Diabetes and other diseases associated with altered blood sugar are rapidly becoming an epidemic in our country. High blood sugar distresses all of the systems in our bodies. Diabetes is one of the most expensive health care conditions in our society. It is estimated that within ten years one in three of us will be obese and most will develop diabetes. Yet, it is totally preventable and, in many cases, reversable!
Imagine that someone is talking…keeps talking…and talking…and talking…Eventually you stop listening. You tune them out.
This is what happens inside of the body when a person keeps eating sugar or sugary foods, like bread, that break down to sugar quickly. When the blood sugar goes up the pancreas has to increase the amount of insulin to respond to the sugar. Insulin’s job is to take the sugar and move it from the blood and put it into the cells. The pancreas keeps pumping put more insulin (talking), but as time goes on the rest of the tissues and organs learn to “tune it out.” They cannot “hear” any more insulin and you develop a condition called Insulin Resistance. This failure to “listen” means that you have more insulin circulating in your body. Insulin that keeps circulating damages tissue like your eyes and capillaries. This makes you more pro-inflammatory and pro-fat. This means you will hurt more and gain weight easily. Over time if you don’t develop diabetes the Insulin Resistance can cause heart disease.
Seek help if you have these symptoms of diabetes: frequent urination, excessive thirst, increased appetite, weight loss despite increased food intake, irritability and fatigue. This group of symptoms means that you likely have full-blown diabetes and need medical intervention. The American Diabetic Association estimates that there are 8 million Americans who are unaware that they have diabetes.
It’s a very personal issue
My Mom had diabetes and I watched her suffer through the majority of health conditions associated with it. She had high blood pressure, eye problems and was unable to see color by the time she died. Mom had neuropathy, sleep problems, chronic pain and inflammation, and she died of congestive heart failure as a complication of her diabetes. More than 15 different medications as well. Now, both of my siblings have diabetes. I really don’t want you to suffer from these problems.
Time to take action
If you have a family history of diabetes, now is the time to make lifestyle and diet changes that will improve your health. It can take more than ten years of poor eating habits to develop diabetes and it ages you 15 years! Stop the foods that have high fructose corn syrup and limit the cookies, candies, and processed and packaged foods that you know aren’t good for you!
Ask yourself, how can I add a little sweetness to my life without reaching for sweet foods or drinks? Do you need a hug, to smell a flower, or to pet a puppy? What would add those feelings of sweetness without raising the blood sugar? Even imagining eating a chocolate stimulates the pleasure centers in your brain!
I would also suggest that when you do choose to eat something sweet really take the time to enjoy it. Eat it mindfully and relish every bite. How many times have you eaten a piece of candy and don’t even remember eating it? Perhaps you will walk away feeling more satisfied.
Eat real food and lots of vegetables. The people who eat the most vegetables age the best and have the least likelihood of developing diseases such as cancer or diabetes. If you are unsure of what to eat to prevent diabetes or to make your body healthier schedule a consult with me.
Even if you do have diabetes, I have been quite successful at helping others to improve health markers such as blood sugar and hemoglobin A1C, a blood marker for diabetes, so that you don’t have to increase the number of medications that you take.