Monday, June 29, 2009

High Ketones

High Ketones

When you do not get a sufficient amount of insulin over a period of time, the cells in your muscles will become so starved for energy that your body will take emergency steps and break down fat.  As your body changes the fat into energy, it will produce blood acids known as ketones.  A buildup of ketones in the blood is called ketoacidosis.

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a very dangerous condition that can be fatal if left untreated.  DKA is more common in people with type 1 diabetes.  It can be caused by skipping some of your shots or by not raising your insulin dose to adjust  for a rise in your blood glucose level.

Extreme stress or illness, which can occur in people with either type 1 or type 2 diabetes also may cause DKA.  If you develop a infection, your body will produce certain hormones, such as adrenaline, to help fight off the problem.  These hormones also work against insulin.  Sometimes the two causes occur together.  You get sick or overstressed, and you forget to take your insulin.

In people who are unaware they have diabetes, DKA can be the first sign of the disease.  Early symptoms of DKA can be confused with flu, which may delay appropriate medical attention.

Signs and Symptoms of High Ketones

When the level of ketones in your blood rises, you may experience:

  • High Blood Glucose
  • Excessive Thirst
  • Dry Mouth
  • Frequent Urination

As the ketone levels gets higher:

  • Fatigue
  • Blurry Vision
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Vomiting
  • Loss Of Appetite
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Weight Loss
  • Shallow Breathing
  • Weakness
  • Sweet, Fruity Odor On Your Breath
  • Drowsiness

What You Should Do About High Ketones

You should check your ketone level if you experience any of the signs or symptoms or whenever your blood glucose is persistently over 250 mg/dL.  It is also a good idea to also check your ketone level if you are feeling sick or especially stressed.

Buy a ketones test kit at the drugstore and do the test at home.  Most kits use chemically treated strips that you dip into your urine.  When you have high amounts of ketones in your blood, excess ketones are excreted in your urine.

The test strips in the kit change colors according to the level of ketones in your urine.  If the color on the test strip shows a moderate or high ketone level, call your doctor right away for advice on how much insulin to take, and drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration.  If you have a high ketone level and you can’t reach your doctor, go to a hospital emergency room.

DKA requires emergency medical treatment, which involves replenishing lost fluids through intravenous lines.  Insulin, which may be combined with glucose, is injected in an IV line so that your body will stop making ketones.  Slowly, your blood glucose level is brought  back to normal.

Adjusting your blood glucose too quickly can produce swelling in your brain.  But this complication is more common in children, especially those with newly diagnosed diabetes. 

Left untreated, DKA can lead to a coma and possibly death.  High ketones is serious…Go see your doctor.

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Friday, June 26, 2009

Low Blood Sugar | Hypoglycemia

Low Blood Sugar or Low Glucose is called Hypoglycemia.  You experience this when there is too much insulin and too little glucose in your blood.  If your blood glucose level drops too low—it could result in unconsciousness, a condition sometimes called insulin shock or coma.


Hypoglycemia which is also called an insulin reaction, is most common among people taking insulin.  People that take oral meds that enhance the release of insulin are also at risk of hypoglycemia.  You can experience Low Blood Sugar for many reasons:

  • Skipping or delaying a meal
  • Not eating enough carbohydrates
  • Exercising longer than normal
  • Having too much insulin from not adjusting your medication when you experience changes in your blood glucose.

Signs and Symptoms of Hypoglycemia

Early Signs and Symptoms

  • Sweating
  • Weakness
  • Shakiness
  • Hunger
  • Visual Disturbances
  • Dizziness
  • Nervousness
  • Irritability
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Fast Heartbeat
  • Cold Clammy Skin

Later Signs and Symptoms

  • Slurred Speech
  • Drowsiness
  • Drunk Like Behavior (Cop miss this one all the time)
  • Confusion

Emergency Signs and Symptoms

  • Convulsions
  • Unconsciousness (coma) could be fatal

What Should You Do?

As soon as you suspect that your blood glucose is low, check your glucose level.  If it is below 70mg/dL, eat or drink something that will raise your level quickly. 

Good Examples:

  • Hard Candy..equal to 5 Life Savers
  • A regular (not diet) soft drink
  • Half a cup of fruit juice
  • Glucose tablets (nonprescription pills made especially for treating low blood glucose)

If after about 15 minutes you continue to experience symptom, repeat the treatment.  If they still don’t go away, contact your doctor or call for emergency assistance.

If you lose consciousness or for some other reason can’t swallow, you’ll need an injection of glucagon, a fast acting hormone that simulates the release of glucose into your blood.  Teach your close friends and family members how to give you the shot in case of an emergency. 
Also tell them to call 911 if you don’t regain consciousness quickly.

Glucose Emergency Kit

A glucose emergency kit includes the medication and a syringe.  The shot is easy to administer and is normally given in the arm, butt, thigh or the abdomen.  The medication starts to act in about 5 minutes.  If you take insulin, you should have a glucagon kit with or near you at all times.  It would be a good idea to have a few kits.  You can keep one in your car, at home, at work, and in your purse or sports bag.

What is Hyperglycemia

The medical term for high blood glucose—blood sugar that is above normal is Hyperglycemia.  Whether you have prediabetes or diabetes, you have hyperglycemia.  The key is to make sure that your blood glucose doesn’t get out of control.  If you have diabetes, regularly testing your blood glucose and keeping it in the target range that your doctor recommends can help prevent serious hyperglycemia.  If hyperglycemia isn’t dealt with early, it can lead to  life threatening problems, such as hyperglycemic hyperosmolar state (HHS) or diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA).

You need to take Low Blood Sugar and Hypoglycemia as a serous problem…Because it is.

This website is for informational purposes only and should not be substituted for professional or medical advice.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Diabetes Risk

The Risk of Diabetes

Everyone seems to think that eating too much sugar will will increase the risk of a person to get diabetes.  Guess what?  Not true.

The risk factor for getting diabetes is not increased with by the amount of sugar your eat.  Doctors, scientist, and researchers really don’t understand why some people develop the disease while others do not.  One thing is certain, lifestyle and certain health conditions can increase your risk for diabetes.

Family History and Diabetes

The chance of getting diabetes (type 1 or type 2) will increase if someone in your family has diabetes, whether that person is a parent, brother, mother, or father.  You can be certain that genetics plays a role in the disease.  The mystery is that nobody can say with certainty how certain genes may cause diabetes.

People who develop diabetes may certainly have an inherited tendency toward the disease, some type of environmental factor is usually the trigger that puts the inheritance factor into play.

Weight and Diabetes

Being overweight or obese is one of the most common risk factors for type 2 diabetes.  More than 80% of people with type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese.  Take a look in the mirror and ask yourself, “Gee, am I overweight or obese?”  If you answer yes, then you are at a high risk of getting type 2 diabetes.  The more fatty tissue you have, the more resistant your muscle and tissue cells become to your own insulin.  This is really true if your blubber is really piled up around your abdomen and your sorry body is an apple shape.  Learn more about Diabetes and Obesity by understanding why one effects the other.

Way too many people that suffer from type 2 diabetes are fat….That’s right fat!!  They are overweight or obese.  People can improve their blood sugar  levels simply by losing weight.  Let’s repeat that for you slow learners.  PEOPLE CAN IMPROVE THEIR BLOOD GLUCOSE LEVELS SIMPLY BY LOSING WEIGHT.

Even small weight loss can have large effects on reducing the risk factors associated with diabetes.  It will certainly reduce blood sugar and very well may allow diabetes medication to work better.

Inactivity and Diabetes

When we say inactivity we are really saying that you are a lazy couch potato that would lay around like a beached whale rather then do the slightest bit of physical activity.  I don’t have anything against potatoes, heck I even write a blog that is dedicated to Easy Potato Recipes.  But there is a time and place for everything. 

