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PREGNANT WOMEN MORE PRONE TO DEVELOP DIABETES


By U-T San

A recent study suggests that obese women who develop diabetes while pregnant gain 11 pounds or more after giving birth. Their risk for developing type 2 diabetes is also more than 40 times greater compared to women who maintain a healthy body weight.
This is according to the findings of a study published on March 18 in the journal Diabetologia.
Diabetes that appears during pregnancy, called gestational diabetes, often goes away after a woman gives birth.
However, some women who experience gestational diabetes also have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes when they get older.
The study’s head researcher at the U.S. National Institute of Child Health and Human Development said extra weight is a risk factor for both gestational and type 2 diabetes, and notes the importance of maintaining a healthy weight before and after pregnancy.
Nearly 1,700 women who took part in the Diabetes & Women’s Health Study developed gestational diabetes between 1991 and 2001. During the 18-year follow-up study,
259 of the study participants also developed type 2 diabetes.
The risk of developing type 2 diabetes rose by 27 percent for each 11-pound weight gain for women who were diagnosed with gestational diabetes — regardless of the pre-pregnancy weight, the study found.

For obese women, who developed gestational diabetes, gaining 11 pounds or more was associated with a 43 times higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes when compared to women who gained less than 11 pounds after gestational diabetes.


SGLT2 inhibitors linked to potentially fatal condition called ketoacidosis


WebMD News from HealthDay

By Robert Preidt
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, May 18, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- A certain class of type 2 diabetes drugs can lead to a life-threatening condition called ketoacidosis, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns.
These prescription drugs are called sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors and include canagliflozin, dapagliflozin and empagliflozin. They work by prompting the kidneys to remove sugar in the blood through urine.
The drugs are sold under the brand names: Invokana (canagliflozin), Invokamet (canagliflozin and metformin), Farxiga (dapagliflozin), Xigduo XR (dapagliflozin and metformin extended-release), Jardiance (empagliflozin), Glyxambi (empagliflozin and linagliptin).
Between March 2013 and June 2014, the FDA received 20 reports of the drugs triggering ketoacidosis, in which levels of blood acids called ketones are too high. If untreated, ketoacidosis can lead to a diabetic coma or even death, according to the American Diabetes Association.
All 20 patients had to go to an emergency department or were hospitalized, the FDA said.
Ketoacidosis typically affects people with type 1 diabetes, but all of these cases involved people with type 2 diabetes and the condition manifested itself slightly differently than in people with type 1 diabetes, the FDA said in a news release.
The agency said it's investigating the issue to see if changes are needed in the prescribing information for SGLT2 inhibitors. The drugs are approved for use with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes.
Patients taking SGLT2 inhibitors should monitor themselves for any signs of ketoacidosis and seek immediate medical attention if they develop symptoms such as difficulty breathing, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, confusion, and unusual fatigue or sleepiness, the FDA said.
Ketones can be detected with a simple urine test using a test strip, similar to a blood testing strip, and you should ask your health care provider about when and how to test for ketones, according to the diabetes association.
Patients shouldn't stop or change their diabetes medications without first talking with their doctor. If ketoacidosis is confirmed in a patient, doctors should take the patient off SGLT2 inhibitor, take appropriate action to correct the condition and monitor sugar levels, the FDA advised.



How to Exercise When You’re Diagnosed With Type 2 Diabetes


Small, gradual changes add up to powerful health effects.

