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Category Archives: Diabetes

Drinking Skim Milk: The Diabetes Obesity Connection

Image result for skim milk

When you are diagnosed with a medical condition such as diabetes. You might seek to get what you think is invaluable information from a well established diabetes organization like the American Diabetes Association.

When you visit The American Diabetes Association website for diet advice,  http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/what-can-i-eat/making-healthy-food-choices/dairy.html?referrer=https://www.google.com/, you will read about the best choices for dairy products:

“What are the Best Choices?”

“The best choices of dairy products are:

Fat-free or low-fat (1% milk)

Plain non-fat yogurt (regular or Greek yogurt)

Non-fat light yogurt (regular or Greek yogurt)”

Yet, low-fat dairy products have more carbohydrates that influence blood sugar, insulin and appetite than natural high fat dairy products.

Current research, “Circulating Biomarkers of Dairy Fat and Risk of Incident Diabetes Mellitus Among US Men and Women in Two Large Prospective Cohorts“, July 5, 2016, Volume 134, Issue 1, http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/early/2016/03/22/CIRCULATIONAHA.115.018410.abstract, suggests full fat (NOT low-fat) dairy may help lower diabetes risk and assist in weight maintenance. The twenty year study followed over 3,000 participants ages 30 to 75.  Those who consumed the higher percent fat dairy “had about a 50 percent lower risk of diabetes.”

Low and non fat dairy may not just be a culprit in elevating diabetes risk, additional research has shown an association between skim milk and weight gain especially in children, http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/20/health/skim-milk-obesity/.

Dr. Mark DeBoer, an associate professor of pediatric endocrinology at the University of Virginia School of Medicine authored a study published in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. They found children who drank 2% fat milk showed lower BMI scores than those drinking the 1% fat milk. Over time, he found that children who were normal weight at the start of the study and consistently drank the 1% milk showed a 57% increased chance of becoming overweight or obese by the time they were 4 years old.”

Despite these findings from 3 years ago, The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the American Heart Association (AHA) continue to recommend that children older than 2 years drink skim or low-fat milk.

Hmmm…if the science is finding skim milk is not healthy, why not scrap the recommendations that are given by most experts, and at least give full fat dairy equal billing to help fight the diabesity battle, and in doing so, re-think the skim milk offerings within the school lunch programs.

There is no essential need to drink milk. Good sources of calcium containing foods (kale, collard greens, broccoli, edamame, bok choy, sardines, oranges, tofu, almonds),  foods that contain vitamin D (salmon, tuna, pasteurized eggs, sardines) and supplements are viable options.

Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin and calcium acts similarly in that it requires a carrier for absorption.  So if you drink milk for the purpose of attaining these nutrients, drink milk with more fat and avoid 1% or skim milk to help vitamin absorption and to reduce the risk of weight gain and diabetes.

 

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The Potassium Tie in to Insulin Sensitivity

Image result for potassium foodsImage result for potassium foods

There may be a valid rationale to use potassium citrate as a supplement for those who are interested in improving beta cell function (i.e. diabetes) and insulin sensitivity.

Although the sample size is small, the research method for “Effects of potassium citrate or potassium chloride in patients with combined glucose intolerance: A placebo-controlled pilot study”, seems to hold its own.

Conen K. et al., conducted this double-blind, placebo-controlled study with 7 males and 4 females ages 47-63 years old who were glucose intolerant (an umbrella term for metabolic conditions which result in higher than normal blood glucose. Pre-diabetes, type 2 diabetes, impaired fasting glucose and impaired glucose tolerance is defined by the World Health Organization as a fasting blood sugar level of 6.0 mmol/l) and found that both systolic and diastolic blood pressure, beta cell function and insulin sensitivity were significantly and positively affected when given 90 meqs of potassium citrate when compared with potassium chloride. They concluded that the citrate anion (The first intermediate of the citric acid or Krebs cycle, it plays an important role for fatty acids and it acts as a carrier for acetyl-CoA, and then synthesis for fatty acids.)  is responsible for the insulin-sensitizing and blood pressure lowering results.

Yet potassium itself may be more than a viable piece of the diabetes/insulin resistance treatment puzzle. One’s own genetic  mutations (KCNJ11 gene and KCNQ1 (specific to the Asian population) affect potassium channels that influence insulin secretion, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3197792/.