The less active you are, the greater the risk is that you will contract type 2 diabetes.  Physical activity will help control weight, will use up sugar as energy, makes your cell more sensitive to insulin, increase blood flow and improve circulation.  Exercise will also help build muscle mass.  This is important because most of the glucose in blood is absorbed by muscles and burns as energy.

Age and Diabetes

The risk of type 2 diabetes increases as a person gets older.  It really increase quite a bit after age 45.  One in five people in America age 65 or older has diabetes.  When people grow older they tend to become less physically active, and they gradually lose muscle mass and gain weight….Sound familiar??

Race and Diabetes

About 8 percent of the US population has diabetes. 

Type 1 diabetes is more common in white Americans than in black Americans or Hispanics.  If you happen to be a black American, Hispanic-American you are 1 1/2 times more likely to have type 2 diabetes than somebody that is white.

American Indians and Alaska natives risk of type 2 diabetes more than double compared to whites.

Diabetes risk is real.  Prevention is the best cure.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Fasting Blood Glucose Test

Fasting Blood Glucose Test

When we talk about Fasting Blood Glucose Test we are actually talking about a glucose test.  Simple!!

Amounts of glucose in your blood fluctuates, but within a very narrow range.  Blood glucose levels are typically at their highest after a meal and at their lowest after an overnight fast.  The best way to test your blood glucose is after you have fasted overnight or for at least 8 hours.  This is called a Fasting Blood Glucose Test.

Blood will be drawn from a vein and sent out to a laboratory for evaluation.  A fasting blood glucose level under 100 milligrams of glucose per deciliter of blood (mg/dL) is considered normal.  If the glucose level measures 100 to 125 mg/dL, then you have what is considered impaired fasting glucose, which is often referred to as prediabetes.  Prediabetes shouldn’t be taken lightly.  It’s a sign that you might be at risk of developing diabetes.  You should get in and see your doctor on a regular basis and take steps to control your glucose.

After 2 tests, your glucose results are 126 mg/dL or higher after at least 8 hours of fasting, you have diabetes.  If your blood glucose is above 200 mg/dL , with symptoms of diabetes, a second test may not be necessary to reach the diagnosis.

Always consult with your doctor when you are about to take a Fasting Blood Glucose Test.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Diabetes | Signs and Symptoms

Signs and Symptoms of Diabetes

Many times there are no signs that you have diabetes.  This is especially true with type 2 diabetes.  This is how diabetes can go undetected for years.  The disease can emerge very slowly.  There will be a lack of symptoms.  And when symptoms do show up they vary quite a bit.  The signs and symptoms of diabetes can be anything and will occur from persistently high blood glucose.

There are two signs and symptoms that are classic red flags when it comes to diabetes:  An increased thirst and a frequent need to urinate.

Increased Thirst | Frequent Urination

High levels of glucose in your blood overwhelms your kidney’s filtering system.  Your kidneys can’t reabsorb all of the excess sugar, and it’s secreted into your urine with fluids drawn from your tissues.  This leads to more urination.  Because of all this urination you start to feel dehydrated.  To replace the fluids that your body is getting rid of, you will start to drink a lot of water or other beverages.

Diabetes Feels Like The Flu

Symptoms of diabetes, like always feeling tired, weakness and loss of appetite, can mimic a viral illness.  The reason being is because when you have diabetes and it’s not under control, the process of using glucose for energy is impaired, affecting the functions of your body.

Diabetes | Weight Loss or Gain

Some people with type 1 diabetes lose weight before diagnosis.  This is because of glucose lost through urination leads to calorie loss. 

More stored fat is used for energy, and muscle tissues may not get enough glucose to generate growth.  The weight loss might not be noticeable in people with type 2 diabetes because they tend to be overweight.  But in most people with type 2, and some people with type 1, diabetes develops after a period of weight gain.  Excess weight worsens insulin resistance, leading to an increase in blood sugar levels.

Diabetes | Blurred Vision

An over abundance of glucose  in your blood will draw out the fluid from the lenses in your eyes, causing them to thin and affecting their ability to focus.  If you lower your blood sugar it will help restore fluid to the lenses.  Your vision will probably remain blurry as the lenses adjust  to the restoration of the fluid.  But ultimately your vision more than likely will improve.  High blood glucose also can cause the formation of very small blood vessels in your eyes to bleed.  The blood vessels are not the cause of the symptoms, but bleeding from the vessels can be the cause of dark spots, flashing lights, rings around lights and blindness.

It is because diabetes related eye changes often don’t produce symptoms , it’s important that you see an eye doctor on a regular basis.  By dilating your pupils, an eye specialist is able to examine the blood vessels in each retina.

Slow-Healing Sores or Frequent Infections

High levels of blood glucose block your body’s natural healing process and its ability to ward off infections.  For females, bladder and vaginal infections are especially common.

Tingling Feet and Hands

If there is too much glucose in the blood it can damage the nerves, which are normally nourished by the blood.  Nerve damage can produce quite a few symptoms.  The most common are a tingling feeling and a loss of sensation that occurs mainly in your feet and hands.  This results from damage to the sensory nerves.  A person can also experience pain in the extremities:  legs, feet, arms and hands, this can also include burning pain.

Tender Gums that are Red and Swollen

One of the things that diabetes can do is weaken your mouths ability to ward off germs.  This will increase the risk factor of infection in the gums and the bones that hold the teeth in place.

Diabetes Warning Signs for Type 1 and Type 2

  • Excessive thirst
  • Frequent Urination
  • Constant Hunger
  • Unexplained Weight Loss
  • (In Type 2) Unexplained Weight Gain
  • Flu-Like Symptoms..Weakness and Fatigue
  • Blurred Vision
  • Slow-Healing Cuts or Bruises
  • Tingling or Loss of Felling in hands and feet
  • Infections of Gums or Skin
  • Recurring Vaginal or Bladder Infections

If you exhibit and of the signs or symptoms of diabetes you should consult with a medical doctor.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Diabetes Types

Diabetes Types

Most people will clump all diabetes into one disease.  But there are different types of diabetes you need to be aware of.  What is important at this stage is that you know that glucose can mass in your blood for many different reasons, which of course will result in different types of diabetes.  There are two common types of diabetes that most people have heard about:  type 1 and type 2.

Type 1

People have type 1 diabetes when the pancreas makes little if any insulin.  When there is no insulin circulating in the bloodstream, glucose won’t be able to get into the cells, so it stays in the blood.

At one time type 1 diabetes was known as insulin-dependent diabetes, or as juvenile diabetes.  The reason for these names was that most often the disease developed when a person was young, a child or a teen, and required daily insulin shots to make up for the lack of insulin that the body was suppose to produce.

The reason you don’t really hear or read the names, insulin-dependent or juvenile diabetes any longer is because they are not really accurate.   It is not common, but adults can develop type 1 diabetes.  Also, the use of insulin isn’t limited to people with type 1 diabetes.  People with other forms of diabetes also may need insulin. 

What Causes Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is a auto-immune disease, which means that your own immune system is the bad guy.  Your auto-immune system normally attacks  different viruses and bacteria.  With type 1 it also attacks your pancreas, focusing on your beta cells, which of course are the cells that produce insulin.  Doctors and scientist are not sure why the immune system fights your own body, but genetic factors and exposure to other viruses my play a part.

The attacks on your immune system can reduce or even wipe out  the insulin making ability of your pancreas.  Only 5-10% of people who suffer with diabetes have type 1.  The disease seems to be evenly distributed among males and females.

The evolution of type 1 diabetes can occur very slowly.  It may go undetected for several months or even longer.  Most often is the case that type 1 diabetes symptoms come to your attention very quickly.  Normally following an illness.

