Diabetes Support

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Category: Diabetic Articles (Page 3 of 7)

Stevia Conversion

Stevia – How to use in different Recipes

Below is the equivalent to “1 cup exchange” In other words, one cup sugar or sucralose (splenda) called for a recipe is equivalent to the below amounts.
If the recipe calls for 1/2 cup exchange, you would use 12 packets blend, etc. etc.

24 packets Stevia Blend
12 tsp. Spoonable Stevia Blend
2.5 tsp. Stevia Extract Liquid
1.5 tsp. PURE Stevia Extract Powder

1/3 tsp “Sweet Leaf” = 1 cup sugar.

NOTE: Not all Stevia Extract Powders are pure. Look for a 28 mg serving size or thereabouts… If the serving size is significantly larger, the Stevia isn’t pure

From a book called “Sugar-Free Cooking with Stevia”

One cup = 48 teaspoons
One cup = 16 tablespoons


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The Symptoms Surrounding Type 2 Diabetes

Diabetes is a condition caused by a diet that is too high in carbohydrates over a long period of time. Ultimately, the high carbohydrate diet brings about a condition known as insulin resistance.

Insulin resistance occurs as a result of the body continuously producing increased insulin in an attempt to maintain normal blood sugar levels.

Carbohydrates are simply long chains of sugar molecules hooked end-to-end. When a person eats carbohydrates their normal digestive process breaks up these chains into the individual sugar molecules, and they pass right through the intestinal wall into the bloodstream, and load up the bloodstream with sugar.

If this happened every once in a while it would not be a problem. But as diets today are so high in carbohydrates, people have a constant high level of sugar pouring into their bloodstream year after year.

This requires their body to continuously produce high levels of insulin to keep that sugar level down. (Insulin’s job is to push sugar out of the bloodstream into the cells where it is used for energy.)

Eventually the cells in their body becomes insensitive to the effects of the insulin (insulin resistance). To handle this problem of insulin resistance their body begins to produce even higher levels of insulin. This continues until their pancreas reaches the maximum amount of insulin it can produce, and when the insulin resistance increases again, their blood sugar begins to rise out of control.

The result is type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is actually an extreme case of insulin resistance.

Not everyone experiences all the symptoms and there is no specific sequence in which these signs of high blood sugar symptoms appear. Some symptoms may appear before the blood sugar levels rise above normal and others may not show up until after the blood sugar levels have gone up.

“High insulin levels, not low insulin levels, are the problem originally associated with Type II diabetes, and high insulin levels are harder to detect because it is normal for insulin levels to rise under many circumstances. The slightly higher insulin level causes slow weight gain, small increases in blood pressure, slow changes in cholesterol numbers and the beginning of artery plaque formation.”

“One by one, diagnoses of obesity, hypertension, cholesterol abnormalities, and heart disease are made without taking into account that these are all related to higher insulin levels and to each other. If the underlying physiology is not corrected, Type II diabetes will likely be the next diagnosis.”

“The physical changes that occur when you have higher insulin levels are so subtle and cause damage over so many years that it takes approximately ten to thirty years for your blood sugar-levels to rise after the initial changes in insulin levels begin. By the time Type II diabetes is diagnosed, chronic high insulin levels have done a lot of metabolic damage though it will seem to happen overnight.”

excerpted from The Schwartzbein Principle II, The Transition
by Diana Schwartzbein, M.D.

In an attempt to reduce the symptoms of insulin resistance or hold them in check, the symptoms are often treated by drugs, medications or insulin. Addressing symptoms does nothing to handle the underlying condition causing it, and so the condition continues to get worse, resulting often in more and more medications to keep the symptoms “under control.”

It can get so crazy that diabetics can wind up being prescribed for several drugs for high blood sugar, as well as another drug for high triglycerides, and another for high cholesterol, and another one for high blood pressure. Yet none of these drugs addresses or corrects the underlying cause of the diabetic condition, insulin resistance!

If you have not yet done so, you can turn your diabetic condition around and improve your overall health by getting onto a high protein/low carbohydrate diet, taking the correct nutritional supplements, and putting a little exercise into your life!


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Tight Blood Sugar Control Increases Diabetic Death Rate

A long-term study, featuring 10,000 diabetic patients, was recently halted 18 months early, due to an unexpected increase in deaths.

The US Government’s National Institutes of Health was running this study to answer the key question:

“Could pushing blood sugar to near-normal levels of an average of 100 help protect high-risk patients’ hearts?”

(This is below today’s recommended blood sugar target of an average of 170 for diabetics.)

