Diabetes and Dementia

Thursday, November 21st, 2019

I am currently reading a book to review entitled The Alzheimer’s Prevention & Treatment Diet, which has good information about diabetes and dementia that is worth mentioning now, during National Diabetes Month, while I finish reading the book.

diabetic diet has an emphasis on whole foods

Early in the book the authors, Dr. Richard Isaacson and Christopher Ochner, PhD, write about the link between these two ailments, specifically type 2 diabetes. The theory revolves around the fact that diabetes is characterized by insulin resistance, which is defined by the authors as “a condition in which the body manufactures a hormone called insulin but is unable to respond to it properly.”  Since the job of insulin is to help your cells take in glucose, defined as a simple sugar that your body’s main energy source, as well as to clear the bloodstream of excess glucose once no more energy is absorbed, the constant and persistent elevated levels of glucose can lead to many problems because of insulin resistance* And since insulin is essential for the brain to function properly, memory problems can result when there is insulin resistance.

*an impaired response of the body to insulin, resulting in elevated levels of glucose in the blood (a key component of type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome (definition from the Internet)

I have been reading that some “experts” are calling Alzheimer’s “Type 3 Diabetes,” and as more research is revealed, I think we can benefit from knowing how strong a link there is between memory loss and insulin. So if you are diagnosed with pre-diabetes or Type 2 diabetes, then whatever steps you take to correct the problem, especially with a diet that doesn’t include lots of denatured foods, like white flour and white sugar, you may be on your way to help prevent memory loss.

 

Concerning diet, in UnDo It! by Dr. Dean Ornish and his wife, Anne Ornish, here is a great deal to learn about diabetes and memory loss. For example, they note that in a study of more than 200,000 men and women over a period of 20 years years by the Harvard School of Public Health, the results demonstrated that a whole foods plant-based diet substantially lowered the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. (I believe plant-based does not necessarily mean no meat, but rather that plants are eaten more than meat, depending on the researchers’ guidelines.)

In this same book, the authors note that lowering one’s blood sugar with lifestyle medicine is better than by just using drugs alone, which tells me that eating a whole foods diet with recipes similar to what I post on Menupause, is a giant step in the right direction to avoiding diabetes.  Since diabetes runs in my family, I take special care to be sure I don’t overload my body with “empty” calories, especially carbs,  or sugar-laden foods in place of naturally sweet foods.

I just copied some info that might be helpful and you may wish to investigate:

The best food choices for diabetics according to the American Diabetes Association. These foods help diabetics control blood sugar and lose weight, which makes blood-sugar management easier.

Image courtesy of share.baptisthealth.com

share.baptisthealth.com

The 16 Best Foods to Control Diabetes

www.healthline.com/nutrition/16-best-foods-for-diabetic

Here are the 16 foods:

fatty fish     leafy greens      cinnamon          
 eggs         chia seeds           turmeric
Greek yogurt    nuts        broccoli
extra virgin olive 
oil   
flax seeds      apple cider
strawberries    
garlic     squash    shiritaki noodles*

*Shiritaki Noodles (or Rice):

A meal that helps balance blood sugar? Yes!*

Source: https://miraclenoodle.com/

Glucose is a sugar that circulates in your blood. High carbohydrate foods, like regular pasta, rice, grains, etc., have a high glycemic index – they are rapidly digested and cause substantial fluctuations in your blood sugar. When you eat them you suddenly have lots of energy…and just as suddenly, you crash.

The Konjac plant fiber in Miracle Noodle, Miracle Rice, and Ready-To-Eat Meals, slows down your absorption of glucose, helping your blood sugar even out so you won’t have spikes of energy and exhaustion.

In fact, a study published in Diabetes Care confirmed that a diet rich in high-viscosity Konjac plant fiber, “improves glycemic control and lipid profile.

Miracle Noodles and rice are approved for these special diets: Keto, Paleo, Certified Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Soy-Free, Certified Vegan, Certified Kosher, Blood Sugar-Friendly.

They’re naturally low in carbs and calories, Certified Non-GMO, contain no additives, and are made from the Konjac plant.

(I plan to look for these in my health food stores  es)…….

Finally, some time ago I reviewed Suicide by Sugar by Nancy Appleton, PhD (also from Square One Publishers). Here is the internal blog link to that review: https://www.menupause.info/suicide-by-sugar-a-sweet-review/. 

