I've joined some soap groups on Facebook.

Justin Masterson 5:45
That is such a quarantine thing to say. Yeah, join some soap groups on

Chelcie Rice 5:48
Facebook like and that's the thing is like people were saying like, Okay, well, you know, people are quarantine now they're at home and they learn how to cook more than like baking sourdough. Random like, wash your hands with sourdough. I can make them fortune over this. So

Stacey Simms 6:03
all right, well, as we move on here, you are each playing for a contestant who has been selected by random from the Diabetes Connections Facebook group. So let me tell you, who you are playing with and for and we thank them very much. So Michelle Briggs is playing with Justin. All right, Michelle. Yeah, fi Comstock is partnered with Chelsea. And Caitlyn states is with Lauren. So no pressure. But these very loyal wonderful podcast listeners are counting on you. Alright, Caitlin.

Unknown Speaker 6:40
money involved? Am I gonna, ya

Stacey Simms 6:43
know, hey, look, it's all virtual be tough to get Oh, well, yeah,

Unknown Speaker 6:45
you know.

Stacey Simms 6:46
So we're gonna start with trivia. And each of you has five questions. I'm going to know we'll take one person at a time we'll go through the questions. Don't chime in with the answers. But feel free to chime in if you have a comment or something you'd like to add. Or if you have personal experience, these are all diabetes community questions. They're not all about diabetes, which will become clear and write it Don't worry, don't worry, it's not, you're not going to be judged. I also do have some show Intel because we're at home in my office. So I thought why not? pull some stuff off the shelves and ask you about it. Alright, so we're gonna start with Justin. Everybody ready? I would stare at the clock if I had one. But hopefully we'll just we'll we'll just let you know when you're at a time. All right. Our first question comes from the field of sports. NFL tight end Mike Moore. I'm already messing up. NFL tight and Mark Andrews has type one. And he plays for the Ravens. He keeps a strict diet around games reportedly eating for eggs before every game and the same kind of sandwich the day he plays. And the night before. This sandwich is a staple of school kids. What is it?

Unknown Speaker 7:57
Oh, man.

Justin Masterson 8:00
My school. We ate a lot of chicken fried steak and salsbury steak. I don't think either of those qualify as sandwiches. I'm going to say it's the school kid. It's going to be a pb&j. I mean what's better than a pb&j?

Stacey Simms 8:16
It is a PB and J and he says a lot of peanut butter. Not a lot of jelly. He prefers the complex carbs that come in. But I would think that the chicken fried steak is a complex something. Yeah.

Unknown Speaker 8:30
It's complex.

Chelcie Rice 8:32
Complex. There's so many complex things that go in it. Yep, yep, yep.

Stacey Simms 8:36
All right. Excellent. All right. Next question. There is an eternal flame at Banting house, the Canadian National historical site where Sir Frederick Banting woke up in the middle of the night with the idea that led to the discovery of insulin. The flame is meant to burn until there is a cure for diabetes. It was lit by the Queen Mother. In what year? And this is multiple choice. Wow. 1979 1989 or 1999? I don't think this was featured on the crown. So

Justin Masterson 9:07
it took it took him like 50 years to get this flame idea going.

Unknown Speaker 9:11
Oh yeah, well, at least Yeah.

Justin Masterson 9:15
I feel like it would be I feel like it would be in the 70s that feels like it was enough time to get the Queen Mother on board. I'm going to say 1979

Stacey Simms 9:23
incorrect. At 88 which I think is weird. I would have thought it was like 1959 but

Chelcie Rice 9:32
okay, was all the rage on MTV. So

Stacey Simms 9:36
I just finally figured out all the Elisabeth's in the royal family because of the crown the Queen Mother and the Queen girl anyway. Okay. All right. This is a an entertainment question for you. So brec bassinger is the young actress who stars in the CW hit show star girl actually got great reviews. It's been renewed for a second season. She lives with type one and her previous series was nickelodeons Bella and the Bulldogs and your daughter might have watched this. Maybe not. What sport did the Bulldogs play this whole show centered around this team? Was it football, baseball or soccer?

Justin Masterson 10:16
Sometimes my thinking sounds a lot like googling. Now, I'm gonna say it was a soccer team. It had to be the Bulldogs soccer game with

Stacey Simms 10:31
the quarterback. She was the quarterback.

Justin Masterson 10:36
Michelle, I'll send you something nice in the mail. I'm just sorry.

