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Diabetes & Flu: A Devastating Combination

Diabetes & flu: a devastating combination

Diabetes & flu: a devastating combination

Flu hits diabetes patients hard – nurses and GPs can help improve vaccination rates
‘I remember the fever and fatigue as being unbearable,’ recalls Maximino Álvarez, a diabetes patient who has had flu twice. ‘It is an unpleasant experience which should be avoided.’
Flu infection can be serious for anyone but for people with chronic diseases, such as diabetes, the risk of hospitalisation can be as much as ten times higher than the rest of the population.
‘Anything that affects your health has an impact on your diabetes,’ explains Maximino. ‘With flu, your blood sugar levels are affected and it becomes difficult to keep it under control. Resistance to fast-acting insulin is a frequent effect of influenza infection.’
Dr Xavier Cos, a GP specialising in diabetes care, says people with diabetes are more severely affected by any respiratory tract infections and can suffer serious complications as a result.
‘The reaction to the infectious process often exacerbates their metabolic disease,’ he says. ‘In many cases, they are also not as well able to fight the infection so a cascade of consequences can follow – just as in older people or those with chronic lung or kidney diseases.’
Vaccine-prevent diseases
Flu and pneumococcal disease – both of which can be prevented by vaccination – are serious respiratory diseases that can increase the risk of hospitalisation. ‘Epidemiological data tells us that people with diabetes who suffer from flu or other respiratory problems are at higher risk of hospital admission and likely to spend more days in hospital, Continue reading

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You can avoid pre-diabetes with small changes to your diet

You can avoid pre-diabetes with small changes to your diet

Charity Diabetes UK estimates that up to 11.5 million people in the UK are at a high risk of developing it.
This statistic is backed up by research published last year in online medical journal BMJ Open which estimates a third of UK adults are at the stage known as pre-diabetes.
If you’re one of them or think you might be, the main thing to know is that pre-diabetes can be reversed.
In fact, it takes only simple lifestyle changes to cut your risk of going on to develop Type 2 diabetes.
So what does the term mean?
Although not a medically recognised condition, pre-diabetes is a term used when a person’s blood glucose levels are higher than normal, yet not high enough for the full diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes.
Being told you have pre-diabetes serves as a warning that you’re at increased risk of developing the condition.
It has other health implications, too, for example it raises risk of cardiovascular diseases such as heart attacks and stroke.
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If you’re diagnosed with pre-diabetes (also called impaired fasting glucose or impaired glucose tolerance) but don’t have any signs of Type 2 diabetes, you’re likely to be seen every one to three years by your doctor, depending on your blood sugar levels.
Now’s the time to take steps to reduce your risk.
Diabetes UK is encouraging people to find out their level of risk of developing Type 2 and whether they have pre-diabetes.
There is a quick Know Your Risk quiz on the charity’s website (diabetes.org.uk/r Continue reading

Got pre-diabetes? Here’s five things to eat or avoid to prevent type 2 diabetes

Got pre-diabetes? Here’s five things to eat or avoid to prevent type 2 diabetes

Pre-diabetes is diagnosed when your blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as having type 2 diabetes. Pre-diabetes is an early alert that your diabetes risk is now very high. It is ten to 20 times greater compared to the risk for those with normal blood sugars. What you choose to eat, or avoid, influences this risk.
Diabetes Prevention Programs
Studies around the world, including Finland, China and the US have shown diabetes prevention programs prevent or delay progression to type 2 diabetes. When people eat more healthily, drop their body weight by 5-10% and walk for 30 minutes a day, five days a week, they lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by about 58% over two years.
We recently gave 101 men with pre-diabetes a self-directed diabetes prevention program over six months. We found they were able to reduce their portion size of potato and meat and improve their variety of health foods. They were able to reduce the proportion of energy coming from junk food by 7.6% more than the group who didn’t change their diet and got a four-point increase in their scores from the Healthy Eating Quiz. These improved eating patterns were associated with an average weight loss of 5.5kg and better blood sugar regulation.
This is great news for the 318 million adults around the world, including two million Australians, who have pre-diabetes.
The original diabetes prevention studies started in the 1980s. Back then the advice was to reduce your total kilojoule intake by eating less fat, especially from take-away, processed and fried foods and Continue reading

Diabetes and stamina: How to stay energized

Diabetes and stamina: How to stay energized

Keeping your energy levels stable if you have diabetes can be a constant challenge.
Not only can daily management of the condition become tiresome, but diabetes itself can also cause other health complications that contribute to fatigue.
In order to stay energized, it's important to manage your condition effectively and adopt healthy lifestyle habits that support your mood and vitality.
Drink More Water
A simple way to boost your energy levels is to drink more water. Diabetics tend to urinate more frequently than other people, which could be causing dehydration. Make sure to have water with you wherever you go, and drink a glass upon waking to jump start your energy and oxygenate your body.
Eat Regularly
Dips in energy can often be traced to irregular eating patterns. Diabetics especially need to maintain regular meal and snack times in order to keep blood sugar stable. Don't stray from a routine – no matter how busy you may be. And make sure each meal or snack is nutritionally balanced with some protein and fat. Foods that are high in carbohydrates may give you a quick rush of energy, but they'll tend to leave you more tired than before shortly after.
Move More
Some diabetics shy away from exercise because they think it will stress the body or worsen their condition. That's not the case. In fact, regular movement is crucial in helping you maintain your energy. Moderate exercise should energize you, not make you fatigued. That said, if your exercise routine seems to be making you tired, talk with your doctor about activities that might be better for your health.
Stress Le Continue reading

Diabetes Home Remedy

Diabetes Home Remedy

Signs and Symptoms of Diabetes
Diabetes is a serious illness where there is a persistently high glucose level in the bloodstream. Glucose (blood sugar) is the primary source of energy for the cells in our body, and diabetes occurs when the glucose level is not regulated properly by the hormone known as insulin.
Common symptoms of diabetes include:
frequent trips to the bathroom
unquenchable thirst
weight loss
fatigue and weakness
numbness or tingling sensation in the hands, feet or legs
blurred vision
dry or itchy skin
frequent infections or cuts and bruises that take a long time to heal
When these signs are associated with diabetes, they are the result of high glucose levels in the body. If you notice any of the above signs, schedule an appointment with your family doctor. Blood tests will be able to tell you if you have reason to be concerned about a diagnosis of diabetes.
Causes of Diabetes
There are two common types of diabetes:
Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body does not produce any insulin on its own. Type 1 diabetes has often been considered a childhood problem, but it can also develop in adults. This form of diabetes requires regular insulin injections for survival, and there is currently no known cure.
Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body becomes resistant to insulin or when there is an insulin deficiency. This type of diabetes can often be managed with regular exercise and a proper diet.
Thus far, medical scientists have been unable to pinpoint the exact causes of diabetes. However, there are certain factors which may increase the risk of developing diabetes, an Continue reading

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