Family History Affects Your Risk Of Diabetes

Type 1

Relative with Diabetes       Your Risk

  • Mother                               1-5%
  • Father                                5-15%
  • Both Parents                     0-25%
  • Brother or Sister              5-10%
  • Identical Twin                  25-50%

Type 2

Relative with Diabetes        Your Risk

  • Mother                               5-20%
  • Father                                5-20%
  • Both Parents                     25-50%
  • Brother or Sister              25-50%
  • Identical Twin                  60-75%

Type 2

Type 2 diabetes is the most common for of the disease.  95% of all people that over 20 years old that have diabetes have type 2.  Many people with type 2 diabetes do not need insulin shots.  Children, teenagers, and adults can get type 2 diabetes.  And of course like all things related to diabetes there are no hard and fast rules.  People with type 2 also might need to take insulin shots.

What is Type 2 Diabetes

With type 2 diabetes, your pancreas makes insulin, but your cells become resistant to it.  Which means that insulin can’t help move glucose into your cells.  As a result, most of the glucose stays in your bloodstream and accumulates.  Nobody knows why the cells become resistant to insulin.  But there are suspicions that excess weight and fatty tissue seem to be important factors.  Most people who develop type 2 diabetes are obese or overweight

Some people with type 2 diabetes may eventually require insulin shots.  This is because the pancreas may not produce enough insulin, or may lose its ability to make insulin.  There is a possibility that people with type 2 may become dependent on insulin.

Gestational Diabetes

The name of the diabetes disease that develops during pregnancy is called Gestational Diabetes.  The disease can develop temporarily when hormones secreted during pregnancy increase the body’s  resistance to insulin.   You can expect this to occur in about 4% of pregnant women.

Gestational Diabetes will normally occur during the late second half of a women’s pregnancy.  Under normal circumstances it will go away after the baby is born.  A Warning:  About 1/2 of the women who develop gestational diabetes while pregnant will also develop type 2 diabetes later on life.

Doctor’s will screen women for gestational diabetes during their pregnancy.  If you develop the disease then controlling your blood glucose level throughout your pregnancy can reduce complications for you and your baby.


Latent autoimmune diabetes of adults (LADA) is a form of type 1 diabetes that develops slowly over many years.  LADA is uncommon, but it can be mistaken for type 2 diabetes.  Maturity-onset- diabetes of youth (MODY) is an uncommon form of type 2 diabetes, caused by a defect in a single gene.

Other Causes Of Diabetes

A very small number of people are diagnosed as a result of conditions or medications that can interfere with the production of insulin.  Included in this:  inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis), pancreas removal, adrenal or pituitary gland disorders, rare genetic defects, infection, malnutrition, or medications used to treat another disease.

In our next post we will discuss diabetes signs and symptoms.  We hope you learned a little bit about the different types of diabetes.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Diabetes | What is Diabetes

What is Diabetes 

Let’s suppose you went to the doctor and he walks into the room and says, “Hey, you’ve got diabetes.”  Now what?  You would be scared about what is going to happen to you.  Perhaps one of the first thoughts that would pop into your mind when you find out that you have diabetes is:  What is Diabetes?  Does this mean I am going to have to eat food that taste bland?  No more sugar?  Will you lose a foot?  Will diabetes eventually kill you?

With just a little it of luck the majority of people suffering with diabetes will be able to answer “NO” to most, if not all of these questions.  Doctors and scientist over the years have made great strides in their research concerning diagnosis of diabetes and how to control it.


If you have diabetes the number one most important thing you need to do is go to the doctor on a regular basis and follow his or hers advice.  You are not a doctor so don’t think for a second that you know better than a trained medical professional.

Because there have been so many advances in medical science concerning diabetes, you will be able to live a “normal” life and not have to suffer serious complications from diabetes.  But the key is for you to follow what your doctor tells you concerning:  eating, exercise, blood sugar (glucose) monitoring, and when prescribed, medications.

What is Diabetes

When we talk about diabetes we are not just talking about one disease.  We are referring  to a group of diseases that affect the way your body uses blood glucose or blood sugar.  Blood glucose is important because it is the single largest source of energy for the cells in your body that make up your muscles and tissues.  In other words it is you body’s main source of fuel.

If you have diabetes, doesn’t matter if it type 1 or type 2, it means you have too much glucose in your blood.  The reasons why you have to much glucose in your blood differs from person to person.  And please do not be complacent:  Too much glucose in your blood can lead to very serious problems.

Processing Of Blood Glucose

Blood glucose is derived from two places:  the food that you eat on a daily basis and from your liver.  When your food is being digested, glucose is going to be absorbed into the bloodstream.  Under normal conditions it will enter the cells in your body and will be helped along by the action of insulin. 

What Is Insulin

Insulin is a hormone that comes from the pancreas.  When you eat, your pancreas secretes insulin into your bloodstream. 

As the insulin circulates, it acts like a key, unlocking microscopic doors that allow glucose to enter your cells.  So insulin by doing this lowers the amount of glucose in your bloodstream and prevents it from reaching dangerous high levels.

Because your body is so smart it knows what to do when your blood glucose level drops.  It stops the secretion of insulin from your pancreas.  Your liver’s job in all of this is to act as a glucose storage and manufacturing center.  When the level of insulin in your blood is high, for example after a meal, your liver stores extra glucose as glycogen in case your cells need it later…Pretty smart!!

When your insulin levels are low, for example, after you have not eaten for a while, your liver releases the stored glucose into your bloodstream to keep your blood sugar level with a normal range.

What is Diabetes | Process Breaks Down

If you have diabetes, the process explained above does not work correctly.  Instead of the excess glucose being transported into your cells, the excess glucose will build up your bloodstream, and sooner or later some of it will be transported out of your body through your urine.  This normally will happen when your pancreas produces little or no insulin, or your cells do not respond properly to insulin….or both reasons.

Diabetes Mellitus

The medical term for the above condition is Diabetes Mellitus.  The word “mellitus” in Latin means, “honey sweet.”  It is referring to  the excess sugar in your blood and urine.

Diabetes Epidemic

There is a growing number of people that are obese or overweight.  Include with that fact that the population is aging and you have a recipe for a major health problem.  It is called type 2 diabetes. 

Let’s make it very clear:  If you are obese or overweight and you are getting older, then you are at a high risk of of getting type 2 diabetes.

This should have given you a general understanding of What is Diabetes.

This website is for informational purposes only and should not be substituted for professional or medical advice.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Diabetes and Alzheimer’s

Diabetes Alzheimer’s

It is a well know fact that Diabetes cause many complications for people suffering from the disease.  Ask any diabetic and they can tell you that diabetes will cause problems with your heart, eyes, kidneys, feet, and nervous system.

Regulate Blood Sugar

Now it seems that doctors are convinced that diabetes damages blood vessels that supply the brain.  It is suspected that when the body is starting to lose its ability to regulate blood sugar that the damage to the vessels have already started.  This is a problem because a person might not even be diagnosed with diabetes when all of this starts to occur.

Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

The bottom line is this:  You need to be right on top of your health as it pertains to diabetes and heart related risks.  There are major implications with what is happening with the obesity fueled epidemic of type 2 diabetes and the aging of the population.

The risk of a type 2 diabetic developing Alzheimer’s Disease is three times that of a non-diabetic.  Be aware that genetics are still a prime risk factor for dementia.

But there is a link between diabetes and Dementia and Alzheimer’s.  You need to be aware and talk with your doctor about it.

Diabetes Symptoms | Dementia Alzheimer’s

  • Brain function slows as type 2 diabetic’s blood sugar rises.  This happen before any loss of memory occurs.
  • People with a history of diabetes develop Alzheimer’s faster then in the population.
  • Type 2 diabetes occurs because of insulin resistance.  Insulin turns blood sugar into energy.  Insulin influences memory in a variety of ways, and an insulin-resistant body in turn affects brain cells' insulin-related activity.

