Intermittent Fasting Could Help Tackle Diabetes – Here’s The Science

Intermittent fasting could help tackle diabetes – here’s the science

Intermittent fasting could help tackle diabetes – here’s the science

Intermittent fasting could help tackle diabetes – here’s the science
Intermittent fasting is currently all the rage. But don’t be fooled: it’s much more than just the latest fad. Recent studies of this kind of fasting – with restricted eating part of the time, but not all of the time – have produced a number of successes, but the latest involving diabetes might be the most impressive yet.
The idea of intermittent fasting arose after scientists were impressed by the effects of constant calorie restriction. A number of studies in many different animals have shown that restricted eating throughout adulthood leads to dramatic improvements in lifespan and general health.
The reasons for these improvements aren’t yet clear. Part of it seems to be that going without food gives cells in the body a much needed break to perform maintenance and repair. But the lack of food also forces cells to resort to alternative sources of energy. Some of these, such as ketones – molecules created in the liver from recycled fat – appear to be beneficial.
The problem is that constant calorie restriction isn’t practical: it’s easy for scientists to impose upon lab animals, but hard for humans to impose upon themselves in the real world. Fortunately, we’ve learnt that constant calorie restriction isn’t really necessary. Intermittent fasting seems to have many of the same benefits.
There are two main types of intermittent fasting. One type, known as “time restricted feeding”, requires eating only during a few hours of the day – say between 10am and 6pm. This ap Continue reading

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Recommendations for Management of Diabetes During Ramadan

Recommendations for Management of Diabetes During Ramadan

Since our last publication about diabetes and fasting during Ramadan (1), we have received many inquires and comments concerning important issues that were not discussed in the previous document, including the voluntary 1- to 2-day fasts per week that many Muslims practice throughout the year, as well as the effect of prolonged fasting (more than 18 h a day) in regions far from the equator during Ramadan when it occurs in summer—a phenomenon expected to affect millions worldwide for the next 10–15 years. Since 2005, there have been substantial additions to the literature, including two studies examining the effect of structured education and support for safe fasting, both of which had promising results (2,3). In addition, new medications, such as the incretin-based therapies, have been introduced with less risk for hypoglycemia.
According to a 2009 demographic study, Islam has 1.57 billion adherents, making up 23% of the world population of 6.8 billion, and is growing by ∼3% per year (4). Fasting during Ramadan, a holy month of Islam, is a duty for all healthy adult Muslims. The high global prevalence of type 2 diabetes—6.6% among adults age 20–79 years (5)—coupled with the results of the population-based Epidemiology of Diabetes and Ramadan 1422/2001 (EPIDIAR) study, which demonstrated among 12,243 people with diabetes from 13 Islamic countries that ∼43% of patients with type 1 diabetes and ∼79% of patients with type 2 diabetes fast during Ramadan (6), lead to the estimate that worldwide more than 50 million people with diabetes fast during Ramadan.
Ramadan Continue reading

Type 1 Diabetes and UTIs

Type 1 Diabetes and UTIs

WRITTEN BY: Georgina Cunningham
It’s my second trip to the hospital in a month. I’ve already missed five days of work. I’ve been poked and prodded, I have no good veins left. I’m already covered in bruises from last time and I just don’t want to be here again. I’m putting on a brave face, but everything inside me is telling me to scream at the top of my lungs. I’m doubled over with back pain, a migraine, a horrible fever, tachycardia, and to top it off I have constant low blood sugar.
“You again,” says the emergency department doctor. We both know the drill — fluids, intravenous antibiotics and a nice four-night stay in the Acute Ward.
I would consider myself a healthy person. I eat a balanced diet, I walk everywhere and my blood sugar levels are even “better than a person not living with Type 1 diabetes” (according to my endocrinologist). I’m hygienic and I had never had a UTI up until this moment. So, to be honest, I couldn’t tell you how I got here.
While a UTI might typically be something that is easily treated, it can become dangerous for someone with Type 1 diabetes. It can spread easily through your blood and your kidneys can become damaged. Our bodies can’t fight infections as well as they should, so it’s important to know the signs and make sure you advocate for your own body.
Everyone’s bodies are different, even amongst the Type 1 community. When I had the initial infection my sugars were generally stable, so long as I ate. But as soon as the infection spread and I incorporated antibiotics, a small appetite and my normal insulin Continue reading

Frequently Asked Questions about Diabetes

Frequently Asked Questions about Diabetes

1. Why do you recommend a vegan diet for diabetes?
Vegan diets, which contain no animal products (meat, dairy, eggs, or other animal products), are healthier than other diets, because they contain no cholesterol and less fat, saturated fat, and calories than meat-based diets or ovo-lacto vegetarian diets. Scientific research shows that health benefits increase as the amount of food from animal sources in the diet decreases, making vegan diets the most healthful overall.
2. I want to try a vegan diet. How should I start?
If a plant-based diet is new to you, you’ll be pleased to discover a wonderful additional benefit to vegan eating: It’s a fun way to explore delicious new foods. Start by checking out our Vegan Diet: How-to Guide for Diabetes and our Vegetarian Starter Kit, both of which explain the New Four Food Groups and offer useful tips, the “whys” and “hows” of a healthier diet, and easy-to-make recipes.
To order a Vegetarian Starter Kit, please visit PCRM's literature store.
3. Are carbohydrates bad for you?
Some people imagine that pasta, bread, potatoes, and rice are fattening, but the opposite is actually true. Carbohydrate-rich foods are helpful for permanent weight control because they contain less than half the calories of fat, which means that replacing fatty foods with complex carbohydrates automatically cuts calories.
It’s important to remember to eat healthful carbohydrates, such as whole grains, pasta, brown rice, and sweet potatoes. Processed carbohydrates, such as white bread and white rice, are not as healthful a choice because they have lo Continue reading

23 Interesting Facts About Diabetes

23 Interesting Facts About Diabetes

Trivia can be fun and interesting, especially when you are learning about something that is close to home. Whether you have diabetes or know someone who does, you might want to learn some interesting facts about this disease. Seeing how greatly treatment has evolved can be empowering. In addition, learning more about this disease can help to increase your awareness and motivate you to take control.
As the saying goes, knowledge is power.
23 Interesting Facts About Diabetes
The earliest known written record that likely referred to diabetes was in 1500 B.C in the Egyptian Ebers papyrus. It referred to the symptoms of frequent urination.
Diabetes symptoms such as thirst, weight loss, and excess urination were recognized for more than 1200 years before the disease was named.
The Greek physician Aretaeus (30-90CE) was credited with coming up with the name "diabetes." He recorded a disease with symptoms such as constant thirst (polydipsia), excessive urination (polyuria) and weight loss. He named the condition "diabetes," meaning "a flowing through."
Dr. Thomas Willis (1621-1675) called diabetes the "pissing evil" and described the urine of people with type 2 diabetes as "wonderfully sweet, as if it was imbued with honey or sugar." He was also the first to describe pain and stinging from nerve damage due to diabetes.
In ancient times, doctors would test for diabetes by tasting urine to see if it was sweet. People who tasted urine to check for diabetes were called "water tasters." Other diagnostic measures included checking to see if urine attracted ants or flies.
In the late 1850 Continue reading

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