Potassium:

  1. is a necessary nutrient in normal skeletal muscle and nerve function (and we know that skeletal muscle insulin resistance is the primary defect in type 2 diabetes)
  2. works with sodium to maintain fluid and electrical balance for the cell membrane.
  3. is required for optimal heart, adrenal and kidney function.

Low potassium levels can result from fluid loss (from perspiration, vomiting, or diarrhea); excessive consumption of caffeine, salt, or sugar which many folks do on a daily basis, as well as, certain medications and natural supplements deplete potassium stores (aspirin, ACE inhibitors (captopril, enalapril), choline magnesium trisalicylate, colchicine, corticosteroids, thiazide diuretics, laxatives, sodium bicarbonate,  Glycyrrhiza glabra and ramipril.

Potassium researchers recommend a diet that maintains an optimal sodium-to-potassium ratio of 1:5 or less, http://www.anaturalhealingcenter.com/documents/Thorne/monos/Potassium%20mono.pdf.

Potassium recommendations for adolescents and adults is 4,700 mg/day, for children: 1 to 3 years of age is 3,000 mg/day, 4 to 8 years of age is 3,800 mg/day and 9 to 13 years of age is 4,500 mg/day.

Foods that are good sources of potassium include: salmon, tuna, turkey, clams, avocado, white mushrooms, spinach, kale Swiss chard, collards, broccoli, blackberries, cantaloupe, grapefruit, artichokes and tomato.

If you are not able to meet potassium recommendations, using a supplement seems prudent.  There are certain population groups like the elderly, pregnant women or children, those with kidney issues, ulcers or anyone prone to metabolic alkalosis that should not use potassium supplements. Any nutrient supplementation should be supervised by a doctor.

If potassium citrate can work as an insulin sensitizer while preserving beta cell function, it, along with other natural supplements like magnesium and chromium should be considered a first line option in diabetes treatment before using pharmaceutical drugs that have long lasting and more severe consequences.

 

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Strip Tease The Sugar Out of Your Diet

 

Français : Echantillons de différents sucres, ...

Français : Echantillons de différents sucres, de gauche à droite et de haut en bas : sucre blanc, sucre complet, rapadura, cassonade (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Traditionally, when we think of sugar, we think sweet, white stuff coming from the sugar cane plant. Naturally sweet foods can be purposeful. Now, industry has flooded the food market with an excess of sugar from both natural and chemical sources.

In small amounts and in its natural state, sugar cane has many nutrients that contribute to good health;

  • chromium helps control blood sugar
  • manganese is an essential mineral involved in carb and fat metabolism, bone health, sex hormones and helps reduce free radical damage
  • cobalt is an essential mineral the is involved in the formation of vitamin B12
  •  copper and zinc are important to maintain minerals because when deficient can contribute to poor immune system, attention and behavior issues. If you suffer from chronic fatigue and are a vegan or an older adult, please read this, http://www.westonaprice.org/metabolic-disorders/copper-zinc-imbalance.
  • magnesium is an important mineral involved in bone and heart health and many more functions in the body, read more here http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-HealthProfessional/

When sugar cane is processed into sugar, it is stripped of its nutritional value. Sugar cane loses 93 percent of its chromium, 89 percent of its manganese, 98 percent of its cobalt, 83 percent of its copper, 98 percent of its zinc, and 98 percent of its magnesium. It is now practically nutrient less. Consuming pure refined sugar may also cause your body to excrete chromium, which, ironically, triggers sugar cravings. This mineral loss is typically what happens in the processing of many convenience foods, including bread products.

Sugar, aka :brown sugar, dextrose, fruit juice concentrate, honey, maltodextrin, invert sugar, malt syrup, lactose, maltose, molasses…here’s more, http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/821596-257-names-for-hidden-sugar, is hidden in everything.

Many convenience foods that do not taste sweet are loaded with added sugars, and many busy people turn to these foods for quick meal options. Consider that peanut butter, jelly, bread, bologna, breakfast bars, granola bars, canned chili, and canned fruit in syrup all contain added sugar; so do fast foods such as pizza, sandwiches, and even breakfast items too. According to the USDA, a fast food cheese and bacon griddle cake sandwich has 9 grams of sugar. Some sweetened breakfast cereals contain as much as 15 grams of sugar per ounce.

Do you think of these foods as being sweet? Just check the label for yourself.