On p. 10 of the book is a topic called: “Sugar by Any Other Name is Just as Troublesome,” with a list of sugar in its many forms. Use very sparingly! (Keep in mind that all not only sugars, but empty carbs can raise blood sugar levels.)

agave syrup or nectar    barley malt   beet sugar    brown sugar  cane sugar  cane syrup confections sugar crystalline sugar   date sugar   evaporated sugar cane   fructose   fruit juice concentrate   galactose   glucose granulated sugar   high fructose corn syrup   honey   invert sugar  lactose    liquid cane sugar or syrup maltose  maple syrup    molasses.   maple syrup   powdered sugar    raw sugar  rice syrup    sugarcane syrup table sugar  turbinado sugar   unrefined sugar   white sugar

When reading labels on foods you buy, check to see if any of these is near the top of the list, which means the amounts

are high. When I buy a treat, which is not too often, I check the sugar levels by seeing how many grams of sugar in a

serving and aim for 5 grams or less. (Check with your own doctor for his/her recommendations.)

Diabetes is a serious illness that can often be controlled by changes in lifestyle, especially diet. Consult with your doctor for testing and treatment. If you are pre-diabetic, find a health practitioner with lots of experience with this disease, since diabetes can result and is linked with memory loss.

 

P.S. Please note that my WordPress program doesn’t seem to keep all the words in lists the same size. I have tried several different ways and nothing works, so my apologies.

 

 

 

Diabetes (Type 2) Data

Wednesday, November 30th, 2016

 

The last day of American Diabetes Month has me poring over all my magazine cutouts I have been saving on diabetes and squeezing them in the last day.  Here are “briefs” of the articles:

  1. According to Health.com (Dec. 2013), About 1/3 of all Americans have diabetes resistance. The body does produce insulin, but cannot use it effectively. If left unchecked, glucose will build up in your bloodstream and can then lead to pre-diabetes and diabetes. The article suggests a screening to measure your glucose levels every three years if over age 45, but earlier if you have other risk factors, such as weight gain, high blood pressure, etc. (In my case, diabetes runs in the family, so when my AC1 showed high-normal, I obtained a blood sugar kit and tweaked my diet and now feel I won’t just succumb to diabetes as my mother and grandmother did. es)is
  2. In the October 2016 Nutrition Action Healthletter, published by The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) results of a study with 237 sedentary adults (ages 45-75) with pre diabetes. The people were divided into 4 groups:
    a) diet with low-dose moderate exercise, b) low-dose moderate exercise, 3) high-dose moderate exercise, 4) high-dose vigorous exercise. After 6 months, only those who combined diet with exercise (a) lowered their fasting blood sugar and insulin and lost about 14 pounds. (recommendation is to walk about 2 miles per day and even if you don’t lose weight, the brisk walking may be help to “dodging” diabetes.img095
  3. Inside Salk, the magazine of the Salk Institute where my brother worked in the mid 1960s and early 70s, the first article (“Finding the ‘Secret Sauce'”) is about researchers uncovering “a molecular switch to make effective sugar-responsive, insulin-releasing cells in a dish, offering hope for diabetes therapy.” The researchers hope to have human (not animal) trials within the next few years.
  4. In a Diabetes Seminar workbook I obtained from Acme Pharmacy, three lifestyle habits are listed for “dodging” diabetes: stop smoking, reduce stress, be active. (Diet is the focus of the workbook, so these are listed as lifestyle habits.)unknown
  5. In an article, “Mission Control,” by Maureen Sangiorgio in Walgreen’s magazine,  according to the American Diabetes Association, nearly 29 million Americans have diabetes and approximately 86 million have pre-diabetes that could develop into diabetes. The Mediterranean Diet is mentioned as lowering your risk for diabetes, that is, moving away from red meat and moving towards more seafood, whole grains, fruits, and nuts.fruits
  6. The July/August 2012 Nutrition Action Health Letter featured diabetes and heart disease in an article called “Metabolic Meltdown.” At the end were six suggestions: 20 lose excess weight; b) eat a diet rich in vegetables and fruit but low in saturated and trans fat; c) decrease carbs; d) cut added sugars; e) eat fatty fish; f) exercise.active-athletic-exercise-female-40974
  7. In a later issue of Nutrition Action Health Letter (July/Aug 2014) the excellent article “Tip of the Iceberg: Most People with Prediabetes Don’t Know it,” features a plate filed with food with this handy rule of thumb: “Fill half your plate with vegetables, a quarter with lean protein, and just a quarter with (preferably whole) grains.”

img_0034

All the sources seem to point to a combination of a low meat, high veggie diet, at least 1/2 hour a day of exercise, and reduced stress. Interestingly, all these suggestions could also be applied to prevent or any ailment you wish to avoid or want to manage better. Let food be your medicine!

Subscribe