The bottom line is this.  You need to control your diabetes as best you can.  You need to take pro-active steps to prevent heart problems and the problems that can occur with the blood vessels prevent blood from flowing freely to your brain.

The diabetic suffering from diabetes needs to be aware of the risk of Dementia and Alzheimer’s.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Diabetic Neuropathy

Let’s start with a good solid definition of Diabetic NeuropathyDiabetic Neuropathy is a group of nerve disorders that occur in diabetics and people suffering from diabetes.  The symptoms of diabetic neuropathy can be numbness in a person’s hands, arms, legs, and feet.  The longer a person has diabetes, the greater the risk that nerve problems will occur.

About 50% of all people that have diabetes also have some form of neuropathy.  People who have neuropathy do not always experience symptoms.  Symptoms are much more likely to be experienced with people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years.  Diabetic Neuropathy is more prevalent in diabetics that have had a history of not being able to control their blood glucose levels, have had high levels of blood fat and high blood pressure, have been overweight or obese, and are over the age of 4o.

There are 4 classes of Diabetic Neuropathy:

  1. Peripheral Diabetic Neuropathy
  2. Autonomic Diabetic Neuropathy
  3. Proximal Diabetic Neuropathy
  4. Focal Diabetic Neuropathy

Diabetic Neuropathies are defined below.

Peripheral Neuropathy will cause pain and/or a loss of feeling in the one or both arms, hand, feet, leg, and toes. 

Autonomic Neuropathy will cause a change in a person’s digestion, the function of the bowel and bladder, sexual response, and perspiration.   It also may affect the nerves that serve the heart and control blood pressure.

Proximal Neuropathy will cause a pain in a person’s  thigh, hip, or buttock and will lead to weakness in the legs.

Focal Neuropathy will result in the sudden weakness of a nerve, or a small group of nerves, that will cause muscle weakness or pain.  It is possible that every nerve in the body may be affected. 

Blood glucose

levels need to be brought within the normal range to prevent further nerve damage. Symptoms can get worse when blood glucose is initially brought under control, maintaining lower blood glucose levels over time will  help decrease neuropathic symptoms and prevent further problems. Good foot care is necessary and should not be ignored.  Patients will  find that regular walks, warm baths, and using elastic stockings will help relieve leg pain.

Painful Diabetic Neuropathy can manifest itself with a severe burning pain.  There are treatment regiments that a qualified doctor can recommend.  The first thing you will have to do is to get your diabetes under control the best you can.  A doctor may have you take insulin several times a day to accomplish this.  This would just be the first step in a treatment program for painful diabetic neuropathy.

Diabetic Numbness:  It is recommended that diabetics have an annual foot exam to check for peripheral neuropathy. 

A complete examination will include focusing on the feet, skin, muscles, bones, circulation, and sensation.  Focusing on sensation or numbness is important and will be paid attention to during the exam.

Diabetic Food---Diabetic Recipes---Diabetic Nutrition---Carbohydrate Counting

You might as well face it, the days of eating whatever you want, whenever you want are over.

Carbohydrate counting is planning technique for managing your blood glucose levels. You should always remember that food that contains carbohydrates will raise your blood glucose levels.  Keep track of how many carbohydrates you eat and set a limit for your maximum amount to eat.  This will help to keep your blood glucose level within your target range. The right amount of carbohydrates will depend on many factors including how active you are and what, if any, medications you take.

How much carbohydrates?
A good place to start is 45-60 grams of carbohydrates at a meal. Your doctor  will adjust your carbohydrates intake for more or less carbohydrates at meals depending on how you agree to manage your diabetes.  Once you have settled on how many carbohydrates to eat at a meal, you will then choose your food and the portion sizes to match.

Which foods have carbohydrate?
Food that contain carbohydrates are:

starchy foods like bread, cereal, rice, and crackers
fruit and juice
milk and yogurt
dried beans like pinto beans and soy products like veggie burgers
starchy vegetables like potatoes and corn
sweets and snack foods like sodas, juice drinks, cake, cookies, candy, and chips
Non-starchy vegetables have a little bit of carbohydrate but in general are very low.

How much carbohydrate is in these foods?
Reading food labels is a great way to know how much carbohydrate is in a food. For foods that do not have a label, you have to estimate how much carbohydrate is in it. Keeping general serving sizes in mind will help you estimate how much carbohydrate you are eating.

For example there is about 15 grams of carbohydrate in:

1 small piece of fresh fruit (4 oz)
1/2 cup of canned or frozen fruit
1 slice of bread (1 oz) or 1 (6 inch) tortilla
1/2 cup of oatmeal
1/3 cup of pasta or rice
4-6 crackers
1/2 English muffin or hamburger bun
1/2 cup of black beans or starchy vegetable
1/4 of a large baked potato (3 oz)
2/3 cup of plain fat-free yogurt or sweetened with sugar substitutes
2 small cookies
2 inch square brownie or cake without frosting
1/2 cup ice cream or sherbet
1 Tbsp syrup, jam, jelly, sugar or honey
2 Tbsp light syrup
6 chicken nuggets
1/2 cup of casserole
1 cup of soup
1/4 serving of a medium french fry

Protein and Fat
With carbohydrate counting, it is easy to forget about the protein and fat in meals. Always include a source of protein and fat to balance out your meal.

Using Food Labels
Carbohydrate counting is easier when food labels are available. You can look at how much carbohydrate is in the foods you want to eat and decide how much of the food you can eat. The two most important lines with carbohydrate counting are the serving size and the total carbohydrate amount.

1. Look at the serving size. All the information on the label is about this serving of food. If you will be eating a larger serving, then you will need to double or triple the information on the label.

2. Look at the grams of total carbohydrate.
Total carbohydrate on the label includes sugar, starch, and fiber.
Know the amount of carbohydrates  you can eat, figure out the portion size to match.

Other important label information:
3. If you are trying to lose weight, look at the calories. Comparing products can be helpful to find those lower in calories per serving.

4.To cut risk of heart disease and stroke, look at saturated and trans fats. Look for products with the lowest amount of saturated and trans fats per serving.

5. For people with high blood pressure, look at the sodium. Look for foods with less sodium.

Control of your diabetes is key.  Proper diet and nutrition is a good first step to controlling both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

Diabetic Neuropathy is serious and should be taken seriously.  Always consult with your doctor before making any changes to your diet, lifestyle, or daily activities.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Diabetes Symptoms

What are the Symptoms of Diabetes?

  • Too much glucose in your blood and not enough in the cells of your body.
  • Frequent urination.  You are making way too many trips to the bathroom.
  • You are constantly thirsty.  You can drink water constantly and still fell thirsty.
  • You have unexplained weight loss.  Your not on a diet or eating less, yet you are still losing weight.
  • You always feel tired and run down.
  • Your hand, feet, and/or legs have a tingling sensation. 
  • Blurred Vision – Itchy and Dry Skin - Infections|Cuts or Bruises that don’t heal quickly.

All of these are Diabetes Symptoms that should motivate you to make a doctor’s appointment to get a check up.

The Signs and Symptoms of Diabetes and Pre Diabetes

  • Interestingly there really are no signs or symptoms for pre diabetes.  Most of the time a doctor during a normal physical will discover that you have pre diabetes when he is screening your blood for glucose levels.

There is a bit of good news.  If your doctor tells you that you have pre diabetes there is a good chance that you might be able to prevent type 2 diabetes from taking hold.  A healthy lifestyle is the key to prevention.  It will improve the way that your body uses insulin.  You must lose fat and gain muscle.  Eating healthy and exercising are your main weapons in fighting type 2 diabetes.

