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Diabetes Can Be (and Cause) A Real Headache

Diabetes Can Be (and Cause) a Real Headache

Diabetes Can Be (and Cause) a Real Headache

Diabetes can seem to have an almost limitless list of symptoms. Now headaches are added to the list.
The ebb and flow of blood sugar levels can result in headaches whether sugar is high (hyperglycemia) or low (hypoglycemia.) The mechanisms are different, but the pain is the same.
Types of Headaches
Headaches are the most common cause of pain experienced by otherwise healthy people, according to the National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. Diabetics have also been found to have more frequent headaches than the general population.
Classification Of The Headaches
Generally, headaches are classified as primary or secondary.
A primary headache occurs when neurotransmitters in the brain send signals to certain groups of nerves. Migraine and stress headaches are examples of this type.
Secondary headaches, on the other hand, are the result of some disease or disorder within the body that causes disruption to the nervous system. Diabetes is one of these diseases.
Doctors have not determined the exact process for every different type of headache but they have a pretty good idea of what causes most of them.
Hypoglycemic Headache
Your brain runs on glucose, using as much as 25 percent of the glucose circulating in the body. The brain can sense when there is an inadequate supply. Despite sending off a lot of commands to different parts of the body – to the liver for increased glycogen production, the pancreas for insulin production, and so forth - blood vessels in the brain constrict, or spasm. This spasming can be very painful. Brain cells starved for glucose can als Continue reading

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Do Potatoes Cause Diabetes?

Do Potatoes Cause Diabetes?

Are potatoes dangerous? Do potatoes cause diabetes?
You might think so if you followed the headlines. In 2006, the media was full of reports making these claims, some of which are still being made today. All of this attention was based on the results of a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.1
The prospective study followed 84,555 women in the famed Nurses’ Health Study. At the start, the women, aged 34–59 years, had no history of chronic disease, and completed a validated food frequency questionnaire. These women were then followed for 20 years with repeated assessments of their diet. The study concluded, “Our findings suggest a modest positive association between the consumption of potatoes and the risk of type 2 diabetes in women. This association was more pronounced when potatoes were substituted for whole grains.”
So, let’s take a closer look at the study and see how accurate these claims are, and where the truth really lies. Specifically, we will look at five key points.
Are all potatoes equal? Or “When is a potato not a potato?”
In the study, participants were asked how often, on average, in the previous year, they had consumed potatoes. The options they were given to choose from were either:
a) One baked or one cup mashed potato
b) 4 ounces of french-fried potatoes
These were the only two choices the subjects could pick from. So, while these may represent how potatoes are often consumed here in America, they do not account for any differences in how the potatoes were prepared and served. And mashed potatoes were counted in with Continue reading

How fasting reverses type 2 diabetes

How fasting reverses type 2 diabetes

While many consider type 2 diabetes (T2D) irreversible, fasting has been long known to cure diabetes. In our previous post, we considered bariatric surgery. While extreme, these surgeries have proven the point that the metabolic abnormalities that underlie T2D (hyperinsulinemia, insulin resistance) can be fully reversible even after a few short weeks.
Many early studies were done with the heavy-duty Roux-en-Y surgery, which is the heavyweight champions of surgeries. The best weight loss. The most complications. This is the surgery that has ‘Go Big or Go Home’ tattooed on its massive bicep.
But even milder forms of bariatric surgery show the same reversibility of T2D. A gastric band is essentially a belt implanted around your stomach. The surgeon keeps tightening the belt so that you can’t eat. If you try to eat too much, you’ll puke it all back up. Lovely. It ain’t pretty, but it sure does work. Again, long term results are kind of iffy, but short term results are pretty good.
The results of gastric banding versus medical treatment showed a significant and pretty damn good drop in their fasting blood sugars. In other words, their T2D was reversing in a b-i-g way. Those given medicines alone basically stayed the same. They were no better than before.
Gastric banding a 500 pound patient will still reverse 20 years of diabesity within weeks. One of the main questions is why? There are many hypotheses, but essentially, it is the sudden severe restriction of all calories that causes this beneficial effect. This is the same thing as the time tested, ancient healing trad Continue reading

Health Claims On The Rise For Kids With Type 2 Diabetes, Obesity-Related Conditions

Health Claims On The Rise For Kids With Type 2 Diabetes, Obesity-Related Conditions

It’s no secret that American children have gotten fatter in recent decades.
Now a new study joins earlier research showing the consequences: A sharp rise in insurance claims for youth with Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and other conditions more often associated with older adults.
Claims for Type 2 diabetes — formerly known as “adult-onset” diabetes — among young people aged 0 to 22 years old more than doubled between 2011 and 2015, according to an analysis of a large national database of claims paid by about 60 insurers.
At the same time, claims for prediabetes among children and youth rose 110 percent, while high blood pressure claims rose 67 percent. Sleep apnea, a condition where a patient temporarily stops breathing while sleeping, rose 161 percent.
The findings “not only raise quality-of-life questions for children, but also the … kind of resources that will be necessary to address this emerging situation,” said Robin Gelburd, president of the nonprofit Fair Health, a national clearing house for claims data that offers free medical cost comparison tools to consumers and sells data to insurers and health systems.
To be sure, the analysis is certainly not the first to note a rise in obesity or Type 2 diabetes in this age group; nor does it explore the possible reasons behind the apparent increase in claims. One factor in the rise could simply be increased awareness and testing for the problem, while variations between states could reflect differences in patient ethnicities, how doctors practice, insurance rules or all of those factors.
“We try to Continue reading

Diabetes Questions: How do blood sugar levels affect your feet?

Diabetes Questions: How do blood sugar levels affect your feet?

When it comes to managing your blood glucose, keep in mind the whole-body effects of high blood glucose levels. For individuals with diabetes, continued exposure to high blood glucose can result in serious complications, including foot problems. When the body is exposed to these high levels, over time the nerves in the body can become damaged.
When the nerves in the body become damaged, this can result in neuropathy or specifically diabetic peripheral neuropathy. In fact, about 60% to 70% of all people with diabetes have some form of neuropathy, but today we’re going to focus on diabetic neuropathy because it is the most common type and it impacts your feet.
What is diabetic peripheral neuropathy?
Diabetic peripheral neuropathy is a type of nerve disorder that impacts a person’s legs, feet, toes, hands, and arms. Over time, a variety of factors can cause nerve damage in the body, resulting in sensations of numbness and pain in parts of the body. You may experience pain, tingling, or total loss of feeling in your extremities.
What parts of the body does peripheral neuropathy affect?
Peripheral neuropathy impacts a person’s toes, feet, legs, hands, and arms. Diabetic neuropathy affects the longest nerves first, that’s why the extremities of the body are affected, usually starting with the toes and feet. Keep in mind, this is a person-specific condition, and everyone will experience symptoms differently.
What are the long term complications of diabetic peripheral neuropathy?
Like all things pertaining to health, nerve damage has different symptoms and complications for Continue reading

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