CAUTION: This article could be dangerous! Why? Because after reading it you’re likely to walk away thinking, “I don’t have any of those symptoms, so I must not have high blood sugar.” The problem is that many people don’t show any signs of high blood sugar until it begins wreaking havoc on their body.
High blood sugar is a sign of prediabetes or full-blown type 2 diabetes. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that over 29 million people in America have diabetes. The scary part is that one in four, or over 7 million people don’t even know they have the disease and the consequences can be deadly.
Additionally, an estimated 86 million Americans have prediabetes, a condition in which blood sugar levels are already elevated and beginning to inflict damage. And in the case of prediabetes, 90 percent of those people don’t know that they have high blood sugar.
I think you see now, why this article could be dangerous!
However, sometimes subtle changes in our bodies, the way we feel, or the way we respond to stimuli around us can tip us off that something is very wrong. A simple blood test can solve the dilemma and tell us whether our problem is high blood sugar or not.
- Increased thirst. If for no apparent reason, you suddenly feel thirsty all the time, it could be your body telling you that you have high blood sugar.
- Frequent urination. This sign follows from the last. If you’re drinking more fluids, you’re likely to urinate more often. Sometimes people recognize this sign because it wakes them up repeatedly at night. If this is happening to you, it may be time to have your blood glucose levels tested.
- Recurrent fatigue. High blood sugar usually means that your cells are already gorged with sugar and can’t accept anymore. Cells need sugar for energy, but too much sugar is like smothering a campfire with too much wood. The result is your cells are unable to get the energy they need and fatigue sets in.
- Increased appetite. High blood sugar usually means high insulin levels as well, because your cells are resistant to insulin. People with high insulin levels often crave sugary and high-carb foods.
- Enlarged abdomen. When blood sugar levels are high, people tend to carry their weight around their middle. If this describes your body configuration, you may be suffering from high blood sugar.
- Frequent headaches. A headache can be brought on by an imbalance in fluid or electrolytes in the body. When your blood sugar and insulin levels are too high, they throw your body out of whack. Headaches may be the warning sign your body is giving you.
- Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. High levels of blood sugar triggering high levels of insulin can cause women to produce too much androgen (a male sex hormone). This overproduction of androgen may be a contributing factor in polycystic ovarian syndrome.
- Increased acne. As mentioned, when sugar is high in the blood, it’s likely that insulin will be also. Increased insulin levels stimulate higher levels of the male hormone testosterone and can cause skin problems especially on the face.
- Frequent mood swings. The human body is a finely tuned instrument. But when blood sugar levels continue to be high, the body’s hormones are thrown out of balance. Irritability and mood swings can result.
- More infections. With heightened blood sugar, the risk for bacterial and fungal growth increases. If you find yourself getting sick more frequently, your blood sugar levels may be too high.
High blood sugar is often the result of lifestyle choices that have snuck up on us. Many people have found that by changing their lifestyle, especially in terms of eating right and exercising regularly, they have been able to lower their blood sugar levels and eliminate these symptoms.
If you think you might have any of the warning signs of high blood sugar, put your mind at ease and go to your doctor for a simple blood test. Also, let me introduce you to a man who was able to lower his blood sugar and even combat type 2 diabetes. I think you’ll be surprised when you see who it is and hear his testimonial!
 US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Diabetes Infographic,” 2014, http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/pubs/images/diabetes-infographic.jpg.
 US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Diabetes Infographic.”
 WebMD, “Symptoms of High Blood Sugar,” June 4, 2014, http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/tc/symptoms-of-high-blood-sugar-topic-overview.
 The Diabetic Guide, “10 Warning Signs of High Blood Sugar,” nd, http://thediabeticguide.com/10-warning-signs-of-high-blood-sugar/1/.
 Liver Doctor, “12 Signs of Insulin Resistance,” September 14, 2015, https://www.liverdoctor.com/signs-of-insulin-resistance/.
 Jaime Herndon, “Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome,” Healthline, August 3, 2015, http://www.healthline.com/health/polycystic-ovary-disease#Overview1.
There’s nothing like an aromatic spice to add pizazz and flavor to your favorite foods. But common spices may do far more than making bland food more palatable and exciting. There is a growing body of evidence that demonstrates the power of certain spices to lower blood sugar. This is great news for those suffering with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes.