  • Grey Poupon
  • Pepperidge Farm 100% Natural Whole Wheat bread
  • Jif Peanut Butter
  • Bush’s Best – light red kidney beans
  • Progresso Dark Red Kidney Beans
  • Oscar Meyer shaved turkey breast
  • Oscar Meyer Ready to Serve Bacon
  • Oscar Meyer Hard Salami
  • Healthy Choice Split Pea & Ham soup
  • Powerbar performance bars
  • Aunt Jemima Original Pancake Mix
  • Aunt Jemima Whole Wheat Blend Pancake Mix
  • Desserts and sweet beverages pile on even more of the sweet stuff. You may also have more sugar in the form of soft drinks, candy, ice cream, cookies and cup cakes.

There is one sweetener, in particular, it is a “natural” corn derivative.  So seemingly it would NOT be unhealthy but high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) which has been in our foods since the 1970’s is anything but a healthy alternative. It dominates the “added sugars” market in processed convenience foods. Here’s what you should know, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mark-hyman/high-fructose-corn-syrup-dangers_b_861913.html.

Even those who are  active and in good shape, are encouraged to load up on sugary sports drinks, and energy bars, before and after exercise. Television commercials and programming also urge you to drink “sports drinks” after exercise, to replace the energy you burn. Guess what they contain? Have you read the ingredients? This is how fit people may end up with metabolic health conditions.  No matter what alias they give to  added sugars, when consumed they encourage us to prefer sweet foods as well as wreak havoc on blood sugar and insulin, appetite and fat storage especially triglycerides. If this makes you think metabolic syndrome, keep thinking. You are on the right track.

What Sugar Does

The more sugar is pumped into food, the more sugar is consumed unknowingly. Sugar highs and lows  intensify as do a cascade of other hormones as well, metabolism becomes more unbalanced, setting you up not only for weight gain, but also  for developing stomach upset, diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis and other diseases. Health is compromised no matter what.  The food supply threatens the health of our children too. It used to take 15 to 20 years for a steady consumption of sugar and other sweeteners to trigger conditions like type 2     diabetes. Now we’re seeing type 2 diabetes in children as young as age 6.

Each sugar hit gives you a little bounce, followed by a bigger crash. You eat sugar and experience a short-lived exhilaration and energy as your adrenal glands produce the stress hormone adrenaline. This hormone drops quickly, so you feel fatigued. You eat more sugar and rise some, only to drop deeper into a fatigue only to seal the adrenal “coffin”.  To learn more about adrenal fatigue, make sure you read, http://www.adrenalfatigue.org/what-is-adrenal-fatigue and this, http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/.2009/09/05/most-common-cause-of-fatigue-that-is-missed-or-misdiagnosed-by-doctors.aspx.

Strip sugar from your diet for so many more reasons, including addiction and depression, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-r-talbott/sugar-health_b_1396609.html and 141 physiological reasons from Nancy Appleton’s blog http://nancyappleton.com/141-reasons-sugar-ruins-your-health/.

Even when you do not suspect you are eating sugar, you probably are ingesting it. Find lurking sugar in your food and strip it from your diet. There should be no room in your eating repertoire for added sweeteners in foods if you want to live a long healthy life.

 

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A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing: No-Calorie Artificial Sweetener

Image result for google image a wolf in sheep's clothing

Non-calorie, Artificial sweeteners (AS) are thought to help those who want to lose weight by cutting calories and allow those with blood sugar issues to expand on food options because there is a negligible effect on blood sugar, therefore aiding in health promotion.

However, on the same line as the calorie theory (a calorie deficit consumed equals weight loss), AS are building a track record of doing just the opposite.

Research suggests that AS have multiple negative effects on body systems that include changing taste receptors (increasing expectation for a greater sweetness  in food), altering brain signals and responses (by providing sweetness without accompanying fuel or calories) and changing good gut bacteria (effecting immune system digestive issues). None of which falls into the “this is good because it has zero calories” theory.

While it is true AS do not provide calories or carbs, once ingested the metabolic effects have a much greater consequence on weight and health than chomping down on some bacon or, for that matter, any other food with calories or carbs like olives, berries or nuts.

Burke and Small explain this in the 2015 issue of Physiological Behavior, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031938415003303. Their paper, “Physiological mechanisms by which non-nutritive sweeteners may impact body weight and metabolism”, explains that  AS “are not physiologically inert compounds and consider the potential biological mechanisms by which NNS (AS) consumption may impact energy balance and metabolic function, including actions on oral and extra-oral sweet taste receptors, and effects on metabolic hormone secretion, cognitive processes (e.g. reward learning, memory, and taste perception), and gut microbiota”.

