You’ve just been told by your doctor that you have Type II Diabetes. What do you do now? Where do you begin? Where do you turn for information and support?
You are overwhelmed by the words “Type II Diabetes.” A million images and thoughts are running through your head. How is this going to impact my life? What about my job and social life? How do I tell my family and friends? Can I die from this disease?
Your head is spinning and you just want to get off the merry-go-round. But there is hope, and there is help. Lots of help, an overwhelming array of help.
In fact, it doesn’t take you long to discover that there are plenty of resources available to today’s diabetic. However, you soon find out that while many of those resources contain useful information, it’s not exactly the kind of information you are looking for. You want to find the easiest and most natural way to take care of yourself, while still maintaining your active lifestyle.
Welcome to Natural Diabetes Lifestyle, the web site offering alternatives in the treatment and management of Type II Diabetes.
From meal planning to exercise programs, vitamin therapy to nutritional supplements, this web site offers practical, no-nonsense advice about living with this disease. And this is not a one-way communication – we want to hear from you. This is your web site to share thoughts, ideas and tips, and to ask questions of other diabetics or of experts in the field.
Our goal is to educate you to the best of our ability with your best interest at heart. We know there is a time and place where medication is necessary to treat acute symptoms. But this is a chronic disease and you have to ask yourself, “Is there a better, safer alternative to treating this disease than just medication?”
This web site is a place for you to find information on alternative ways to manage. We believe that with proper information about diet, exercise and alternative therapies we will begin to see this chronic disease slowly decline in numbers. It all starts with the first step, and we hope that you will take us along on your journey as you battle this disease.
Take some time to look around our site. Come back often. We will be updating the site with the latest news and methods for coping with this disease. We also want to create a community of people who are looking to help themselves and others by sharing their experiences.
The Prevention Of Diabetes
Have you ever wondered if the prevention of diabetes is possible? The good news about Type 2 diabetes is that it is often preventable. And – although there is no cure for Type 2 diabetes – managing the condition follows the same guidelines as prevention of the condition:
- Eating healthy
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Including exercise and physical activity in your daily routine
Researchers are still baffled why some people develop Type 2 diabetes and others do not. While some risk factors can help manage the prevention of diabetes, there are some that cannot. For example, age, family history and race are risk factors we cannot control. However, preventive measures can often be taken to delay the onset of the illness, or reduce and delay the many complications that can arise once a diagnosis has been made. How do you know if you are a high-risk candidate for Type 2 diabetes? Take a look at the following risk factors:
- Weight. Are you significantly overweight? An estimated 80 percent of those diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes are obese. Managing your weight can aid in the prevention of diabetes. How do you know if you are obese?
- Exercise/Physical Activity. Do you maintain a regular exercise routine? Studies show that regular physical activity/exercise lowers blood sugar, moving sugar from your blood stream into your cells. Exercise also helps you control your weight, thus it can also be beneficial in the prevention of diabetes.
- Family History. Is there a history of Type 2 diabetes in your family? A parent or sibling with the disease greatly increases your chances of developing diabetes. Although there is little you can do to change your genetics, you can help reduce the probability of the occurrence or delay the onset by maintaining an adequate exercise program and a healthy weight.
- Race. Are you a member of one of the high-risk race groups? Researchers are uncertain why, but people of particular races – black, Hispanic, American Indian, Asian American – are at greater risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Like family history, there is little you can do to change your race.• Age. Are you older today than you were yesterday? Of course you are, but in all seriousness, as we age, our risk of getting Type 2 diabetes increases. In fact, the onset of the disease is most common in middle age and later life, particularly after age 45. However, the disease is becoming more frequent among adolescents and young adults due to the increasing problem of obesity in these groups.
- Prediabetes. Do you have a higher than normal blood sugar level? The level is high, but not high enough to be called Type 2 diabetes. However, left untreated, this condition can develop into Type 2 diabetes .• Gestational Diabetes. Did you develop gestational diabetes while you were pregnant? If so, you may be at risk for developing Type 2. Your risk also increases if you gave birth to a baby weighing more than 9 pounds.
How did you do? How many risk factors do you have? Some of the risk factors you can’t control – you just have to be aware you have them and work harder on those risk factors you can control. This web site is built around the hope that you will educate yourself about Type 2 diabetes and then implement changes in the areas that you can control. For somebody that is a high risk candidate, the prevention of diabetes is something that you can control.
Realizing you are a high-risk candidate for Type 2 diabetes and accepting your situation is the first step to reducing your risk. I’m sure that you’ve heard the phrase, “Knowledge is king,” or my favorite, “In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.” Well, you are now in the know. The time to begin to reduce the risk is now – before it is too late. Read on and let us help you work towards eliminating this disease from your life.