10 Spices that Lower Blood Sugar
- Cayenne – This fiery spice will turn up the heat on any dish! But cayenne has also shown its ability to lower blood sugar. A study published in the 2006 edition of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition demonstrated this property of cayenne.Subjects in this study ate a meal seasoned with cayenne. They experienced a significant drop in blood glucose levels for up to two hours following their meal. Researchers concluded that cayenne improves insulin sensitivity, thus lowering blood sugar.
- Cinnamon – Cinnamon has probably gotten more attention for its blood-sugar-lowering properties than any other spice. In a study conducted by a scientist with the US Department of Agriculture, he was shocked when apple pie lowered, rather than raised, blood sugar. He was excited to discover that it was the cinnamon that did the trick!In another study, researchers found that a mere half-teaspoon of cinnamon per day significantly lowered blood sugar in subjects with type 2 diabetes. Beware! Cinnamon may also have blood-thinning effects, so please talk to your doctor before taking cinnamon.
- Fenugreek – Unless you prepare Asian recipes, this spice may not be familiar to you. Fenugreek seed is well-known for its medicinal properties in Southeast Asia. A review of herbal food supplements in 2013 discovered convincing evidence that fenugreek also lowers blood sugar in type 1 and 2 diabetes. You can consume fenugreek as a spice in food, in capsule form or as a tea.
- Garlic – Cultures have been relying on garlic for its antibacterial properties for millennia. But recent studies have also shown that garlic extract may also lower blood sugar. A laboratory study on rabbits in 2012 saw a 30-point drop in blood sugar levels when rabbits were fed garlic extract regularly. This could translate to a significant reduction in blood sugar for humans as well.
- Ginger – Ginger is most well-known for its ability to soothe an upset stomach and even ward off motion sickness. A recent study involved 88 people who had been suffering with type 2 diabetes for at least 10 years. Half of the subjects took three grams of ginger per day in capsules, while the other half took the same amount in an identical-looking placebo. After eight weeks, those who took the ginger experienced a significant drop in their blood sugar.
- Marjoram – Marjoram is a savory spice that works well with meats, eggs, cheese and mushrooms. Marjoram is akin to oregano, yet distinct in flavor. A recent study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry revealed the findings of lab tests involving marjoram, oregano and rosemary. All three herbs demonstrated ability to lower blood sugar levels much like common diabetes medicines.
- Oregano – Italian dishes come to mind when cooking with oregano, but it can also be a great addition to eggs, a wide variety of other dishes and even consumed as a tea. The Journal of Natural Medicine reported the findings of a 2008 study. The study found that oregano contains glucosides that are effective in lowering blood sugar.
- Rosemary – Scientists at the University of Illinois discovered that rosemary enzymes and flavonoids impact insulin release and signaling. The results of their study indicated a more natural way to manage diabetes and lower blood sugar.
- Sage – Sage has an earthy, aromatic flavor that especially works well with poultry and pork. In a study published with the US National Library of Medicine, researchers found that common sage extract demonstrated similar effects as metformin. Sage was able to impact fasting glucose levels and may be useful in preventing and treating type 2 diabetes.
- Turmeric – This delightful spice goes well in rice, salad dressings, eggs, roasted vegetables and soups. A recent study in China showed promise for turmeric as a way to manage type 2 diabetes. When subjects took 300 mg of turmeric in capsules for three months, they experienced a significant drop in blood sugar levels, insulin resistance and A1C compared with those who took a placebo.
If you are already on medication to lower your blood sugar, consult your doctor before taking herbs and spices that lower blood sugar. The combination of the medication and spices could result in your blood sugar going too low, which can be dangerous.
Also, pregnant and nursing women must take extra care when taking herbs and spices. Some of those listed above can result in premature contractions and even cause miscarriage. Remember, just because something is “natural” doesn’t necessarily mean it is safe.
Many people with type 2 diabetes find that they are able to manage their blood sugar levels more naturally with spices and herbs and avoid the cost and side effects of drugs. If you have type 2 diabetes or prediabetes, you may want to discuss herbal supplements with your doctor and determine what works well for you.
 Michael Ravensthorpe, “Three Popular Spices that Lower Blood Sugar Levels,” Natural News, November 16, 2013, http://www.naturalnews.com/043175_blood_sugar_levels_medicinal_spices_diabetes.html.
