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Diabetes Where You Can't Have Sugar

Can Eating Too Much Sugar Cause Type 2 Diabetes?

Can Eating Too Much Sugar Cause Type 2 Diabetes?

Because type 2 diabetes is linked to high levels of sugar in the blood, it may seem logical to assume that eating too much sugar is the cause of the disease. But of course, it’s not that simple. “This has been around for years, this idea that eating too much sugar causes diabetes — but the truth is, type 2 diabetes is a multifactorial disease with many different types of causes,” says Lynn Grieger, RDN, CDE, a nutrition coach in Prescott, Arizona, and a medical reviewer for Everyday Health. “Type 2 diabetes is really complex.” That said, some research does suggest that eating too many sweetened foods can affect type 2 diabetes risk, and with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimating that 30.3 million Americans have the disease — and that millions of more individuals are projected to develop it, too — understanding all the risk factors for the disease, including sugar consumption, is essential to help reverse the diabetes epidemic. The Sugar and Type 2 Diabetes Story: Not So Sweet After the suspicion that sugar was the cause of diabetes, the scientific community pointed its finger at carbohydrates. That makes sense, notes Grieger, explaining that simple and complex carbohydrates are both metabolized as sugar, leading blood sugar levels to fluctuate. Yet carbs are processed differently in the body based on their type: While simple carbs are digested and metabolized quickly, complex carbs take longer to go through this system, resulting in more stable blood sugar. “It comes down to their chemical forms: A simple carbohydrate has a simpler chemical makeup, so it doesn’t take as much for it to be digested, whereas the complex ones take a little longer,” Grieger explains. Sources of complex carbohydrates include whole-wheat bread an Continue reading >>

Can’t Lose Weight? Could Be Your Blood Sugar

Can’t Lose Weight? Could Be Your Blood Sugar

Diabetes has unique early warning signs in women, including frequent vaginal infections, inability to lose weight and fatigue. Avoid these and other symptoms with Dr. Ruchi Mathur’s tips in Ask the Doctor, a women’s health video series produced in partnership with Cedars-Sinai Medical Center... Women who have recurrent yeast infections or are unable to lose weight despite dieting have something in common: They may have prediabetes, a precursor to type 2 diabetes. Even polycystic ovarian syndrome, a condition that causes multiple cysts on ovaries, can signal prediabetes, says endocrinologist Ruchi Mathur, MD, Director, Diabetes Outpatient Treatment and Education Center, Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles. Prediabetes, a condition in which blood glucose levels are higher than normal, increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes within a decade, she explains. People with diabetes in their family history are 26% more likely to develop the metabolic disorder, according to a 2013 German study of 8,000 people. The risk may be higher if they’re overweight (with a BMI greater than 25) and sedentary, Dr. Mathur warns. “Genetics are quite a significant factor,” but so is lifestyle, she says. Other risk factors for prediabetes include: Continue reading >>

13 Diabetes Myths That Don't Lower Blood Sugar

13 Diabetes Myths That Don't Lower Blood Sugar

Skipping meals could potentially push your blood glucose higher. When you don't eat for several hours because of sleep or other reasons, your body fuels itself on glucose released from the liver. For many people with type 2 diabetes (PWDs type 2), the liver doesn't properly sense that the blood has ample glucose already, so it continues to pour out more. Eating something with a little carbohydrate signals the liver to stop sending glucose into the bloodstream and can tamp down high numbers. Skipping meals can also lead to overeating, which can cause an increase in weight. And if you take certain diabetes medications that stimulate the body's own insulin such as common sulfonylureas, or you take insulin with injections or a pump, you risk having your blood glucose drop too low when you skip or delay meals. Going Low-Carb Low-carb diets "are not balanced and deprive the body of needed fiber, vitamins, and minerals," says Constance Brown-Riggs, M.S.Ed, R.D., CDE, CDN, author of The African American Guide to Living Well with Diabetes (Career Press, 2010). Recently, Brown-Riggs counseled a PWD type 2 who ate very little carbohydrate. The result: poor energy and severe headaches. Brown-Riggs helped the person balance out his meal plan by suggesting fruits, grains, and other carb-containing foods. "His headaches subsided, his energy level was restored, and he was happy to learn that he could eat healthy sources of carbohydrate and manage his blood glucose levels successfully," Brown-Riggs says. The keys to success are to manage portions of all foods, spread your food out over your day, and work with your health care team to devise an individualized meal, activity, and medication plan. Eating Pasta Al Dente It is best to eat your spaghetti al dente, says David J. A. Jenkins, M. Continue reading >>