A powerful and very important message don’t ya think?

This may even explain how we spend $2-4 billion dollars/ year on non-calorie artificial sweeteners and yet continue to watch the diabesity (http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=33948) epidemic grow. After all these years of throwing our money down the drain (paying more for calorie-free products) and acting as human guinea pigs we now find out this food ingredient causes the very same problems it is trying to correct.

In 2014, Eran Elinav et. al., from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, conducted and published consecutive trials in the scientific journal Nature, http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v514/n7521/abs/nature13793.html.  The study found that AS changed gut bacteria causing fluctuations in sugar metabolism that mimic diabetes. Admittedly the study sample size is small but regardless of size, if you are the one person that the results apply then it is very relevant to you. Here is what they found:

  1. Mice were fed plain water, water with Sweet’ N Low, Splenda or Equal, water with sugar or glucose. The mice who drank water with artificial sweeteners “developed marked glucose intolerance” as a result of changes in the natural gut flora. The mice with glucose intolerance were then given antibiotics that killed the gut flora and the glucose intolerance went away.
  2. Researchers also took a sample of the gut bacteria in the mice that were glucose intolerant and then injected the bacteria in mice that had never consumed artificial sweetener. The injected mice then developed glucose intolerance. “DNA sequencing showed the artificial sweetener changed the variety of bacteria in the guts of the mice that consumed it.”
  3. Then the researchers compiled data on 381 non diabetic individuals and found a connection  between “the reported use of any kind of artificial sweeteners and signs of glucose intolerance. In addition, the gut bacteria of those who used artificial sweeteners were different from those who did not.”
  4. For one week, seven human volunteers (who normally did not use artificial sweeteners) “consumed the maximum amount of saccharin recommended by the United States Food and Drug Administration. In four of the seven, blood-sugar levels were disrupted in the same way as in mice.” Then they used bacteria from the four volunteers who developed glucose intolerance and injected it into the gut of mice. The mice, then also developed glucose intolerance.

Seems pretty straight forward right?  Yes but there is more to take from this if you read between the lines:

  1. Gut bacteria seems to be another point of interest in understanding blood sugar disorders.
  2. This research seems to suggest that there may be a variety of ways blood sugar abnormalities occur and some may at least originally be independent of insulin abnormalities.

While this information is compelling, is it really shocking? We know there is no magic bullet for weight loss or blood sugar control. We also know of similar situations  like the creation of trans fats (to make foods healthier by removing naturally occurring fat) and how that turned out (they proved to promote heart disease and negatively effect blood sugar and health).

Eat smart. Make REAL food choices. Understand how what you eat effects you.

 

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Cruising Down Memory Lane With The 8th Annual Low Carb Cruise

Image result for cruise

In honor of the 8th Annual Low Carb Cruise 2015, http://www.lowcarbcruiseinfo.com/, hosted by my friend and colleague Jimmy Moore. I thought I would repost an interview we did awhile back and share a great conversation that discusses the health benefits of The Atkins Diet from my perspective as a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator and the book I co-authored, “The Stubborn Fat Fix” (https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/09/30/what-is-metabolic-overdrive/https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/11/11/insulins-immense-role-in-metabolic-overdrive-mo/, https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/10/28/hormonal-havoc-harnesses-metabolic-overdrive-part1/https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/11/04/hormonal-havoc-harnesses-metabolic-overdrive-part-2/,https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/the-thyroid-tie-in-to-metabolic-overdrive/https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/10/06/the-cortisol-connection-to-metabolic-overdrive-mo/). We discuss:

  • how you can identify reasons behind stubborn fat that just refuses to come off
  • why exercise may not be a good idea if you are experiencing metabolic overdrive
  • social and emotional interference with your diet
  • practical and creative solutions to help you stick with your nutrition plan
  • supplement solutions and much much more…

It is with great regret that I have only been able to attend one of the cruises but the memories are like yesterday. I met people who I will be friends with for life!

So here is my interview with Jimmy, http://www.thelivinlowcarbshow.com/shownotes/410/valorie-berkowitz-ep-251/!

I hope you have the opportunity to listen as this interview really hits on many aspects of weight loss and health regardless of diet preference and it may help spark a fire to that will help fix whatever obstacles are getting in the way of getting to your goal(s).

