‘Diabetes Affects Indians At A Younger Age And Progresses Much Faster’

‘Diabetes affects Indians at a younger age and progresses much faster’

‘Diabetes affects Indians at a younger age and progresses much faster’

India is among the countries which has the largest burden of diabetes in the world, says Dr. V. Mohan, the chairman and chief diabetologist at Dr. Mohan’s Diabetes Specialities Centre, a WHO Collaborating Centre for Noncommunicable Diseases Prevention and Control, in Chennai.
A Padma Shri recipient (2012) for his extensive contributions to the field of diabetes research, Dr. Mohan has recently been felicitated with the highest award for biomedical research in India -- Dr. B. R. Ambedkar Centenary Award -- by the Indian Council of Medical Research.
An alumnus of Madras Medical College, Dr. Mohan is also the president and director of Madras Diabetes Research Foundation, an ICMR Centre for advanced research on diabetes. He speaks to The Hindu about the disease, its implications, prevention and research in the area.
How has you extensive work in the field of diabetes helped the common man, especially with India having such a huge burden of the disease?
I have been working in the field of diabetes for nearly 40 years. I first started working on diabetes research as an undergraduate student helping my father, Prof. M.Viswanathan, who is considered the ‘Father of Diabetology’ in India.
Our initial studies were clinical, but they helped us understand the Asian Indian phenotype of diabetes better and laid the groundwork for my future research in this field. In my early years, I worked on a condition called “Fibro Calculus Pancreatic Diabetes”, which is a type of diabetes secondary to stones inside the pancreas. It is a rare form of diabetes, but my work helped to understan Continue reading

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Starch-Based Vegan Diets And Diabetes: The Science-Backed Truth No One Wants You To Know

Starch-Based Vegan Diets And Diabetes: The Science-Backed Truth No One Wants You To Know

Top 3 Diabetes Myths, Busted: Fruit, Starchy Vegetables, and Blood Glucose
Almost 10 percent of Americans have diabetes and that number is growing. Unfortunately, the myths surrounding diabetes are as widespread as the disorder itself.
For the past 50 years, people diagnosed with all forms of diabetes have been advised to eat low-carb diets high in fat and protein, and to avoid eating high-carbohydrate foods like fruits, potatoes, squash, corn, beans , lentils , and whole grains .
Despite this popular opinion, more than 85 years of scientific research clearly demonstrates
that a low-fat, plant-based whole foods diet is the single most effective dietary approach for managing type 1 and type 2 diabetes. This means that a low-fat dietnot a low-carb diethas been shown across the board to minimize oral medication and insulin use, stabilize blood glucose, and dramatically reduce long-term disease risk in people with diabetes.
Myth #1: You Develop Type 2 Diabetes From Eating Too Much Sugar
Eating sweets is not a direct cause of type 2 diabetes. People develop type 2 diabetes over time by slowly developing a resistance to insulin, the hormone that escorts glucose out of your blood and into tissues like your muscle and liver. I like to think of type 2 diabetes as a very advanced form of insulin resistance in which glucose remains trapped in your blood because your body cannot use insulin properly. In this way, elevated blood glucose is a symptom of diabetes, and NOT the root cause.
The real cause of insu Continue reading

Why Resistance Training is Great for Diabetes Management

Why Resistance Training is Great for Diabetes Management

What if I told you that I have the magic formula for looking good, feeling amazing, and using less insulin (or other diabetes drugs)?!! Would you believe me?
Well I do have a magic formula!
But it’s not really magic, and you will have to work for it. The good news is that there is a readily available way of achieving those three things. It’s called resistance training.
What kind of magic is this?
From a diabetes perspective, resistance training really seems like magic, since it’s one of the most powerful ways to significantly improve insulin sensitivity.
Improved insulin sensitivity makes it easier to manage your diabetes (once you understand the new sensitivity patterns) and can significantly reduce the amount of diabetes drugs needed (goes for both T1D and T2D).
Think of your muscles as a lot of little “gas tanks” that can store glucose. Because glucose from your food is mainly absorbed by your muscle tissue, resistance training (which builds muscle mass) is particularly good at improving blood sugars after meals.
An added (and very welcome) benefit of resistance training is that you use a lot of energy (calories) to build and maintain your muscles, making it an excellent weight management tool. You don’t have to build bodybuilder-sized muscles to achieve this effect, or even the amount of muscle mass I have. Any improvement from where you are now will help.
Besides the (pretty awesome) diabetes management benefits, resistance training also has a large number of other health benefits, like improving bone density, strengthening your joints, and improving your m Continue reading

Glucose response holds key to better obesity and diabetes drugs

Glucose response holds key to better obesity and diabetes drugs

For the first time, South Australian researchers have recorded how human gut cells react to glucose, one of the key nutrients in our diet.
The study focuses on the secretion of a hormone called glucagon-like peptide 1 (or GLP-1) from the lining of the gut. When it is released after a meal, GLP-1 triggers insulin secretion from the pancreas and signals fullness, to limit further food intake.
As a result, this hormone has been the focus of significant new drug development for type 2 diabetes and obesity in the past decade.
“But while we knew that GLP-1 was important in diabetes and obesity treatment, we still knew little about how the release of this hormone was controlled in humans,” says research leader Professor Damien Keating, from Flinders University and the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI).
“We have now recorded how the arrival of glucose in the upper intestine triggers the release of this important hormone, which has been a chief therapeutic target for a number of diabetes and new anti-obesity drugs,” Professor Keating says.
“By learning more about the gut’s mechanism to process glucose and produce this hormone, we can begin to develop potential new therapies which may be much more targeted and effective.”
With obesity and Type 2 (acquired) diabetes on the rise, these therapies will be important in increasing public health and wellbeing, and in reducing the future cost burden of these conditions to the community.
Drugs that mimic GLP-1, or increase its levels in blood, are now used successfully for the treatment of people wi Continue reading

Medicare, Dexcom G5, & Smartphone Access: Whos to Blame and What Can We Do?

Medicare, Dexcom G5, & Smartphone Access: Whos to Blame and What Can We Do?

But the cause for celebration was quickly muted due to the following statement set down by CMS under Miscellaneous :
Coverage of the CGM system supply allowance is limited to those therapeutic CGM systems where the beneficiary ONLY uses a receiver classified as DME to display glucose data. If a beneficiary uses a non- DME device (smart phone, tablet, etc.) as the display device, either separately or in combination with a receiver classified as DME , the supply allowance is non-covered by Medicare.
Why? Because CMS believes that if someone on Medicare doesnt use the receiver that is required by FDA to be shipped as part of the system, then they shouldnt have to pay for the system at all. The receiver is considered Durable Medical Equipment (DME) and so the only way they can be sure it is used is to prevent any other method of viewing the data. This includes smartphone, watches, and tablets.
By denying access to the CGM data generated by the transmitter to any device except the receiver, the ability to remotely monitor or alternately alarm the person with diabetes is prohibited. This becomes a significant safety issue, as:
Caregivers cannot use the Dexcom Follow App , which allows up to 5 people to remotely view CGM data. The Dexcom Follow App can alarm the caregiver when blood glucose levels are out of the accepted safe range so that the caregiver can immediately contact the person with diabetes (or emergency personnel) to prevent severe hyper- or hypoglycemia.
People with diabetes cannot use the Dexcom G5 Mobile App , which shows real-time data on a smartphone or tab Continue reading

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