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Ideal Blood Sugar Levels For Weight Loss

The Dilemma Of Weight Loss In Diabetes

The Dilemma Of Weight Loss In Diabetes

People with diabetes receive mixed messages about weight loss from magazines, newspapers, friends, family, and, yes, even health professionals. Few subjects have accumulated as much misleading and potentially dangerous folklore as the subject of obesity. A common message is that losing weight is just a matter of willpower, and if you have been losing weight and reach a plateau, it's because you've lost your willpower and are no longer following your diet. Furthermore, for people with type 2 diabetes, the message often is that weight loss is the answer to improving glucose control: “If you just lose 20 lb, you won't need insulin.” What does research tell us about these issues, and what should our messages as health professionals be to people with diabetes? Obesity is a serious worldwide problem and is associated with the risk of developing diabetes. Today, more than 1.1 billion adults worldwide are overweight, and 312 million of them are obese.1 In the past 20 years, the rates of obesity have tripled in developing countries that have adopted a Western lifestyle, with the Middle East, Pacific Islands, Southeast Asia, India, and China facing the greatest increase. Consequently, the number of people with diabetes in these countries is expected to increase from 84 million in 2000 to 228 million by 2030. Thus, preventing obesity is a high priority for the prevention of diabetes and other chronic diseases. According to some obesity researchers, it may not be possible to decrease the current numbers of overweight and obese people in the United States, but we need to try to slow or prevent the increase that has been occurring at an alarming rate.2 The hope is that slowing the rising prevalence of obesity will also slow the diabetes epidemic. Can this be accomplished? Thus fa Continue reading >>

7 Ways To Maintain Healthy Blood Sugar Levels

7 Ways To Maintain Healthy Blood Sugar Levels

Enjoy Mediterranean meals iStock/Thinkstock According to studies involving 140,000 people, the odds of developing diabetes are 21 percent lower for those who follow a Mediterranean diet—building meals around plant-based foods, including fruits and vegetables, beans, nuts, whole grains, and olive oil. Fish and chicken are eaten regularly but not red meat, butter, or sweets. Phytonutrients and fiber in the plant foods help with blood sugar control, and the olive oil might reduce inflammation. Go blue iStock/Thinkstock Eating more anthocyanins—the nutrients that give grapes and berries their bright red and blue colors—was linked to better blood sugar control in a new British study. One portion a day of grapes or berries can have the same impact on blood sugar as a one-point reduction in your body mass index, says researcher Aedin Cassidy of Norwich Medical School. Don't skip breakfast If you frequently miss a morning meal, you'll be more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. Eating breakfast may help stabilize blood sugar throughout the day. Prepare a healthy blend of protein, complex carbs, and fat—yogurt mixed with fruit and nuts, for example. Starting the day with lots of simple carbs (such as a bagel and OJ) is just as bad for your blood sugar as skipping the meal, according to experiments at the University of Minnesota. Sweat and strengthen iStock/Thinkstock Women who did both cardio (at least two and a half hours) and strength training (at least one hour) every week had the lowest diabetes risk—about one third less than that of non-exercisers. After an exercise session, your muscles take up more glucose from the bloodstream. As you become more fit over time, cells become more sensitive to insulin. Step away from the desk (and the TV) Hemera, iStock, Photodisc/ Continue reading >>