Help For When You Can't Control Your Eating

Help For When You Can't Control Your Eating

You've tried to eat right, but somehow it all fell apart. One moment you were eating healthful salads, the next you finished off half the batch of cupcakes you were making for the Cub Scout sale. Yes, getting control of your diet is essential when you have diabetes, but if you have failed, don't despair. You aren't the first, nor the last person with diabetes to run into trouble when you try to eat in a healthier manner. If you've been having a hard time with your diet, don't blame yourself. There are reasons why you failed and they can be corrected. Here are some very common reasons why people with diabetes end up eating foods that derail their control along with tips that can help you avoid diet disaster. Too Stringent a diet. An almost guaranteed way to sabotage yourself is to set too stringent a diet goal for yourself. Yes, you can get great control of your blood sugar by eating only 30 grams of carbohydrate a day, but unless you have an obsessive, rigid personality it is very unlikely you will be able to adhere to that strict a diet plan for more than a few weeks. Most people with diabetes do not have obsessive, rigid personalities and the fact that you have been diagnosed with diabetes is not going to change the personality type that you already have. So you have to work with what you've got, and that means choosing a diet goal that you can attain without feeling deprived and crazy. If your goal is blood sugar control, you will have to cut back on carbs, but here are a few tips that can help you avoid extreme dieting and its inevitable ugly meltdown. When you start your diet, don't limit carbohydrates and calories at the same time. It is a lot easier to cut back on carbohydrates if you let yourself eat satisfying filling foods. For most people with Type 2 diabetes Continue reading >>

What To Do When You Can’t Afford Your Diabetes Medication Or Supplies

What To Do When You Can’t Afford Your Diabetes Medication Or Supplies

In today’s demanding economy, it can be difficult to manage the cost of ongoing diabetes care. Whether you are insured, under-insured or uninsured, monthly medical expenses can add up. Discover what to do when you can’t afford your diabetes medication or supplies. Many people with diabetes must take oral medications, injectables or insulin to avoid serious blood sugar fluctuations. They must also test their blood sugars daily with a glucometer and strips. Having diabetes can involve a range of expenses including doctor visits, co-payments, prescriptions and even the cost of healthy food choices. Cutting back on or going without diabetes medications or supplies and doctor visits is not the answer. People with diabetes must closely monitor and control the disease to avoid future complications that could become even more costly. Ask Your Health Care Team Never stop taking medications or reduce the doses without talking to your doctor first. Ask your health care team about ways to cut medication costs. Request equivalent generic versions of medication when possible. Always shop around for the best prices. If you take more than one medication for diabetes, find out if it is possible to take a combination pill. If you have a mail order insurance drug program, take advantage of the 3 month medication supply at a reduced cost. Check Your Community Check with local community centers, local and state governments and neighborhood clinics to learn more about diabetes medication assistance and help covering the cost of diabetes supplies. Many states have programs to help people with diabetes who do not qualify for Medicaid benefits. Get involved in free screening events sponsored by hospitals and out-patient centers. Try Drug Companies Contact the drug companies or supply compan Continue reading >>

Diabetes Prevention And Risk Factors: What You Can And Can’t Avoid

Diabetes Prevention And Risk Factors: What You Can And Can’t Avoid

There are a number of risk factors for diabetes, and, depending on the type, there are also ways to prevent the disease. Even when it’s not possible to prevent diabetes, there are ways to lessen its effects. If you have Type I diabetes, managing your condition is the main focus. This type of diabetes comes about from a lack of insulin production in the body, and is generally not considered to be preventable. Type II diabetes, however, can be caused by lifestyle choices. That means you can make changes that can improve or even reverse your condition, or stop you from getting diabetes in the first place. For purposes of this article, the focus will be on Type II diabetes. Tobacco Use Can Be a Factor People who smoke are more likely to be diabetic. While there isn’t necessarily a direct link between tobacco and diabetes, people who smoke usually have less healthy lifestyles than non-smokers. That’s not always the case, of course. There are even athletes who occasionally smoke a cigarette. But most people who smoke, especially those who smoke heavily, lead lives burdened by other unhealthy habits. This can include drinking too much, overeating, not getting adequate rest, and working jobs that are stressful or hard on the body. For that reason, smoking may help reduce diabetes risk. When people quit smoking, it’s often as part of a lifestyle change that will help them be healthier and feel better about themselves overall. This can give them the incentive they need to lose weight, get more exercise, get better sleep, and even see their doctor more frequently. With that in mind, it’s important to note that quitting tobacco, in and of itself, isn’t necessarily proven to reduce the risk of diabetes. But anything that makes you healthier overall can reduce your chance Continue reading >>

Can Consuming Too Much Sugar Cause Diabetes?