By Lisa Esposito

Maria Ibarra couldn't control her blood sugar. Now 40, the Sacramento, California, medical records specialist was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes five years ago and started on medication. But a year later her A1C – a measure of blood sugar levels over time ¬¬– was rising. And that wasn't OK.
Ibarra came from a family with a strong history of diabetes (although they didn't talk much about it). She had seen what diabetes can do if unchecked. Her late mother, who'd lost a sister to the condition, took medication and walked for her health. But Ibarra's brothers, diagnosed as adults, suffered serious complications: Both have had toes amputated, and one is now blind. "So I knew what the future held," she says, "and I didn't want to be that."
 Exercise on the Agenda
Medication to lower your blood glucose, a healthy diet and exercise are three mainstays of diabetes treatment. "Exercise provides multiple benefits," says Deborah Greenwood, president of the American Association of Diabetes Educators. "It lowers blood glucose, or blood sugar. It can lower blood pressure and lower blood fats – and all of those are important in managing diabetes."
Among other complications, diabetes is a risk factor for cardiovascular conditions such as heart attack and stroke. "Physical activity helps all those pieces as well as weight loss, which is often an issue for people with Type 2 diabetes," Greenwood says. "Exercise is a free medication – it's free treatment, if you will, for diabetes."
Exercise can boost endorphins, and over time, many patients are surprised to find how much working out improves their mood.
Seeking Help
At first, Ibarra thought she could get a handle on diabetes with routine care. But after a year with poor results, she knew she needed major lifestyle changes.
Diet was one issue. Raised on traditional Mexican cooking with plenty of rice, cutting calories and carbs wasn't easy for Ibarra. Exercise was the other area for improvement. Walking was her main activity, she says, but not that far or often – maybe a mile or so a few times a week.
Her physician suggested classes. That's how Ibarra connected with Greenwood, the program coordinator and diabetes clinical nurse specialist with the Sutter Health Integrated Diabetes Education Network in Sacramento.
If you've been recently diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, Greenwood says, you should meet with a diabetes educator, who can help you develop a personalized management plan. Insurers and Medicare cover diabetes education, she says, but it's vastly underused, so ask your physician for a referral.
 Active and Aware
By working with a diabetes educator, Ibarra learned to connect the dots between when and what she eats, the activity she does and her blood glucose afterward. "My health is definitely better now," she says. "My A1C is well controlled, and so is my regular blood sugar."
These days, along with her younger daughter, she works out at the gym four or five days a week, splitting cardio between walking and an exercise bike. Then she makes the short circuit of weight machines. Ibarra sticks with her routine: "It keeps it simple and easy – but wow, what a workout."

Fitbit is her friend. "It's really helped me stay accountable," she says. She tracks her daily 10,000 steps with the device and uses it to connect with her fitness buddies, including co-workers who don't necessarily have diabetes but also need a boost to stay active. They encourage one another with "Hey, keep going" messages. 


Gastric bypass helps treat diabetes, but has risks


BY KATHRYN DOYLE

(Reuters Health) - Two years after surgery, people who have had gastric bypass have better control of their type 2 diabetes than people who did not, but also had higher risk of infections and bone fractures, according to a new international study.
“Some doctors had thought that gastric bypass could cure diabetes, but that did not happen for most of our patients,” said coauthor Dr. Charles J. Billington. “Also unexpected was the extent of complications in the bypass patients,” said Billington, of the endocrinology and diabetes division at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.
“Gastric bypass now appears to have less strong positives and more worrisome negatives than previously thought,” he told Reuters Health by email.
The results are based on two years of the ongoing Diabetes Surgery Study.
Between 2008 and 2011, researchers recruited 120 obese patients aged 30 to 67 years old with type 2 diabetes at three teaching hospitals in the U.S. and one in Taiwan. They were randomly divided into two groups: lifestyle and medical diabetes management, or lifestyle and medical management in addition to gastric bypass surgery.
The lifestyle group met regularly with a dietitian or nurse, were instructed to weigh themselves and record their food intake daily while ramping up daily exercise to a goal of 325 minutes of activity, like walking, per week. They also met with an endocrinologist and took medicines for blood sugar control, cholesterol and blood pressure as needed.
The gastric bypass group had access to the same resources in addition to weight-loss surgery.
Two years after surgery, 24 of the patients in the gastric bypass group achieved lower HbA1c, as well as lower low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and lower blood pressure. Together these indicated improved diabetes control, relative to eight patients in the comparison group.
There were eight infections in the gastric bypass group, compared to four in the comparison group, and the bypass group had seven serious falls with five fractures compared to three serious falls and one fracture in the comparison group, as reported in The Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology. All the fractures happened among women.
Nutritional deficiencies of iron, calcium and vitamin D were more common in the gastric bypass group.
“I assume nutritional deļ¬ciencies are likely to be an even greater problem in general practice,” said Markku Peltonen of the National Institute for Health and Welfare in Helsinki, Finland, who wrote an editorial accompanying the new results.
Gastric bypass may reduce bone strength because of reduced calcium absorption from food, Billington said. “Supplements need to be adjusted to be sure they are enough,” he said.
Carefully taking nutritional supplements, regularly checking with your doctor about the adequacy of these supplements, and maintaining physical fitness reduces the risk of adverse events, he said.
“We are still not sure which are the best patients with diabetes to consider for gastric bypass or other bariatric surgery,” Billington said. Hopefully this and other studies will help identify which patients are best suited for gastric bypass to treat diabetes, he said.