Type 1 Diabetes Symptoms

First let’s talk about what Type 1 Diabetes is.  Too put it simply and bluntly, Type 1 Diabetes is with you for life.  There is nothing you can do to prevent it or to get rid of it.  Your job will be diabetes control.

Type 1 diabetes occurs when the pancreas does not produce the proper amount of insulin to control blood sugar levels.  You might have heard type 1 diabetes referred to as Juvenile Diabetes or Insulin Dependent Diabetes.

When there isn’t enough insulin in your body, the glucose that is present won’t go into your cells.  Instead it will build up in your bloodstream.  This is why you will feel hungry---Your cells are not getting the nutrition they need.

Type 1 diabetes is most often initially found in people younger than 30 years old.  But it can occur in people of all ages.  Nobody really knows why Type 1 diabetes occurs.  The causes of diabetes, especially type 1 diabetes is a mystery.  Diabetes signs will usually occur very fast.

Type 1 Diabetes Symptoms

  • Fatigue
  • Abdominal Pain
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Unexplained Weight Loss
  • Increased Urination
  • Increased Thirst

If you are somebody you know has signs that indicate Type 1 Diabetes then the doctor will most likely perform the following tests to diagnose diabetes:

  • Urinalysis
  • Fasting Blood Glucose
  • Random Blood Glucose
  • Insulin Test
  • C Peptide Test

Diabetes Treatment

The goal of treatment is to treat the diabetic ketoacidosis and of course the high glucose levels.  It is not unusual for newly diagnosed patients with diabetes symptoms to be hospitalized until the disease is brought under control.

The objective of the diabetes treatment is to prolong life and help reduce the diabetes symptoms.  There are complications associated with diabetes that also need to be prevented:  blindness, kidney failure, and the amputation of limbs.

The diagnosed person will need to control the diabetes with proper insulin use, strict diet, exercise, weight control, and testing of glucose levels.


Insulin is at the heart of the disease and it is what helps control diabetes.  What insulin does is lower blood sugar.  It accomplishes this by being able to leave the blood stream and enter the cells where it is needed.  All living creatures need insulin.  The problem that occurs with people with type 1 diabetes is that their bodies can’t produce insulin.  So they must take insulin every single day.

Insulin can be taken in a variety of different ways.  It can be injected, it can be administered by a pump, or it can be inhaled.  Insulin injections may be needed from 1 to 4 times a day.

Ketones and Diabetes

The presence of ketones in the bloodstream is not an uncommon complication of diabetes.  If the ketones are not treated in a timely manner it very well may lead to ketoacidosis.

Ketones is the acid that remains when your body burns its own fat.  When your body can’t obtain the proper amount of glucose from your blood to utilize as energy it will start to burn fat.  When your body is burning more fat then is normal, it might cause ketones to appear in your bloodstream.

Ketoacidosis is a extremely serious condition, so please pay attention.  Your bodies energy is mainly derived from sugar.  Insulin is a hormone that is produced in the pancreas and it metabolizes blood sugar.  Unfortunately, insulin is either not present or present at extremely low levels in diabetes patients.

When your body does not have the ability to burn sugar it will turn its attention to burning up stored fat.  This is where the problem begins.  When the body burns up stored fat, ketone will start building up.  When the ketone levels become to high, the risk of ketoacidosis is raised.  This is definately an emergency condition that very well may lead to coma, and even death.

Anyone with type 1 diabetes should be tested for ketones.  If you find ketones present in your urine it is a sign that you along with your doctor will have to make adjustments to the way your diabetes is being managed.

Pregnant women that are diabetics and pregnant women who develop gestational diabetes should also have ketone testing done.

Your doctor is your best source of information when it comes to the proper time to test for ketones.  Generally speaking ketone testing should be done when:

  • Your blood sugar level is at or above 250mg/dl for two tests in a row.
  • Whenever you get sick (even a minor illness)
  • If you have diarrhea or vomit
  • You suffer from depression and/or stress
  • You are pregnant

The Ketone Test

Luckily the ketone test is very simple.  All it takes is a dip and read of a urine test strip.  If the color changes on the strip, it means there are ketones in your urine. 

What You Should Do

If your strip changes color you will need to contact your doctor and him/her know.  If there are very small amounts of ketones showing up you should:  drink water every hour, continue testing every three hours, do not exercise.  If your ketone levels do not decrease after two tests, then you will need to call your doctor and them know.  If the test shows moderate or high ketone numbers then call your doctor immediately and continue to drink water.

I want to emphasize that this is a informational site and not a replacement for the advice of a trained medical doctor.  If you have any unusual signs concerning your health, you will need to call your doctor.

Diabetic Symptoms

Diabetic Symptoms, especially for Type 2 Diabetes, sometimes do not reveal themselves or are masked as not too serious.

Many people have type 2 diabetes, diabetes mellitus, for many years before developing any symptoms at all.  When the diabetic symptoms do get revealed they vary quite a bit.  But it seems all people with diabetic symptoms will have these two:  increased thirst and frequent urination.

The reason these two symptoms are so prevalent is because extra glucose circulating in your body draws water from your tissues, making you feel dehydrated.  To relieve your thirst, you drink a lot of water.  Of course drinking a lot of water will lead to frequent urination.

Signs of Diabetes

  • Flu like symptoms
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Blurred Vision
  • Slow healing sores
  • Nerve Damage
  • Red, Swollen, Infected Gums


Insulin is a hormone and a protein that is created in a person’s pancreas.  Carbohydrates, or sugar, are absorbed from the intestines into the bloodstream after a meal.  Insulin is then secreted by the pancreas in response to the added blood sugar.  Most of the cells in the body will have insulin receptors which will bind the insulin which is in the circulation.  When a cell has insulin attached to its surface, the cell activates other receptors designed to absorb glucose (sugar) from the blood stream into the inside of the cell.

Without insulin, you can eat lots of food and actually be in a state of starvation because many of our cells will not be able to absorb the calories contained in the glucose very well without the action of insulin.  This is why type 1 diabetics need to take insulin shots.  Type 2 diabetics will develop a resistance to insulin.

Blood Sugar

The average American consumes an astounding 2-3 pounds of sugar each week, which is not surprising considering that highly refined sugars in the forms of sucrose (table sugar), dextrose (corn sugar), and high-fructose corn syrup are being processed into so many foods such as bread, breakfast cereal, mayonnaise, peanut butter, ketchup, spaghetti sauce, and a plethora of microwave meals. 

In the last 20 years, we have increased sugar consumption in the U.S. 26 pounds to 135 lbs. of sugar per person per year! Prior to the turn of this century (1887-1890), the average consumption was only 5 lbs. per person per year! Cardiovascular disease and cancer was virtually unknown in the early 1900's.

The "glycemic index" is a measure of how a given food affects blood-glucose levels, with each food being assigned a numbered rating. The lower the rating, the slower the absorption and digestion process, which provides a more gradual, healthier infusion of sugars into the bloodstream. On the other hand, a high rating means that blood-glucose levels are increased quickly, which stimulates the pancreas to secrete insulin to drop blood-sugar levels. These rapid fluctuations of blood-sugar levels are not healthy because of the stress they place on the body.

One of sugar's major drawbacks is that it raises the insulin level, which inhibits the release of growth hormones, which in turn depresses the immune system. This is not something you want to take place if you want to avoid disease.

An influx of sugar into the bloodstream upsets the body's blood-sugar balance, triggering the release of insulin, which the body uses to keep blood-sugar at a constant and safe level. Insulin also promotes the storage of fat, so that when you eat sweets high in sugar, you're making way for rapid weight gain and elevated triglyceride levels, both of which have been linked to cardiovascular disease. Complex carbohydrates tend to be absorbed more slowly, lessening the impact on blood-sugar levels.