Physician’s Guide: Using Blood Test Findings To Safely Induce Weight Loss

Physician’s Guide: Using Blood Test Findings To Safely Induce Weight Loss

The prevalence of obesity has doubled since the year 1980. The latest study reveals that for the first time, obese Americans outnumber those who are merely overweight. The war against obesity is an obvious failure. Overlooked are a plethora of research findings indicating substantial fat-loss effects in response to the proper use of bioidentical hormones, certain prescription drugs, and nutrients, along with lifestyle changes. The reason these proven weight-loss strategies have not caught on is that when used in isolation, they often fail to meet the expectations of a typical obese or overweight individual. In this eye-opening report, Life Extension® discusses how to interpret blood test results to prescribe an armada of medications, natural hormones, and lifestyle alterations that can safely induce substantial and sustainable weight loss. Our Bloated Bloodstreams Overeating is associated with bloating of the gastrointestinal tract (stomach and intestines). Forgotten is what happens after excess fats and sugars leave the digestive system and enter the bloodstream. People in modern societies have succumbed to a pathological propensity of ingesting excess calories throughout the day (and sometime night). The result of successive meal intakes is that our bloodstreams are chronically bloated with fats and sugars. Constant exposure to excess fats and sugars results in insulin resistance,1-3 oxidative stress,4,5 vascular inflammation,1,5-9 and platelet activation,10 all of which sharply increase heart attack,1,2,6,11,12 stroke,6 and diabetes12,13 risks. Chronically bloated bloodstreams also contribute to unwanted weight gain and preclude the shedding of surplus fat pounds. The term postprandial is defined as “after eating a meal.” A growing number of medical studies disc Continue reading >>

Insulin And Glucagon: How To Manipulate Them And Lose Fat

Insulin And Glucagon: How To Manipulate Them And Lose Fat

I know many of you lean, mean, workout machine Breaking Muscle readers could care less about body fat reduction. You're already there. Your focus goes to your lift resistance amounts, improving training times, shoring up your exercise techniques, strategic planning to defeat your opponents, future competition preparation, and feeling good about your training. That's how it should be. What About Fat Loss? But guess what? There is a large segment of the population who are only concerned about shedding their "love handles.” Yes, most of these people will admit they're over-fat due to lack of physical activity and eating like it's Thanksgiving day multiple times per week. If taken to task, most people don't want to resemble an unshapely blob of protoplasm. They would rather look better, but they just don't know where to start to achieve that goal. On top of this, we all exist in a society where a plethora of high-calorie and/or low nutritional value food exists. Wise decisions must be made by all, regardless of your goals. Is it possible to eat your favorite foods, be happy, and attain your fitness goals simultaneously? Maybe. There are hundreds of diets and workout programs purportedly geared toward expunging body fat while enjoying your favorite foods. Many of them work, provided you actually adhere to their guidelines and remain disciplined with sensible calorie intake and exercise. But here’s my advice if you are attempting to maximally lose body fat: maintain your blood sugar level between 70 mg/dl and 110 mg/dl. Do this, and all other factors being equal, you will burn more fat. Biologically, it comes down to your body's innate ability to regulate two hormones - insulin and glucagon - relative to dietary intake. How Insulin and Glucagon Affect Fat Storage Insulin Continue reading >>

Blood Sugar: Tool At Your Fingertips

Blood Sugar: Tool At Your Fingertips

Here is an excerpt from Wheat Belly Total Health that discusses how to use a glucose meter to accelerate weight loss. The same strategy can be used to reverse type 2 diabetes as much as possible in as short a time as possible. (Taken from Chapter 7: Grainless Living Day-to-Day.) A blood sugar meter used pre- and post-meal can be a very powerful tool for weight loss and the reversal of metabolic distortions like high blood sugar. But you have to know how to apply the information. Many people are frightened at the prospect of getting their blood checked for anything, and are particularly frightened by the prospect of checking it themselves. They’re frightened that it could be painful or expensive, or that it would make them feel like they have diabetes. As diabetics and anyone else comfortable with checking blood sugars will attest, the process is easy. It is not painful, as the devices used to prick the finger are spring-loaded and cause minimal discomfort. And costs are modest, especially if you obtain a device and test strips from your physician who will often just given them to you. (The device manufacturers give them away to physicians, since their money is made on the repeat sales of test strips.) If worse comes to worst, you might have to shell out the equivalent of the cost of a nice dinner at a restaurant to have a glucose meter and test strips for glucose and ketones (if desired; discussed below). There are a number of devices that can test your blood sugar. I’ve had good experiences with the OneTouch Ultra, Accu-Chek Aviva, Bayer Contour, and ReliOn brands. The Precision Xtra tests for both glucose and ketones, using different test strips for each. Instructions are provided with each device, and it will take about 15 minutes to get any of these up and runni Continue reading >>