In the group pushing for near normal levels, many patients took multiple drugs and insulin shots, adhered to strict diets and regularly met with counselors and doctors who monitored them.

The reason the study ended early was that the number of deaths from heart attacks and unexpected sudden deaths was 25% higher in the group that was pushing for normal or close to normal blood sugar levels as compared to those looking to maintain the existing recommended blood sugar target of 170.

The use of diabetic oral drugs and insulin does not address the root cause of the diabetic problem.

A proper diet with reduced carbs, effective nutritional supplementation and adding just a bit of regular exercise is a very effective and natural way of reversing the diabetic condition.


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Why a Diabetic Diet Should Be Low in Carbs

The Anatomy of Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are long chains of sugar molecules connected together. There are basically two kinds of Carbohydrates: Simple and Complex.

Simple Carbohydrates are made up of only 1 or 2 sugar molecules. Complex carbohydrates are made up of many sugar molecules linked together.

Simple and Complex Carbohydrates in the diet

Examples of foods that contain Carbohydrates are:

Rice, grains, cereals, and pasta
Breads, tortillas, crackers, bagels and rolls
Dried beans, split peas and lentils
Vegetables, like potatoes, corn, peas and winter squash
Fruit
Milk
Yogurt
Sugars, like table sugar and honey
Foods and drinks made with sugar, like regular soft drinks and desserts

Starch found in Potatoes is a complex carbohydrate whereas table sugar is one of the most simple.

Whether the carbohydrate is complex or simple it can’t be used by the body until it is broken down into a basic sugar molecule.

Stages of Digestion of a Carbohydrate

Stages of Digestion in Carbohydrate Metabolism

Stages of Digestion

1. In the stomach complex carbohydrates are broken down into more simple or basic forms by the stomach acid. Your stomach then passes its contents into the intestines.

2. In the intestines with the help of intestinal bacteria and other digestive enzymes the carbohydrates are broken down into even simpler forms.

3. This digestion in the intestines continues until the carbohydrates are broken down into basic sugar molecules.

4. These sugars pass through the intestinal walls into the blood stream. That is why a person’s blood sugar levels go up after eating carbohydrates.

5. The sugar now in your blood travels through the body.

6. Your body recognizes this increase of blood sugar and produces insulin, which is used to transport the sugar from the bloodstream into the cells of the body where it is used for food and energy.


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Vitamin C – the Missing Vitamin

Facts on Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an antioxidant. It is needed for tissue growth and repair, adrenal gland functions, healthy gums, skin and blood. It also aids in the production of anti-stress hormones, is needed for metabolism, protects against harmful effects of pollution, protects against infection, and enhances immunity.

Without it you can bruise easily, have wounds that don’t heal, gum problems and aching joints.

Why do we need to take Vitamin C supplements?

As a place to start, you need to understand, there are only 3 mammals on planet earth that have bodies that do not manufacture vitamin C. These are the guinea pig, the rhesus monkey, and humans. The way all three must acquire the vitamin C they need is through their diets and/or supplementation.

If you are diabetic, taking vitamin C is essential. Your body attempts to protect itself from high blood sugar levels by converting excess glucose in your bloodstream to sorbitol, which is a form of sugar that is initially less damaging to your body.

But over time, sorbitol travels to certain parts of the body where it builds up. Research indicates that this buildup of sorbitol is a factor in the long-term complications of diabetes.

These complications are cataracts, neuropathy (nerve damage), retinopathy (going blind) and nephropathy (kidney failure).

Studies have shown that taking 2,000 mg/day of vitamin C reduces the production of sorbitol and strips sorbitol out of the body.

Another study presented at the Nuffield College of Ophthalmology [Definition: the branch of medicine concerned with the eye and its diseases] of Oxford University, England, showed that vitamin C actually slowed and stopped the development of cataracts, and how natural vitamin C was more effective than synthetic ascorbic acid.

If you have high blood pressure, taking vitamin C is a must! A study done by scientists at the Boston University School of Medicine and the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University, showed that people with high blood pressure had their blood pressure levels fall by an average of 9.1% by taking 500 mg of vitamin C each day for a month.

A 10-year study from UCLA showed that in a population of more than 11,000 US adults aged 25-74, men who took 800 mg of vitamin C daily lived about six years longer than men who took only 60 mg of vitamin C daily. Increased vitamin C intake was likewise associated with greater longevity in women. Higher vitamin C intake reduced cardiovascular deaths by 42% in men and 25% in women.

There is a huge difference between whole food Vitamin C and ascorbic acid. The more ascorbic acid you take the less your body absorbs. An intake of less than 20 mg has a 98% absorption rate. By the time the intake increases to 1 to 1.5 grams, the absorption has dropped to 50%. In amounts over 12 grams, the absorption of ascorbic acid drops to only 16%.

