Treatment for diabetes can include insulin, oral medications, exercise and diet depending on the type of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is typically treated with a combination of insulin, exercise and diet. Type 2 diabetes generally focuses on weight loss prior to diet and exercise treatment methods. The primary goal of treatment is to keep your blood glucose at an optimal level.
Approximately 24 million Americans are living with diabetes. Type 1 diabetes prevents the body from producing insulin, which is used to help us convert sugar into energy. Without insulin, sugar builds up in blood which can cause life-threatening complications. Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes whereas the body does not produce enough insulin or the body’s cells ignore the insulin.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently approved Tradjenta tablets as a supplement to diet and exercise, to manage blood glucose levels for those living with Type 2 diabetes. This drug increases the amount of hormones that stimulate the release of insulin after meals.
Gastric bypass surgery is a relatively new and encouraging option to help treat – if not outright cure – Type 2 diabetes. The surgery reroutes the patient’s digestive system and can result in continued weight loss, normal blood pressure, and the elimination of diabetes, which after all, can be brought on by obesity.
Up until recently, the procedure was only permitted on morbidly obese individuals with body-mass indices (BMI) over 35, which is the level established by the American Diabetes Association for which the surgery “may be considered.” In addition, Medicare and many private insurance providers cover the surgery above that BMI threshold.
Naturally, this threshold left many diabetics with a BMI of less than 35 without the gastric bypass option for managing diabetes – until now. In certain instances, doctors have been given permission to perform the surgery on individuals with a BMI lower than 35 – and the results are equally promising.
Last month, two highly publicized research reports found that gastric-bypass surgery led to a 75 percent remission rate for Type 2 diabetics, while a more invasive and extreme type of surgery contributed to a 95 remission rate.
In other words, the study claimed that radical gastric bypass surgery could, in essence, cure most forms of diabetes. Needless to say, the study sent shockwaves throughout the medical and diabetes community, and could radically transform treatment for diabetes.
The first study was conducted by the Cleveland Clinic. It found that 40 percent of diabetics who had gastric bypass surgery had “much better control” of their blood sugar levels. Meanwhile, only 12 percent of diabetics who did not have the surgery reported equally positive results.
The second study was based in Italy and found that 75 percent of diabetics who had surgery went into full remission.
Experts concede that the results are encouraging, yet it is too early to declare victory of diabetes. That said, given the burgeoning diabetes epidemic in the United States, any piece of good news is comforting.
There is a lot that goes into managing diabetes. Diet, exercise and medication all work together to keep a person’s blood sugar under control. But another big part of managing diabetes is understanding the risks involved. Many people don’t understand the serious health complications that can arise from type 2 Diabetes and they aren’t going to the doctors.
These serious complications include heart disease and stroke. People living with type 2 Diabetes are at a far greater risk of dying from heart disease. It is the leading cause of death.
Many folks with type 2 Diabetes have high blood pressure. If they have not been diagnosed, they may not be taking the proper prescription medication that will help to keep their pressure under control. High blood pressure makes it more difficult for people to fight off what could be dangerous infections.
People with type 2 Diabetes are at a much greater risk of kidney disease and nerve damage. This nerve damage accounts for many leg and foot amputations. If a person has not been treated for type 2 diabetes, they are at serious risk for glaucoma and cataracts. They may also have retinopathy, which can lead to blindness.
If you are overweight and lead a sedentary lifestyle, it is imperative that you are seen by a doctor so they can diagnose if you have type 2 diabetes. Nevertheless, you should embark on a healthier lifestyle and reduce these risks even if you test negative for the condition.
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.
Millions of Americans are Diabetic, But Don’t Know It. Here’s How to Find Out if You’re One of Them.
While many people may not want to acknowledge it, if they engage in poor eating habits, high sugar intake, and are overweight, they may not only be candidates for Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, they already may be diabetic but not know it yet.
The fact remains that while there are tens of millions of Americans diagnosed with diabetes, there are also millions who are already afflicted with the diseases, but aren’t diagnosed. Therefore, it is important for individuals to be aware of the symptoms of diabetes and contact a physician immediately should any apply.