Can Consuming Too Much Sugar Cause Diabetes?

Independently of quantity, consuming sugar (i.e., sucrose) does not cause diabetes. Understand why: “Since the first doctor noticed, hundreds of years ago, that the urine of a diabetic patient tasted sweet, it has been common to call the condition the sugar disease, or sugar diabetes, and since nothing was known about physiological chemistry, it was commonly believed that eating too much sugar had to be the cause, since the ability of the body to convert the protein in tissues into sugar wasn’t discovered until 1848, by Claude Bernard (who realized that diabetics lost more sugar than they took in). Even though patients continued to pass sugar in their urine until they died, despite the elimination of sugar from their diet, medical policy required that they be restrained to keep them from eating sugar. That prescientific medical belief, that eating sugar causes diabetes, is still held by a very large number, probably the majority, of physicians.” “In an earlier newsletter, I wrote about P. A. Piorry in Paris, in 1864, and Dr. William Budd in England, in 1867, who treated diabetes by adding a large amount of ordinary sugar, sucrose, to the patient's diet. Glucose was known to be the sugar appearing in the diabetics' urine, but sucrose consists of half glucose, and half fructose. In 1874, E. Kulz in Germany reported that diabetics could assimilate fructose better than glucose. In the next decades there were several more reports on the benefits of feeding fructose, including the reduction of glucose in the urine. With the discovery of insulin in 1922, fructose therapy was practically forgotten, until the 1950s when new manufacturing techniques began to make it economical to use.” “On a normal diet, his weight was 152 pounds, and his metabolic rate was from 9% to Continue reading >>

5 Nightmares You Don't Know Until You're Diabetic

5 Nightmares You Don't Know Until You're Diabetic

Hey, remember when everybody was freaking out about Ebola, because of an outbreak that killed more than 10,000 people? Well, diabetes kills 1.5 million people a year worldwide, more than 200,000 of them in the U.S. And you're probably never more than a few dozen feet away from someone who has it -- there are 30 million diabetics in the U.S. alone. In other words, for something most people consider too boring to even think about, the scale of the epidemic is mind-boggling. The U.S. alone spends an astonishing quarter of a trillion dollars a year fighting it. Or to put it another way, diabetes sucks a thousand bucks out of every single man, woman and child in America, every year. We previously debunked the myth that sugar causes diabetes, and when we talked to someone with one variety of the disease, we learned about the parts of the experience you never hear about. He says ... 5 The Disease And The Treatment Can Both Send You To The Emergency Room Comstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images Our diabetic, Zach, once woke up in the middle of the night starving, his legs feeling near-paralyzed. His memory of the incident is hazy, but the next thing he knew, he was on a kitchen chair wearing only his boxers with an empty jar of raspberry jam on the table -- he'd eaten nearly the entire thing with his bare hands like fucking Winnie the Pooh. Oh, bother. When he tested his blood sugar, it was 45 (the normal level is between 80 and 100). Anything below 70 is hypoglycemia, yet even after eating an entire jar of what is essentially pure sugar, his blood sugar level was still near emergency levels. If we're being completely honest, it's remarkable that he ever even woke up to eat that jam. By all rights he should've died in his bed. So this shit can get serious, is what we're saying. "Wait," Continue reading >>

7 Scary Things That Can Happen When You Don't Treat Your Diabetes

7 Scary Things That Can Happen When You Don't Treat Your Diabetes

Swallowing pills, checking your blood sugar all the time, or sticking yourself with needles full of insulin probably doesn't sound like your idea of a good time. But taking steps to keep your diabetes under control is your best shot at preventing a slew of frightening complications. If you don't take care of yourself, "diabetes complications typically start within 5 years; within 10 to 15 years, the majority of patients will progress to have multiple health issues," says Betul Hatipoglu, MD, an endocrinologist at Cleveland Clinic. Fortunately, eating a nutritious diet, exercising, and taking your medication may not only stop complications from progressing, but can also reverse them, she says. Need motivation to stick to your treatment plan? Here's what can happen when you slack off. With type 1 diabetes, your body stops producing insulin, a hormone that regulates blood sugar; with type 2 diabetes, your body can't properly use the insulin you do produce. In turn, your HDL (or "good") cholesterol lowers, and your levels of harmful blood fats called triglycerides rise. Insulin resistance also contributes to hardened, narrow arteries, which in turn increases your blood pressure. As a result, about 70% of people with either type of diabetes also have hypertension—a risk factor for stroke, heart disease, and trouble with thinking and memory. (Add these 13 power foods to your diet to help lower blood pressure naturally.) Failing to control high blood pressure and high cholesterol, either with diet and exercise alone or by adding medications, accelerates the rate at which all your other complications progress, says Robert Gabbay, MD, PhD, chief medical officer at Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston. More than 4 million people with diabetes have some degree of retinopathy, or dam Continue reading >>