 Salynn Boyles, “Common Spices May Help Diabetes,” WebMD, August 6, 2008, http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/news/20080806/common-spices-may-help-diabetes.
 Salynn Boyles, “Common Spices May Help Diabetes.”
 Christine Case-Lo, “Foods that Lower Blood Sugar,” Health Line, July 14, 2014, http://www.healthline.com/health-slideshow/foods-lower-blood-sugar#2.
 Christine Case-Lo, “Foods that Lower Blood Sugar.”
 Diabetic News, “12 Common Spices to Lower Blood Sugar,” nd, http://www.diabeticnewsnow.com/12-common-spices-to-lower-blood-sugar/.
 Prevention, “Ginger Shown to Lower Blood Sugar,” April 10, 2014, http://www.prevention.com/health/diabetes/ginger-shown-lower-blood-sugar-diabetics.
 NYR Natural News, “Rosemary, Oregano & Marjoram Contain Diabetes-Fighting Compounds,” 28 July, 2014, http://www.nyrnaturalnews.com/diabetes-2/2014/07/rosemary-oregano-marjoram-contain-diabetes-fighting-compounds/.
 Michael Ravensthorpe, “Three Popular Spices that Lower Blood Sugar Levels.”
 NYR Natural News, “Rosemary, Oregano & Marjoram Contain Diabetes-Fighting Compounds.”
 Michael Ravensthorpe, “Three Popular Spices that Lower Blood Sugar Levels.”
 Baby Center, “Herbal Remedies in Pregnancy,” nd, http://www.babycentre.co.uk/a536346/herbal-remedies-in-pregnancy.
We don’t like to hear this, but the primary causes of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes are tied directly to our habits. Our lifestyle choices: what we eat, how active we are, and whether we’re overweight are major factors when it comes to high blood sugar and a host of other diseases.
This is why I cringe when someone says they’re going to treat their lifestyle disease (e.g., diabetes) with a drug. Follow the logic. If our lifestyle led to a particular disease, doesn’t it make sense that we need to change our lifestyle? Instead, we swallow a pill thinking that will take care of things. Meanwhile, we continue living the way we always have with the false assurance that the drug will make up for it.
What doctors seldom tell you is that if you rely solely on a drug to manage your blood sugar, the disease will progress.[i] True, with the help of the drug, diabetes will progress at a slower rate, but it will still progress. The reason for this is that drugs like metformin merely address the symptoms, not the cause of your high blood sugar.
Also, over the years that you’re on that drug, your body will develop tolerance to the drug so that you’ll continually need stronger and stronger drugs to achieve the same benefit you initially hoped for.[ii]
Third, I don’t have space in this article to get into all the nasty side effects of metformin and other similar drugs.[iii] Of course drugs have their place in medicine, but when we take a drug, we should know how else this drug is going to affect us.
Fourth, know that the medical community is predisposed to prescribe drugs, because they exist to make a profit like any other business. It’s like asking your barber if you need a haircut. Of course he’s going to say, “Yes!”
Initiate a Change in Your Lifestyle
Okay, if you’re open to changing the lifestyle that led to high blood sugar, there are at least three powerful things you can do that will help you lower your blood sugar. Be sure to engage in these three actions under the supervision of your doctor. At the same time, it’s your body; your life, so take control of your health.
And by the way, even if you don’t currently have high blood sugar, these three actions can help prevent you from developing it.
3 Powerful Ways to Manage Your Blood Sugar
- Lose weight if you’re overweight! I know, this is easier said than done. But even losing 10 or 15 pounds will lower your blood sugar.[iv] Don’t look for a magic pill or crash diet to lose weight. You need to change your habits. If you follow the next two ways below, you’ll see your weight and blood sugar drop.
- Change your eating habits! The standard American diet is filled with sugar. To a great extent that’s what has gotten us in trouble. One simple way to change your eating habits is to involve any or all of the following:
- Reduce your portion sizes.
- Eat only three meals per day with no snacking. (Contrary to what you’ve heard, eating numerous small meals throughout the day does not help lower blood sugar. Every time you eat, your blood sugar rises.)
- Eliminate all sugar and artificial sweeteners from your diet. Don’t drink sodas (diet or regular) and learn to drink your tea or coffee without sugar or other sweeteners.
- Increase the amount of protein you eat and consume fewer carbs. Substitute whole grain foods for white bread, white rice, and pasta.