Diabetes Symptoms

As you have seen there are many symptoms related to diabetes.  Please be careful about your diet.  Obesity and Diabetes is a epidemic in this country and around the world.  You not only have to watch your diet but you will also need control your stress levels in order to keep diabetes under control. 

There are many symptoms that diabetics need to be on the lookout for.  Regular check ups by your healthcare provider is you first and best line of defense when taking care of your health and discovering diabetes symptoms.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Diabetes and Obesity

Diabetes Obesity

Obesity in America is an epidemic. Guess what? Diabetes in America is also an epidemic. Seems like diabetes and obesity go hand in hand. If you are obese or overweight then you are much more likely to have type 2 diabetes than the general public. Those smart scientist that make a living studying things like this have put 2 and 2 together. They figured out that people with type 2 diabetes have a high likelihood of being overweight or obese.


So what does this mean to you and me? Well for starters it means that if we are overweight, obese, fat, lazy, slovenly meat heads, we have to start taking care of ourselves. A good first step would be a well thought out diet for diabetes and a exercise regime to control our weight and get rid of some of that tonnage that we have packed on as we happily made our way to obesity city. You may be surprised to learn that in one study overweight adults who lost a modest amount of weight—5 to 10% of their initial body weight--- and exercised regularly reduced the risk of developing diabetes by 58% over three years.

Let's take a long hard look at:

  • Diabetes
  • Living As A Diabetic
  • Obesity
  • Diet
  • Insulin
  • Sugar
  • Glucose
  • Symptoms
  • Research
  • Treatment
  • Facts

It is important to understand diabetes and obesity so that we can combat them before it is too late. Or if we are already involved with these diseases then we need to know what we can do to combat these conditions.

Obesity Statistics

Here are some shocking (who would have guessed) statistics: Two-thirds of all American adults are overweight and a full one third are obese. Stop right here and look in the mirror or get on a scale. If you are fat then we are talking to you. By sticking your head in the sand and lying to yourself by saying you are comfortable at your current (sad) physical condition, you are really killing yourself. You are not suppose to be overweight....And you are not suppose to be obese. There are no excuses. You can lie to yourself but you can't lie to science.

Facts to consider if your are overweight or obese:

  • You are much more likely to become a diabetic
  • You are at a much higher risk for coronary heart disease
  • You probably have high blood cholesterol
  • You are at a higher risk for stroke
  • You more than likely will have hypertension
  • Let's hear it for gallbladder disease!!!
  • How does osteoarthritis sound
  • You think sleep apnea is enjoyable
  • And the risk of cancer goes way up

Makes you want to pop another cupcake in your mouth and wash it down with an ice cool soda pop!!

But wait-----There's more!!!

  • Get pregnant and you'll more than likely have complications
  • You'll have menstrual irregularities
  • Excess hair will appear on your body and face...Very attractive
  • Urine leakage...Makes you all warm and fuzzy just thinking about that
  • Depression is common among obese people
  • Increased mortality is an extra bonus of being obese

I'm are going to have to remind me how being overweight can be a good thing? Do you really think convincing clothing designers to make clothes that fit you means anything? It means nothing. It is not the fight you need to be involved with. You need to be fighting the battle of the bulge. Every other fight is a waste of time and energy. When you are laying in bed dying prematurely, nobody is going to say that you looked good in the custom made tent of a dress that the designers made to fit you. Do you know what they are going to be saying? They are going to say that you never should have gained so much weight, that you were very unhealthy, and now you are paying the price.

You need to get with the program and stop making excuses for yourself. And if your friends and family say they love you no matter how much you weigh....they are hurting you more than loving you. They should be pushing you to lose weight. If they truly love you and want to help you they should be telling you the truth about what you are doing to yourself. They should be helping you get healthy. If you are overweight or obese then the only thing that you should be concerned with is weight loss.

Causes of Obesity

We can get very creative or we can put this quite simply. I vote for putting it simply. If you put more calories into your body than you burn up then you are going to gain weight. If you put a lot more calories into your body then you burn then you will get to be obese.

There isn't quite anything like overeating and inactivity to get a person's weight way up. Really there isn't anything that does the job quite so good as stuffing food down your throat and being a couch potato.

Obesity causes major health issues that nobody should have to deal with. But if a person is stubborn and throws caution to the wind and food down their throats, then there is nothing any of us can do to help.

Fast Food and Obesity

There is a growing trend to try and marry fast food and obesity. There is merit to this argument. Fast food is filled with fat and bad cholesterol and shouldn't be eaten very often. Do you eat fast food all of the time?

There are studies that have reported that young adults who eat frequently at fast food restaurants gain more weight and have a greater increase in insulin resistance in early middle age. Despite all of the advertising and PR, it is extremely difficult if not impossible to eat healthy at a fast food restaurant.

But wait just a minute. Is anybody holding a gun to your head and forcing you to eat fast food? No there is not. You are freely walking into these establishments and eating yourself to a slow death. I'm pretty sure a diabetes burger and a obesity shake should be on the menu. How about taking some responsibility for your own health, show a little backbone and courage, and stop eating this garbage. You are to blame...Not the fast food establishments.

Ready for something new? Why not try a vegetarian approach? That's right a vegetarian menu can be very good for you and will help you lose weight. As an added bonus a vegetarian diet might help control and manage your blood glucose levels.

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes is also known as Juvenile Diabetes. Let's start with a simple explanation of what diabetes is: Diabetes means that your blood sugar, or blood glucose, is too high. With type 1 diabetes, your pancreas does not make insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps glucose get into your cells to give them energy. Without insulin, too much glucose stays in your blood. Over time, high blood glucose can lead to serious problems with your heart, eyes, kidneys, nerves, gums, and teeth.

Type 1 Diabetes happens most often in children and young adults but can appear at any age.

Symptoms of Type 1 or Juvenile Diabetes:

  • Being very thirsty
  • Urinating often
  • Feeling very hungry or tired
  • Losing weight without trying
  • Having sores that heal slowly
  • Having dry itchy skin
  • Losing the feeling in your feet or having tingling in your feet
  • Having blurry eyesight

A blood test can show if you have diabetes. If you do, you will need to take insulin for the rest of your life.

Juvenile Diabetes

Juvenile Diabetes is no laughing matter. It is very serious and should be treated as a very serious condition. You should be tested and advised about this condition by a trained medical doctor.

According to Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International (JDRF)

Juvenile or Type 1 Diabetes strikes children suddenly, makes them dependent on injected or pumped insulin for life, and carries the constant threat of devastating complications. While diagnosis most often occurs in childhood and adolescence, it can and does strike adults as well. Type 1 or Juvenile Diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the body's immune system attacks and destroys the insulin producing cells of the pancreas. While the causes of this process are not entirely understood, scientist believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved.

Needs Constant Attention: To stay alive, people with type 1 diabetes must take multiple insulin injections daily or continually infuse insulin through a pump. They must also test their blood sugar by pricking their fingers for blood six or more times per day. While trying to balance insulin doses with their food intake and daily activities, people with this form of diabetes must always be prepared for serious hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) and hyperglycemic (high blood sugar) reactions, both of which can be life-limiting and life threatening.

Insulin Does Not Cure It: While insulin allows a person to stay alive, it does not cure diabetes nor does it prevent its eventual and devastating effects, which may include: kidney failure, blindness, nerve damage, amputations, heart attack, stroke, and pregnancy complications.

Difficult To Manage: Despite rigorous attention to maintaining a meal plan and exercise regimen, and always injecting the proper amount of insulin, many other factors can adversely affect efforts to tightly control blood sugar levels including: stress, hormonal changes, periods of growth, physical activity, medications, illness/infection, and fatigue.

