Posts Tagged ‘Diabetes’


Not surprisingly, health problems associated with uncontrolled Type 2 diabetes can determine the depression that often accompanies the condition. A study of the relationship was published this month in the Indian Journal of Medical Research.

Researchers in the Department of Pharmacy Practice, National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research in Punjab, India, studied depression in 300 volunteers with Type 2 diabetes

  • 23% cent were diagnosed with major depression
  • 18% were diagnosed with moderate depression and
  • 59% had no clinically diagnosed depression

Depression was associated with:

  • age over 54
  • abdominal fat
  • nerve damage
  • kidney disease
  • blood vessel disease
  • diabetic foot disease and
  • taking more than four pills each day

Of the seven factors above, only one, aging, cannot be prevented or treated. Or can it? In the United States, physicians note the age of patients on their medical records, and also typically record whether the patient appears his or her stated age, or appears older or younger than his or her stated age. While chronological age cannot be tampered with, effective age often can. If 75 is the average lifespan for a person in a given society, then someone who lives to 100 is effectively only 75.

Staying active, not smoking, and eating a healthy diet are all action that lower our effective age.
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These problems were found to lead to depression:

1. Abdominal fat interferes with controlling Type 2 diabetes and makes people tired and self-conscious about their appearance. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, USA, recommends abdominal curls for strengthening abdominal muscles. Instructions can be found at the website: Eating a diet rich in fiber and low in calories can be helpful too, so prepare lots of fruits and vegetables to include in your eating plan.

2. Peripheral nerve damage makes for pain and numbness in your feet and hands, and can make walking and manual activities dangerous and frustrating. Keeping blood sugar levels under control and taking a walk daily can help prevent and treat the nerve damage that can come with uncontrolled Type 2 diabetes.

3. Kidney disease can be a serious complication of diabetes, so again, keep your blood sugars under control so the blood vessels going through your kidneys are not damaged. Blood pressure is important to keep under control as well, so visit your physician for regular checkups and be faithful with any blood pressure medication that is prescribed.

4. Heart and blood vessel diseases are another serious complication that can be prevented and treated with a healthy diet and physical exercise. Eat a salad for lunch instead of the hamburger and fries and take a walk in the park.

Depression is twice as common in people with Type 2 diabetes, and can last longer than in people without diabetes. People who are depressed are more likely to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as overeating, not exercising, and not taking care of their Type 2 diabetes… these also increase your effective age. Controlling blood sugar levels though can lead to improvement in this depression, anxiety and other health problems associated with Type 2 diabetes.


A small percentage of pregnant women, between about three percent and eight percent, develop a condition known as gestational diabetes during their pregnancy, often starting around the twenty sixth week, but it can be earlier. It is a temporary form of diabetes that normally ends with the birth of the new baby.

Although a temporary form, gestational diabetes must be taken seriously and properly treated, probably with the implementation of a custom gestational diabetes diet devised by a dietitian and perhaps an addition of some physical exercise to the daily routine.

Like all forms of diabetes, gestational diabetes is characterized by the existence of higher than normal levels of glucose in the bloodstream. The source of the glucose is the foods eaten each day and primarily from the foods with significant carbohydrate content.

An appropriate gestational diabetes diet will provide all the essential nutrients, the proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals for the continuing good health of mother and baby but will pay special attention to the carbohydrate foods that cause the greatest affect in raising blood sugar levels.


Carbohydrates are essential sources of energy needed by the cells of the body. Carbohydrates are composed of molecules of sugars, starches, and fiber, joined together in a chainlike structure. They can be described as “simple” or “complex”, depending on the number of and type of sugar molecules that make up the chain. After being eaten, the body’s digestive system converts and breaks down the carbohydrate chains to individual glucose molecules that are then passed into the bloodstream.

For the person with diabetes, the simple carbohydrates are the biggest problem because their sugars enter the bloodstream quickly compared with those of the complex carbohydrates. The diabetic condition involves an impairment in the body’s system to easily process and absorb the sugars and that results in the higher blood sugar levels that must be avoided or minimized as much as possible because they can lead to more serious health conditions if not controlled.