Supplements for Diabetics
From tablets to powders, and capsules to liquids, nearly half of the adult population in the United States consumes nutritional supplements. And why not? We have become a health-conscious society, acutely aware that our food may be lacking in the nutrients we need to fight off everything from common ailments to serious disease.
That wasn’t always the case. Years ago most of the food in this country was grown on small local farms and supplied to nearby communities. Crops were at the mercy of the elements and pesticides were virtually unknown. The vitamins and minerals that were absorbed from the soil into the food was digested during eating and subsequently used by the body.
Unfortunately, the small family farm is increasingly becoming a thing of the past as huge conglomerates are taking over food production. The goal is maximum crop yields in the shortest amount of time. To that end, many farming operations turn to herbicides and pesticides to ensure peak production with little spoilage when the food arrives at your local grocery store.
In fact, the use of chemical fertilizers and more pesticides has changed the soil environment and the way we grow food resulting in produce that contains less micronutrients than before. In addition, food is often being harvested before it is fully ripe, robbing it of a crucial phase of nutritional development when vitamin and mineral absorption occurs.
Water also plays an important role in the absorption of vitamins and minerals. Years ago it was common for fields to be watered from wells or rivers that were untreated and rich in nutrients. Today’s water is “cleansed” of contaminants and filled with fluoride and chloride. While this is recognized as a necessary step in today’s modern world, it can have an adverse effect on the foods we eat by reducing the level of vitamins and minerals that would normally be absorbed into the soil.
It’s not surprising that supplements have become increasingly popular in recent years. They are meant to be taken in addition to healthy food, not in place of.
We would be remiss to talk about herbs and diabetes without mentioning cinnamon. There has been quite a bit of research into the effects of cinnamon on diabetes and other health related issues. Although the results are still mixed, we believe you should understand what has been found regarding cinnamon and diabetes.
The government does not regulate this industry. As a result, it is up to you to protect yourself as much as possible from poorly made or unsafe products. Before taking any product, consider the following:
- Discuss the supplement with your physician.
- Determine if the claims about the products are realistic.
- Find out if there are any side effects.
- Determine if any studies have been made regarding the product’s safety.
- Find out if the product will interact with any prescription or non-prescription medications you are taking.
- Find out how long it will be before you begin to see results.
- Be sure the brand is reputable.
- Do not take herbal supplements if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
- Purchase products that have an expiration date; a lot or batch number is also beneficial.
- The list of ingredients should state which part of the plant was used – root, leaf or blossom, for example.
- Products created by cold pressed extraction or supercritical extraction are much safer than chemical extraction.
- Raw herbs are not as effective as herbal concentrate and extract.
In our research, we have found several daily supplements that can be very benificial if taken on a regular basis. The problem with most of these supplements is that they only work on specific areas of the body.
We have, however, found one product that works on multiple areas of the body. This product places your body in a state of balance so that it is better able to focus on the areas that need help.
This is a relatively new product to the market, but years of clinical research has gone into each of the four primary extracts.
Additionally, the manufacturing process that is utilized provides a very unique effect in that it shows an immediate result. No other product that we have found has such a powerful combination of extracts, combined with a unique delivery system that shows immediate, objective results.
In addition to being beneficial to diabetes, individuals taking this product have reported an increase in strength, balance, coordination, flexibility, endurance, mental clarity, focus, calmness, and recall.
Food Shopping for Diabetes
Food shopping is one of those necessities of life that most of us don’t really enjoy but we manage to muddle through when the need arises. But an outing to the supermarket doesn’t have to be a drudge-filled experience. With a little careful planning, a bit of thoughtful reading and some time-tested advice, your grocery shopping experience can be turned into a journey towards a healthier, happier and better you. Think of it as an opportunity to nourish your body so you can do the activities you enjoy – whether it’s a walk in the park, a vigorous swim or a hike in the mountains.
Whether you shop a megastore or something slightly smaller, one truism prevails – supermarket design is relatively consistent. With that in mind, it’s a good idea to stick to the perimeter of the store. That’s where you’ll find the healthiest, freshest and most natural foods – the produce, meat/seafood and dairy/deli departments are located around the outer edges of most grocery stores. In contrast, convenience foods with a longer shelf life are usually displayed in the market’s center aisles. Many of these foods contain added sugar, sodium and preservatives.