“It is important that patients understand that bariatric surgery has other consequences beside the weight loss itself,” Peltonen said. “Realistic expectations about the effects of surgery, acknowledging the possibility of adverse events, and the need for continuous monitoring of patients after surgery needs to be discussed with the patients.”



5 Benefits of Magnesium for Diabetes


By Jerry Shaw

  Magnesium has positive effects in controlling and preventing diabetes. The essential mineral helps the body process and regulate cells, muscles, nerves and other areas of the body. Magnesium also helps other minerals in the body work effectively for a variety of functions.
A diabetic diet often features foods high in magnesium. They include vegetables, fruit, dairy products, nuts, seeds, fish and meat. Diabetics also benefit from magnesium supplements, but only when recommended by a doctor or dietitian working with a dietary plan that addresses the specific issues of each person.
Excess magnesium from supplements can cause such problems as nausea, low blood pressure, breathing difficulties, confusion and more serious effects. Supplements can also interact with medications, so a doctor’s care is crucial when getting the right amount of magnesium in the diet.
Here are five benefits of magnesium in the treatment or prevention of diabetes:
1. Blood sugar levels have a better chance of staying under control with proper amounts of magnesium in the body. Low magnesium levels can cause a two-sided attack on diabetics. Symptoms of the disease might include low levels of the mineral, and low amounts of magnesium in the body could worsen the effects of diabetes, according to the National Institutes of Health.
Low levels of magnesium can wreak havoc on blood sugar levels. An inadequate supply of magnesium for a diabetic interferes with insulin resistance, which causes dangerous blood sugar fluctuations. Diabetics have benefited from magnesium supplements to control symptoms, Live Science notes.
2. Magnesium helps prevent heart problems diabetics may face. The American Diabetes Association states diabetes increases the risk of heart disease and heart attack. High cholesterol is a major cause of heart disease. Magnesium has been found to lower LDL cholesterol, which builds up in the bloodstream to damage the arteries and lead to heart disease. Magnesium also raises the level of HDL, the beneficial cholesterol that rids the bloodstream of excess cholesterol.
 3. High blood pressure is another risk for diabetics. Magnesium has been used to lower blood pressure. Doctors use magnesium intravenously for pregnant women, who sometimes develop high blood pressure during pregnancy.
4. Research suggests that adults and overweight children can reduce the risk of developing diabetes with a diet rich in magnesium, according to WebMD.
5. Metabolic syndrome is a medical term used for people who have an increased risk for diabetes and heart disease. Low magnesium levels dramatically increase the risk of developing the syndrome. High amounts of magnesium in the diet and magnesium supplements reduce the risk of developing metabolic syndrome for women and young adults, WebMD reports.




Sugar Tax UK: Life Science Minister Suggests Unhealthy Sugary Foods COULD Face Taxes


By Victoria Guerra

Last November, Berkeley, California, one of the United States' trial cities for new policies, approved through general election the creation of a soda tax that adds $0.01 per calorie on soft drinks, in a policy created to try to halt the high obesity epidemic - and the sugar tax UK could be heading in the same direction.
The United Kingdom is one of the nations most affected by the obesity epidemic in the world, and the government and major food companies have attempted to create further conscience about this health risk, and the sugar tax UK could be the next step towards this after a major cereal brand took "sugar" off its name, and the country even had issues with the Italian government over their exports.
According to The Independent, the suggestion of the sugar tax UK came from a major government official, Life Sciences Minister George Freeman, as he was speaking at the Hay Festival earlier this week, talking about the obesity crisis in the country as 25 percent of adults in the UK are obese now, when 40 years ago this was only 3 percent - the numbers are staggering.
"I think that where there is a commercial product which confers costs on all of us as a society, as in sugar, and where we can clearly show that the use of that leads to huge pressures on social costs, then we could be looking at recouping some of that through taxation," Freeman said, according to Food Navigator, then hinting at a possible sugar tax UK. "Companies should know that if you insist on selling those products, we will tax them."
However, Metro reports that the rest of the administration has shut down claims that a sugar tax UK is currently underway, as outlets explicitly asked the country's Prime Minister, David Cameron, whether the rumors were correct - and it turns out that Freeman, a newly appointed minister, was just speaking out of turn.

Freeman is the first minister in the country to ever hint a sugar tax UK.