In contrast, Whole Food Vitamin C contains no ascorbic acid and the body knows how to absorb and use it.

In fact, comparison studies showed that after 12 hours there remained 25 times more Vitamin C in the blood stream than ascorbic acid.

Three Whole Food Vitamin C tablets contain almost as much vitamin C as a half-gallon of fresh squeezed orange juice!

The problem for people who want real vitamin C, is that glass for glass, orange juice contains more sugar than Coca-Cola!

Find out more about a Whole Food Vitamin C


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How Much you Should Exercise and When

Today, the one thing that everyone agrees on is that exercise improves health and can help reverse many medical conditions. Even people who cannot exercise for long periods due to being out of shape or busy lifestyles can now benefit from recent research regarding exercise.
Exercise Programs and Routines

Recent studies show that several, short periods of exercise after eating is more effective than continuous exercise for lowering fat and triglyceride levels in the bloodstream. This new research supports multiple 10-minute periods of exercise that add up to at least 30 minutes a day on most days of the week, as a way to reduce the risk of heart disease.

Additionally, if you also want to lose excess weight and/or lower blood sugar levels, the best time to do your exercise time is before breakfast, before lunch and before dinner.
Walking for Exercise

A good type of exercise to start with if you have not been exercising or are out of shape is to begin by just walking. Then as you get accustomed to the walking you can increase your pace, or if you wish, begin a more vigorous exercise regimen.

Take those walks and in one week you will start to feel the difference! In two weeks you’ll be amazed!


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The Dangers of Microwaving Your Food

The Microwave oven is a standard feature in just about every household today. It is as common as the TV, and there are dozens of microwave cookbooks available in any bookshop.

Unfortunately, the more this kitchen tool is looked into, the more it becomes clear they are unsafe and a threat to your health and the health of your family, as can be seen from the following:

“Heating food in a microwave oven is very convenient but recent studies have shown that it may not only impact the nutrition of the food, it also may be dangerous to those who eat the food.”

“According to an announcement about infant bottles from the University of Minnesota in 1989 “Heating the bottle in a microwave can cause slight changes in the milk. In infant formulas, there may be a loss of some vitamins.”

“According to research, cooking food in a microwave may alter the physical make up of the food. It is known that the irradiation process breaks up the molecular structure of food and creates a whole new set of chemicals. These chemicals include benzene [Definition: chemical used in making insecticides and motor fuels], formaldehyde [Definition: fluid used for preserving dead bodies] and a host of known mutagens [Definition: substances that increases the rate of cell mutation] and carcinogens [Definition: cancer causing substances].”

“A study performed by Dr. Hans Hertel of Switzerland found that food prepared in microwave ovens not only altered the food, it also altered the blood chemistry of those eating it.”

“Microwaving food in plastic containers runs the additional risk of the food absorbing dangerous chemicals released when the plastic is bombarded and heated by radiation.”

Dr. J. D. Decuypere


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Neuropathy Drugs Increase Suicide Risk

The FDA just released the analysis of 199 studies done on a total of 44,000 patients who were taking anti-epileptic drugs. The results showed there was twice the risk of suicidal behavior in using anti-epileptic drugs as compared with patients taking a placebo.

Two of the anti-epileptic drugs in these studies were Gabapentin (marketed as Neurontin) and Pregabalin (marketed as Lyrica). Both of these drugs are advertised for neuropathy and are made by the drug company Pfizer.

In 2004 Pfizer was fined by the FDA and paid over $430 million for promoting Neurontin to doctors as a medication for neuropathy, a use for which it was never approved!

So here we have a drug company making two drugs that are prescribed by doctors for neuropathy, one of which was never approved by the FDA for that use, and both are associated with increased risk of suicidal behavior.

(If you know of friends or relatives taking Neurontin or Lyrica, feel free to forward this article to them. You just might save a life!)

Drugs can never heal the body as they are an alien substance in the body. They cannot address the root of the problem, which for most people who have neuropathy, are very specific nutritional deficiencies.


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Are Pre-Packaged “Low Carb” Foods Really Low Carb?

In the last couple of years there have been more and more prepackaged foods going onto shelves in supermarkets and health food shops that are advertised as having a “Low Carb” content.