Stacey Simms 10:40
Well, there's a lot of game to go. There's a lot of Don't worry, don't worry. All right. Um, here's one. You know, I, I gave this answer away in the introduction. I don't know how well everybody was listening. I do this sometimes. Alright, here's the question. How old is the friends for life conference? I mean, what year of the conference? Is this year's 2020? lorincz.

Unknown Speaker 11:07
Don't say any. Okay.

Justin Masterson 11:10
1999. How about that?

Stacey Simms 11:15
Well, I'm gonna give it to you. Because it is the 21st year, but it started in 2000. Right. All right. But we'll give it to you. We'll give it to you. That was on the line that was on the line. Okay. And your last trivia question, or this is a show and tell. I hope I don't get in trouble for this. We love all our sponsors. Okay. In in 2018. I don't know how well you can see this. Yeah, in 2018. Can you see this? Okay. accucheck had a diabetes awareness campaign where they sent out these hands, promoted by country singer, Ben NRW. The idea was that you'd make the symbol, right. And you would upload a photo to your social media platform with this hashtag. And then their parent company would donate if they would donate a buck to diabetes, education and awareness. So here's the symbol. What was the hashtag? Was it give a book about diabetes, Buck off diabetes or go buck diabetes?

Justin Masterson 12:16
I can't believe any of those are true.

Unknown Speaker 12:19
I'm gonna read it again.

Stacey Simms 12:25
All right, we look at the answer in just a moment. What do you think it is? But first, Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Jeeva Kibo pen had almost everyone who takes insulin has experienced a low blood sugar and that can be scary. A very low blood sugar is really scary. That's what tchibo Kupo pen comes in. Chibok is the first auto injector to treat very low blood sugar. chivo hypo pen is pre mixed and ready to go with no visible needle. That means it's easy to use. How easy is it? You pull off the red cap and push the yellow end onto bare skin and hold it for five seconds. That's it. Find out more go to Diabetes and click on the G book logo. g Vokes shouldn't be used in patients with pheochromocytoma or insulinoma. Visit Chico slash risk. Now back to the game and Justin is trying to guess the buck hashtag

Justin Masterson 13:18
give a buck for diabetes buck off that diabetes or go buck

Stacey Simms 13:24
go buck diabetes.

Unknown Speaker 13:25
Oh my gosh.

Justin Masterson 13:29
I'm gonna say it was a buck off. Oh, hey, if those guys ever need some marketing consulting, tell them to give me a call. I think they might be on the wrong track from well,

Unknown Speaker 13:43

Stacey Simms 13:43
You do Chelsea?

Chelcie Rice 13:44
Yeah, I do remember that when I remember seeing is like are they really going with this one? That was

Stacey Simms 13:51
there. Remember that at all? Ben rule. It wasn't it was not too long ago. It was 2018. He was on the Today Show or one of the morning shows. And it was it was really cute. I think they had a bull riding thing. I mean, it was really cute. Except for the part that was alright, you did great.

Chelcie Rice 14:10
I gotta say, though, when you first pull that out. I thought that was a flying finger of fate from laughing in Asia, but yeah. Which finger to show first it getting easy. We don't want to give it away.

Stacey Simms 14:31
All right. So Justin, thank you. Standby. We're gonna move on to Lauren. Now for the other trivia questions. And we're starting with technology. Right this year Insulet changed the name of their hybrid closed loop system from Omni pot horizon to something else. Do you know what they changed it to?

Unknown Speaker 14:51

Unknown Speaker 14:54
no, I don't it's Oh, I'm so bad. No, no,

Stacey Simms 14:59
it's Omni. Hi.

Lauren Lanning 15:03
I can't remember no go.

Stacey Simms 15:06
Sorry, Caitlin. Anybody? No Omnipod five. I don't don't ask me what coober Omnipod five man,

Unknown Speaker 15:15
yet Anyone else? No,

Unknown Speaker 15:17

Justin Masterson 15:19
I know about the Omnipod five as a thing. It just never occurred to me you would change from horizon to five. It feels like a downgrade and

Stacey Simms 15:26
it's Omnipod five powered by horizon.

Unknown Speaker 15:29
Oh god.

Unknown Speaker 15:30
I don't know, either. Okay.