Berkeley Soda Tax Brings in $116,000 in First Month


 By Andrew Stelzer 

Berkeley’s tax on sugary drinks brought in $116,000 in its first month, in line with projections made before voters overwhelmingly approved Measure D last November.
“We have delivered for the city of Berkeley,” said Berkeley City CouncilwomanLinda Maio, one of several council members who gathered on the steps of City Hall on Monday to announce the numbers. She estimated that the tax would bring in at least $1.2 million in its first year.
The penny-per-ounce tax, the first of its kind in the nation, took effect March 1. It is levied on the distribution of most sugar-sweetened beverages, including sodas and energy drinks.
City Councilman Laurie Capitelli said the funds will be used for programs aimed at reducing obesity, poor dental health and diabetes among children.
“What we really want to do in 10 years is collect no tax,” Capitelli said. “We don’t want soda consumed in this community. We don’t want 50 percent of our African-American and Latino children facing diabetes in our lifetime.”
The Berkeley City Council has already approved advance funding of $500,000, and wants half of that to go to the school district’s nutrition education program. Tuesday night is the first meeting of an expert panel — the Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Product Panel of Experts — that will advise the City Council on which specific health programs to fund or establish.
Panel member Joy Moore, a cooking and gardening instructor at Berkeley Technical Academy, said the rest of the allocated money will be directed to community-based groups and programs, with an emphasis on programs that serve low-income children and people of color.
“The place we can make the most difference is in the schools,” Moore said. “Education is going to be important to everyone because we need all people to implement, to buy into, to understand the dangers that overconsumption of sweetened beverages will do.”
The nine-member panel plans to consult with the community and will make recommendations to the City Council by Oct. 1. Local organizations will be able to apply for community-based funds.
“We are tired of burying our family members,” said Xavier Morales, executive director of the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California, and another member of the expert panel. “We have a diabetes crisis in Berkeley.”
He said that having dedicated revenue to fund programs to help people with diabetes or families at high risk “will really help us in Berkeley.”
California Beverage Association spokesman Roger Salazar, who was standing only a few feet from the jubilant press conference, called the tax measure “very confusing.”
“We’ve heard from a lot of grocers, retailers, restaurateurs who want to comply with the measure but can’t get real clarity of what it applies to and who it applies to,” Salazar said.
During the month of March, 36 entities, mostly larger distributors, paid the tax. Maio said the city is doing person-to-person outreach to inform smaller merchants about how the tax might affect them. Measure D stipulated that the tax take effect on Jan. 1 — but to give time to businesses to adjust, the council delayed the start date until March 1.
“We want to do a truly good job of implementing this, because we know we are being watched very carefully,” Maio said, “and that particularly the (soda) industry is watching very carefully. … We want it to work well.”
Maio also praised Dairy Queen’s recent decision to remove soda from its children’s menus — following the lead of Burger King, McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Chipotle and Panera.
“We think we are at the beginning of a continuum that has to move forward for the health of our kids,” she said.




Berkeley says $116,000 made so far from new soda tax


By Carolyn Tyler


BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) --
Berkeley is the only city in the nation with a soda tax. It passed last November and now city officials and local businesses have some indication of the impact; at least in dollars and cents.
Some businesses are grumbling, but officials at city hall are very excited. On Tuesday night, for the first time, a special commission mandated by the voters is going to get together to try to figure out how to divvy out the tax dollars with the focus on how they can improve children's health.
The tax is a penny an ounce not just on soda but also on energy drinks, sweet teas, and other surgery beverages. Kiki Assefaw, manager of Bob's Liquor in Berkeley, says it's hurting business.
"Yeah we've seen a difference," he said. "You know, it's not like it used to be. Customers now don't want to add that extra money on the taxes and on the same time they start complaining about it."
But city officials are cheering. They have their first data. It's from March -- $116,000, putting them on pace to collect perhaps as much as $1.5 million this year. The money is earmarked for public health with half going to the school district.
"Fifty percent of our African American and Latino kids who are 13 years of age are predicted to have diabetes in their lifetime," said Berkeley City Councilmember Laurie Capitelli. "What we had to do was do something."
The beverage industry spent $3 million trying to defeat the measure and says complying is an operational and financial burden.
"If the goal was to make it much more difficult for businesses in Berkeley to do business, then they succeeded," said Rober Salazar with the American Beverage Association. "If the goal was to improve health outcomes, I'm not sure that's happening."
Sandesh Siwakoti, owner of Max's Liquor in neighboring Albany, believes he's picking up some of Berkeley's business.
"I have seen people come here to buy sodas this year because there's no tax on the soda that we sell," he said.

