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Preview Diabetic Handbook
I was always the life of the party. I was full of joy, I loved making others laugh and in general I was having fun and enjoying life. Then one day it was as though someone flicked a switch and I became a different person. I was visiting friends in Amsterdam and enjoying seeing the sights and after being there about one week my friends suggested we drive to Paris to spend a few days. To my surprise, I did not care to go and in fact did not care to do anything. The remaining week of my holiday was miserable and my friends did not really care for my company.
Upon returning home from my short holiday I decided to go see a doctor and explain what was happening to me. He immediately checked my blood glucose and scheduled me for a fasting glucose test and arranged a follow-up appointment. The day of my follow-up appointment the doctor sat me down and informed me that I have Diabetes and if I did not shed some of the 135 pounds I was carrying and make some lifestyle changes I would not survive past 45 years of age. That scared me!
He put me on Metformin and Gliclazide and sent me to a dietician who advised me on what to stop eating and what I could safely eat. The most important advice I was given, in her mind, was to stop eating fats, oils and creams, avoid sugar as though it were poison, reduce my consumption of beer and spirits and stop smoking. Regarding the advice I was given on fats, the doctors did not have a lot of knowledge 42 years ago and much has been learned since about beneficial fats that actually are needed by the body The beer and spirits were easy, I just quit altogether. The others were not so easy though I did overcome and even after some time quit smoking. Sugar was the hardest to avoid as it is present in so many foods and even used as a preservative in many pre-packaged products.
Diabetes is a non-curable life-long health problem. Today some 3.5 million people have been diagnosed with diabetes in the UK alone and it is estimated that 549,000 people don’t yet know they have it.
Diabetes is a condition causing the amount of glucose in your blood to be elevated because the body is not making proper use of it.
Since your pancreas either doesn’t produce any or insufficient insulin, to help your body absorb the glucose into body’s cells or in the case of insulin resistance, the insulin produced does not work effectively.
In Type I Diabetes the pancreas produces no insulin.
In Type II Diabetes the insulin produced does not work effectively due to insulin resistance. Type II, or what is sometimes referred to as “old farts Diabetes”, is what I will be discussing in this book.
Type II Diabetes normally occurs in people over the age of 40. Thus it is called “old farts Diabetes”. However, in South Asian people it often appears starting around the age of 25. Type II Diabetes is quickly becoming more common and currently is what up to 95 per cent of all people with diabetes have. The most basic treatment is a healthier diet and regular exercise along with medication and sometimes insulin.
If Type II diabetes was infectious public health officials would say we are having an epidemic. Type II was once referred to as adult onset diabetes, and it is affecting a-growing number of adults. What is even more surprising is that it’s now being diagnosed in teenagers and children.
The number one cause of kidney failure and blindness among adults is diabetes. It is the 7th greatest cause of death in America and it is blamed for 70,000 deaths annually however, it contributes to thousands more.
The bright side is that Type II diabetes is mostly avoidable. Approximately 90% of cases could have been avoided by taking just a few simple steps: keep your weight controlled, do more regular exercise, eat a healthier diet, and being a non-smoker.
Type II diabetes was at one time called adult-onset diabetes. The reason was that it was virtually unheard of in children. Today however, thanks to the proliferation of fast food restaurants and a plethora of snack foods childhood obesity is on a rapid rise. Now it is becoming more and more common in younger people.
In addition to the millions of adult diabetics it is estimated that another 60 million adults have “pre-diabetes.” Pre-diabetes indicated by high glucose levels on a fasting glucose test. Preventing pre-diabetes from becoming Type II diabetes is primarily up to the individual. Losing weight, exercising regularly, and changing one’s diet can not only stop pre-diabetes from becoming Type II diabetes, it can also return blood sugar levels to normal.
Even though genetics can be a factor in the development of Type II, it is still dependent on behavior and lifestyle. A Nurses’ Health Study suggested that 9 out of 10 of women with Type II can be directly connected to 5 factors:
Excess alcohol use.
The measurements for low risk are:
Maintaining a healthy weight.
Maintaining a body mass index of less than 25
Eating a healthy diet.
Exercising for 30 minutes or more each day.
Having only a few alcoholic drinks each week.
Studies of men, strongly indicate that an unhealthy “Western” diet along with a lack of physical activity and being overweight, greatly increases one’s risk of acquiring Type II diabetes.
Making just a few changes in your lifestyle can greatly reduce your risk developing Type II. Interestingly, the same modifications may, in addition lower your chances of developing heart disease and some cancers. That’s win, win, win.
Excess weight is the biggest risk factor for developing Type II diabetes. Carrying excess weight gives you a 7 fold increase in your chance of developing Type II diabetes. If you are obese your chances go up to 20 to 40 times more likely.
If you are above a healthy weight then shedding some just 10 percent of can halve your chance of developing Type II diabetes.
Not many things promote the development of Type II more than inactivity. Getting your muscles working more often harder will greatly improve their glucose absorption ability.
Long sessions of sweaty exercise are not required. Simply walking briskly for only 30 minutes every day will reduce your risk by about 30 percent.
Being a couch potato and watching television is extremely detrimental. For every two hours spent in front of your television rather than doing something more active you increase your chances of developing Type II by up to 20%.
Four simple changes to your diet can provide a huge impact on the risk of developing Type II.
First, choose whole grains over processed carbohydrates.
Drink more water, coffee, or tea and stop the sugary drinks.
Use the good fats and toss out the bad.
Cut down on red meat, avoid processed meat; choose whole grains, nuts, poultry or fish instead.
If You Smoke, Try And Quit
Type II has been added to the already long list of health issues linked to smoking. Smokers have a 50% greater chance of developing Type II than nonsmokers.
A growing body of evidence implies that moderate alcohol use reduces risk of cardiovascular disease. It is suspected that the same may apply to Type II. Small amounts, up to a drink a day for women, and two drinks a day for men appears to improve the efficacy of insulin delivering glucose to the cells.
Preventing Type II can be summed up in five words: Stay lean and keep active.
Are you concerned that you, one of your children, a relative or even a friend may have diabetes? Experiencing some of the symptoms Diabetes does not mean you have the condition, but you should contact your doctor to be certain.
Urinating a lot especially during the night.
Feeling very thirsty.
Having less energy than usual.
Unexpectedly losing weight.
Itching in the genital area or thrush.
Wounds and cuts taking longer usual to heal.
Blurred eye sight.
Though most Type I Diabetics are diagnosed as children or in early adulthood, no matter the age, the symptoms are the same.
If you are displaying any of the symptoms of diabetes, you should make an appointment with your doctor. Remember, showing some symptoms does not necessarily mean you are Diabetic, but it must be eliminated as a diagnosis. The sooner you get a diagnosis the better. Proper treatment and control are vital for future good health and will greatly reduce the chances of developing serious complications later in life.
It’s difficult to ignore the symptoms of Type I diabetes because they will often appear very quickly. But not seeking treatment is an invitation to serious health problems in the future.
Type II diabetes is easier to miss because it develops slowly. In the early stages it is harder to spot the symptoms. But diabetes left untreated will affect many of your major organs. These organs include your heart, nerves, eyes, blood vessels and kidneys. Getting an early diagnosis and beginning to control your glucose levels can help avert these complications.
Personally, I think that everybody should get checked for diabetes annually. After all, it is a quick and easy test