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SUGGESTIONS FOR TYPE 2 DIABETES

For those with a new diagnosis of diabetes, I would like to give a short background on the disorder and it's risks. Some of the information is common knowledge, some is not often mentioned by allopathic MDs. This is not meant as criticism, just a fact that they are not often given the same information as holistic practitioners.

Diabetes is not often found as a single disorder. People diagnosed with diabetes may also have hypertension, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, low thyroid function, and obesity. In fact, this is very often the case. This whole cluster of disorders has become known as "Syndrome X". Due, in part, because they were unable to discover the reason for the syndrome. My intention is to give you as much information as possible in order to help you peel away the layers and possibly discover the reasons for your diagnosis. If or when that happens,then, it is time to work with a knowledgable healthcare practitioner and plan a new health care strategy. In most cases, type 2 diabetes is controllable by diet alone - especially if it is caught early.

Keep in mind that there is another form of diabetes - Type 1 Diabetes. This is a completely different disorder. Type 1 diabetes is a lifelong disease that develops when the pancreas stops producing insulin. Without insulin, the amount of sugar in the blood rises above a safe level, and the cells do not get the sugar they need. Over time, high blood sugar can damage blood vessels and nerves throughout your body and increase your risk of eye, heart, blood vessel, nerve, and kidney diseases. If your blood sugar level becomes very high, a life-threatening chemical imbalance (diabetic ketoacidosis) can develop.

Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age; however, it usually develops in children and young adults, which is why it used to be called juvenile diabetes. It has also been called insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) because insulin injections must be taken daily. One kind of type 1 diabetes—latent autoimmune diabetes of adulthood, or LADA which develops in adulthood.(LADA develops in adulthood because it takes a long time for the body to destroy all the insulin-producing cells.) It sometimes is confused with type 2 diabetes because it starts later than most cases of type 1. Insulin normally is made by beta cells in a portion of the pancreas called the Islets of Langerhans. For unknown reasons, type 1 diabetes develops because the body destroys the beta cells. It is known as an autoimmune disease.

Some people inherit a tendency for type 1 diabetes. People who have a parent, brother, or sister with type 1 diabetes are more likely than other people to develop the disease; however, most people with type 1 diabetes do not have a family history of it. Even with a family history of diabetes, you might not develop the disease unless you are exposed to something in the environment that triggers it. Experts debate whether enteroviral infections, especially Coxsackie B, and not being breast-fed beyond 3 months of age may increase the risk for type 1 diabetes.

Type II diabetes generally occurs because of a metabolic failure at the cellular level, a condition spurred by poor diet, obesity, environmental factors, and genetics. Body tissues, such as cell receptor sites, lose their sensitivity to insulin. As insulin attempts to deliver glucose into the cell, it can no longer “unlock the door”. Blood glucose, barricaded from the cell, accumulates in the blood stream. Insulin therapy is usually not indicated in type II diabetics because typically these individuals already have too much insulin in their blood stream. If a diabetic is over producing insulin, it makes more sense to work on increasing sensitivity to the insulin already being put out. In Type 2 diabetes, dietary changes should be implemented before drugs. Most physicians, however, routinely use insulin or drugs. The current goal of treatment in type 2 diabetes is to lower the blood sugar level. But a raised blood sugar level is always a sign of an underlying disease. Can lowering a metabolic sign really prevent mortality and morbidity? Are we treating a disease when we lower blood sugar levels? No, we are not. We are simply lowering blood sugar levels which is an effect, not a cause. After an extended period of excess insulin secretion in type 2 diabetics,however, the pancreas may lose it’s ability to produce insulin, and a type II diabetic may then become insulin dependent.

When attempting to diagnose type 2 diabetes, it is suggested that a fasting serum insulin test be performed. This is the most accurate way in which to determine insulin resistance. The lower the results of the test, the better. Studies show that any result above 5-10 may be indicative of insulin resistance or hyperinsulinemia. In addition to the numerous complications from diabetes, insulin resistance, in most cases, causes a loss of magnesium in the body. This decrease in magnesium in turn causes an increase in blood pressure and a resulting loss of energy. In addition, it also causes an increase in insulin, which causes you to lose more magnesium, which makes you even more insulin resistant. It's a very vicious circle. Too much insulin also causes sodium retention, which causes high blood pressure and fluid retention. This puts one at a greater risk of congestive heart failure.