Berkeley is now doing a study to see if its residents really are crossing city lines to avoid the tax or if they are now choosing to drink less. 

13 recommendations for healthy blood sugar levels


Diabetes is a tricky condition as there are so many factors that can effect your blood sugar. These are some easy things you can do to get better control...
Much research has been conducted on the best types of diet for a diabetic. And when you understand how much diet can affect someone with diabetes, or influence someone’s development of the disease, it’s easy to understand why. While diet is key there are other factors that have been researched, too. Here is a selection of interesting recommendations – food-related and other – that have been proven to maintain healthy blood glucose and insulin levels, courtesy of Reader’s Digest’s Best Health.

1. Let loose and laugh!
Japanese scientists have established that laughter is the best medicine! Diabetics who watched a comedy after dinner experienced lower blood sugar levels than others who listened to a boring lecture.

2. Do not forget your daily dairy
A study of 3,000 people found that overweight people who ate a lot of dairy, were 70% less likely to develop insulin resistance than those who didn’t. This is because “the lactose, protein and fat in dairy products improves blood sugar by filling you up and slowing the conversion of food sugars to blood sugar."

3. Master magnesium
A study of women found that higher intakes of magnesium reduced diabetes risk by about 10% overall, and by about 20% in overweight women. Find magnesium in avocados, spinach (an absolute winner), leafy greens, nuts, and fish.

4. Cue cinnamon
In a Pakistani study, people with type 2 diabetes took 1 g/3 g/ 6 g of cinnamon and saw a drop in their blood sugar levels of 18-29% in relation to the amount used. And it’s so easy to use – drop a smidge in your coffee, tea, yogurt, you name it!

5. Get your 8 hours
Numerous studies have found that not getting enough sleep has a serious effect on your blood sugar and insulin levels.

6. Drink and be healthy!
A study on women showed that those who drank a glass of wine a day cut their risk of diabetes in half compared to teetotallers and the same effects were found for beer. But take your drink with dinner - an Australian study found that drinking a glass of wine immediately after eating is actually detrimental.

7. Cut back on fat
The results from an American study on 3000 people showed that you have a much higher chance of developing diabetes if you have high levels of saturated fat in your diet.

8. Walk it off
A large American study found that walking 2 km a day would cut the risk of dying from diabetes by a third and that by walking the 10 km each week would also reduce a diabetic’s chance of dying from heart disease by 34%.

9. Go grrrapefruit
“American researchers asked 50 obese patients to eat half a grapefruit with each meal for 12 weeks and compared them to a group that didn’t eat any. Those patients who ate the grapefruit lost an average of 1.6 kg. They also had lower levels of insulin and glucose after each meal, suggesting a more efficient sugar metabolism,”

10. Decide on decaf
According to British researchers, a cup of decaf is best when the sweet tooth takes over. The combination of decaf and the sugars found in cakes and biscuits reduces the resultant rise in the blood sugar.

11. Snoring? Get to the bottom of it
In a Harvard research study, it was found that “women who snored were more than twice as likely as those who didn’t to develop diabetes – regardless of weight, smoking history or family history of diabetes."

12. Lay on the legumes
Ignore those old childish taunts about beans. Studies have found that by eating 75 g of beans a day your blood sugar and insulin levels can stabilise.

13. Unwind
A study has found that after just 10 minutes each day of tensing then relaxing each muscle in your body, blood sugar levels, particularly in people with high sugar levels, are significantly improved.
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Red wine compound could target gut to lower blood sugar in diabetics



