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user functions, help please - El Forum - 01-06-2012

[eluser]UnknownPlayer[/eluser]
Hi,
until now, i wrote my code on core php, and i started CI.
Now, i have problem with user functions..
When i make controllers, models and views for profile(user) page, article page, category page, and more..
I wonna put in top of the page, just like on this CI forum, user menu, where is some info about user and logout, profile, control panel etc.. links, so how can i get user data from table, and use it on every page ?
I can do that on user controller, that is logical, but how can i use that on other controllers ?
I have 2 options:
- to make helper file, where i will put my php functions
- to auto load User_model, and there to put functions for that

Give me your opinions, how would u make this thing ?
Thanks.