Statistics and Warning Signs of Diabetes

  • As many as 3 million Americans may have type 1 diabetes.
  • Each year more than 15,000 children are diagnosed with diabetes in the U.S. That's 40 children per day.
  • Warning signs of type 1 diabetes include: extreme thirst, frequent urination, drowsiness or lethargy, increased appetite, sudden weight loss for no reason, sudden vision changes, sugar in urine, fruity odor on breath, heavy or labored breathing, stupor or unconsciousness. These may occur suddenly.

Juvenile diabetes is not fun. It is a very serious condition. Type I diabetes as far as we know can't be prevented. But there are types of diabetes that can be prevented by living a healthy lifestyle. If not prevented that made less severe. Don't you think it is worth putting your best effort towards preventing this disease from gaining a foothold in your body, in your child's body?

You might be able to prevent Type 2 Diabetes according to the latest diabetes research. Prevention is a big deal with Type 2 Diabetes, it is the most common form of diabetes. If you are overweight or obese, have a family history of diabetes, then you need to take steps in order minimize your risk. It is never too late to start changing your lifestyle, eating habits, or exercise routines.

Diabetes Prevention

  • Exercise Diabetes: This is the part where you get your lazy fat butt off the sofa and do some physical activity. Physical activity lowers blood sugar and boosts your sensitivity to insulin. All of this helps to keep your blood sugar within a normal range.
  • Diabetes Diet: Eat plenty of fiber. It may reduce your risk of diabetes by improving blood sugar control. As an added bonus, fiber intake is also associated with a lower risk of heart disease. It may even promote weight loss by making you feel full. High fiber foods include fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grains, nuts, and seeds.
  • Diet For Diabetes: That's right...there's more!! Whole grains may reduce your risk of diabetes and help maintain blood sugar levels. Half of your grain intake should be whole grains. Whole grains are included in many foods: breads, pasta products, and cereals. Look for the word “whole” on the package in the ingredient section.
  • Diabetes Weight: This is key—If you are overweight or obese then diabetes prevention may hinge on weight loss. Every pound that you lose improves your health. You may be surprised to learn that in one study overweight adults who lost a modest amount of weight—5 to 10% of their initial body weight--- and exercised regularly reduced the risk of developing diabetes by 58% over three years.
    Diabetes Nutrition: Skip the fad diets. Low carb, low glycemic load or other fad diets my help you lose weight in the short term, but their effectiveness at preventing diabetes is not known'; nor are their long term effects. By leaving out or limiting a certain food group, you may be giving up important nutrients. Portion control and variety is what you should be looking for in a diabetes prevention diet plan.

When it comes to diabetes prevention there are certain risk factors like age, and family history that can't be changed. But there are other risk factors like diet, exercise, and lifestyle choices that can be changed and therefore help in the prevention of type 2 diabetes.

If you have high blood pressure or if your are overweight, changing your lifestyle habits can help prevent type 2 diabetes. Diet changes and more physical activity or exercising can make a dramatic difference. Lowering your cholesterol, stop smoking, lowering your blood pressure all help reduce the risk of complications.

In a study by the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study Group, researchers reviewed the effects of weight loss, diet, and exercise on type 2 diabetes prevention in more than 500 people who were over weight and also had pre-diabetes or borderline diabetes with an impaired oral glucose tolerance test. They concluded that with changes geared at weight loss and improving physical activity levels, people at high risk of developing diabetes could reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes by more than 50%.

I hope it is becoming clear to you that being over weight or obese and either being diabetic or having diabetes goes hand in hand. You need to make changes in your life before it is too late.

Obesity Prevention

Like we said before, obesity is a epidemic in America. You won't be able to take a pill, injection, or read a book to cure yourself. You will need to make lifestyle changes. You will have to change the way you eat, live, exercise, and think about daily life and how you go through it. It won't be easy but it will be worth it.

If you don't take the fight against obesity seriously then you can look forward to premature death and/or disability. There is growing evidence that obesity can be traced to poor nutrition and a lack of physical activity. Obesity does not just strike adults. Children are a growing population in the obesity statistics. The number of obese children has tripled over the past 30 years.

Overweight and Obesity are major risk factors for:

  • cardiovascular (heart) disease
  • high cholesterol
  • high blood pressure
  • type 2 diabetes
  • cancer
  • osteoarthritis

Many of the diseases are increasingly being seen in overweight and obese children. Not only are adults and children that are obese at risk for chronic diseases, but they face being stigmatized in society. This can lead to shame, low self-esteem, and depression.

You are responsible if your child is overweight or obese. If they become type 2 diabetics because of their weight issues then it is your fault. Children eat what is in the house and put in front of them. Children do not drive themselves to fast food joints and pay for the garbage that is served up. YOU DO. How about becoming a good parent and taking care of your kids.

Diabetes Mellitus

You probably have heard doctor's refer to the term "Diabetes Mellitus." The reason they use this term instead of the more generic "Diabetes" is to not confuse Diabetes Mellitus with the less common Diabetes Insipidus. Diabetes Insipidus is a very rare disorder that does not affect blood sugar levels.

Type Diabetes

Prediabetes: When we are discussing Prediabetes what we are really talking about is a medical condition that occurs when blood sugar levels are elevated to the point of being considered high. But they are not elevated high enough to be labeled diabetes. There is no doubt that people with prediabetes be made aware of their condition. They carry a higher risk for future diabetes and heart disease. If these people would decrease their body weight by 5-10% through a strict diet and disciplined exercise regime, they can significantly reduce their risk of developing diabetes.

Type 1 Diabetes: Once know as juvenile or insulin dependent diabetes or adult on-set diabetes. The cause of Type 1 Diabetes is that more than 90% of the cells that produce insulin found in the pancreas are permanently destroyed. That is why there is no cure. About 10% of all people with diabetes have Type 1. Most people with type 1 diabetes will develop the disease by the time they are 30 years old.

Type 2 Diabetes: The pancreas will continue to produce insulin for people who have type 2 diabetes. Sometimes the pancreas will produce higher than normal amounts of insulin. The problem with type 2 is that the body will build up resistance to the effects of insulin. What happens is that there is never enough insulin to meet the body's needs. Type 2 Diabetes used to rare among children. But no more.

Obesity and being Overweight are the main causes for developing type 2 diabetes. Obesity causes insulin resistance. In turn, obese or overweight people need very large amounts of insulin in order to maintain normal blood sugar levels.

Diabetes Symptoms

Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes actually have very similar symptoms. The initial symptom is when the blood sugar level gets elevated and the sugar spills over into the urine. What happens is that the level of sugar in the urine keeps rising higher, which causes the kidneys to discharge extra water in order to dilute the larger than normal amounts of sugar. Because the kidneys are producing such large amounts of urine, people who have diabetes will urinate large amounts with great frequency. What happens when people urinate with such great frequency is that they become abnormally thirsty. Large amounts of calories are lost in the urine, people lose weight. Of course now these people feel hungry and eat too much. Sometimes, especially with type 2 diabetes, during the early stages of the disease, the blood sugar level will be abnormally low. This condition is know as hypoglycemia. There are many other symptoms that we are not covering here. We will in later posts.

Diabetes Complications

People that have diabetes very well may experience serious complications. The more disciplined people are about controlling their blood sugar levels, the less likely that these complications will develop.

Most complications have to do with the blood vessels and circulation. Elevated blood sugar levels and poor circulation can cause harm to the heart, brain, legs, eyes, kidneys, nerves and skin. People with diabetes are much more likely to have problems with infections of the feet and legs. If you can prevent these complications from happening then you better get on the program. See a doctor, get yourself on a diet, and exercise.