BY RAVI MANDALIA

Red wine has been in the news lately for its potential benefits to diabetic patients and another research claims that a compound found in red wine activates a molecule that triggers a neuronal network involving the gut, brain and liver to lower blood sugar.
Researchers at the Toronto General Hospital Research Institute have discovered metformin (the most widely prescribed type 2 diabetic medication) and resveratrol, a compound found in red wine, trigger novel signaling pathways in the small intestine to lower blood sugar.
The team, led by Dr. Tony Lam and his Banting fellow Dr. Frank Duca, graduate student Clemence Cote, and Vanier Scholar Brittany Rasmussen used obese and diabetic rat models to discover that metformin and resveratrol respectively activate molecules known as AMPK and sirtuin 1 in the small intestine and trigger a neuronal network involving the gut, brain and liver to lower blood sugar.
The findings were published as two back-to-back papers as advance on-line April 6, 2015 publications in the international medical journal Nature Medicine entitled, “Metformin activates duodenal AMPK and a neuronal network to lower glucose production” and “Resveratrol activates duodenal Sirt1 to reverse insulin resistance in rats through a neuronal network”.
One compound studied is the commonly-used drug metformin for patients with Type 2 diabetes, and the other is resveratrol, a compound found in red wine, grapes, peanuts and blueberries. Although research on resveratrol in cell culture and animal studies has shown promising effects on inhibiting cancer cells, anti-inflammation capabilities and decreases in glucose or blood sugar levels, the compound’s effects on humans is unclear.
“Almost 80% of people living with type 2 diabetes are overweight or have obesity, making it harder for them to control their blood sugar levels. Our work shows that these two antidiabetic agents target the intestine directly, a previously underappreciated organ in diabetes therapy, to lower blood glucose levels, even in obese rats or those with diabetes. This knowledge will help us to develop more effective, targeted drugs, with less side effects. ” says Dr. Frank Duca, a first and co- first author on both papers, and a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Tony Lam, who holds the John Kitson McIvor (1915 – 1942) Endowed Chair in Diabetes Research and Canada Research Chair in Obesity at UHN and University of Toronto.
“We already knew that the brain and liver regulate blood glucose levels, but the question has been, how do you therapeutically target either of these two organs without incurring side effects?” noted Dr. Lam, and is also a Full Professor of Physiology and Medicine at the University of Toronto. “We may have found a way around this problem by suggesting that molecules in the small intestine can be the initial targets instead. If new medicines can be developed that stimulate these sensing molecules in the gut, we may have effective ways of slowing down the body’s production of sugar, thereby lowering blood sugar levels in diabetes.”
Dr. Lam emphasized that it will take a number of years of experimental work to determine whether the current findings are relevant in humans.
More than two million Canadians have diabetes. Currently, those with diabetes lower their glucose through diet, exercise, anti-diabetic tablets or insulin injections (usually several times a day) and must regularly monitor blood glucose levels. High glucose levels result in damage to eyes, nerves and kidneys and increase the risk of heart attack, stroke, blindness, erectile dysfunction, foot problems and amputations. Many laboratories around the world are in a race to find alternative and effective ways in which to lower glucose levels because of the severe complications which can result from high sugar levels. The current findings from both papers imply that targeting the gut with small compounds could represent the alternative strategies to lower glucose levels and reduce diabetic complications.



Fish Oil Can Reverse Diabetes Nerve Damage: Study


Thursday, 07 May 2015 03:44 PM
By Sylvia Booth Hubbard

More than 29 million Americans have diabetes, and about half of them suffer from nerve damage or neuropathy. There is no cure, and the most effective treatment, which is keeping blood sugar levels under control, doesn't stop but only slows the painful condition.
A new study conducted at the VA Medical Center in Iowa City, however, found that Resolvin D1, a metabolite produced by an omega-3 fatty acid found in fish, not only stops the progression of neuropathy in mice, but actually reverses it.
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"Diabetic neuropathy is a very costly and debilitating complication of diabetes," researcher Mark Yorek said in a news release. "It is the leading cause of foot ulcers and nontrauma-related amputations, and the impact of diabetic neuropathy on the patient and family are unmeasurable."
Fish oil supplements, Yorek said, would be a safe treatment. "Supplements are considered very safe and could be easily translated into everyday care.
"Fish oil would be easy to take, like a vitamin, and should have few side effects when combined with other medications," he explained.
Numerous previous studies have found that the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil help diabetics manage blood sugar levels better, reduce inflammation, and improve liver function.
In the new study, diabetic mice were given high-fat diets and daily injections of resolvin, a metabolite produced in the body from fish oil, or a high-fat diet in which half the fat came from fish oil. The results were compared to healthy, non-diabetic mice.
The diabetic mice had less feeling in their paws and their eyes had fewer nerves. But even though fish oil diets and resolvin didn't lower sugar levels to a normal range, they improved the amount of feeling in the animals' paws. Resolvin also stimulated nerves to grow.

"Even though a lot more work needs to be done, including clinical trials with human subjects, our animal studies suggest that fish oil can reverse some of the harmful effects of diabetes on the nerves," Yorek said.

