Category Archives: Diabetes Information

Is Type 2 Diabetes a Lifestyle Disease?

Some of your physical characteristics were inherited. If you are exceptionally taller or shorter than average, there’s a good chance this was dictated by your genes. People in your family tree were also taller or shorter than most, and this had a bearing on your height. The color of your eyes and hair can be influenced by your genetics. Unfortunately, some unwelcome physical and mental conditions can also be inherited.

For instance, if both of your parents were diabetic, your risk of developing diabetes rises significantly above average. However, even after diabetes is diagnosed, it can be reversed. The same is true with prediabetes, which is kind of a warning signal that you will possibly develop diabetes if you don’t make some changes in your life.

This is why type 2 diabetes is often referred to as a lifestyle disease. The lifestyle choices you make significantly contribute to whether or not you will receive a type 2 diabetes diagnosis.

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You could also call type 2 diabetes a “life partner” disease. If you are diagnosed as diabetic and do not make certain changes to the way you live your life, you could be diabetic up until the day you die. Diabetes is treatable, but this physical state is not anything that you would choose to live with.

In almost every case, a diagnosis of prediabetes happens before type 2 diabetes occurs. This is because your blood sugar levels don’t rise dramatically in most cases to the point that you go from sustained healthy levels to diabetic levels. Regular testing can reveal a slow and gradual increase in blood sugar, and this allows you act quickly to keep prediabetes and diabetes out of your future. This is done very simply, with a protocol proven to return blood sugar levels to a healthy range.

Choosing a Better Lifestyle

Diabetes is a chronic disease. Nerve damage, kidney failure and vision problems that include blindness can all develop from diabetes. Those are probably not things you look forward to in the future. Since health experts agree that this is a lifestyle disease, you can simply choose a different lifestyle.

What does a non-diabetic existence look like?

It includes regular physical activity to naturally expend energy. Don’t worry, you don’t have to run the Boston Marathon, swim, bike and run a triathlon, become an Olympic bodybuilder and purchase an expensive gym membership. All you have to do is get up and moving more than you are sitting and inactive. That’s really it as far as physical activity is concerned. Work 2.5 hours (150 minutes) of physical activity into your week.

Research shows that undertaking 15 separate 10 minute sessions of moderate to intense aerobic activity provides the same rewards as 5 physically active sessions that are 30 minutes each. Just figure some way to raise your heart rate through aerobic activity 2.5 hours each week.

Nutrition Plays a Part… A Big Part

Did you know that approximately 60% to 70% of your level of health and well-being is directly related to the foods and liquids you put into your body? As recently as the 1990s it was believed that you inherited the greatest part of your physical fitness. We know now that nutrition has a greater influence on your overall mental and physical wellness than genetics. In other words, you can choose how well you want to be.

Is Type 2 Diabetes a Lifestyle DiseaseDiabetes specialists will tell you regular physical activity and smart nutrition is an almost unbeatable combo for not only preventing diabetes, but also for reversing diabetes as well. So, the choice is yours. You can choose a diabetic lifestyle where you sit around a lot, don’t get much physical activity, eat a lot of processed foods and develop chronic health problems.

You can alternately choose to keep prediabetes and diabetes out of your life, or reverse those conditions if they have already developed. The lifestyle choice is yours, and the key to good health is well-known. This is great news, because it means you have control over your health and well-being, and making simple changes in your life can lead to the healthiest, happiest you.

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Smoking is Even More Hazardous for Diabetics

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Are you a diabetic? Do you smoke? Do people around you smoke? We all know smoking is a direct cause of cancer but if you have diabetes smoking, including passive smoking leads to other health problems.

If You Have Diabetes Smoking Leads to Health Problems

Here are 7 reasons why mixing diabetes with smoking is a very bad idea:

  • diabetes smokingYou are more likely to get nerve damage (neuropathy). This is because smoking affects your blood circulation and that in turn means your nerve endings are not getting the nutrients they need. If this happens to the nerves in your feet it could lead to sores and infections and, if not taken care of properly, even amputation.
  • There is an increased risk, double in fact, of you getting limited mobility in your joints. It’s no fun trying to bend, climb stairs or lift something when you have a painful joint.
  • Because of smoking you could develop kidney disease.
  • When you smoke your blood pressure increases. Increased blood pressure creates a real risk of heart disease.
  • Research has shown that diabetics who smoke increase, 3-fold, the risk of dying of heart (cardiovascular) disease.
  • By smoking you increase your blood-sugar levels. This makes it more difficult to control your diabetes because your glucose levels could be fluctuating quite dramatically. This, in turn, leads to other problems.
  • And it also increases your cholesterol levels, which increases the risk of a heart attack.

In fact smoking and passive smoking have a seriously detrimental effect on the ABC’s of diabetes management:

A – the measurement of your blood glucose over a 3-month period
B – your blood pressure, which should be below 130/80
C – your cholesterol levels. Cholesterol levels include LDL, HDL and triglycerides. Your LDL should be below 100. HDL levels should be above 40 (for men) and above 50 (for women). Tryglycerides should be below 150.