Diabetes Diagnosis

The diagnosis of diabetes occurs when people have high level of sugar in their blood. Normally a routine physical exam will reveal this problem. If diabetes is suspected then a blood sample will be taken for tests after people have fasted overnight.

We hope that you see that diabetes and obesity go hand in hand. If you already have type 2 diabetes then you need to have an awakening and start taking care of business. Nobody should go through life with diabetes if they don't have to. If you are overweight or obese you need to stop making excuses, seeking people that are willing to enable your bad habits, and attending your own pity parties. You need to start living a healthier lifestyle. Diabetes and Obesity...don't let them ruin your life.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Blood Sugar and Stress

High Blood Sugar and Stress go together like peanut butter and jelly. If you have one you most likely are going to have the other. There is medical research that suggests that lowering your stress levels can help lower your blood sugar to a more normal level.

A study was conducted at the Medical University of Ohio. The experiment followed 30 people with diabetes. Half of the people in the study practiced exercises that helped tame their tension such as muscle relaxation. The group in the other half simply took classes that had subjects to help educate diabetics.

The study went on for 10 weeks and came to the following conclusions:
  • The people with diabetes that used the relaxation exercises saw about a 10% drop in fasting blood sugar and in the amount of HbA1c--A sign that their glucose had stayed lower around the clock for the previous few months. These results can mean a smaller risk of diabetic complications, such as heart disease, blindness, and nerve damage.
  • During the same time period, the group that received the classes saw their blood sugar and HbA1c levels actually rise.

Stress and High Blood Sugar

Stress, according to this study, can and probably does set off hormones that raise blood sugar levels. Ronald McGinnis, MD. says, "Reducing chronic stress switches this process off."

If you happen to need more motivation to reduce your stress levels consider this, the group that practiced relaxation techniques also saw a decrease in depression and anxiety!

High blood sugar levels in a person with diabetes can lead to memory problems. It is a problem that is not known to many people. People with type 2 diabetes are more at risk, because of their high blood glucose levels, to experience dementia. There is a growing body of research that suggests that poor blood glucose control is tied to poorer memory function and quite possibly Alzheimer's disease.

Glucose Levels

When people refer to blood sugar concentration or glucose level what they are talking about is the normal amount of glucose that is in a person's blood. Maintaining a normal blood sugar level is important. Failure to maintain blood glucose at the normal level can lead to conditions of persistently high hyperglycemia or low hyperglycemia, blood sugar. Diabetes mellitus, characterized by persistent hyperglycemia from any of several causes, is the most prominent disease related to failure of blood sugar regulation.

The lesson that you need to take away from this is to control your blood sugar. You want to maintain normal blood sugar levels. We will talk about how to exercise this control later on.

If you have diabetes then it is essential that you keep your blood sugar or glucose level as close to normal as you possibly can. If you are able to keep your blood sugar in your target or ideal range then you can help prevent the start of problems associated with diabetes, such as: nerve, eye, kidney, and blood vessel damage.

Diabetes Test

A blood glucose testing is a must for diabetics or anyone who has borderline diabetes. But in reality everyone could benefit from blood glucose test. A diabetes test will certainly give you an early warning if there is something wrong.

Definitely have a blood glucose test if you have diabetes and:

  • You are taking insulin diabetes pills
  • Are on insulin therapy
  • You are pregnant
  • Have a difficult time keeping control of your blood glucose levels
  • Have unexplained low glucose levels without warning signs

Urine checks for glucose are not really accurate. Urine testing should only be done when blood glucose testing is not available.

What Is The A1C Test?

It is a test that measure how much glucose has been sticking during the past 3 to 5 months to the hemoglobin. The hemoglobin is the substance in the red blood sells that carries oxygen to the bodies cells. The A1C test has importance in diabetes as a long term measure of control over blood glucose. A person who is not a diabetic, who has an elevated A1C level, may be at risk for cardiovascular disease.

High Blood Pressure

Make no mistake....Hypertension will make your diabetes even worse than it has to be. The cause of hypertension or high blood pressure many but here are a few causes:

  • Not getting enough exercise
  • Improper diet
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Old age
  • Genetics

Conditions that can be caused by high blood pressure:

  • Atherosclerosis
  • Heart Disease
  • Kidney Disease
  • Stroke
  • Eye Disease

Hypertension is a crucial factor in the development and worsening of many complications of diabetes, including diabetic eye disease and kidney disease. It affects up to 60% of people with diabetes. People who are diabetic need to be aware of the unique dangers high blood pressure poses for them and take all necessary steps to prevent it.

The American Diabetes Association gives a table that list blood glucose levels for adults with diabetes:

  • Glycemic control A1C <7.0%
  • Preprandial plasma glucose (before a meal) 70–130 mg/dl (5.0–7.2 mmol/l)
  • Postprandial plasma glucose (after a meal) <180>
    Blood pressure <130/80>


  • LDL <100>
  • Triglycerides <150>
  • HDL >40 mg/dl (>1.1 mmol/l)

A blood check works like this: You will use a lancet (a needle) to prick your finger and get a drop of blood. With some of the meters on the market you could also use your forearm, hand, or thigh. Some of the lancets are spring loaded which will make the prick less painful.

The drop of blood will be analyzed in a blood glucose meter. In all meters, your blood glucose level shows up as a number on a screen, similar to what numbers look like on a pocket calculator.


You might have to check your urine for ketones every now and then. Ketones in the urine means that your body is using fat for energy instead of using glucose because not enough insulin is available to use glucose for energy. Ketones in the urine is more common in type 1 diabetes.

If there are small or trace amounts of ketones in your urine it may mean that ketone buildup is starting. You should wait a few hours and test again. Moderate or large amounts are a danger sign that you should not ignore. They upset the chemical balance of your blood and can poison the body. Never exercise when your urine checks show moderate or large amounts of ketones and your blood glucose is high. These are signs that your diabetes is out of control. Talk to your doctor at once if your urine results show moderate or large amounts of ketones.

When To Check For Keytones

  • You blood glucose is more than 300mg/dl
  • You are nauseous, you are vomiting, or you have abdominal pain
  • You have cold or flu like symptoms
  • You are always feeling tired
  • Your mouth feels dry and you are thirsty all of the time
  • Your skin is flushed
  • Your breath has a "fruity" smell to it and you have a difficult time breathing.
  • You feel unsure of you are in a foggy frame of mind. Things seem confusing.

Blood Sugar And Your Brain

Glucose is the type of sugar that moves in your bloodstream to give energy to the mitochondrial furnaces responsible for your brain power. Glucose is the only fuel that is consumed by brain cells. Because neurons can't store glucose, they depend on the bloodstream to supply a steady supply of this precious fuel.

This blood sugar is obtained from carbohydrates: the starches and sugars you consume in the form of grains and legumes, fruits and vegetables.

Consuming too much sugar or refined carbohydrates at one time, however, can actually deprive your brain of glucose – depleting its energy supply and compromising your brain's power to concentrate, remember, and learn. Mental activity requires a lot of energy.

If you need some inspiration to help you stop sugar cravings there is much information on the internet. I also will be posting some helpful hints later on.

For the diabetic stress is a serious topic. It is important that you control your stress in order to control you blood sugar. Remember, Blood Sugar and Stress go together: Control one and you will be on your way to controlling both.

A qualified health care professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product discussed. Readers should verify all information and data before undergoing any treatment. Consult your doctor before making any changes or decisions concerning your diet, medication, or lifestyle.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Information On Diabetes For The Diabetic

Welcome to Diabetes and the Diabetic. This site will provide information on how to successfully live with, prevent, or control diabetes. As a diabetic it is important that you live a healthy lifestyle, eat correctly, and exercise on a regular basis.

Before making any decisions that concern your health you should always first speak with a licensed doctor.

Monday, March 2, 2009


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