For diabetes control, surgery and intensive lifestyle change about equal


BY LISA RAPAPORT

 (Reuters Health) - Intensive medical management with supervised diet and exercise may work as well as weight-loss surgery to help diabetics get blood sugar levels under control, at least in the short term, a small study suggests.
Researchers followed 40 people with diabetes and poorly controlled blood sugar for one year, giving half of them weight-loss surgery and offering the other half a non-surgical alternative, so-called intensive medical management. Both options produced similar reductions in blood sugar.
"Individuals motivated to impact their health can have substantial diabetes and weight improvements," said senior study author Dr. Allison Goldfine, a researcher at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston.
Worldwide, nearly one in 10 adults had diabetes in 2014, and the disease will be the seventh leading cause of death by 2030, according to the World Health Organization.
Most of these people have type 2 diabetes, which is associated with obesity and aging and happens when the body can't properly use or make enough of the hormone insulin to convert blood sugar into energy. Left untreated, diabetes can lead to nerve damage, amputations, blindness, heart disease and strokes.
While physicians have long recommended exercise, weight loss and a healthy diet to control blood pressure and minimize complications, in recent years a growing number of obese people with diabetes have been offered weight-loss surgery as an alternative way to shed pounds and get blood sugar under control.
Goldfine and colleagues studied a type of weight-loss surgery known as laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding, a minimally invasive procedure that involves placing an adjustable inflatable belt around the upper portion of the stomach. The band can be made of silicone and tightened by adding saline. It effectively reduces the amount of food the stomach can hold, and people are advised to eat portions about the size of a shot glass post-surgery.
The study team compared this surgical intervention to aggressive medical management by a team of specialists in endocrinology, diabetes education, exercise physiology, nutrition and behavioral health. These participants had two-hour weekly group sessions for three months as well as calorie-restricted meal plans and supervised exercise sessions.
At the start of the study, participants were typically obese and about 51 years old. Many of them were taking medication to control blood sugar, lower cholesterol or treat hypertension.
The main goal of the study was to see which treatment alternative was most effective at helping to lower hemoglobin A1c, a protein in red blood cells that gets coated with sugar over time, making it a gauge of average blood sugar levels in the past few months.
After one year, six of 18 surgery patients (33 percent) and five of 22 non-surgical patients (23 percent) achieved the target A1c level below 6.5 percent, where diabetes is considered well-controlled.
Within three months, seven people in each group lost at least 10 percent of their body weight, but after one year the surgical group achieved a greater weight loss than the participants in medical management.
Because the study was so small, and only followed participants for a year, more research is needed to compare the long-term impact of these treatment options, the researchers acknowledge in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
"Success over one year is no guarantee of longer term success, regardless of the intervention," Sheri Colberg, a professor of exercise science at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, said by email. With both the gastric band surgery and diet and exercise, many people are unable to sustain weight loss over time, said Colberg, who wasn't involved in the study.
After two years, there should be a much more dramatic weight loss with surgery compared with diet and exercise, John Dixon, head of clinical obesity research at Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne, Australia, said by email. People getting this surgery, if managed appropriately, can lose as much as 20 percent of their body weight by two years and keep it off, said Dixon, who wasn't involved in the study.
While the new report offers clear evidence that intensive lifestyle management can achieve improvements in diabetes after one year, this method may not work over the long term to reduce the risk of cardiovascular complications or deaths in patients with diabetes, Dixon said. There is, however, a growing body of evidence suggesting that surgery reduces mortality, he said.
SOURCE: bit.ly/1DU6sZF Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, online April 24, 2015.




Diabetes Hitting Younger, Thanks Largely to Inactive Kids



When it comes to diabetes, San Antonio is heading in the wrong direction, with more patients being diagnosed with diabetes earlier in life, leading to a longer period of time in which expensive treatment is necessary, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