Because of the foregoing, it is likely that the gestational diabetes diet will eliminate the simple carbohydrate foods, the sweet tasting products that are high in sugars, such as cookies, table sugar, honey, candy, pies, pastries, and cake.

As well as allowing a more gradual entry of glucose into the bloodstream there is an additional nutritional advantage in depending more on complex carbohydrates in the diet because they usually provide additional vitamins, minerals, and fiber, beneficial for good health.

The choice of good carbohydrates for the diet will include such foods as fresh fruits and most vegetables (but probably not potatoes and possible a few others), legumes, beans, nuts and seeds, whole grain breads and cereals.

A balanced diet will also provide an appropriate ratio of proteins and fats in relation to the carbohydrates.


Foods in this nutrient category, with some exceptions due to personal preferences, are: lean meats, fish, chicken without the skin, low fat cheeses and milk, eggs, yogurt. The carbohydrate content of these protein foods is minimal.


Essential for good health, fats should be mainly unsaturated fats with fewer saturated and transfats. Good fats are found in olive oil, canola and other vegetable oils and in many nuts such as hazel nuts, almonds, walnuts and Brazil nuts. The omega-3 fatty acids are also found in cold water fish such as salmon, preferably of the wild variety in preference to farmed fish.


Eight glasses of liquid daily is a common recommendation with water as the main source. Avoid sugary pops and soft drinks. Caffeinated drinks such as tea and coffee may be approved by the dietitian but probably limited to two per day. There are non caffeinated forms of those popular drinks.
Usually, sweeteners such as Nutrasweet and Equal that use aspartame are acceptable and also Splenda find favor with dietitians.

The general guidelines are to eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grain cereals and breads, while avoiding processed, refined, and fried foods and saturated fats as much as possible. Choose low fat dairy foods and lean meats and skinless poultry. Eat enough but don’t eat too much. And if the doctor approves, exercise, even moderate exercise can be beneficial, during pregnancy and long after.

In conclusion

The doctor and the supporting healthcare team, including the dietitian are the authorities and will monitor and manage the pregnancy and any accompanying gestational diabetes.



The usual definition of diabetes is having too much glucose in your blood.

How much is too much? Well, the World Health Organisation lowered the threshold some time ago, 1997, as people were being found to have diabetes, despite being under the blood sugar level associated as being normal.

The new definition, along with the usual symptoms such as fatigue, excessive thirst, frequent urination and blurred vision is:

  • A randomly taken sample of blood glucose showing a level greater than 11 mmol/l (millimoles per litre).
  • Blood sugar levels greater than or equal to 7 mmol/l when fasting
  • If blood sugars are greater than 11 mmol/l two hours after drinking 75 grams of glucose diluted in water.
  • Millimoles per litre are an almost universal measurement, except in the US, where mg./dl (milligrams per decilitre) is used, which is mmol/l x 18.

Everyone is different. In my case I had my own business at the time, dealing with floods and fires for insurance companies. We would go in, strip out all the damaged items and building fabric, then reinstate the property. It was physical work and I loved it.

I thought the physical aspect meant that it helped keep me fit, and when at 47 years of age, I found that I needed to take a short 20 minute nap in the afternoon; I simply put this down to my advancing years.

Some months later, I developed a raging thirst. I was literally drinking over 5 gallons of water a day, and needed to visit the bathroom about every half hour.

Things came to a head about 2 weeks after this, when my vision became slightly blurred. Initially, that too I put down to age, especially since I received a reminder for an eye test! I woke up one morning and just couldn’t see, everything was just a mass of colour.

I happened to be visiting my parents at the time, and my father, a doctor, recognised the symptoms immediately.

I finally visited my doctor the next day, more tests and it was confirmed. I had type 2 diabetes.