- Exercise regularly! Physical exercise is one of the best ways to manage blood sugar and prevent the physical problems often associated with diabetes as it progresses. Regular exercise offers numerous benefits:[v], [vi], [vii]
- Burns glucose and lowers blood sugar
- Increases cell sensitivity to insulin
- Increases the take-up and utilization of oxygen throughout the body
- Lowers risk for heart disease and stroke (the number one killer of diabetics)
- Lowers blood pressure
- Increases your energy
- Helps you sleep better
- Helps you lose and maintain a healthy weight
Here are some tips for beginning an exercise plan:
- Choose an exercise you enjoy (or can learn to enjoy)
- Select an exercise you can engage in regularly
- Purchase necessary equipment to make your exercise enjoyable
- Start out slowly
- Exercise four or five days a week at least 30 minutes at a time
- Exercise with a friend or loved one
- Drink plenty of water while you exercise
- Track your progress
Give exercise and your new eating plan time to work. If you’ve been sedentary, your body will need time to get used to your new routines. Monitor your blood sugar levels and watch them drop. Also, remember that muscle weighs more than fat, so don’t rely solely on your scale to gauge your progress.
Finally, here’s a video link to a personal testimonial of a celebrity who has managed his blood sugar for over 25 years using the methods described in this article. I think you’ll enjoy getting reacquainted with this television personality! And following his example, you too can manage your blood sugar.
[i] Diabetes Digest.com, “Natural Progression of Type 2 Diabetes,” February 7, 2014, http://diabetesdigest.com/living-with-type-2-diabetes-progression/.
[ii] Daniel A. Hussar, PhD, “Tolerance and Resistance to Drugs,” Merck Manual, nd, http://www.merckmanuals.com/home/drugs/factors-affecting-response-to-drugs/tolerance-and-resistance-to-drugs.
[iii] Drugs.com, “Metformin Side Effects,” nd, http://www.drugs.com/sfx/metformin-side-effects.html.
[iv] WebMD, “Will Weight Loss Help Your Diabetes?” May 14, 2015, http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/safe-diet-tips-for-diabetes?page=2.
[v] WebMD, “11 Exercise Tips for Type 2 Diabetes,” October 22, 2014, http://www.webmd.com/diabetes/type-2-diabetes-guide/exercise-guidelines.
[vi] Dr. Joseph Mercola, MD, “Exercise Alone May Help Those with Type 2 Diabetes,” July 26, 2013, http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2013/07/26/diabetes-exercise.aspx.
[vii] American Diabetes Association, “Physical Activity Is Important,” April 9, 2015, http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/fitness/physical-activity-is-important.html.
Aida Turturro, the actress who plays Janice Soprano on the HBO series “The Sopranos,” is one of the more than 20 million Americans who have diabetes.
Turturro was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes (where the body does not produce enough insulin or the cells do not use the insulin properly) in 2000. For more than a year after her initial diagnosis she was in denial and did not take the proper steps-such as diet and exercise-to manage the disease.
Finally, her doctor told her that her blood sugar levels were too high and if she did not learn how to manage the disease, she would suffer serious complications.
“As soon as I started learning more about the potential complications of the disease, I realized I should have taken action sooner,” said Turturro. “It is scary what can happen to you if you do not take control of your diabetes.”
Turturro was among the more than 50 percent of diabetes patients whose A1C levels are above the target goal of 7 percent as established by the American Diabetes Association. Patients with diabetes should know their A1C level. It is a simple blood test that assesses glucose levels over a two- to three-month period.
In addition to her diet and exercise routines, Turturro worked with her doctor to develop a treatment regimen that was right for her. At first she was taking oral medications but was still unable to get her blood sugar levels under control. About two years ago, Turturro and her doctor added Lantus® (insulin glargine [rDNA origin] injection), the once-daily, true 24-hour basal insulin, to her treatment plan.
With a treatment regimen that includes Lantus and other diabetes medications, Turturro achieves good blood glucose control with an A1C level below seven percent.
“Managing diabetes is not easy. What I have learned is the best way to manage the disease is by becoming educated, motivated and an advocate for yourself,” said Turturro. “It is a 24-hour disease and you have to put in a real effort to keep your blood sugar levels under control.”