  Dr. Carmelo Otero, a cardio thoracic surgeon at San Antonio’s Southwest General Hospital, says 60 to 70 percent of his patients now come to him with diabetes related issues, and he says what really concerns him is the fact that those patients are getting younger and younger.
  "The incidence of diabetes is going up, and there are more and more people being diagnosed, younger diagnosis, which means they have a longer time ahead of having problems," Dr. Otero told News Radio 1200 WOAI.
  He says the problems remain the same and the message doesn't seem to be hitting home.  The best way to avoid the risk of diabetes, even among individuals at the greatest genetic risk for the disease, is to eat right and exercise, but Dr. Otero says that's not happening.
  "Kids used to be out on the streets running around with their friends," he said.  "Today you have kids by themselves, with an iPad or sitting in front of the TV, and they are very inactive."
  A new study shows not only are diet and exercise very effective in fighting diabetes, but just holding your weight down isn't enough.  Researchers say the type of food you eat is important, and it is important for patients to participate in both a healthy diet and exercise.  Many people believe, for example, that if they exercise they can eat as much as they want because the activity will counter it, and that is not the case.
  About 29 million Americans have some form of diabetes, with about one third of those still undiagnosed.  Several studies have pointed out that Americans of Latino heritage are significantly more likely to be at risk for diabetes.

   "You take a good balanced diet, you exercise, and you are going to become more resistant to diabetes, it's as simple as that," Dr. Otero said.

15 Reason To Stop Drinking Mountain Dew


Mountain Dew originated in Tennessee many years ago, and was sold to the Pepsi company in 1964. For the last 51 years it has been a favorite soft drink for many people across the country, but unfortunately it is actually one of the most unhealthy drinks you can put in your body.
Mountain Dew contains just about every bad food additives that you can cram into a soft drink, and then some. From GMOs to chemicals that are designed to fireproof other materials, there is almost nothing beneficial for your body in a can of Mountain Dew. Here are the top 15 reasons out of the 100 or so that I could find to stop drinking mountain dew immediately.

1. Dental Health
Mountain Dew is one of the most acidic soft drinks on the market with a pH level of 3. Battery acid has a pH of 1, if that helps you put that in perspective. All that acid erodes the enamel on your teeth, and is incredibly harmful to your body.

2. Infertility
Mountain Dew itself may not be the direct culprit, but the BPA plastic bottles that it is sold in are known to cause sever hormone imbalances. BPA actually mimics estrogen in the body, which causes all sorts of medical problems. Combine BPA plastic, and the acidity of Mountain Dew, and you’ve got a combination that is ripe with health problem causing chemicals.

3. Bad Marketing
Mountain Dew is marketed as some kind of “super fuel” to the impressionable younger consumers, and is done so quite recklessly. Kids are made to believe that if they drink Mountain Dew their abilities to do things like play video games and play sports will be enhanced. The truth is, the Mountain Dew is more likely to make them sick, instead of enhancing performance.

4. Diabetes
The sugar content in Mountain Dew is one of the highest of all of the soft drinks on the market. That sugar content can be a direct cause for type 2 diabetes.

5. Obesity
Along with Diabetes, comes obesity. One can of Mountain dew has 290 calories and 77 grams of carbohydrates. Those are empty calories, and carbs from sugar, by the way.

6. BVO
Brominated Vegetable Oil is an ingredient that is found in mountain dew that is actually banned in several other countries. Not only is it used in soft drinks like Mountain Dew, it is used as a fire retardant chemical.

7. – 10. Nerve Disorders, Skin lesions, Memory Loss, Muscle Problems
According to the Environmental Health News:
“After a few extreme soda binges—not too far from what many gamers regularly consume—a few patients have needed medical attention for skin lesions, memory loss and nerve disorders, all symptoms of overexposure to bromine. Other studies suggest that BVO could be building up in human tissues, just like other brominated compounds such as flame retardants.”

11. It’ll Dissolve a Mouse
Recently there was a law suit involving a mouse that was found in a can of mountain dew, and PepsiCo’s legal defense suggested that the consumer planter the mouse. They did this by admitting that a mouse left in a can of mountain dew for the period of time that the mouse was supposedly in the can the consumer purchased would have completely dissolved.

12. Thyroid Issues
Mountain Dew essentially wears your thyroid out by competing with the natural iodine in our bodies needed to make hormones. This can lead to chronic fatigue, which then leads people to drink more Mountain Dew.

13. GMO Ingredients
The corn used to make the high fructose corn syrup and the soybeans used to make the brominated vegetable oil for Mountain Dew are both major GMO, high-production crops. The worst of the GMO crops, to be exact.

14. Preservatives
Sodium benzoate, a common preservative, along with the BVO and acids in Mountain Dew react with the natural vitamin C in the citrus juice used, and actually makes it a carcinogen.

15. Dyes

Yellow dyes in soft drinks like Mountain Dew are actually made with coal tar. It is one of the single most toxic things you can ingest.