Stacey Simms 15:33
Okay, so this one is a little silly, but I enjoyed putting this one together. Major League ballplayer Adam Duvall was diagnosed in his early 20s. He's had a great season with the Atlanta Braves. But in the minors, he suited up with the August green jackets, which is just a great name. What is the mascot of the minor league baseball team? Augusta green jackets. I'll give you three choices because this really has nothing to do with diabetes, but I thought it was funny. Is it an anthropomorphic green jacket? Like you know the Masters little green jacket? Is it a fierce green insect? Or is it a little green golf caddy?

Lauren Lanning 16:17
I'm going with the answer. Look for thick,

Stacey Simms 16:21
green jacket. green jacket that looks like a person. Yeah, no, it's a green insect. It's the like a yellow jacket. jacket. It's got a little stinger. It's very cute. It's very cute. I had nothing to ask about Adam Duvall. Sorry. All right. Here's a here's another one. You might know this one. Eric church, just one Entertainer of the Year at the Country Music Awards. I was in attendance a couple of years ago when he gave $1 million to a local jdrf chapter at their Gala. What is his connection to diabetes? Is it Oh, go ahead. Oh, we are multiple is his connection. He's got a connection of type one. Is it his mother, his daughter or his wife?

Lauren Lanning 17:08
His mother, it is his mother

Unknown Speaker 17:10
act. Yeah. Excellent. Yes, his

Unknown Speaker 17:12
mom got one. Yay.

Stacey Simms 17:16
All right. Um, diabetes, mine ran an article earlier this year referencing how many potential cgms are in the works currently being studied or built or trademarked? How many CGM continuous glucose monitoring systems Did they say are potentially coming? 1929 or 39?

Lauren Lanning 17:41
I'm going to go with 29

Unknown Speaker 17:45
it's 39. Wow,

Unknown Speaker 17:48
isn't that crazy movie?

Unknown Speaker 17:49
Yeah. 39.

Unknown Speaker 17:53

Chelcie Rice 17:56
we really need that many choices.

Stacey Simms 17:58
I don't think we're gonna get that many but let's all throw in.

Chelcie Rice 18:02
I mean, 39 What are we gonna be buying cgms at like, you know, Kroger or something.

Stacey Simms 18:07
People like poor Gary shiner. The You know, there's certified diabetes educator who tries every system he's gonna be covered.

Justin Masterson 18:12
So let's just work through all those you can only wear for the time before it really.

Stacey Simms 18:19

Lauren Lanning 18:21
I was on an airplane with him. And I think we were going to London for CWT conference. And i ne had on like, a, he had on a few different pumps testing. Yo, what happens? It was it was interesting. He's

Stacey Simms 18:37
amazing. All right, your last question. Great, Chelsea.

Chelcie Rice 18:41
No, that was just imagining and trying to go through ATF Yoda.

Unknown Speaker 18:45
All that.

Unknown Speaker 18:48
Want to explain.

Stacey Simms 18:52
Just I'm just beeping every two minutes. Don't mind me. Lauren, here is your show Intel. This is one of the Bibles of diabetes care, right? The Pink Panther book. This is the ninth edition from the year 2000. I think we're all very familiar with this. But the question is, when was the Pink Panther book first published? Was it 1970 1980 or 1990? Didn't didn't. Donna

Lauren Lanning 19:25
nine teen. Wait a minute. Wait a minute. It's Monica's Dr. Monica used to go seek Paperchase. Oh, and I used to work for the children's diabetes foundation who publishes the that book. I know this. Ah, it's 1970

Stacey Simms 19:50
it is it is 1970 who knew I didn't know you knew that. That's a

Lauren Lanning 19:55
thing. Do the math because Dana was died. Dana Davis was diagnosed And she's got this old and I have to do the math.

Stacey Simms 20:04
Yeah. And Barbara Davis center of course is where that so

Chelcie Rice 20:07
that free, right? Corning fiberglass marketing?

Lauren Lanning 20:13
No I think they paid oh yeah they paid for all the Pink Panther or no did they? Did they pay for it? There were there were very strict rules around how to use the Pink Panther. Well, and everything has been

Stacey Simms 20:30
okay in my, in my research, I found that the first two monograph printings were in the 60s created by a parent to their basement using an old army press and sent out for free. So kids gather round and learn how we used to use paper. Actual publication of the book was in 1970. But isn't that crazy? They did have to get they continue to renew the agreement to use the Pink Panther. I have asked many times, Lauren, maybe you can find out for us. What the heck does The Pink Panther have to do with anything? Why The Pink Panther and diabetes?