 

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Eat Your “Diabesity” Out

Diabesity

https://intensivedietarymanagement.com/new-science-diabesity-hormonal-obesity-xi/ (worth a look see, excellent site)

The past two weeks I have written about Diabesity, what it is, https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2015/05/04/stop-diabesity-in-its-tracks/, and how to identify it, https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2015/05/11/diabesity-tell-tale-signs-and-symptoms/. This week it is all about the simple solution.

While eating right is not always the easiest answer. It is simple, ideal and the most effective solution with absolutely no downside. So do not eat your “heart” out.  Eat your “diabesity” out. Eat diabesity right out of your system.

If you have been eating “healthy” low fat foods and staying away from nutrient dense high fat foods (foods that do not affect hormones, help to stave off hunger, help control appetite and maintain consistent blood sugar in normal range) or eating  a combination of high carbohydrate and high fat foods then my best nutritional advice is to eat your way out of diabesity.

Eating low fat “healthy” meals are loaded with the precise nutrients that feed diabesity and make it worse especially when the majority of what is consumed is carbohydrate. This will happen when insulin and blood sugar are at the root of any medical condition such as heart disease, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), metabolic syndrome…

Consuming foods that do not cause blood sugar or insulin spikes and also contribute to burning fat are the best selection for weight loss, blood sugar control, eliminating diabesity symptoms and optimizing clinical lab outcomes. Fat is the only nutrient that has minimal effect on either blood sugar or insulin. So eating a majority of calories from fat is hands down the healthiest choice to make, Nutrition. 2015 Jan;31(1):1-13. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2014.06.011. “Dietary carbohydrate restriction as the first approach in diabetes management: critical review and evidence base”, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25287761. One hundred percent of starch and carbohydrates turns into sugar (this includes healthy foods like fruit) after consumption and excess protein has been shown to increase insulin levels.

Forget about the calories! Eat to beat diabesity by choosing the foods that keep your body in balance. You will experience a big difference in how you feel, in your ability to lose weight and controlling blood sugar.

Lowering carbs between 30- 50 grams each day and eating more fat begets fat burning. Lowering carbs also minimizes blood sugar spikes because 100% of carbohydrates or any form of sugar will catapult blood sugar out of range and into “health hell”.

Does your breakfast consist of cereal? A bagel or English muffin? How about low fat fruited yogurt? None of these contain fat or much protein. So therefore all of the food consumed hits your body and infiltrates it like a tsunami, first thing in the morning. Blood sugar soars, hormones are disrupted, hunger is ignited and non-fat calories are easily stored as fat. However, most of us think that calories matter more than anything and few of us think about what happens to the body on the inside when we pick our next morsel.

If you want to prevent diabesity, strategize meal plans to rest the liver and pancreas. Once these overworked organs get a chance to relax and are restored to good health, with the foods you avoid and choose to eat, you will be as good as new in no time.

Try this as a sample meal or switch out foods in the same food groups with foods you like.

Breakfast

Eggs (prepared your choice) sautéed kale sliced cheddar cheese

or

Smoked salmon cream cheese tomato, onion and avocado “cigars”

Lunch

Chef salad

or

Tuna and chicken salad (“banana boat”) scoops with celery sticks , cucumber and tomato salad

Dinner

–includes side salad for either entree

Double cheeseburger (no bun or ketchup) or steak, mashed cauliflower with butter (faux mashed potato), sautéed spinach garlic and oil

or

Salmon, broccoli, miracle noodle teriyaki

Snacks

  1. celery with peanut butter or cream cheese
  2. fresh mozzarella, basil and tomato
  3. cottage cheese with sprinkled cinnamon or 1/4 cup berries
  4. protein shake
  5. >85% cocoa chocolate with 6 almonds

Take matters into your own hands, use a simple solution to the diabesity epidemic, eat to free yourself of obesity and diabetes. What are you waiting for?

 

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Diabesity: Tell Tale Signs and Symptoms

Diabesity is found in both overweight and TOFI ( Thin Outside Fat Inside) individuals, https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2015/05/04/stop-diabesity-in-its-tracks/#comment-5261. This bears repeating because we understand a consequence of being overweight is having diabetes but we assume that someone who is thin and looks good on the outside is immune to health issues.