Diabetics Who Can’t Detect Their Own Low Blood Sugar

Diabetics Who Can’t Detect Their Own Low Blood Sugar

People with diabetes can usually tell when their blood glucose (sugar) is getting low. Low blood glucose, or hypoglycaemia, is not dangerous if it is detected early, before a person’s blood glucose level drops too much. Most people with diabetes can control this problem by eating something that contains carbohydrates. But as many as one in four people with type 1 diabetes do not recognize when a hypoglycaemic episode – or low blood glucose – is coming on. Severe hypoglycaemia may impair a person’s consciousness and can cause their driving privileges to be revoked, among other problems. New and stricter legislation for driving licences has increased the relevance of this issue. An inability for some diabetics to detect when they have low blood sugar can be a problem when it comes to driving a car. Photo: Thinkstock “It is well known that the longer a person has diabetes, the greater the prevalence of impaired awareness of hypoglycaemia. In addition, we know that repeated episodes of low blood glucose can have a bearing on this condition,” says Professor Marit R. Bjørgaas at the Department of Cancer Research and Molecular Medicine, NTNU. Bjørgaas, along with Asta Kristine Håberg and Tor I. Hansen at the Department of Neuromedicine and Movement Science, has documented this relationship in previous research. Their new study provides additional insights into the condition. “Our goal was to investigate individuals with and without impaired awareness of hypoglycaemia to increase our understanding of this condition. The ultimate goal is to prevent hypoglycaemic events in vulnerable individuals,” says Håberg. People with diabetes who have impaired awareness of hypoglycaemia have difficulty in sensing the symptoms and taking necessary precautions to protect th Continue reading >>

Can Eating Too Much Sugar Cause Type 2 Diabetes?

Can Eating Too Much Sugar Cause Type 2 Diabetes?

Olivia Yang was stunned when she learned she had type 2 diabetes six years ago, when she was 19. Her doctor was shocked, too. In fact, her physician tested her twice to be sure there wasn’t some mistake. Yang was young, had a normal weight for her 5-foot-2-inch frame, and didn’t consider herself a particularly bad eater. She certainly didn’t seem like someone at risk. Now a new study may hint at why some patients end up with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes even when they don’t appear to have all of the typical risk factors such as age, obesity, and an unhealthy diet. Yang learned of her condition sophomore year of college. She’d gone for a physical — a requirement in order to begin working out with a fitness trainer — but her A1C blood test came back abnormally high, indicating diabetes. An A1C test tells a person’s average blood sugar level over the past few months. More specifically, an A1C test measures what percentage of your hemoglobin — a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen — is coated with sugar. It’s used to diagnose type 1 and type 2 diabetes and to keep tabs on how a person is managing their condition over time. Normal readings land below 5.7 percent. The range for someone with prediabetes falls between 5.7 and 6.4 percent and indicates a high risk of developing diabetes. Anything higher is considered diabetes. Unexpected diagnosis Yang, now 25 and an account executive at an advertising agency in Boston, told CBS News, “It was a shock for me. Type 2 runs in my family. But it happened when my parents were older so it was kind of a shock that I would get it at such a young age.” After the diagnosis, though, she realized she’d had symptoms for a while. “Looking back, I fell asleep a lot. I was tired a lot after I ate, a sym Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 Diabetes

A A A Topic Overview What is type 2 diabetes? Type 2 diabetes happens when your body can't use insulin the right way or when the pancreas can't make enough insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body's cells use sugar (glucose) for energy. It also helps the body store extra sugar in muscle, fat, and liver cells. Without insulin, this sugar can't get into your cells to do its work. It stays in your blood instead. Your blood sugar level then gets too high. High blood sugar can harm many parts of the body, such as the eyes, heart, blood vessels, nerves, and kidneys. It can also increase your risk for other health problems (complications). Type 2 diabetes is different from type 1 diabetes. In type 1 diabetes, the body's immune system destroys the cells that release insulin, so that over time the body can't produce insulin at all. In type 2 diabetes, the body still makes some insulin, but it can't use it the right way. What causes type 2 diabetes? You can get type 2 diabetes if: Your body doesn't respond as it should to insulin. This makes it hard for your cells to get sugar from the blood for energy. This is called insulin resistance. Your pancreas doesn't make enough insulin. If you are overweight, get little or no exercise, or have type 2 diabetes in your family, you are more likely to have problems with the way insulin works in your body. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed with a healthy lifestyle, including staying at a healthy weight, making healthy food choices, and getting regular exercise. What are the symptoms? Some people don't have symptoms, especially when diabetes is diagnosed early. This is because the blood sugar level may rise so slowly that a person may not know that anything is wrong. The most common symptoms of high blood sugar include: Fee Continue reading >>