Diabetes And Weight Loss – Blood Sugar And Weight Loss

Diabetes And Weight Loss – Blood Sugar And Weight Loss

Diabetes is frequently associated with rapid fluctuations in weight gain or weight loss. Many diabetics, both Type 1 and Type 2, will want to lose weight in order to manage their conditions and optimize health. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes and wish to lose weight or body fat, read on for details on how to manage your condition and lose excess weight in an effective, safe way. When you are diagnosed with diabetes, you may find yourself amidst a significant amount of confusing medical information, yet one thing becomes crystal clear reasonably quickly: you need to lose weight, preferably in a healthy and easily manageable way. Those few -or more- extra pounds you’ve been carrying around no longer mean merely aesthetic concerns; you need to redesign your entire life and diet to ensure maintaining optimal health despite having diabetes. On the other hand, you may have been living with diabetes, battling its effects on your well-being since early childhood. Your weight could be ideal now, but it’s a perpetual battle to keep it that way regardless of medications and meal plans designed with your physical condition in mind. “What i have come to see is that what we eat truly is a matter of life and death. I have seen the people from my TV show on diabetes make amazing changes by changing the food they consume, i have seen people in my film do the same. We know what the foods and sugary drinks can do to us, we know this all to well. At the end of the day we are in the drivers seat with our health with certain conditions, even if we need meds to help us, we can put our bodies in a situation where the foods we eat are not the contribution factor to our overall health” states Charles Mattocks, Celebrity Chef and Diabetes Advocate. Perhaps you’ve experienced th Continue reading >>

How To Lose Weight By Balancing Your Blood Sugar (5 Easy Ways)

How To Lose Weight By Balancing Your Blood Sugar (5 Easy Ways)

All of these years, you’ve been told that counting calories, following point systems, and choking down fat-burning pills are the ultimate solutions for weight loss. And as one of America’s most profitable industries, fad-diet quick-fixes make tall promises, which only yield short-term (and often disappointing) results. 1 Worst Carb After Age 50 If you're over 50 and you eat this carb, you will never lose belly fat. HealthPlus50 The truth is, there’s an easier way to lose the weight—and it has nothing to do with miracle nutrients, detox teas, or dieting. Instead, sustainable weight loss can be achieved by learning how to balance your blood-sugar levels. What is Blood Sugar, and How Does it Work? You may want to hit the snooze button when it comes to blood sugar 101. But having imbalanced blood-sugar levels could be the exact reason why you’re not losing weight—especially if you feel like you’ve tried everything else to no avail. Blood sugar simply refers to the amount of sugar (or glucose) in your blood, which comes from carbohydrates. Whenever you eat, your body receives an influx of nutrients, including carbohydrates. During digestion, carbohydrates are broken down into sugar molecules and sent to your bloodstream, which naturally raises your blood-sugar levels. The hormone insulin is then released to bring the sugar out of your blood—and into your cells to be converted into energy. That sounds simple enough, right? Just a regular biological process… No big deal. But here’s where the connection between blood sugar and weight gain comes in. How Imbalanced Blood-Sugar Levels Can Make You Fat You see, your body only needs so much energy at once. So if your energy stores are already full at the time of digesting the carbohydrates, any excess sugar from Continue reading >>