Unknown Speaker 21:06
right why Bart? Burke?

Unknown Speaker 21:09
green jacket?

Unknown Speaker 21:12
The anamorphic.

Stacey Simms 21:15
Yeah, and Okay, so you guys are actually tied at three points apiece Chelsea to take lead.

Unknown Speaker 21:20
Oh, my gosh. All right. You're

Stacey Simms 21:21
ready. Here we go.

Chelcie Rice 21:22
Sure. Let's go for it.

Stacey Simms 21:24
All right, the happy Bob app was released this year. It's been a very big hit. You can use it with your CGM readings, and it tells you encouraging messages. But they have since added a snarky Bob who tells you not so encouraging things, it kind of insults you a little bit. And they've added a female counterpart. What is the name of the female counterpart for happy Bob? Is it Karen, Mary Jane or Bobby?

Justin Masterson 21:48
Please be Karen please be caring.

Chelcie Rice 21:52
Oddly enough, I downloaded this app a few weeks ago. And in fact, it is Karen and I was very surprised that I was like, for real?

Stacey Simms 22:03
It is it's the it's like your annoying, annoying neighbor. I've reached out to them. They're gonna podcast like who comes up with this stuff? I

Justin Masterson 22:10
just love it. Karen would like to speak to your blood glucose manager, please.

Stacey Simms 22:14
Exactly. Chelsea, the in person at the in person friends for life conferences. And they send these out now with the virtual ones as well. They're always colored bracelets. Lauren, back me up here. Right green for people with type one orange for family members. When did they add the bracelets? Was it 2002 2008 or 2012?

Chelcie Rice 22:41
I'm just thinking back to when the whole bracelet thing first dropped because because you know what the lance armstrong thing?

Unknown Speaker 22:51
Oh, yeah. And

Chelcie Rice 22:55
I'm gonna just throw it out there and say 2002

Stacey Simms 22:59
Yes, it was 2002 had nothing to do with Lance Armstrong. Although those rubber bracelets were, you know, probably 90 Gosh, at this point. But the idea was the first couple of years. They you know, they were just trying to start things out. And then they were seeing the kids without their parents around eating. And it was like, well, who has type one and who doesn't have we've got to figure

Lauren Lanning 23:22
and when you see a kid sleeping in the hallway with glucagon or et you let them sleep because he's fired.

Chelcie Rice 23:31
They had to rule out the whole thing like just get into tranquilizer gun into tagging them like to do a wild kingdom.

Stacey Simms 23:40
Didn't my house Anyway, when they were preschool? It's much easier. Alright Chelsea I know you're a big fan of this show. The baby sitters club was a big hit on Netflix. Season Two is coming soon. The characters the character Stacy on the baby sitters club lives with type one of course very popular book series. So at the end of the episode, there were Stacy comes to terms with her diabetes. She asks her parents for a designer diabetes item. What is it? Was it I'll give you choices here. A Gucci fanny pack for pump supplies. A Gucci branded pump clip, or a Gucci cover for her CGM receiver

Chelcie Rice 24:25
shows so much

Stacey Simms 24:28
It's really good. Kids are way too old but we watched it anyway. And it was very good.

Chelcie Rice 24:34
We've been streaming Dexter for the past couple of days for

Stacey Simms 24:38
different different audiences. Yeah,

Justin Masterson 24:40
five is almost no overlap. Like

Stacey Simms 24:43
Mike we're this though. You could see where it could come in handy.

Chelcie Rice 24:47
I was gonna what was the first one you said

Stacey Simms 24:49
a Gucci fanny pack for pump supplies.

Chelcie Rice 24:52
That's what I was gonna go with a fanny pack.

Stacey Simms 24:55
And that is correct. It is a Gucci fanny pack. She does not get it. But she

Justin Masterson 25:01
does bedazzle the heck out of her pump though. And yeah, it's cool because for the rest of the series, you can see her pump like they leave it visible, which I think is really neat.

Stacey Simms 25:10
I think they did a very good job with it. I'm very happy. Yep. All right,

Justin Masterson 25:13
Stacy, did you cry when you saw that episode?

Stacey Simms 25:17
No, I cried. No, I'll tell you when I cried was the other episode when the dad like the dads falling in love and they don't know if they want him like I know cuz I have a boy with diabetes a different

Justin Masterson 25:30
kind of messed up. My daughter was cool as a cucumber and I was just fountains over here. It was a mess. I was

Chelcie Rice 25:37
like, I'm not missing anything.

