10 Mental Health Strategies While We “Stay at Home”

As we enter this unprecedented phase of the pandemic, how do we as individuals and parents cope? Dr. Giuseppe (Bepi) Raviola serves as the director of the global mental health team at Partners In Health. To help us through this difficult and scary time, he has outlined mental health strategies to help us adapt and cope while we engage in social distancing and upheaval of our daily lives.

We highlight several practices that might help us gain steady emotional footing in this strange new scenario that we are suddenly together in. Coach Beverly has also incorporated a few of her own suggestions.

10 Practices

  1. Social distancing doesn’t mean emotional distancing. Find ways to keep connected with your important people. Use technologies such as skyping, facetime and others to keep in touch. Write those thank you cards you have been meaning to send or write a letter to a special person in your life.
  2. Create a schedule for your day and try to develop a routine if you are staying home. Make sure to include outdoor activities, time for mindfulness and connecting with others.
  3. Carve out time for physical activity. Try to stretch daily and breathe deeply. There are lots of dance instruction and yoga classes online for free. Maybe you want to try a new type of exercise that you can find online. Take a walk outside while talking to friends on the phone. National Parks are not charging admission fees to encourage people to enjoy nature.
  4. Try to limit internet time reading about COVID-19. Instead, consider this is a time for learning and intellectual engagement. Start learning that new language, read a book on a topic you are not familiar with, take online courses for continuing education. Dust off your guitar or piano or other instruments and take online lessons.
  5. Positive family time can help counter feelings of fear. Play games together, sing karaoke, work on outside projects, cook meals, or just hang out in a shared space.
  6. Remember to do the things that you really enjoy doing, that you can do in this situation.
  7. Reach out to neighbors that need help getting food and basic necessities. Look for ways to volunteer in your community.
  8. Take time for focused meditation and relaxation. We have a wonderful and free Mindfulness Practice for Health Care Professionals that you may want to explore.
  9. Limit exposure to TV and internet news. Choose small windows and then find ways to cleanse yourself of it.
  10. Bathe daily, if possible, to reinforce feelings of cleanliness. Take a bath in mineral salts, light candles, listen to soothing music.

Read more here.

Remember that we will get through this. We are resilient, smart and resourceful.

With love, Coach Beverly.


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Taking care of ourselves, our families and our patients are our first priorities at this time.

It is very quiet in most neighborhoods this morning; no commuter cars on the streets, no school bus noises, no sounds of children playing. This desolate environment reminds us that there is a lot of unknown for all of us.

It is so important right now to make sure we are all prepared for social distancing and flattening the curve of the spread of this pathogen.

We want to offer a few resources for those living with diabetes to prepare for what’s ahead and how to manage stress during this time. Endocrinologists are urging people that use insulin to plan ahead and have extra supplies on hand.

Written by Catherine Cullinane RN, CDCES, our resident Tech Thursday Content Writer


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March is the National Nutrition Month!

To kick things off, Coach Beverly has collected an entire page of plant-based eating resources. This page includes recipes, instructional videos, reading materials, and more!

We hope this list informs and inspires you!

Click here to read more.


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Click here to view highly Rated Apps for Diabetes.

A new study, published by JAMA Network Open, found that people living with diabetes can benefit from using self-management apps on their computers and mobile devices.

These tools offer a platform for individuals to have more control over their care by increasing communication with their healthcare team, monitoring lab results and medication refills.

They found that by giving people living with diabetes access to a mobile and computer-based self-management tools, their medication adherence and glycemic control improved.

The study evaluated 111,463 individuals who already had an oral diabetes prescription at baseline with no insulin use from April 2015 to December 2017. Researchers evaluated medical adherence to oral medications by monitoring the “percentage of days covered” (PDC) and by measuring glycemic levels.

For computer-only access results were:

  • PDC increase of 1.16 (95% CI, 0.63 to 1.70) percentage points
  • HbA1c level change of -0.06 (95% CI, -0.08 to -0.03) percentage points

The study also tested the results for combining both computer-based and mobile access. They found that combining the two, they were able to see further improvements.

For computer and mobile access the results were:

  • PDC increase of 1.67 (95% CI, 1.10 to 2.23) percentage points
  • HbA1c level change of -0.13 (95% CI, -0.16 to -0.10) percentage points

As the JAMA Network Open suggests, “these functions are particularly useful for improving the quality of care for patients with chronic conditions, such as diabetes, that require ongoing self-management.”

These results indicate that by offering web-based self-management tools to individuals, medication adherence and glycemic control can improve over time.

You can read more about this study here.


For a list of Highly Rated Apps for Diabetes, click here.


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Join us on March 10 from 11:30 am – 12:45 pm

Get ready to succeed a the CDCES Exam. This course will transform your test anxiety into calm self-confidence and test-taking readiness.

We will review sample test questions and the reasoning behind choosing the right answers.

Topics covered include the changes in requirements for 2020, exam eligibility and test format, strategies to succeed, and a review of study tips and test-taking tactics.


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Intended Audience: This FREE webinar is designed for individuals or groups of diabetes educators, including RNs, RDs, Pharmacists, Nurse Practitioners, Clinical Nurse Specialists, Physician Assistants and other health care providers interested in achieving excellence in diabetes care and becoming Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialists®.