And, of course, on top of all that there’s the proven risk of cancer! More importantly your healthy gets compromised and you could end up with complications such as loss of vision, kidney disease, risk if heart attacks and strokes as well as skin problems.

If you are having trouble quitting, talk to a health care practitioner as there are many different methods to help you stop smoking.

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Diabetes Management: Blood Glucose Meters

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If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with diabetes, one of your first steps will likely be to purchase a glucose meter.

There are some important things to keep in mind as you make your decision because this piece of equipment is likely to be part of your everyday life.

A glucose meter (or glucometer) is a medical device for determining the approximate amount of glucose in a drop of blood obtained by pricking the skin with a lancet. Glucose meters are portable and designed for use by ordinary people with diabetes.

There are now dozens of models of glucose meters. The average size is approximately the size of the palm of the hand, though some are smaller or a bit larger and they are battery-powered.

A consumable element containing chemicals which react with glucose in the drop of blood is used for each measurement. For most models this element is a plastic test strip with a small spot impregnated with glucose oxidase and other components. Each strip can only be used once and is then discarded.

Cost is a major issue for most people, but there’s good news if you have any kind of medical insurance. A glucose meter is typically considered to be a vital part of medical treatment and insurance companies often pay for a portion or the entire cost of the meter.

At the same time, there is sometimes a limit on the amount the insurance company will pay, and that may severely limit your options.

glucose meterWhile cost is naturally important, remember that you’re going to be needing a meter from now on. Finding a cheaper glucose meter that requires a more serious stick for blood may seem like the best option when you’re writing the check for the meter, but the tedium of the daily stick may negate that cost in the long run.

There are some companies out there that help with the cost of a glucose meter if you meet specific income guidelines. This may be a good answer if your quandary about which meter to buy is purely based on financial restraints.

Your doctor, druggist or representative of a local medical supply company may also be good sources of information about how to find the best deals and how to get help paying for a glucose meter.

Finding a very inexpensive glucose meter may be the best answer to this situation. If the meter is accurate, it’ll get you through the initial period of adjusting your life to the regular testing of your blood sugar.

Take some time to do research into what’s best and what’s not in glucose meters. You’ll find that some make absolutely ridiculous claims and you may have to ask some questions to find those companies that produce the glucose meter that will work best for you and your lifestyle.

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Depression And Diabetes

Many people who are diagnosed with diabetes are overwhelmed with information, medications, doctor visits and a feeling of helplessness. Diabetes can be frightening, particularly for anyone who is not familiar with the disease. We read about complications with taking insulin and medication and can often feel hopeless.

Many diabetics experience a period of denial when first diagnosed with diabetes. They refuse to believe there is anything wrong with them. While they remain in denial, the condition worsens.

symptoms-of-diabetesThis can often lead to depression. According to the American Diabetes Association, people with diabetes have a greater risk for developing depression than other individuals.

The stress of managing diabetes can take a toll on an individual. There are new medications to take, blood sugar must be monitored frequently and a record kept for your doctor. There are frequent doctor visits and there may be several different medication combinations needed before your blood sugar is under control.

On top of that, people who have diabetes are often faced with sudden lifestyle changes. Foods that they once enjoyed are now on the can’t eat list. An exercise regime is often recommended, which can be good for depression, but people with depression often have little energy to begin an exercise regime.

As the depression continues, people often lose interest in monitoring their blood sugar levels and may even skip their medication.

Symptoms of depression include a loss of pleasure in every day activities that used to be enjoyed as well as a change in appetite. You may have trouble concentrating and have trouble sleeping. Or you may even sleep too much.

Many people suffer from depression, but for a diabetic, it can be life threatening. Depression and diabetes is a dangerous combination.

People who are diagnosed with diabetes can empower themselves by learning as much about the disease as possible from the beginning. This can alleviate the feeling of helplessness that often accompanies the diagnoses.

Ask your physician questions. Do research. Find out how you can help manage you disease.

If you feel you are suffering from some of the signs of depression, ask your doctor to recommend a therapist who is familiar in dealing with people with chronic illness. Therapy can be crucial for a diabetic patient who feels isolated because of all of the extra work involved in treating their illness.

Do not be afraid to discuss your illness with family and friends. Diabetes is a nothing to be ashamed of, it is a disease that affects millions of people.

If at all possible, join a support group for others who also have diabetes. Here you can not only find kindred spirits who are experiencing some of the same fears as yourself, but you can also learn new information.

Any time someone is diagnosed with an illness puts them at risk for depression. Their world has changed and no longer feels safe.

Worse of all, they feel out of control. If you are diagnosed with diabetes, take back the control and learn how to manage your disease.

By empowering yourself, you will not only be able to effectively manage your diabetes, you will eliminate the depression.

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