Stacey Simms 25:43
All right, well, here's another one slightly different angle here. Chelsea. ominous beeping shut down the Forsyth County Courthouse. Not too far from me in North Carolina earlier this year, as law enforcement investigated a possible bomb threat. It turned out to be a diabetes device. What was it? Was it an omni pod discarded in the trash? a defense attorney with a Dexcom or a judge who let their t slim x two insulin pump run out of insulin.

Chelcie Rice 26:17
I was gonna say, what was it that was in the trashcan? You said it was an omni pod. I'm gonna go with that. I'm probably in the trashcan. Because it seems like you know, anybody's going crazy and shutting the place down ahead of in something. Because like, if it was somebody was beeping, they just like get up and run away or something.

Stacey Simms 26:33
Oh, yeah, you are correct. That was and that gave it away with the answers very good to see the deductive reasoning that interestingly, this was the second time in about three years that a North Carolina municipal building was shut down by an army i'd beeping.

Chelcie Rice 26:48
Previously, God walked through the courthouse.

Stacey Simms 26:55
That could happen. All right, our last tell our last show and tell me let me make sure there's nothing that's like, Okay. I'm not my microphone. This is our last show until a pop company had a line of toys like this, each of which was comfortable, sort of on the land or in the water. I think they also had a walrus, they had a penguin they had they would change the stuffed animal every year. The company is no longer in business. Was it? deltec Cosmo, the Animus or a Santee snap?

Chelcie Rice 27:35
vaguely remember this, but I'm thinking is second want to animate?

Stacey Simms 27:41
You are five for five matches? Yes. And Benny, the Bengal tiger. So of course I had to keep because my son's name is Benny.

Chelcie Rice 27:50
What am I Why am I remembering that? For some reason?

Stacey Simms 27:53
I don't know why you remember this thing? It's got to be seven years old. But I don't I mean, atomists went out of business officially in seventh 2017 or 2000.

Chelcie Rice 28:01
I think when we I think when I was at, for instance, that you that was like the last time anybody who's seen animals that I remember after that they just pretty much is like, you know, walked off into the sunset.

Justin Masterson 28:16
And we I remember animus is they went out of business the day after we signed up for an animist pump. Oh, so for my daughter, so she was finally ready to try a pump with tubes on it. And we were like, yeah, we signed up for an animist pump. Yep. And we and we took it home from the clinic and everything and we had just trained on it and they're like animals go out of business. We never took it out of the box.

Stacey Simms 28:37
Wow, I'm so mad at them. We love them so much. And I actually it's a long story, but they're one of the reasons why I was able to come into the diabetes community the way that I did they like my blog and I want to speaking and writing for them. And they had this they had great studies on their hypo hyper minimiser. They were one of the first you know, hybrid closed loops that were coming and then Johnson and Johnson pulled the plug. All right, we are in excellent shape. We have Justin I'm actually keeping score which I usually forget to do. Justin Lauren are tied. Chelsea is in the lead. And now it is time to move on to the bluff the listener portion of our show, and we have a real live contestant with us. Tripp stoner is joining us and Tripp you're on the road. Thanks for thanks for jumping in.

Unknown Speaker 29:22
No worries. I'm near you.

Stacey Simms 29:27
I heard so you're from Atlanta, but you're passing through North Carolina. Um, let me ask you, if you don't mind, tell us a little bit about who you are your connection to diabetes and what's up with your friends for life usually,

Unknown Speaker 29:38
um, I am a type one myself. I do a little bit of blogging here and there. I'm not as passionate as y'all are. But I've been with friends for life now for going on. I think four years. I'm kind of behind the scenes most people don't even know I'm on the staff which is a good thing. I'm just there to help whoever needs help. That's pretty much it.

Stacey Simms 30:03
Awesome. All right bluff the listener section, you have to guess which of our panelists is telling the real story of something that happened in the diabetes community.

Right back to the game in just a moment. But first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dexcom. And it is hard to think of something that has changed our diabetes management as much as the share and follow apps. The amazing thing to me is how it's helped us talk less about diabetes. That is the wonderful thing about share and follow as a caregiver, parent, spouse, whatever, you can help the person with diabetes manage in the way that works for your individual situation. Internet connectivity is required to access Dexcom follow separate follow app required, learn more, go to Diabetes, Connections comm and click on the Dexcom logo. Now back to the game and we are moving into bluff the listener.