Being a diabetic, it is important to maintain a low carb intake for several reasons: 1) carbs convert to sugar (glucose) in the digestive tract and raise blood sugar levels, 2) to compensate for the increase in sugar coming into the bloodstream, the body increases its production of insulin, which adds to the already existing problem of insulin resistance that diabetics must deal with, and 3) the excess sugar in the bloodstream that cannot be pushed into the cells of the body for food and energy get converted into triglycerides (fat) and get packed away in the fat cells causing weight gain.

To maintain a low carb diet the diabetic must have the correct information on the carb content of the food he or she is eating. Many new pre-packaged foods today have prominent wording the front of the packaging about it being “Low Carb” and stating that the product has only so many “net carbs” or “effective carbs” per serving.

Some of the “low carb” products that can be found on shelves are energy bars, noodles and even cookies. In inspecting several of these products, the energy bars had 2 “Effective Carbs” per serving, but when looking at the nutritional panel on the back it said Total Carbohydrates per serving was 24. The noodles advertised 5 “Net Carbs” per serving on the front, but the nutritional panel on the back stated Total Carbohydrates per serving was 43. The cookies advertised at only 2 “Net Carbs”, yet the nutritional panel stated Total Carbohydrates at 15.

How can this contradiction be and which information is correct?

Not counting carbs occurs two ways: The first is that some food manufacturers use sugar alcohols as ingredients to sweeten their products. The common sugar alcohols used are mannitol, sorbitol, xylitol, lactitol, isomalt, and maltitol amongst others.

Because these sugar alcohols are not technically sugar (even though they do contain carbs and do raise blood sugar levels — but more slowly than sugar) the food manufacturers do not count their carb content or label it as zero.

The second way that carbs are not counted is: Fiber is known to help lower blood sugar levels. Because of this, certain food manufacturers count the number of grams of fiber per serving and subtract that number from the number of carbohydrates. Of course this is not based on any scientific evidence that the fiber cancels the carbs, but these food manufacturers do it anyway.

By using the above two techniques the result is “Net Carbs” or “Effective Carbs” which are advertised on the front of the packaging as the carb contents per serving.

But if you look at the nutritional panel on the back of these products it lists the true Total Carbohydrates per serving, which is required by law to be shown there.

So, do not be fooled by misleading advertising gimmicks, judge the carb content by looking at the Total Carbohydrates in the nutritional panel on the back of the product. If you have been using these incorrectly labeled products, you now know the real carb content of the foods you are eating. This will make it easier to keep your blood sugar levels under control.


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High Morning Sugar Levels: Should They Dictate Your Actions?

Let’s look again at what happens as you become insulin resistant.

The liver becomes resistant first, then the muscle tissue, then the fat. What is the effect of insulin on the liver? It is to suppress the production of sugar by the liver.

“The sugar floating around in your body at any one time is the result of two things, the sugar that you have eaten and how much sugar your liver has made. When you wake up in the morning it is more of a reflection of how much sugar your liver has made. If your liver is listening to insulin properly it won’t make much sugar in the middle of the night. If your liver is resistant, those brakes are lifted and your liver starts making a bunch of sugar so you wake up with a bunch of sugar.”

excerpted from a talk at the Designs for Health Institute
by Dr. Ronald Rosedale, noted Diabetic Specialist

In a book by Julian Whitaker, M.D., there is a section that covers research with insulin-dependant diabetics that explained the mechanics behind the cause of the “Dawn Phenomenon”. Though the research concerned insulin-dependant diabetics, it applies equally to non-insulin-dependant type 2 diabetics. Dr. Whitaker explains:

“Dr. Peter Campbell and his associates from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, have documented that most insulin-dependent diabetics have early morning surges of growth hormone, an insulin antagonist [antagonist: a substance that counteracts the effect another substance has on the body] that regularly causes elevated blood sugar readings in the morning.”

In other words, the growth hormone reduces the force or effectiveness of the insulin the body would make in the morning, which would normally handle the high output of sugar by the liver. Also, growth hormone enhances the making of glucose by the liver, thus you have the creation of the “dawn phenomenon.”

“This phenomenon creates a problem because the early morning blood sugar level is the level most commonly used to establish the amount of insulin [or drugs] used that day. Second, if this level is high, there is a tendency to try to bring it down aggressively with larger insulin dosages [or drugs] in the afternoon or evening. This approach only worsens the problem by creating hypoglycemia.”

“The bottom line is that we should be less concerned with blood sugar levels that are elevated (150-250) in the morning unless there is a consistent elevation throughout the day.”

excerpted from Reversing Diabetes
by Julian M. Whitaker, M.D.

If you are experiencing high morning sugar levels you can turn your diabetic condition around and improve your overall health by getting onto a high protein/low carbohydrate diet, taking the correct nutritional supplements, and putting a little exercise into your life!


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