New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg recently banned extra large sugary sodas from restaurants and convenience stores in the city. Regardless of your opinion of this measure – most New York City residents narrowly approve it – it has helped trigger a national discussion on how to prevent and manage obesity and childhood diabetes.
Throughout this debate, many health advocates call for a “holistic” approach. After all, if New York City residents really want soda, they’ll just buy it on their own time. But what does a “holistic” approach constitute?
For an answer, we suggest this illuminating column. It argues that education is the key, and proper preventative care should start at a young age. For example, politicians and administrators must ensure that every school provides healthy nutritional options and physical education classes. Fast food, junk food, and sodas should be stricken from the menu. It also suggests that food and soda manufacturers stop advertising to children.
This approach is sure to be controversial. But with childhood diabetes reaching epidemic proportions, we as a society have little choice.
Public Health Advocates Look to Anti-Tobacco Movement as the Model for a More Rigorous Anti- Childhood Obesity and Diabetes Campaign
In 2010, Michelle Obama launched a high-profile anti-child obesity campaign. Two years in, most health experts agree that the effort created much-needed visibility around the issue. Yet childhood diabetes and obesity rates remain frustratingly high, and experts now argue that something more drastic needs to be done.
Public health advocates point to the anti-tobacco movement as an optimal model moving forward. That movement relied heavily on advertisement campaigns – just like the First Lady – but went much further. It penalized the tobacco companies themselves for knowingly marketing damaging products to children; it instituted strict health warnings on packaging; it sued the companies, and it lobbied for higher tobacco taxes to decrease consumption.
Needless to say, these proposals are fraught with political implications. One can imagine the outcry if a State Attorney General takes Burger King to court. Yet that's precisely what occured during the anti-tobacco movement. And with obesity-related deaths – including heart disease and diabetes – topping 200,000 last year alone, advocates suggest it will be worth the effort.
Type 2 diabetes is often hereditary. If the disorder runs in your family, it’s important to eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and watch for symptoms. Here are some of the symptoms for diabetes:
- Increased hunger
- Unexplained weight loss
- Frequent urination
A new study, the Diabetes Prevention Program, by the National Institutes of Health, has found that people at increased risk for Type 2 diabetes, can prevent or delay the onset of the disease by losing 5 to 7 percent of their body weight through increased physical activity and a reduced fat and lower-calorie diet.
Suggested tips including moving more by walking, taking the stairs, doing in-home exercises, playing games and taking bike rides, as well as eating more colorful vegetables and fruits, whole grain foods, low-fat foods and avoiding unhealthy snacks.
The National Institute of Health has resource materials for people interested in taking steps to prevent Type 2 diabetes, as well as those who are currently managing the disease. For more information visit http://ndep.nih.gov/index.aspx.
Type 2 Diabetes is brought on by many bad habits. These habits cause people to gain weight, exercise less and generally fall into a destructive pattern. So, how easy is it to just stop, reflect on these poor lifestyle choices and change?
For a lot of people, it’s harder than you think. There are many folks who are able to make changes in their lives with relative ease. Others try and fail many times before they can successfully say they’ve beaten their habit.
There are many successful ways to break bad habits and make positive long lasting changes for a healthier, happier life. Breaking these bad habits are sometimes the only thing it takes to delay or even prevent type 2 diabetes!
Studies have shown that it takes about a month to rewire your brain and change a habit. So, begin by making a list of what you would like to change. Next to each bad habit, write down what you feel this habit gives to you. The goal is to replace the bad habit with something healthy.
Make sure the changes are small otherwise you will become discouraged. As these small changes get easier over time, you can add more changes toward a healthier lifestyle.
Write your goals for change down or tell a friend. This helps you keep the commitment. Reading about your new habits each day or talking to your friends about them, will keep you inspired.