All right, so we're gonna take turns reading here. Our subject this year is diabetes mascots. And they are of course as we've already seen, those adorable furry friends have helped make type one a little less scary for pediatric patients. But honestly they can be a little bit weird. So Chelsea, why don't you go ahead and go first I'm going to give you the floor here let me let me do this. There we go. All right trip can hear us. Chelsea you're gonna read your story. And then after we hear from everybody triple let us know which is the real thing. So go for it. Chelsea. Cool.

Chelcie Rice 31:39
Alrighty, Rufus is the adorable teddy bear that jdrf gives out to newly diagnosed families. But many don't know that the bear with diabetes is named after American Canadian singer Rufus Wainwright. As a child growing up in New York, Wainwright was hospitalized with acute appendicitis. Turns out his best friend Brian was in the same hospital receiving a type 1 diabetes diagnosis. The Wainwright recovered quickly, but Brian had to stay for two weeks. Future singer insisted on visiting every day until his friend came home. Later that year, Brian's mother worked with jdrf to create a toy to help kids learn to do shots through play. By then Wainwright's family had moved to Monterey. Also, she named the bear after him to give the boat give the boys a nice way to remember each other.

Stacey Simms 32:30
Very nice. Okay, so that is our first story trip as you are listening. Keep that in mind. All right, Chelsea, I'm going to switch you out with Justin. You're up Justin, what's your mascot story?

Justin Masterson 32:43
This is a nice follow up story. So after the success of Rufus from jdrf, and Medtronic, Lenny the lion, other diabetes companies decided they needed a mascot to but what animal would appeal to kids and make sense for Omni pod? In the mid 2010, the makers of that system decided to ask their customers Insulet asked kids to come up with not just their mascots name but its species. What kind of animal goes with a tubeless pod type insulin pump. They got some creative submissions such as a dolphin and a puppy named Potter. Get it? PAWD er Potter, Omni pod chose a turtle because they say the shell resembles a pod then because turtles are at home on land and in water just like their system. The trademark for turtle Potter. That's the actual trademark was issued in 2016. And Toby was a central part of omnipods teaching app launch that year. Why is he named Toby? That's only for the turtles to know.

Stacey Simms 33:48
Mm hmm. Justin. Okay. And our third story for a diabetes mascot comes from Lauren take it away.

Lauren Lanning 33:59
Okay, Tandem is the current sponsor of beyond type one snail mail program, which of course has a cute little snail mascot. But the makers of the T slim x two pump have been working on a separate symbol of their own instead of a fluffy friend. They've decided on a bicycle built for two. That's one meaning for the word Tandem, of course, a bicycle with seats and pedals for two riders, one behind the other. Before COVID hit, they were planning to launch this as a stationary attraction at diabetes conferences. The idea was to have fun contests like how far can you and your dad pedal in five minutes? What happens to blood sugars when you hop on the stationary bike? They were also going to have children at the conferences, decorate and even put features like eyes and smiley faces on the bikes to see if it could work as an actual mascot. All right, so

Stacey Simms 34:59
trip. The question is, is the real story? Rufus Wainwright inspiring Rufus, kids picking the turtle for Toby the turtle or tandems bike extravaganza at conferences if it wasn't for COVID

Unknown Speaker 35:19
um, I believe it's going to be Rufus. If I remember the story right. She eventually set up quite a few women's sewing those bears together to hand out to other children at their local Children's Hospital.

Stacey Simms 35:35
Well, Chelsea, was that the real story?

Chelcie Rice 35:41
Let me check your email.

Unknown Speaker 35:46
No, no.

Stacey Simms 35:50
The there's just enough truth in that one. Yes. There was a wonderful mom the kids name was Brian. So I apologize for sticking that in there. But Rufus Wainwright has nothing to do with Rufus the bear Justin had the real story of Toby the the turtle although I've got to say I wish and Tandem for a licensing fee you can have that idea from me for and I wish your idea was your story there was true I love that one.

Justin Masterson 36:18
It does remind me of the the contest that they had to name the the boat and they named it boaty mcboatface. So I think they got a lot better with Toby the turtle they

Stacey Simms 36:33
will chosen for that for fooling everybody.

Chelcie Rice 36:37
They change it to Rufus our freight train Jones.