Note to Editors: Important Safety Information for Lantus
Lantus is indicated for once-daily subcutaneous administration, at the same time each day, for the treatment of adult and pediatric patients (6 years and older) with type 1 diabetes mellitus or adult patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus who require basal (long-acting) insulin for the control of hyperglycemia. Lantus must not be diluted or mixed with any other insulin or solution. If mixed or diluted, the solution may become cloudy, and the onset of action/time to peak effect may be altered in an unpredictable manner. Lantus is contraindicated in patients hypersensitive to insulin glargine or the excipients. Hypoglycemia is the most common adverse effect of insulin, including Lantus. As with all insulins, the timing of hypoglycemia may differ among various insulin formulations. Glucose monitoring is recommended for all patients with diabetes. Any change of insulin type and/or regimen should be made cautiously and only under medical supervision.Concomitant oral antidiabetes treatment may need to be adjusted. Other adverse events commonly associated with Lantus include the following: lipodystrophy, skin reactions (such as injection-site reaction, pruritus, rash) and allergic reactions.
For people with insulin-dependent diabetes, trying to control their blood glucose, or blood sugar, can be a stressful juggling act. Managing the disease often requires several daily insulin injections, taking up to 10 blood samples a day, coordinating the use of multiple medical devices and being mindful of how diet, exercise and medication can affect blood-sugar levels.
Medtronic’s Paradigm REAL-Time System incorporates a glucose sensor, a transmitter, a “smart” insulin pump and a glucose meter to provide patients with better control, flexibility and health.
Chris Jarvis, a member of the 2004 Canadian Olympic Rowing Team and a marathon runner, knows firsthand about the challenges associated with diabetes. He has type 1 diabetes, which means his body doesn’t produce insulin on its own. Some days, during races, Jarvis used to take up to 15 fingerstick measurements to check his blood sugar. For many years, he used two separate devices to control his diabetes, one to monitor his glucose and another to administer insulin into his body.
Most recently, however, Jarvis has been using a new federally approved device-the only one of its kind in the world-that has given him much more control over his diabetes.
Developed by Minneapolis-based medical technology company Medtronic, Inc., the MiniMed Paradigm® REAL-Time Insulin Pump and Continuous Glucose Monitoring System integrates an insulin pump and continuous glucose monitoring system to deliver insulin to the body day and night while at the same time continuously checking glucose levels, and sounding an alarm (or vibrating) if levels get dangerously high or low. This new device provides Jarvis with the confidence he needs to continue leading a healthy life.
“It gives you a real sense of comfort knowing exactly what’s happening inside of your body, rather than trying to guess with only a couple of fingersticks,” Jarvis says. “It’s just a quick touch of a button and you see where your blood sugar is.”
This new therapy option helps patients, like Jarvis, gain tighter control over their disease and understand how their diet, exercise, medication or lifestyle may affect their blood sugar. Armed with this knowledge, patients can take immediate corrective or preventive action to maintain healthy glucose levels.
Dr. Irl Hirsch, medical director, University of Washington Diabetes Care Center, Seattle, says that many patients with insulin-dependent diabetes still give themselves multiple daily injections of insulin and rely solely on blood draws-four to 10 per day-from fingersticks to measure their blood-sugar levels. The new system changes all this because it constantly delivers insulin to the body and continuously-almost 300 times a day-provides users information on what their glucose level is and whether it’s heading up or down.
“If you have insulin-dependent diabetes, you need to make sure you’re getting the right amount of insulin, and you need to keep a close eye on your glucose levels,” Hirsch says. “The insulin pump and continuous glucose monitor is a major breakthrough because it’s the only device in the world that helps you do both.”
Studies have shown that multiple daily insulin injections aren’t as effective as insulin pumps in controlling diabetes. Fingersticks alone miss more than 60 percent of low-glucose events, and that’s a real danger for people with diabetes. If blood sugar gets too high or low, patients can lapse into a coma and die within just a few hours. Over time, not maintaining normal blood-sugar levels can lead to blindness, stroke, amputations, heart disease and kidney disease.
“With the MiniMed Paradigm REAL-Time System, I control my diabetes; it doesn’t control me,” Jarvis says.
Diabetes and care— there cannot be a better combination of words in the world of diabetes!
Your doctor may examine and advise you for some time on diabetes during your visits to his clinic or his visits to your residence. But you are your own doctor for 24 hours all through the months and years with diabetes. How many times a day do you contemplate about the word diabetes?