One of the best things you can do to break a bad habit is start hanging out with people who are have already changed. If you want to cook healthier meals, join a group or take a class, surround yourself with people who have the same interests. If you want to exercise more, join a gym and talk to folks who will inspire you. Maybe you have a neighbor who walks each day, ask them if you can join them. This also creates a support system.
Don’t add too many changes at once. If it is diet and exercise you want to change, that is great, but don’t add more on top of that. Once you are successful with these, you can make any other changes in your life, such as financial changes, de-cluttering your home, taking more trips or visiting family. Once you being to see that these changes are attainable, and you get rid of even more bad habits, you will be working towards a fulfilling and happy life.
Scientists at the Garvan Institute in Sydney, Australia have made progress in the study of a gene that is linked to Type 2 diabetes, as published in the journal Diabetes.
Id1 is a gene that when turned "on" interferes with the ability of beta cells' ability to produce insulin within the pancreas. In studies involving mice, the researches have found that the gene is expressed when the mice were fed high-fat diets. The gene normally remains dormant with a low-fat diet and regular exercise.
The scientists hope their discovery will lead to a drug that blocks the role of ID1 and keeps it "off" regardless of dietary and exercise habits. When the gene was blocked in mice, they were still protected from the disease even with high-fat diets. Medical procedures may also be developed to identify patients at risk for diabetes while still young by detecting high levels of ID1, allowing diabetes care methods to be implemented to prevent the onset of the disease.
The findings support the methods that are currently employed in managing diabetes, such as healthy diets and exercise, for prevention as well. Other factors such as stress and glucose levels also affect the normal functioning of the gene, and finding a specific drug to inhibit Id1 may be the next generation of diabetes medication.
Diabetes is a growing concern. With the increase in aÂ lazy lifestyle and obesity, cases of diabetes are growing at an astounding rate. More and more people are being diagnosed with this life altering disease, from children to the middle aged and elderly. This disease can cause kidney damage, loss of eyesight and weight gain, nerve damage and blood vessel damage. Diabetes affects millions of people and certain people are more at risk for this disease than others. So, who should get tested and when? The answers may surprise you.
Classic symptoms of diabetes are frequent urination, especially at night, extreme thirst and sudden weight loss. These are only theÂ basic symptoms there are a host of associated symptoms, including frequent yeast infections (women), swollen ankles, wounds that are slow to heal and even more. Not everyone experiences these symptoms; some people have few or no symptoms at all. Age groups, amount of exercise and family history all play roles in who develops diabetes as well. Certain ethnic groups are more susceptible to diabetes, also.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, mention them to your doctor. Theyâ€™ll assess your case and can run several types of tests to determine whether you have diabetes and which type. There are a couple of different tests they may perform, depending on the doctorâ€™s preference. A Fasting Plasma Glucose Test is the preferred method of testing for many doctors and is best performed in the morning, at least 8 hours after eating. This test measures the amount of glucose in your blood and compares it against an average rate. An Oral Glucose Tolerance Test can also be performed and is similar to the previous test. The Oral Glucose Tolerance Test is performed 8 hours after eating, immediately before and 2 hours after drinking a large dose of glucose dissolved in water. The results of this test are compared to normal readings and a diagnosis is made.
Overweight and obese people are at considerably higher risk of developing diabetes and anyone over 45 years of age should get regular checks. Minorities are also at higher risks of developing diabetes, especially type 2 diabetes. High blood pressure and uncontrolled cholesterol are also implicated in diabetes.
Several methods have been shown to drastically reduce the risk of diabetes. Regular exercise, losing weight, a low calorie, low fat diet and regular checkups with a doctor are the easiest ways to reduce risks of developing diabetes and can help control existing cases, as well. Being aware of your risks is the first step in prevention, followed by brisk exercise and diet modifications.
Diabetes can be a debilitating disease, but it can be caught early or prevented entirely by a few simple to implement methods. Not all diabetes cases will have to be controlled with insulin; many cases, if caught early enough, can be managed simply through diet and exercise, eliminating the painful shots of insulin and the fear of insulin dependence.