The Real Reason You're Not Losing Weight

The Real Reason You're Not Losing Weight

Is your blood sugar blocking your efforts to shed pounds? The diabetes-weight connection is trickier than you think. Getty ImagesYou probably know that weight gain ups your risk of diseases like diabetes. But you might not realize how complicated that link really is, says Osama Hamdy, MD, medical director of the obesity clinical program at Joslin diabetes center in Boston and author of The Diabetes Breakthrough. "The cycle starts when you gain weight," Dr. Hamdy says. The kicker is that once you have blood sugar problems, it's much harder to do the one thing that can really help: slim down. That may be why the majority of people with type 2 diabetesabout 80 percentare overweight or obese. The good news: dropping pounds is not impossible if you understand the complex dance between blood sugar, belly fat and insulinand how to interrupt it. The Vicious Cycle, Explained Every time you eat, your pancreas produces insulin. This hormone helps your body harness the energy provided by food by "unlocking" your cells, helping to move sugar (aka glucose) inside each one, where it's used for fuel. The problem starts with insulin resistance, in which your cells no longer respond to the hormone. Weight gain can bring it on, especially if you add visceral fat (the kind around your abdominal organs) because it churns out inflammatory chemicals that harm cells' response to insulin. Think of your body as a car, says David G. Marrero, PhD, president of health care and education at the American diabetes association. "Fill the trunk with 500 pounds of gravel and it's harder to run. It needs more gas and it wears out the engine to get the same level of performance." That's obesity. "Now think of insulin as the gas line between the fuel tank and the engine. Insulin resistance squeezes it, so w Continue reading >>

10 Secrets To Balance Your Blood Sugar To Promote Weight Loss & Boost Energy

10 Secrets To Balance Your Blood Sugar To Promote Weight Loss & Boost Energy

Knowing how to maintain balanced blood-sugar is one of the biggest keys to unlocking better health, all around. You will naturally increase your metabolism, ward off unhealthy cravings, have more energy throughout the day and maybe even shed a pound or two each week without even knowing it. With consistently even blood-glucose levels, you’ll have better concentration and memory, and just generally feed good. Most importantly, having healthy blood-sugar is one of the best ways to lower your risk of diabetes and heart disease. Read on to learn 10 ways that you can reap all of the benefits of balanced blood-sugar and naturally improve your whole-body health every day and keep it that way. 1. Increase Your Protein Intake When you eat a high-carbohydrate, low-protein meal – especially one loaded with simple sugars – your digestive tract quickly and easily converts those carbs into glucose. The resulting blood-sugar spike (aka “sugar-high”) triggers the pancreas to flood your system with insulin in order to flush all of that excess glucose out of your blood stream (also known as a “sugar crash”). The easiest way to avoid this blood-sugar roller coaster ride is to cut back on carbohydrates and eat more lean protein with your snacks and meals. Protein slows down the digestion and uptake of sugar into the blood stream, meaning that your blood-sugar will remain level for several hours instead of rapidly rising and falling right after every meal. Fish, poultry, eggs, tofu and tempeh, nuts, seeds, and many dairy products are all excellent sources of protein. (Check out this article to learn about one of our favorite protein-rich foods that is also among the healthiest foods in the natural world!) 2. Eat Low Glycemic Index Foods Most fruits, vegetables, grains and legu Continue reading >>

How To Use Your Blood Sugar Meter As A Fuel Gauge

How To Use Your Blood Sugar Meter As A Fuel Gauge

While reducing carbohydrates is the first priority for someone with diabetes, elevated blood sugar levels and insulin resistance can be an indication that you are eating too much and/or too often. You can use your blood sugar meter as a fuel gauge to help you understand whether your hunger is real and refine your meal timing to achieve blood sugar levels closer to optimal. Delaying your next meal allows your body to use up the energy stored in liver and bloodstream. Intermittent fasting will allow the glucose in your blood stream to be replenished from the glycogen stores in your liver and muscle, rather than more food, allowing energy to flow from your fat stores. The table outlines a protocol that will help you to use your blood sugar meter as a fuel gauge to reach your diabetes and fat loss goals. blood sugar action greater than average, well slept and low-stress delay eating and/or exercise less than average if hungry, enjoy nutrient dense foods that align with your insulin sensitivity < 73mg/dL (4.0 mmol/L) if hungry, eat higher insulin load foods and delay exercise This approach is not intended for people who do not produce enough insulin (i.e. type 1 diabetes, type 1.5, LADA and MODY) but rather for people who are insulin resistant and produce large amounts of insulin but still have high blood sugar levels (i.e. pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes). Eating frequently will keep your insulin and blood sugar levels consistently high, particularly if you eat foods with a high insulin load. Reducing meal frequency enables blood sugar and insulin levels to decrease. High levels of insulin keep fat stores locked away and glycogen trapped in the liver. Once our adipose tissue can’t absorb any more energy, it becomes insulin resistant. This makes it harder for insulin to g Continue reading >>