But don’t you despair. You can fight it out with proper care.
The two words that stand uppermost in diabetes care are diet and exercise! If you are disciplined in these two areas, half of your battle is won!
Be in the know that 50 to 60 percent of daily calories come from carbohydrates, 12 to 20 percent from proteins, and not more than 30 percent from fats.
As for diet, let the balance weigh heavily in favor of fruits, vegetables and lots of fiber. More intake of fiber will help you immensely. Give up your past habit of taking heavy meals. Take in small quantities, as and when you are hungry. Extremely high or low blood glucose levels need to be avoided. As for losing weight, “slow and steady wins the race.” You have already consulted your doctor, you strictly go by the norms given to you and you lose two pounds per week. Very good! That’s good progress.
The risk of heart diseases and liver problems are ever there for diabetics. The food items that are major sources of saturated fats must be avoided. Olive oil is often recommended as a good source of mono-unsaturated fat, the healthiest type of fat.
You must remember the following points, which are your lifelines:
1. Maintain the normal blood glucose level.
2. You have the possibility of heart and liver diseases. Limit your food items from this point of view.
3. Maintain the desired level of weight.
With all the emphasis on diet, research on influence of various types of foods on the diabetes patients is still going on unabated. Researchers in this area are the most confused lot. They are certain about effects of some items of food. Vague opinions also float. For example, the researchers are sure that cooked foods raise blood glucose higher than the raw foods. Whether foods with sugar raise blood glucose higher than the foods with starch, is still uncertain!
Diabetes care will, perhaps, be a hot subject for all time to come—so far, diabetes is alive and kicking!
As any sufferer knows, there are two types of Diabetes, type I and type II. The latter is sometimes called adult onset diabetes, and over 90% of diabetics suffer this type.
It therefore takes no great leap of imagination to realize that the vast majority of diabetics are adults. But children can also suffer from diabetes, and for such kids, there are problems to face that are very different to those of their diabetic seniors.
For example, a child with diabetes will obviously need close monitoring, and a great deal of constant care and attention from parents. This in itself is not a problem, but it may mean that the child may never spend a night away from home, and it is not uncommon in these circumstances for a child to have never met another child of their own age with diabetes. Effectively, this is a very isolating period in a diabetic child’s life.
For theses reasons, many countries are now establishing special camps for diabetic children, to address these problems, by bringing a higher degree of normality to the life of diabetic children. Such camps provide 24 hour professional medical supervision and care to all the children, and are an extremely effective way to give young people living with diabetes a chance to be independent and learn about their condition with the support of their peers and trained health professionals.
They provide an enjoyable and safe camping experience in a supervised environment, and often focus, at least to some degree, on increasing the children’s ability to manage their own condition. Such camping conditions also create an environment which allows the interaction between young people with diabetes that may otherwise be denied through geographic isolation.
These diabetes education and recreational camps are, of course, designed to be fun as well as educational. Generally, they will offer a wide range of sporting facilities, which allow participants to try out new sports and other recreational activities, particularly team based activities, that they may often be otherwise denied.
On the medical side, nothing is left to chance. Prior to camp, each participant is normally required to supply a detailed medical history and an indication of the management skills of the child. Based on this knowledge, the camp can then offer the child the opportunity to learn further self management skills and how to interact with other young people with diabetes under professional supervision.
Other people benefit too. Often, many of the “helpers” in such camps are volunteers, with little first hand knowledge of diabetes, and these people will learn a great deal from their exposure on a day to day basis to the children.
Even the health care professionals themselves can gain a valuable insight into the management and lifestyle of young people with diabetes that no textbook can provide. These people usually report that they do learn a lot, and even the most experienced educators say they are moved by the realities of living day to day with these children.
And, last but by no means least, the parents enjoy a break from the daily routine of caring for a young person with diabetes, with the real likelihood that their child will gain confidence and increase their self management skills. To read more, http://webbiz99.com/diabetesdietexercise/
We diabetics have to take special care of our feet, or we can find them troubled in
two ways: reduced blood circulation and nerve damage.
Here’s what to look for and some prevention ideas.
If your feet are constantly cold, your legs are sore when you walk, or your feet hurt
in bed at night, you may be suffering from poor blood circulation. This, in turn, can
slow down the process of healing when you have cuts or other damage to your feet.