There are many other contra-indications to being insulin resistant. Among them are:


NUTRITIONAL AND LIFESTYLE SUGGESTIONS

I highly recommend reading Eat Right 4 Your Type by Peter D'Adamo. There are always general recommendations to stay healthy via nutritional intervention, however, when one has a diagnosed disorder, I feel it is always in your best interest to hone in on exact food choices to accelerate your progress in overcoming those disorders. The following are many suggestions I have found over the years.
  • Avoid processed or fast foods. These are very refined products which are calorie and fat dense but, non-nutritive. For the most part, these types of foods are high on the glycemic index. It is always best to eat foods which are lower on the index. Another reason to avoid these types of foods is the use of vegetable oils in their preparation. Vegetable oils are Omega 6 oils. Ingesting excessive amounts of omega 6 oils is known to cause inflammatory conditions... Heart disease, autoimmune disease, arthritis, pain - all are known to be inflammatory conditions. This is why it is most beneficial to supplement with a good cod liver oil (if you live in the north or don't go out in the sun, or fish oil if you do). Cod liver oil and fish oils are the best source of the highly nutritious OMEGA 3 OILS. NOTE Even though fish oil is highly beneficial for inflammatory conditions and heart disease, various studies are finding that taking 4000mg. per day of fish oil in capsules can decrease insulin sensitivity and increase blood glucose levels. Therefore, when adding fish oil to your regimen, do so under a knowledgable healthcare practitioner's watchful eye and always increase doses slowly. If you notice your levels going up, decrease the amount of fish oil you are taking.
  • Avoid - or drastically reduce consumption of - dairy (cassien in dairy is known to raise cholesterol), wheat, kidney beans, corn, potatoes, sugar, and fruit juice. All will affect weight loss and insulin resistance, in addition to carbohydrate metabolism. Lectins from these foods attach to insulin receptors which program fat cells to hoard all carbohydrates and store them as fat, and to NOT burn them as energy.
  • Studies show that high fiber diets reduce blood sugar levels, reduce sugar in the urine, and reduce insulin requirements. The improvement is progressive, in that it repairs faulty sugar metabolism. The recommended amount if fiber necessary for this improvement is about 80-100 grams of fiber a day. Some suggestions might be: nuts, seeds, or raw oats. Two teaspoons of psyllium seed husks mixed in a large glass of water or 1 teaspoon of apple pectin before meals is known to slow insulin production.
  • Continuing research is finding that the most beneficial way to eat may be having numerous small meals, with a small amount of protein at each. Keeping biochemical individuality in mind, lean organic turkey, chicken, and salmon would be best for blood type A; blood type O does very well with grass fed or free-range beef; lamb, mutton, and turkey are acceptable for both blood type B and AB, with blood type B being able to eat some free-range beef or buffalo. Raw nuts and seeds are very beneficial for most.
  • The best oils to cook with are organic, virgin coconut oil and organic ghee, which is clarified butter. Neither of these oils turn rancid with high heat or result in trans fats. In addition, they are both known to be very nutritious. The organic, virgin coconut oil has antibiotic, antiseptic properties, it is highly beneficial to the thyroid gland, and it can stimulate metabolism. Ghee is an excellant source of butyrate. The higher the fecal butyrate count, the healthier the colon. It is not only beneficial for colon health, but, studies indicate it may show effectiveness with many cancers and ulcerative colitis.
  • DO NOT FAST - that is the worst thing for a diabetic. As long as you eat small meals, you shouldn’t need to fast - unless you choose to do a fast a couple of times a year. If you eat poorly at some point, it is not logical to think that fasting will correct the blood sugar and/or insulin imbalance. Just proceed to get yourself back on track and try not to indulge too often.
  • All grain and starch carbohydrates should be avoided or eliminated. Studies are showing that a low carbohydrate diet is the best way to restore insulin sensitivity.
  • Limit fruit consumption to one serving a day-maximum. Studies are showing that the dark red fruits and berries are the best choices. Drink NO fruit juices. In a sense, this is likened to drinking liquid sugar. Fruit juice has no pulp or fiber to slow down the insulin spike as a result of the high amount of fructose.
  • Most vegetables are highly recommended. However, it is best to avoid all root vegetables. They are known to be a poor choice due to the fact that the fiber breaks down under storage, rendering them comparable to simple carbohydrates. This includes potatoes, carrots, and starchy vegetables. Tomatoes are known to contain a panhemagglultinin that binds with blood cells - causing damage. Eating tomato sauce (with olive oil), occassionally, is found to be beneficial. When eating cruciferous vegetables( broccoli, cabbage, kale, brussel sprouts), it may best to lightly steam them. They are all goitrogenic ( thyroid lowering) vegetables and steaming will counter that property. Garlic and onions are known to have blood sugar lowering properties. There are no known contra indications to eating them as often as possible; unless, you are also on blood thinners.
  • It is best to avoid all products made with flour due to the above mentioned glycemic index.
  • Soy is highly goitrogenic (thyroid lowering) and all around toxic. It is a known endocrine disruptor, and should never be used by anyone. It is not in your best interest to ingest soy of any type.
  • Ice cream is not something you should eat when you are diabetic - dairy is bad (as per blood type), sugar is bad, and if “no-sugar”brands are chosen - all artificial sweetners are toxic your liver among other things.
  • Vegetables and greens neutralize acid from protein. Not necessary to be on a HIGH protein diet; it is best to be on adequate protein diet. Nuts and seeds are good sources of protein, and beneficial fats to balance the diet.
  • Studies have found that B3 (niacin) lowers thyroid activity, is bad for the liver, increases histamine release, and slows the pulse. It is not recommended to use niacin unless it is as a balanced B complex.
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