I cannot emphasize the importance of everyone paying attention to the tell tale signs of diabesity. Be aware of these symptoms no matter who you are, no matter how much you weigh, REGARDLESS of family history.  Why? because 8.1 million people or approx. 28% of the US is walking around with diabetes and they don’t know it, http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/data/statistics/2014statisticsreport.html.  

So if family history is what you use as a guiding risk factor DON’T!

In other words there are many people walking around with blood sugar issues and don’t even know it. If these “clueless” individuals are family, you do not have a “known” family history. But not being diagnosed with diabetes, insulin resistance or glucose toxicity does not mean you do not have a health condition that needs attention.

Discuss Tell Tale Precautionary Symptoms of Diabesity and Insulin Resistance With Your Doctor

  • Abdominal obesity (apple shape)
  • Sugar/carbohydrate cravings
  • Hunger after meals
  • Fatigue after meals
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased thirst and appetite
  • Difficulty losing weight
  • Gut issues (bloating, symptomatic of Decreased stomach emptying
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Vision problems
  • Numbness and tingling in lower extremities
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Sudden mood changes
  • Sudden nervousness
  • Unexplained fatigue
  • Pale skin
  • Headache
  • Shaking
  • Sweating
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Skin tingling
  • Skin tags
  • Gum disease
  • Trouble thinking clearly or concentrating

Ask About Tell Tale Clinical references:

  • Abdominal obesity
  • Dyslipidemia (low HDL, high LDL and high triglycerides)
  • Hypertension
  • Hyperinsulinemia
  • Hyperglycemia (fasting above 100 mg/dL, Hb1Ac above 5.5)
  • Systemic Inflammation (elevated insulin production, C-reactive protein)
  • Hypercoagulable State (tendency to form blood clots)

Ask Your Doctor To Include Tell Tale Blood Tests as Part of Routine Check-ups:

  • Fasting glucose: blood glucose level after fasting for at least 8 hours
    • Normal: 70 – 89 mg/dl
    • Borderline: 90 – 99 mg/dl
    • Impaired glucose tolerance/Pre-diabetes : 100 – 125 mg/dl
    • Diabetes: >126 mg/dl
  • Oral glucose tolerance test: blood glucose level 2 hours after a 75 gram glucose drink (adjusted based on weight)
    • Reactive hypoglycemia: glucose level less than fasting level
    • Normal: less than 140 mg/dl
    • Impaired glucose tolerance/Pre-diabetes: 141 – 199 mg/dl
    • Diabetes: > 200 mg/dl
    • Diabesity : Work-up
  • Fasting Insulin level: insulin level after fasting for at least 8 hours
    • According to Stephen Guyenet, University of Washington, the average insulin level in the U.S. for men is 8.8 mIU/ml and women is 8.4 mIU/ml
    • Reactive hypoglycemia: less than 3.0 mIU/ml
    • Normal : 3.0 to 8.3 mIU/ml
    • Elevated levels : >8.4 mIU/ml
  • Fasting C-peptide level:  a  substance produced by the pancreatic beta cells when proinsulin splits apart to form one molecule of c-peptide and one molecule of insulin
    • Reactive hypoglycemia: less than 0.9 ng/ml
    • Normal : 1.0 – 3.0 ng/ml
  • Leptin: a hormone that is essential for regulation of metabolism and hunger. Blood levels are directly correlated with the amount of triglycerides stored in adipose tissue.
    • Normal for men: 1.2 -9.5 ng/ml
    • Normal for women: 4.1 – 25.0 ng/ml
  • HgbA1c: average blood sugar level for the past 2 to 3 months. This test measures what percentage of your hemoglobin is glycated (coated with sugar)
    • Reactive hypoglycemia: less than 5.0 percent
    • Normal : 5.0 to 5.6 percent
    • Impaired glucose tolerance/Pre-diabetes : 5.7 -6.4 percent
    • Diabetes: >6.5 percent
  • Fructosamine: a glycated serum protein that measures average blood glucose level over the past 2 to 3 weeks
    • Normal : 200 – 257 umol
    • Impaired glucose tolerance/Pre-diabetes: 258– 287 umol
    • Diabetes: >288 umol

The first step to maintaining or attaining good health is to be self aware of the early signs and symptoms of diabesity, glucose toxicity and insulin resistance. Use these lists to communicate with your doctor.  What can you do if you have a blood sugar or insulin issue? The solution, may or may not be easy but you have a choice and it is a powerful one that you can manage. The simple solution is up next week.

 

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