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We want to send a big thank you to one of our community members, Rachel Newman, RN, who forwarded us these amazing resources!

Below is a list of resources that range from tips to managing diabetes through nutrition and sleep, the health impacts of diabetes and aging, financial assistance, and tips on how to discuss treatment plans with providers.

These resources include:

Diabetes and Aging – The combination of aging and diabetes can even make some health problems worse. This article addresses what to look out for to prevent any further health issues. 

Diabetes and Nutrition – Tips for managing blood sugar and how eating well can help manage blood sugar.

Diabetes and Sleep – Steps to get a better night’s sleep and how sleep can help those living with diabetes or prediabetes.

Financial Assistance for Diabetes Patients – Information and assistance for private and government health insurance, local programs, support groups, and medicine-assistance programs.

Talking with Your Doctor about Your Treatment – A great resource to help people with diabetes discuss their treatment plans with their providers.


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Help with insulin is a phone call away

Three insulin manufacturers now have affordable access programs available that can help those on insulin based on their income, insurance, and type of insulin needed. The ADA provides a helpful checklist to go through before making a call to the appropriate manufacturer. They estimate it will take 20-30 minutes to put all the information together before the call.

Also available as a resource is the “Find The National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics (NAFC) Near You” tool to find free or low cost services and medications.

Check out the updated Insulin Cost Saving Resource Guide here!

Read more here.


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Happy Friday! As I get older, font sizes seem to be getting smaller. Excited to see the updated Injectables Algorithm, I turned my ADA Book to Standard 9 and quickly realized that in order to read the print, I had to hold the page inches from my nose. And there was no way could I read the footnotes even using my iphone flashlight to illuminate the words.

Thank goodness I collaborate with wonderful staff who boast youthful eyes and 2020 vision.

Robert (our Assistant Director and my high school senior) set to work recreating a draft of the document on Word. Getting the arrows to line up and fitting all the content in little boxes, was challenging, but he persevered. Taryn added the footnotes and I completed the final editing and the creation of the PDF.

We created this readable version because the algorithm is an important document that can be used to promote a collaborative practice.

Coach Beverly

I consider the ADA Standards my clinical “playbook”. The medication algorithms are of particular importance because it provides us with the opportunity to engage in a collaborative practice with our referring providers. “These are the evidence based medication recommendations from the ADA. I use it as a guide to recommend medication additions or changes”.

Enjoy our font enhanced Figure 9.2: Intensifying to Injectable Therapy

Then we can start a conversation exploring if a collaborative practice and medication adjustments using the algorithm is comfortable for the provider and perhaps include into our practice guidelines.

Enjoy this helpful 2 page reference guide, on us!


Want more Standards of Care updates?

The 2020 Standards of Care is ready for viewing. Coach Beverly highlighted changes from 2019-2020 and summarized important need-to-know content for CDCES’s!

Purchase our Level 1 Standards of Care, or buy the full Level 1 bundle to benefit from all the 2020 updates! Earn 9.0 CEs for $109


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We created this Carb Counting Quick Reference sheet based on the ADA handbook. With the holidays and New Years around the corner, this cheat sheet of the most common carbs with serving size is a perfect reference for people counting carbs. Plus, it is perfect for exam prep for health care professional. Download the Carb Counting Quick Reference today by clicking here!

If you are studying for diabetes certification exam, this reference provides the most common 15gm carb sources and their serving size. One exception is the milk serving – this list was created for people with diabetes and was simplified – we have modified it to reflect the actual carb count of a serving of milk (12 grams, not 15 grams of carbohydrates).


Learn more carb counting tips and tricks, and nutrition information in our Level 1 and 3 courses!

Start 2020 off right with Level 1 updates in January, Boot Camp (Level 3) updates in February and March, and a bundle to save on all the courses! We’re here to help make your New Year’s resolution a reality with great, on-demand videos, podcasts, handouts, extra resources, and practice tests to help you succeed at any diabetes certification exam.


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Experts are meeting with congress to encourage investigation of the relationship of human exposure to perfluoroakyl and polyperfluoroakyl (PFAS) on weight and osteoporosis.

Early studies have shown a link between greater PFAS exposure and increased risk for endocrine outcomes like BMI >30, but more research is needed specifically to examine factors like exposure timing,” Abby Fleisch, MD, MPH

Read More here – Endocrine Today Article

These commonly found chemical PFA substances are endocrine disrupting chemicals and may be the driving factor responsible for a variety of adverse health outcomes.

PFAS are a large and expanding group of man-made compounds that are widely used to make everyday products more resistant to stains, grease and water, according to the NIH.

PFAS can be found in nonstick cookware, stain-resistant carpeting, to-go containers, cleaning products, drinking water, microwave popcorn, and even fire extinguisher foam. Toxic Free Future advises avoiding common packaged foods with grease repellent coatings (such as pizza and french fry boxes), avoid stain resistance treatments on furniture, and check personal care products for teflon, “fluoro” or “perfluoro.”

Toxic Free Future has created a fantastic educational flyer on PFAS, it’s sources, and easy alternatives:

Full Flyer Available Here

For more tips on minimizing exposure to PFAS and what can be done about PFAS, you can visit Toxic Free Future’s website here. We also discuss PFAs in our recent FREE Webinar, Getting to the Gut. Click below to get started.


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