Diabetes & Blood Sugar Disorders

Profound Consequences of a Preventable Epidemic Disease

Diabetes & Blood Sugar Disorders

One billion people around the world now suffer from diabetes and obesity combined. Obesity in adolescence has quadrupled just in the past 30 years, and now almost 20 percent of kids ages six to eleven are obese. Studies have shown that becoming overweight is a major risk factor in developing type 2 diabetes. Today, roughly 30 percent of overweight people have diabetes, and 85 percent of diabetics are overweight. See the trend?
Today is the first generation of kids in modern history that’s expected to live shorter lifespans than their parents. Dr Daniel

If current trends continue, in two decades, 95 percent of Americans would be overweight and one in three would have diabetes. Now, the consequences of this disease epidemic are profound. It’s been estimated that the cost of diabetes alone is $250 billion a year. To put that in perspective… The World Health Organization estimates that it would cost $200 Billion to end world hunger? If healthcare spending continues at its current pace, the US would be insolvent, or bankrupt, by the year 2035.
Metabolic problems (Energy and Glucose dysfunction) are an epidemic in the industrialized world. In the US, someone dies from diabetes-related causes every 10 seconds. Diabetes is also the world’s fastest growing chronic disease! While high blood sugar’s more typically the problem, low blood sugar or alternating high and low blood sugar can also be problematic. High and low blood sugar have many causes, including:

  • poor diet
  • lack of physical activity
  • chronic stress
  • inadequate sleep
  • poor gut health
  • and environmental toxins.

Metabolic problems are usually caused by a combination of these factors in patients. Let’s start by discussing the most common contributor to metabolic disease, and that’s diet.

In the year 2000, medical care itself was the third leading cause of death in the US. Journal of American Medical Association

The Standard American Diet = Excess Release of Insulin

The Standard American or Standard British or Standard Industrialized European or Standard Australian Diet – they have all really become interchangeable at this point – can lead to high glucose levels. In fact, both high and low glucose levels will cause the excess release of insulin, which causes blood sugar to crash. For those with metabolic issues, a Paleo-type diet is recommended, and most will do better on a lower-carb version of this diet, though that’s not always the case. So how do you know what the best diet to follow is? The best way to determine your needs is to monitor blood sugar at home with a device called a glucometer. These are devices that people with diabetes use to prick their finger, get a drop of blood, and measure their blood sugar. The goal should be attaining the following targets: 140 milligrams per deciliter or lower one hour after a meal and 120 milligrams per deciliter or lower two hours after a meal. This is a really helpful and objective way of determining personal carbohydrate tolerance. So rather than trying to guess how much carbs you can eat, simply use a glucometer to measure your blood sugar after meals and use that information to adjust your carbohydrate intake. For example, if you consumed a meal that has a large baked potato, and your blood sugar goes up to 180 an hour after a meal, and it does that consistently—we’re not just looking for a single reading that’s out of range, we’re looking for a pattern—then that would suggest that the amount of carbohydrate in that potato is too much for you, and should consider reducing your intake accordingly. On the other hand, if you’ve been on a really, really low-carb diet and you start to introduce carbohydrates back and you stay within those targets, 140 milligrams per deciliter at one hour and 120 at two hours, then it suggests that you are able to tolerate that amount of carbohydrates. See how this can be a really, really useful tool? Keep in mind that glucometers aren’t super accurate; they’re more for picking up patterns instead of getting precise measurements. But patterns can give us quite a bit of insight into our physiology and more importantly direct us to make the best change possible.

The Real Cause of Diabetes is Insulin Dysfunction

The entire spectrum of diabetes, including all of its complications – elevated blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol – simply downstream symptoms that result from problems with diet, lifestyle, and environmental toxins interacting with our unique genetic susceptibilities. Diabetes is a disease caused by excess insulinnot excess blood sugar. In other words, high blood sugar is a symptom, but not the root cause. Insulin is the hormone responsible for reducing blood sugar. In order for insulin to work, our tissues have to be sensitive to its action; otherwise, tissues become resistant and insulin struggles to clear out sugar from the blood. How does insulin resistance begin? The root of the problem is our diet.

    When your diet is full of empty calories and an abundance of quickly absorbed sugars, liquid calories, and carbohydrates (like bread, pasta, rice, and potatoes), your cells slowly become resistant to the effects of insulin and need more and more to do the same job of keeping your blood sugar even. However, there is a limit to the amount of sugar the liver and muscles can store. The easiest way to understand this is to think of your liver and muscles as small closets without much storage space. If sugar keeps coming in, the closet will quickly fill up. Thus, you develop insulin resistance. A high insulin level is the first sign of a problem. The higher your insulin levels are, the worse your insulin resistance. Your body starts to age and deteriorate. In fact, insulin resistance is the single most important phenomenon that leads to rapid and premature aging and all its resultant diseases, including heart disease, stroke, dementia, and cancer. These are all a result of insulin resistance and too much insulin. Elevated blood sugar is not the source of the problem. And because insulin resistance (and diabetes/obesity) are a direct outcome of diet and lifestyle, the condition is 100 percent reversible in the vast majority of cases. Most people just need to eliminate the things that are sending their biology out of balance and include what’s needed to help the body re-balance itself. For most, the interventions required are extremely simply and extraordinarily effective.

How to Reverse Diabetes Naturally

1. Get the right testing done.

Most doctors simply focus on fasting blood sugar. This is actually a poor indicator of how your body is handling sugar. The absolute best test to get is an insulin response test where insulin levels are measured fasting and then 1 and 2 hours after a glucose drink (yuck). If you have Diabetes or suspect that you may have diabetes then demand this test from your doctor!

2. Fix Your Food and Personal Nutrition Habits.

Despite what the media has you believing.. Diet and Nutrition is pretty dang simple. Eliminate sugar and processed or refined carbohydrates, eat real foods like lean protein (mean, chicken and fish), as many vegetables as you can tolerate, nuts, seeds, beans and drink a lot of water. I know most of you reading this know exactly what you should be eating to be healthy. That’s not the problem. The problem is why you continue to make the choices you do; and this is exactly what I help with in my nutrition coaching program.

3. Fix Your Movement

Aside from changing your diet, exercise is probably the single best medication for diabetes. Walk at least 30 minutes every day. For some, 30-60 minutes of more vigorous aerobic exercise 4-6 times a week may be necessary.

4. Fix Your Stress Levels

Stress is a major unrecognized contributor to insulin resistance and blood sugar imbalance. Chronically raised cortisol levels (stress hormones) create havok for insulin regulation. This is why it’s crucial that you learn how to push your pause button every day with deep breathing, visualization, yoga, and other relaxation techniques

5. Get Personal

While the steps above will address 80 percent of the problems with diabetes, some may need to take additional steps to optimize key areas of their biology. Remember, Functional Medicine is the Future of Medicine, Today. It’s the future of medicine because it’s designed to deliver personalized medicine based on an individuals unique makeup. Seek out your own biological imbalances and look for ways to address them.

Can Functional Medicine Help You? Contact me for a Free 15 Minute Consult...

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