Unknown Speaker 36:40
Oh, like that

Chelcie Rice 36:41
real wrestling fan out there. You know? Yeah. Old School wrestling, you

Stacey Simms 36:46
know. will trip. Thank you so much. That was a lot of work. I know on your part to join us. But we appreciate you dialing in and making it work. So thank you so much for playing.

Unknown Speaker 36:59
Thank you. Y'all have a good day. It's great to see all of y'all.

Unknown Speaker 37:03
You too safe drive and travel.

Unknown Speaker 37:05
Thank you.

Stacey Simms 37:08
Greet job, everybody. That was funny. All

Justin Masterson 37:12
right. I love these stories. They were really well written.

Stacey Simms 37:15
Good art. Thank you. That's my favorite part of doing this. The hardest part is just coming up with the object after that. It's easy. Yeah. But man, thank you.

Lauren Lanning 37:24
All right. Thank you, OSU. We'll be showing you some royalties on that. How could you not

Stacey Simms 37:28
do that man at the conference? That's

Justin Masterson 37:31
such a great idea.

Stacey Simms 37:33
I'm sure. I'm sure their marketing team has thought of it and dismissed it.

Justin Masterson 37:38
Somehow buck off diabetes got through.

Unknown Speaker 37:41

Chelcie Rice 37:43
Really, really bad ones.

Stacey Simms 37:53
are moments people have got a deadline people? Oh, all right. So finally, we are moving on to our limericks now I will read a Limerick to each of you. If you complete it correctly, you will get an additional point. So the topic here is people with diabetes on reality television. So the the answer and I shouldn't give you too much information here. But I think I'm a terrible Limerick writer. So I will tell you that the answer I'm looking for is the name of the show. All right, so Lauren, we're gonna start with you. I apologize in advance these are really bad. I you know, when I learned that on Wait, wait, don't tell me they have like a guy who works on this all week long. He's I don't know if you're not but he's Yeah, but that's what he does. So forgive me. There we go. All right. Remember these reality shows where people with type one appeared. More in this show could be called the CO ket. And a crowd of contestants. Well met Michael among the poor schmoes who didn't get that rose desert he said no thanks on the bachelorette. Yes on the bachelorette. I know the rose gave it away. But Michael apparently was a contestant with type 1 diabetes on a season of The Bachelor. I think it was 2013 I don't watch that one. All right, Lauren, point for you. Excellent. Chelsea, this one's for you. This show is all over the place. With contestants who rarely embrace. Matt came in first, Leo. Well, he's not worst. It's a long road for

Unknown Speaker 39:37
The Amazing Race. The Amazing Race.

Stacey Simms 39:39
Yes. Dr. NET strand, one that a few seasons back and Leo is currently a contestant. Hopefully by the time this airs, he will still be on the show. And not out of it yet. So and Leo has a really we talked him for the podcast he lives with type one word, exactly type one but he head was born with hyper hyper insulin ism and had to have most of his pancreas removed. And then he lived pretty normally until he was 19 when he developed diabetes, but we all spotted his Dexcom on episode one. And I tracked him down. Got him on the show. All right, Justin, this is for you. Ready? This competition for fame? features cyclones and Rams and some flames. Chris trained round the clock. Got a hug from the rock. We spotted his decks on

Unknown Speaker 40:35
okay, I can do this.

Stacey Simms 40:37
This is probably the hardest one sorry,

Justin Masterson 40:39
the rocks on it. There are flames involved. Uh, the Titan games?

Stacey Simms 40:45
The Titan games? Yeah, the right route. And yes, Chris Rutan competed. Yeah, Season One of the Titans.

Justin Masterson 40:51
I remember that episode. That was like the one that my daughter called me downstairs to show

Stacey Simms 40:55
me and got a big hug from the rock. Yeah, that was very nice. All right. So we have totaled up the points, which which don't matter for pride. Chelsea is the winner. But everybody gets a prize. Everybody gets a prize. It's just

Justin Masterson 41:10
for Michelle, did I come in dead last? And does Michelle somehow get punished for

Unknown Speaker 41:14
no actually tie

Stacey Simms 41:18
it all around. So in summary,

Unknown Speaker 41:23
we have

Stacey Simms 41:25
Caitlyn, coming in for a tie for second with Michelle. And fee and Chelsea are the winners. So congratulate all around but it's really well done. Really, aren't we all winners though? And it comes right down to it.