Common symptoms include an unexplained increase in urination and thirst, an unusual boost in one’s appetite (as the body cells lack sufficient energy), and severe weight loss. In addition, diabetics suffer from an inability for glucose to enter cells; this can lead to extreme mental fatigue and blurry vision. This increased glucose level also damages blood vessels, contributing to tingling and numbness legs, hands, or feet.
In some cases, these symptoms may be due to less drastic scenarios, like extreme stress or anxiety.t However, in other instances, it may be symptoms of a far more serious condition that demands immediate medical attention.
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.
Americans are more at risk for type 2 Diabetes than ever. This is a growing problem and one that could leave patients with severe nerve damage if not detected and treated early.
While pre-diabetes and diabetes symptoms don't typically present themselves until after there are complications, pre-diabetic neuropathy could present itself with tingling, numbness and even pain in the arms, legs and feet. This could be a warning sign that a patient is pre-diabetic and possibly developing severe nerve disease.
The good news is that there is research being done to support the fact that making lifestyle changes such as losing weight and adding an exercise program each day, could prevent and quite possible reverse this nerve damage.
If you are experiencing any tingling or numbness in your arms, legs or feet, it is very important that you speak with your physician and begin working on a weight loss program so that you never develop diabetes mellitus and suffer from severe nerve disease.
It would not be an understatement to say that America is facing an epidemic in terms of the growth of Type 2 diabetes.
And if there’s any good news to be found in this development, it is the fact that Type 2 diabetes can be effectively managed through exercise and diet. The same, unfortunately, cannot be said for Type 1 diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes is far less common yet far more serious than Type 2 diabetes. Without proper diabetes care, Type 1 diabetics who fail to effectively manage their blood sugars may face blindness or even amputation. In addition, recent research found that Type 1 diabetics face an increased risk of heart disease if they fail to manage their glucose levels.
Type 1 diabetes is best described as an autoimmune condition in which white blood cells attack the pancreas and render it unable to produce insulin. Lacking insulin, cells cannot be enriched with glucose, which helps regulate the body’s metabolism. As a result, Type 1 diabetes must check provide their bodies with insulin and check their levels multiple times a day.
And fortunately, many recent medical advances such as insulin pumps have helped to make the lives of Type 1 diabetics manageable and routine.
As anyone with diabetes will tell you, one of the biggest frustration in living with the ailment is monitoring one’s blood sugars and taking insulin.
Diabetics need to be constantly vigilant. Those with severe Type 2 diabetes, for example, must keep a close eye on their diet and check blood sugars multiple times a day. It’s not uncommon, for example, for such diabetics to take copious notes regarding their meals: its contents, portion size, amount of sugar, calories, etc.
They may keep a glass of juice nearby if their sugars are too low, and, of course, have insulin handy should they get too high. All in all, it’s probably the most arduous components of diabetes management.
That said, there is hope on the horizon. The Topeka Cotton-O’Neil Diabetes Center is taking part in a promising new clinical trial around the drug Elixca. This diabetes medication is taken only once a day, and in addition to lowering blood sugars, also may reduce the likelihood of heart attack or stroke.
For many health-conscious adults in their 30s, 40s, and 50s, their primary concerns are things like high cholesterol and blood pressure, heart disease, and other ailments. And that’s a good thing: heart disease remains the leading cause of death in America, and the more people watch their diets, exercise, and get regular checkups, the better.
That said, adults may not be aware of the alarming fact that they’re susceptible to Type 2 Diabetes. Unlike Type 1 diabetes, where children are diagnosed at a young age and subsequently spend their lives managing diabetes, Type 2 can strike later on in life. That’s because while adults naturally produce insulin, they suddenly cannot process it due to the combined ingestion of sugar foods, unhealthy meals, and alcohol.
In other words, a poor diet and lack of exercise can also contribute to the onset of Type 2 diabetes, so it is important to be aware of diabetes symptoms when they arise: frequent trips to the bathroom, chronic fatigue, persistent thirst and hunger, and a general feeling of full-body weakness. If any of these symptoms resonate, get tested immediately.