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Coffee, no sugar, dollop of low-fat milt

Back to the caffeine for just a moment.  What?  Only half a cup?  They always used to like my coffee...

I spent most of yesterday morning crafting a masterly summation of the study I mentioned last week.  Then I belatedly read the link kindly provided in my comments by Sandy.  I found this to be the most piquant part:

The public understandably believed that this new study must, indeed, be important since almost no medical professionals were heard contradicting the news reports.

But, there is a reason why:

Because the study had not yet been published in the medical journal or been made available to medical professionals. Anyone who might critique the study hadn’t seen it. It was released to the media before doctors and medical professionals with paid subscriptions had even had a chance to read it!

Gosh, no wonder so many of you wrote to say you couldn't track down the article.

That post raised enough questions in my mind that I crumpled up my own masterly summation and added it to the compost with the morning's clumpy grounds.  Look, I'm not a scientist.  In fact, I am so not a scientist that I am too embarrassed to ask Paul, who is, whether I drain my iPod's battery faster by listening to it loud.  (I was not too embarrassed to ask him why radio reception is worse when it rains, and that should tell you something right there.)  So you would probably do better to read the study (PDF) yourself, talk to a real live doctor about it, and form your own conclusions.  Because at this point I'm not touching this one with a ten-foot one tablespoon scoop.

I am, however, currently enjoying my customary morning latte, but a single instead of a double.  Make of that what you will.

A tip of the portafilter to Sandy at Junkfood Science; another Sandy who pointed me there; and Jen, Cindy, Jeanette, Maureen, and PRC, who went on a helpful paper chase.


Yesterday I had the opportunity to ask a real live doctor myself about caffeine, but I didn't take it.  I was too busy learning how to dose myself with insulin.  ("So you take one of these teeny syringes..."  "Yeah, I think I have this part covered."  "Then you take the alcohol swab..."  "Wait, you take the what, now?")

I knew it was likely that I'd end up on insulin sooner or later, as insulin resistance tends to increase in gestational diabetics as a pregnancy advances.  I did not expect that it would be so soon, but after ten days on the standard diet, my doctor took one look at my postprandial blood glucose numbers and said, "Wow!  You failed these good," then reached for her prescription pad.  I am mildly concerned, because I know from our experience with Charlie that infant RDS, which can be exacerbated by diabetes in pregnancy, is no trivial matter.  But of all my past complications that may recur, this was the most likely, and is happily the most manageable.  So I am perfectly comfortable managing it.

That said, it was not without alarm that I read up on the kind of insulin I've been prescribed, a long-acting variety called NPH.  Now, it used to be that insulin came solely from animal sources — to be precise, cow or pig pancreas.  (What a selfless, noble animal, that medically minded pig.)  But apparently there have since been advances.  Through the use of recombinant DNA, insulin can now be synthesized to be virtually indistinguishable in effect from human insulin.  As I mentioned above, I'm no scientist, so I'm not sure exactly how this is done — genetic engineering, nanobots, or big pharma's secret shame: enormous slave colonies of leaf-cutter ants — but it turns out that the brand I was given is made using Escherichia coli.

Wait, it gets better.  What makes NPH long-acting?  Why, it's "the addition of protamine obtained from the milt or semen of river trout."

Pig juice, E. coli, and fish spunk.  Strange, all of a sudden I'm not so hungry for my mandatory mid-morning snack.


Being somewhat securely with child, I have posted my last at REDBOOK's Infertility Diaries.  If you know of a blogger whose story you'd like to read there, why not go on over and throw her name into the ballot box?  Thanks.  I'll buy you a cup of coffee next time I see you.  (And then lunge across the table to knock that steaming cup of certain fetal death out of your trembling hand.  God, what are you, crazy?)