Justin Masterson 41:44
I'd like to think so. But some of us are technically and more accurately winners. And that's Chelsea.

Stacey Simms 41:48
Well, some of us will find out for winners. If we find out if the show. In the couple of minutes that we have left. Let me just go around and say a thank you. And maybe just give you guys a little bit of a last word. Lauren, you have been amazing keeping the muffles going and everything had friends for life. How's it been for you this year? Are you enjoying it? Is it just more work for you?

Lauren Lanning 42:11
I know i'd love it. I'd love the connection. I didn't think that a online would still have the same feel. But it's great connecting with my muffles every other week and hope everyone can join us.

Stacey Simms 42:26
Excellent. And Justin, um, you know, I can't imagine it's easy doing this quarantine thing you know, as you were with your family and your daughter was one I know it's not easy for any of us. Anything I see a guitar in the background, what are you doing to keep busy?

Justin Masterson 42:39
Yeah, I'm doing a lot of this. A lot of playing music. And I've been one of those folks who has dug into you know, a little bit of cooking and a little bit of fixing the house and I'm not making soap like Chelsea, but I'm doing my very best with what I have. And I'll put in a plug for the dads group. We love being able to run the dads group at friends for life. And if you're not already a part of it, and you're a dad, we'd love to have you I have had some of the most moving experiences of my diabetes journey at the at the men's groups and when amazing questions and amazing learning and then just a lot of camaraderie which I really appreciate.

Stacey Simms 43:19
It is such a gift for all parents to be involved in things like that. It really is a gift for your child's if you're dead thinking about it. You've been reluctant because you know, are your manly man, guys don't do that. Please do that. It's wonderful. Justin, thanks for bringing that up.

Unknown Speaker 43:31

Stacey Simms 43:32
Chelsea, where can we buy your soap? I'm not kidding.

Chelcie Rice 43:37
No. I mean, you can follow me on like, what Instagram type one comedian type tip number one comedian, Instagram because I'm always, you know, posting pictures on there because of just for the heck of it. I'm not really you know, trying to sell but I'm right, because I don't have like a business license or anything. And you got to have insurance when you're selling something that you're gonna rub on your body and then cause somebody like to lose, you know, you know, something, they made some organ that they may need something like that. So I'm willing to like you just pay me to ship and I'll send you some soap. It's no big, big whoop.

Stacey Simms 44:13
And I have to ask you, is there anything that you've made? That's been more interesting? I've seen a couple of things that you've called disasters that I still think are beautiful.

Chelcie Rice 44:21
Yeah, I mean, there was one that one of the things that happens when you you mix the lye water into the oil sometimes if you add some additives like fragrances, they react differently. And one that I put in there just like turned it didn't look like cottage cheese. And I thought it was like oh well and so but I put it into the mold anyway and I colored it with a little orange and little yellow. And when I when I when it's solidified it looked like Colby cheese. And so I mean like and the funny thing is they turned out to be really good soap is a really good hand soap. I don't know what to put in it. Oh What you know percentages, but it comes out to this really nice handsoap that doesn't leave your hands all stripped. And I was like, Okay, great. Now I don't know how to do it again. So, memories.

Stacey Simms 45:14
That's a great trick, but I can only do it once. Yeah. All right. Wonderful. Well, as usual, we got off topic of diabetes. But thank you all so much for joining me on this for another edition of Wait, wait, don't poke me. And maybe we'll do it again sometime. But thank you all so much for being here. I hope you enjoyed it and had a couple of laughs

Unknown Speaker 45:33
Thank you.

Lauren Lanning 45:34
It was fun. Thank you.

Unknown Speaker 45:41
You're listening to Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.

Stacey Simms 45:47
I love doing the game show episodes, there's so much fun to put together. I would do it every week, if I had the time. And if I could come up with that much diabetes trivia. Anyway, you can listen to our previous weight weights at Diabetes there is a very robust search on the website with more than 340 episodes. Now, we really want to make it easy for you to find what you want. So you could just search weight weight or game show this past summer at friends for life. I did a Hollywood Squares because zoom just looked like that to me. So I did Hollywood Squares for the game show but you can find all of that and much more over at Diabetes Thank you to my editor john Buchanan. So for audio editing solutions, and thank you so much for listening. I'm Stacey Simms. I will see you back here next week. Until then, be kind to yourself.

Benny 46:43
Diabetes Connections is a production of Stacey Simms Media. All rights reserved. All rounds avenged

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