I was instantly put on 3 different drugs as my sugar levels were out somewhere around 27 mmol/l! Some 6 months later I was put on insulin, and have been injecting twice a day for nearly 2 years now.

The point is, if you have any of these symptoms, including stress and irritability, don’t simply put them down to old age or stress in the workplace. Go and see your doctor and get checked out. In fact, you should really have a check up every year.
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Early diagnosis means getting this disease under control earlier, and reduces the potential consequences of diabetes – renal failure, blindness and amputations to name three.


“Watch what you eat” that is probably what your doctor would keep on saying if you happen to be a diabetic. Diabetes is a medical condition in which an individual has extremely high blood sugar or glucose levels. This happens when the body fails to produce adequate insulin or in cases when the body cells fail to respond to the insulin that is being produced.

A diabetic has to be very careful about his or her food intake and especially about the sugar intake. However, it is not the sugar intake alone. Excessive consumption of simple carbohydrates may also have an adverse effect on their health as these are broken down into sugars. Fried food and alcoholic beverages are also a strict no-no.

Despite having a sweet tooth, you are forced to skip on desserts when you are a diabetic. You are constantly worried about your blood sugar levels rising high.

When it comes to healthy snacks for diabetics, nuts are a safe bet. These include almonds, cashews, pecans and walnuts. However, snacking on nuts does not mean that you can have as much of these as you want. Nuts should be consumed in moderation as they are high on calories.

The list of healthy snacks also includes fruits and whole grain crackers. When it comes to fruits you have a choice amongst grapefruit, apricots, apple and blueberries. Whole grain crackers, on the other hand, constitute complex carbohydrates which take a long time to get absorbed in the body thus making you feel full for a longer period of time.

But being a diabetic does not mean that you have to snack on fruits and nuts all along. There is a whole range of healthy snacks for diabetics which are nutritious and at the same time delectable. These include whole grain bars, meat preparations, and even a diabetic chocolate cake. Though rich in chocolate, these are devoid of any sugar content. You can have the cake if you are diabetic and even gift it to one who suffers from the same.

For diabetics, the kind of snack that they can have without causing an adverse effect on blood sugar levels is dependant on the kind of medication that has been prescribed. If you are on oral medication, then you should have smaller meals comprising snacks that have high protein content. You need to keep an eye over the calorie content in snacks so that it does not become an additional meal.


Diabetes has different types. Type 1 is also called as Insulin-Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM) or sometimes called Juvenile onset diabetes. In this type of diabetes insulin therapy is always required. It can take place at any age, but it is most frequently diagnosed in children, adolescents, or on early adulthood.

The pancreas, an organ behind the stomach produces insulin through special cells called beta cells. The insulin is necessary to go glucose into cells, then it is keep it is stored and afterward it can be use to have energy. Absolute deficiency of insulin is due to absence of Islet of Langerhans in the pancreas. The insulin that is produced by beta cells of the pancreas are completely damaged which result to body can no longer produce insulin within five to ten years.

If insulin is not enough, the body is unable to use this sugar for energy. And it will results to the symptoms of type 1 diabetes.

The cause of type 1 DM is unknown, but hereditarily vulnerable people can have an immune reaction caused by a viral or it can be environmental trigger. The insulin-produced by pancreatic beta cells are erroneously attack by white blood cells.

The client is thin. This is due to inability of the body to obtain glucose from carbohydrates. Therefore the body breaks down fats and protein for glucose supply. The client is also prone to Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA). In absence of insulin, fats are metabolized. There is increased production of ketones, resulting to ketoacidososis.

Signs and Symptoms

  1. Polyuria, polydypsia polyphagia
  2. Weight loss
  3. Blurred vision
  4. Slow wound healing
  5. Feeling tired or fatigued
  6. Losing the feeling or feeling tingling in your feet

Diabetes is diagnosed by blood tests such as Fasting blood glucose, Random (nonfasting) blood glucose level, Oral glucose tolerance test. Another test that is used in testing type1 diabetes is called Ketone Testing.

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