Staying physically active is one way to help improve your circulation. You also need
to control your blood fat and sugar levels, as well as your blood pressure. And of
course, don’t smoke.
If your feet are numb, you have a burning sensation on the soles of your feet or pins
and needles in your feet, you have signs of possible nerve damage.
Foot nerves are the longest in our bodies and are therefore susceptible to damage
by diabetes. If these nerves are damaged, the feelings are lessened, so we could
have the cuts or blisters that can lead to ulcers, and we wouldn’t even know about
Check your feet regularly to be sure there are no signs of injury. If you develop
corns or calluses, have them treated immediately by a podiatrist. Wash and dry
carefully between your toes, and keep your nails trimmed and smooth.
Everyone likes to have their feet pampered, but for us diabetics it not only feels
good, it also prevents serious health problems in the future. So book that foot
Diabetes can play havoc with your eyes, and sometimes there are no early sumptoms. So you may have no idea anything is wrong until your eyesight is in danger.
Here are the main eye problems that can be caused, or made worse, by diabetes.
These are often described as a clouding of the lens of the eye. They are treatable by surgery in most cases.
Our eyes are largely made up of fluid, and when the pressure of that fluid builds up too much inside the eye, you have glaucoma. Left untreated, it can damage the optic nerves, and even lead to blindness.
Lining the back of our eyes is light-sensitive tissue known as the retina. The retina contains very small blood vessels that can be damaged by diabetic retinopathy. Sometimes there are symptoms such as blurred vision, but often you won’t even know anything is wrong until the condition is well advanced. In the worse case, it leads to blindness.
Early detection is the key to battling all of these conditions, and the best diagnostic tool available is the dilated eye examination. This is a test in which special eye drops temporarily enlarge your pupils, allowing the doctor to see the back of your eyes. This test (which is painless) can detect cataracts, glaucoma or diabetic retinopathy in their early, treatable stages.
Eyesight is precious, so if you have diabetes do yourself a favor and make an appointment for your dilated eye examination. And then do it again every year from now on.
Unexpected sight loss is more common than you may think. Blindness often happens without prior warning signs and in people unaware they are at risk.
The two most common culprits of unexpected sight loss are diabetes and glaucoma. These diseases are known as the “sneak thieves of sight” because symptoms may not occur in the early stages. By the time a person realizes something is wrong, irreversible vision loss often occurs.
In fact, diabetic eye disease is the leading cause of blindness in adults. An average of 55 Americans go blind from the disease each day. The numbers threaten to rise sharply as diabetes becomes increasingly common due to poor eating habits, infrequent exercise and an aging population. One in three children born in the United States five years ago are expected to become diabetic during their lives.
Diabetes causes partial or complete loss of vision in as many as 70 percent of those who have it. Yet 30 percent of all people who have diabetes don’t even know they have it. Even people who know they have diabetes downplay the risks they face.
According to a survey of diabetics sponsored by Lions Clubs International, 60 percent were not worried about going blind or losing a limb. In reality, 74 percent of diabetics will develop serious complications that could lead to loss of sight or a limb or kidney failure.
Glaucoma, on the other hand, is a group of eye diseases that slowly damage the fine nerves that connect the eye to the brain. For most people, this damage occurs when pressure in the eye is too high. When these nerves are damaged, vision loss may result.
Glaucoma is the second-leading cause of blindness in the United States. But like diabetes, not enough people know about it: An estimated 4.2 million Americans have glaucoma but half are not aware of it.
Diabetes and glaucoma are especially prevalent among blacks and Hispanics. These groups are believed to have a genetic predisposition to the diseases and are much more at risk than Caucasians. Others particularly at risk for glaucoma are people over 60, those with a family history of glaucoma, diabetics and the very near-sighted.
The good news for those at risk is that a dilated eye exam can detect the two diseases and early treatment can prevent vision loss. Vision experts urge at-risk people to have regular eye exams.
Raising awareness of diabetic eye disease and glaucoma is key to preventing unnecessary blindness. Lions Clubs International works with Lions clubs, community groups and individuals to publicize the need for early detection and timely treatment of the two diseases. The Lions Eye Health Program provides materials for distribution at health fairs, senior citizen centers and similar gatherings. It also offers strategies for raising awareness of the eye diseases.