Pistachios Are Not a Source of Fast-Acting Carbohydrates

Today I had one of those lows. Like, a cross-eyed, cold sweat, can’t-stand-up-straight, what-day-is-it-anyway, super-sucky kind of low. Even suckier, it happened at a client’s office.

We were nearing the end of a meeting when I felt that particular sort of hunger starting to set in. I knew we’d be out of there soon — and that I’d just eaten a banana — so I decided to suspend my pump and focus on retaining consciousness for the last 15 minutes of the engagement.

As my vision started to get a little jumpy and my stomach growled, I remembered the wise advice my first endocrinologist gave me. “I don’t care where you are or what you’re doing,” he told me. “If you start to feel low —  and I don’t care if you’re talking to the President of the United States — stop what you’re doing and eat something.” With what brain power I had left, I weighed my options. I could: a) interrupt the meeting and ask for a Coke; b) try to end the meeting early; or c) travel back in time to earlier that morning, and put some edible substance in my purse besides the completely useless Pistachio Grove Blend I was toting around, and then eat that.

Sad pistchio! Also almonds and a cashew!

Just as I began to wonder how many carbs were in a tube of Strawberry Lip Smacker, the meeting ended. My coworker and I made a beeline for the lobby, and I asked the receptionist if there was a drink machine around. (At least I’d brought change with me.) There was a machine, she said, but you had to have a badge to access it, and she couldn’t leave her post because something something about American Idol and her back-up was watching people sing. Or something.

“But there’s a cafe in the other building,” she said.

I knew of this cafe. And I knew that the building she spoke of was two big parking lots away. So I popped a complimentary Jolly Rancher in my mouth and headed over. Twenty-ounce bottles of Sprite and rolls of Lifesavers loomed in front of me like mirages, guiding me toward my destination. (I’m pretty sure I saw a vulture or two following us as well.) When I reached the cafe, it was all I could do to count out $1.75 and wrench the cap off of the Sprite bottle. I sat down to drink it, and that’s when the sweats hit. My grown-up businesswoman pants, my cardigan sweater — even my hair — were soaked.

By the time I felt well enough to make the drive back to work, I was exhausted. And damp. I spent an early lunch hour napping and changing and basically pretending that I was starting the day over.

Lows like that one don’t hit me very often. The next time one does, though, I won’t be counting on pistachios to see me through.

14 comments on “Pistachios Are Not a Source of Fast-Acting Carbohydrates

  1. Jess says:

    oh yuck! those lows are the worst!!!! please tell me you stuck something else in your purse!

    sweats are the worst. period. hope tomorrow goes better!

  2. I hate these lows too. I always think afterwards “seriously. Stock up on gluco tabs or keep something in your purse or something”. But I never do. Really bad habit.

    Did you drive to that far-away building?

  3. Kaitake says:

    Crap! That’s a horrible one! I went low today… There’s nothing like teaching a class, talking them through the lesson, and seeing their faces looking all confused. Because I’m rambling. Because I’m low. Luckily it was break time so I told everyone to go get a coffee! I was 3.2mmol!! Damn sneaky lows 😦

  4. Bec says:

    Nothing worse than being with clients trying to be all professional and you look like like you’ve been rained on…totally understand! Why do those lows seem to happen when you have nothing decent on hand to treat it?

  5. Holly says:

    “Just as I began to wonder how many carbs were in a tube of Strawberry Lip Smacker, the meeting ended.” ROFL! Classic. =D

  6. Beth says:

    Oh, I HATE those – they are the worst….Not only does my hair suddenly go absolutely flat and stringy, but all my makeup immediatly melts away and I’m so hot that I can barely keep from tearing all my clothes off, popping buttons and zippers as I go! Now THAT really impresses the clients….!
    I keep glucotabs in my pocketbook because it’s hard to look polished and professional while sucking on a juice box.

    • Hell Cat says:

      “I’m so hot that I can barely keep from tearing all my clothes off, popping buttons and zippers as I go! Now THAT really impresses the clients”

      I know that feeling well. I have them in class when I get stressed out. Stress is my epic trigger, and being in a Chem class from Hades’s toilet bowl is one gigantic ball of unfun. You look like a person looking for a quick hit while you think you’re holding it together better than you actually are.

  7. Rachel says:

    I had a low like that yesterday. At a dog park. Fresh out of glucose tabs. Not. Fun.

  8. Laura Takach says:

    Jacquie – LOVE this post. I just found your blog recently, and it very quickly became part of my must-read D blogs. You have a talent for putting humor, levity and blunt honesty in otherwise not-so-fun topics. Thank you for writing! Glad you’re feeling better. And the pistachios pictures is pretty awesome.


  9. Ckoei says:

    A wet one always leaves me with furiously curling ringlets around the ears (alas, nowhere else :()…your hair is a fair bit longer (&thus heavier) than mine – does gravity prevent it from doing the twist?

  10. Elizabeth says:


    I do have a “pcket sized” tube of glucose tabs that call my purse home. That tube is ALWAYS, ALWAYS with me. However… That doesn’t actually mean the GLUCOSE TABS are with me! Once or twice, I’ve had to pull over to a convenience shop for candy because I discovered the tube was empty.

    Yeah, empty tube of glucose tabs. REALLY helpful.

    And I HATE how a bad low just wipes me out for the rest of the day. Even once I’m “out of the woods,” I’m struggling not to put my head on my desk and hope the boss doesn’t walk by while I snooze.

  11. Hell Cat says:

    I get those lows fairly frequently. (Yeah, that’s not mindboggling scary at all.) And it’s why I keep a change of clothes in the car normally. The whole outfit, too. Just in case because there’s nothing like resembling a one-woman rain cloud victim.

    After I had the beginnings of the loopy, unable to focus warning system in a Chem lab, I started to eat an apple and Peanut Bar (Lance’s) for that specific purpose. I know the bar is bad for me, but I noticed a distinct lack of stress triggering in class. And I’d rather not die from making my school explode cause I was paying more attention to the rivets down my back.

    I try to keep granola bars in my purse to counteract if I’m in a place I can’t find anything else, like the car waiting for my mom to get out of her doctor’s appointment.

  12. Kevin says:

    Jacquie, I was in a toy store once shopping for my nephews and that happened to me. The only thing that saved me was the fact that they had candy at the checkout. I grabbed a Rice Krispies Treat, knelt down in a corner, and ate it as quickly as I could (that was after already eating the Peppermint Patty in my pocket). The point is ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS carry fast acting sugar on you and ALWAYS stop what you’re doing to treat your low. Your client would understand. Every second is critical. I know, because I ended up in the ER from not realizing and acting on a low soon enough. Now I always carry fast acting glucose tabs and a tester on me wherever I’m at.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s