Blood Sugar Level Ranges

Blood Sugar Level Ranges

Tweet Understanding blood glucose level ranges can be a key part of diabetes self-management. This page states 'normal' blood sugar ranges and blood sugar ranges for adults and children with type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and blood sugar ranges to determine people with diabetes. If a person with diabetes has a meter, test strips and is testing, it's important to know what the blood glucose level means. Recommended blood glucose levels have a degree of interpretation for every individual and you should discuss this with your healthcare team. In addition, women may be set target blood sugar levels during pregnancy. The following ranges are guidelines provided by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) but each individual’s target range should be agreed by their doctor or diabetic consultant. Recommended target blood glucose level ranges The NICE recommended target blood glucose levels are stated below for adults with type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and children with type 1 diabetes. In addition, the International Diabetes Federation's target ranges for people without diabetes is stated. [19] [89] [90] The table provides general guidance. An individual target set by your healthcare team is the one you should aim for. NICE recommended target blood glucose level ranges Target Levels by Type Upon waking Before meals (pre prandial) At least 90 minutes after meals (post prandial) Non-diabetic* 4.0 to 5.9 mmol/L under 7.8 mmol/L Type 2 diabetes 4 to 7 mmol/L under 8.5 mmol/L Type 1 diabetes 5 to 7 mmol/L 4 to 7 mmol/L 5 to 9 mmol/L Children w/ type 1 diabetes 4 to 7 mmol/L 4 to 7 mmol/L 5 to 9 mmol/L *The non-diabetic figures are provided for information but are not part of NICE guidelines. Normal and diabetic blood sugar ranges For the majority of healthy ind Continue reading >>

Blood Sugar & Insulin!

Blood Sugar & Insulin!

Lately I've received a whole bunch of questions about the benefits and drawbacks of insulin, so why not straighten out the issue, once and for all? Learn the straight forward facts on insulin! Lately I've received a whole bunch of questions about the benefits and drawbacks of insulin, so why not straighten out the issue, once and for all? (Unfortunately, most of this doesn't apply to diabetics, but if you're one yourself you probably knew that already.) Insulin release is mainly a bodily response, caused by the food you eat. You are able to control this factor to a pretty large degree, just like you can control whether or not you get goose-bumps by making sure to wear a sweater when it's cold - even though the goose-bumps in and by themselves isn't something you can control. You can't choose to have high or low levels of insulin floating around in your system, but you can pretty much steer it by eating. A truckload of fast carbs (like Dextrose), a big bowl of rice, and an extended period without food will all have very different impact on your Insulin levels. But let's not rush ahead of ourselves here - let's get the big picture together. Fast vs. Slow Carbs As you probably know, carbs are actually plain sugar. As an experiment, chew on a piece of non-sweet bread for a while, and you will notice an increasing sweetness developing, because your saliva and jaw-action is breaking down the large chunks of sugar into smaller units, which in turn gets noticeable as they get smaller and smaller. This is how it works in your stomach as well. Now, the difference between slow and fast carbs, aka. complex and simple carbs, is how big the chunks of sugar are! Assume that you have a handful of loose powder. In your stomach, there's really not anything more to digest, so the whole bu Continue reading >>

Can Low Blood Sugar Make You Lose Weight?

Can Low Blood Sugar Make You Lose Weight?

Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, most commonly occurs among diabetics, people taking certain medications or those with deficiencies of specific hormones and enzymes. But among people who are desperately trying to lose weight, not eating enough food or exercising too much can cause extremely low blood sugar levels. And although these people might believe that low blood sugar is helping them lose weight, it’s actually doing more harm than good. Video of the Day The body enters a state of hypoglycemia when blood sugar levels drop below normal. Often referred to as “low blood sugar” or “low blood glucose,” the condition generally occurs once blood glucose levels drop below 70 mg/dL. Carbohydrates, including rice, grains, potatoes, wheat, fruit, milk and sugar, are the body’s main sources of glucose. Once glucose enters the bloodstream, it is transported to the body’s cells where it is used as a source of energy. Excess glucose is stored as either glycogen or fat, both of which can be used as alternative energy sources when necessary. Since carbohydrates are your body's main source of glucose, eating too little food or not eating often enough can easily result in low blood sugar. Additionally, vigorous exercise increases the amount of insulin produced in your body, which breaks down blood sugar. As a result, too much insulin production often results in low blood sugar levels. Blood Sugar and Weight Loss Since excess glucose is stored as fat, some people assume that keeping blood sugar levels low will result in the breakdown of fat when energy is needed. However, if your blood sugar levels remain too low for too long, your body begins to think that starvation is imminent. In response, it goes into survival mode. As part of survival mode, your body stops burning Continue reading >>

Metformin 101: Blood Sugar Levels, Weight, Side Effects

Metformin 101: Blood Sugar Levels, Weight, Side Effects

As a type 2 diabetic, you've probably heard of Metformin, or you might even be taking it yourself. Metformin (brand name “Glucophage” aka “glucose-eater”) is the most commonly prescribed medication for type 2 diabetes worldwide…and for good reason. It is one of the safest, most effective, least costly medication available with minimal, if any, side effects. There are always lots of questions around Metformin – how does metformin lower blood sugar, does metformin promote weight loss or weight gain, will it give me side effects – and lots more. Today we'll hopefully answer some of those questions. How Metformin Works Metformin belongs to a class of medications known as “Biguanides,” which lower blood glucose by decreasing the amount of sugar put out by the liver. The liver normally produces glucose throughout the day in conjunction with the pancreas’ production of insulin to maintain stable blood sugar. In many people with diabetes, both mechanisms are altered in that the pancreas puts out less insulin while the liver is unable to shut down production of excess glucose. This means your body is putting out as much as 3 times as much sugar than that of nondiabetic individuals, resulting in high levels of glucose in the bloodstream. Metformin effectively shuts down this excess production resulting in less insulin required. As a result, less sugar is available for absorption by the muscles and conversion to fat. Additionally, a lower need for insulin slows the progression of insulin resistance and keeps cells sensitive to endogenous insulin (that made by the body). Since metformin doesn’t cause the body to generate more insulin, it does not cause hypoglycemia unless combined with a sulfonylurea or insulin injection. Metformin is one of the few oral diabe Continue reading >>

Doing Keto? Consider Buying A Blood Glucose Meter

Doing Keto? Consider Buying A Blood Glucose Meter

The amount of glucose in your blood at any given time can give you valuable insights into how your body is reacting to the food you eat. If you’re doing a keto-based diet, the data you get from a glucose meter will help you optimize your eating for maximum weight loss! The premise of a keto-based diet is simple: Keep the carbs as low as possible so that your body is forced to get glucose (energy) from fat, rather than carbs. Any sort of glycemic reaction could cause a weight-loss stall for several days. Not sure what a Keto diet is, or want to learn more about it? I talk about what a keto diet is, and the pros and cons of this approach, in this blog article. What is a glycemic reaction? In short, a glycemic reaction is what happens when you eat carbs. It’s a fancy name for an even fancier process. Effectively, when you eat carbs, your body produces a hormone called “insulin” which is responsible for delivering the glucose (the energy from your the carbs you just ate) to the muscle cells in your body. In a keto-based diet, you want to avoid the production of insulin at all costs. Not because insulin itself is bad — but because it means you’ve short-circuited the keto process by eating too many carbs, and allowing your body to get energy from carbs, rather than fat. If this happens, it can take days to “reset” your body back into ketosis. In short, if you are doing a keto-based diet and your blood-glucose levels spike, you screwed up. How to measure your blood glucose level Get yourself a blood-glucose meter!! You can buy a blood-glucose meter from any pharmacy in the $20 to $40 range. The test-strips come in packs of 100 for around $25. (around $0.25 each if you’re bad at math). Here’s a link on Amazon to a glucose meter kit that’s perfectly adequat Continue reading >>

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