Video: How Diabetes Affects Your Blood Sugar

Video: How Diabetes Affects Your Blood Sugar

Your body uses glucose for energy. Glucose metabolism requires insulin, a hormone produced by your pancreas. Here's how normal glucose metabolism works, and what happens when you have diabetes — a disease where your body either can't produce enough insulin or it can't use insulin properly. The food you eat consists of three basic nutrients: carbohydrates, protein and fat. During digestion, chemicals in your stomach break down carbohydrates into glucose, which is absorbed into your bloodstream. Your pancreas responds to the glucose by releasing insulin. Insulin is responsible for allowing glucose into your body's cells. When the glucose enters your cells, the amount of glucose in your bloodstream falls. If you have type 1 diabetes, your pancreas doesn't secrete insulin — which causes a buildup of glucose in your bloodstream. Without insulin, the glucose can't get into your cells. If you have type 2 diabetes, your pancreas secretes less insulin than your body requires because your body is resistant to its effect. With both types of diabetes, glucose cannot be used for energy, and it builds up in your bloodstream — causing potentially serious health complications. Continue reading >>

The Sugar Myths

The Sugar Myths

“To manage diabetes, just cut out the sugar.” “This candy’s okay, it’s sugar-free” “Too much sugar causes diabetes.” Do you believe any of these sugar myths? If so, you’re not alone. They come up over and over again in the Diabetes Daily community. Far too many learn the truth the hard way. So let’s set the records straight. Myth: To manage diabetes, just cut out the sugar. This myth is downright dangerous. Many people get diagnosed with diabetes, cut out the sugar, and struggle to understand why they have sky high blood sugars. They think, “I skipped the sugary foods and just ate a big baked potato. What went wrong?!” The body converts all carbohydrates into simple sugars with the exception of some amount of dietary fiber. So that sugar-free baked potato makes its way into blood sugar just a surely as a piece of candy will. Of course, not all carbohydrates are equal. Pure sugar will raise your blood sugars much more quickly than fibrous carbohydrates from vegetables. Myth: This candy’s okay, it’s sugar-free! This is wrong on a few levels. Many sugar-free foods are actually loaded with carbohydrates. In some cases, a sugar-free food will have more carbohydrates than a comparable product made with sugar! It’s vital to read the actual package to see how many carbohydrates a product contains. The second issue is that many sugar-free candies are full of artificial sweeteners like malitol, sorbitol, and others ending in “-ol”. These compounds are engineered to taste sweet but pass through the stomach undigested. This can nausea or diarrhea in some people, especially in larger quantities. This doesn’t mean that sugar-free foods are always bad. But it’s important to read the nutritional labels to make sure that you’re eating what you thi Continue reading >>

Leg, Foot, And Organ Damage With Diabetes

Leg, Foot, And Organ Damage With Diabetes

Healthy nerves carry messages to our muscles and organs. Having high blood sugar levels for a long time can damage nerves throughout the body. Also, the older people get and the longer they have diabetes, the more likely they are to have some nerve damage. When nerves become damaged, they can't send messages, the messages they send get interrupted, or the messages get mixed up. This is a condition called diabetic neuropathy. High blood sugar affects: Long nerves from the spinal cord that allow us to move and feel. Smaller nerves that support our body organs including the heart, stomach, and bladder. Leg and Foot Damage Long nerves from the spinal cord send messages to the lower legs and feet. When blood sugar levels stay high, the nerve cells swell and scar. After a while, the nerves can't send messages to the legs and feet the way they should. When this happens, it can cause people to lose feeling in their legs and feet, making it hard to sense pressure or pain. It can also cause uncomfortable feelings in the arms and legs, like tingling, shooting pains, or aching. This condition is known as peripheral neuropathy. Damaged nerves can also affect the muscles in the legs and feet, causing them to lose shape. When muscles in the foot lose their shape, they aren't able to hold the bones and joints of the feet together, or they can pull up on the bones, causing the foot to become deformed. These kinds of changes can put pressure on parts of the foot that aren't meant for walking, making it harder and more painful to walk. Sometimes people lose feeling in their feet without realizing it. When people don't know they've lost feeling, it can lead to very serious foot problems, including wounds that won't heal. Treatment Ask your doctor or other member of your health care team to Continue reading >>

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