Since produce is highly perishable, buy only what you’ll need for a week, two at the most. Also, take advantage of what’s on sale. But be careful. If you select fruits and vegetables with a high glycemic index value (peas, carrots, corn, potatoes, cherries, apples, pineapple, bananas), be sure you eat smaller portions. Better, lower- carbohydrate choices include broccoli, celery, zucchini, cantaloupe, grapefruit, rhubarb and watermelon. You’re better off stocking up on non-starchy vegetables.
Also keep in mind that some vegetables have medicinal properties and make excellent additions to your diet. For example, garlic is known to lower cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure and glucose levels. Onions and scallions have properties similar to garlic but in smaller concentrations. Don’t forget about berries. They are excellent sources of antioxidants and they are jam-packed with fiber, folate, Vitamin C and phytonutrients.
Choose items that are as fresh and unprocessed as possible. Select unprocessed chicken, turkey and other meats over those that have been pre-basted, marinated, smoked or cured. The same rule of thumb applies when choosing seafood. Fresh fish should have a mild, pleasant aroma (no “fishy” smell). The color should be uniform. The flesh should spring back when poked.
Zinc is essential for proper insulin production, and beef is an excellent source. Select the leanest cuts available. Look for red meat and pork labeled “loin” and “round” – these have the least amount of fat. A healthier choice is organic meat from animals that are free range and have not been treated with steroids or antibiotics. Although some mainstream groceries carry organic meats, you’ll probably need to seek out a specialty market for organic meats.
Eggs should be first on your list. They are a great source of protein and contain little fat. Also, eggs from free-range chickens have 20 times more omega-3 fatty acids than regular eggs. In fact, chickens fed a diet rich in omega-3 from fish meal or flaxseed produce eggs that have a healthy ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.
Aim for low-fat dairy, including non-fat or low-fat cottage cheese and non-fat plain, unsweetened yogurt. Choose butter over margarine, but be sure to consume sparingly.
When selecting cheese and deli foods, read labels carefully. Look at the protein-to-fat ratio and ingredients. If there is lots of sugar, salt or there are ingredients you cannot pronounce, it may not be the best food for you. Instead, choose foods that are high in protein , low in fat and have little to no sugar and additives. Part-skim mozzarella and feta are the best cheeses. Low-salt turkey breast is your best deli meat selection. Condiments found in the refrigerator case are better than those found in the store’s inner aisles; these usually contain more salt and additives.
Frozen vegetables are the next best thing to fresh. Frozen is also a great way to stock up on fruits and vegetables without worrying they will go bad. Other good frozen food options include fish and meat. Commercially frozen fruits have a storage life of approximately one year, while frozen vegetables can last about eight months.
Meats can be frozen from three months to one year, depending on the cut and variety. For example, ground, stew and organ meats will only last three to four months. However, a whole chicken or turkey will be good for up to nine months, beef steaks for six to 12 months and pork chops will last four to six months.
Inner Aisle Shopping
Read labels carefully. Avoid items that contain white flour, hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils and hidden forms of sugar, such as corn syrup. Choose plain, unflavored teas, green tea or coffee; caffeine-free herbal teas are even better. If you prefer bottled water, choose plain. However, if flavored water is a must, be sure to look at the labels; many flavored waters are loaded with calories and sugar. Buy whole-grain , high-fiber bread, rolls, crackers and rice. Choose raw nuts and seeds, or try dry roasted, free of omega-6 oils such as soybean, cottonseed or safflower.
When it comes to canned foods, choose low-salt varieties of tuna, fish and vegetables. If you can’t find low-salt or salt-free products, be sure to empty the can’s contents into a strainer and rinse thoroughly with water. If you prefer tuna packed in oil, choose olive oil; the same goes for sardines.
Speaking of oils – cold-pressed or unrefined extra virgin olive oils are the best. Avoid oils labeled “virgin,” “light” or “extra light” – they are more processed and not as healthy. When shopping for sauces and condiments, look for ones containing no added sugars. Also, buy a variety of herbs and spices and use them liberally for added flavor and phytonutrients.
Here is a list of shopping tips that will help you at the grocery store.
One of the problems with being diabetic is finding the right dessert/treat. There are many to choose from, but most are sugar free and are not known for their taste. There are, however, options to this dilemma.
Researchers have discovered evidence that chocolate promotes good health. Even better, eating dark chocolate regularly improves insulin response. There is one in particular that has health benefits beyond those for diabetics.
This 70% Organic dark chocolate not only helps you feel and sleep better, it may also improve memory, reduce blood pressure, has a low glycemic index, is full of antioxidants and Omega 3, helps with weight loss, is vegan and promotes wellness without drugs.