June 21, 2024

Diabetes and The Menopause

You might be thinking “What’s the connection between diabetes and the menopause?”

Well, for ladies reaching that certain age, it can be very traumatic – especially when some of the effects experienced can easily be mistaken for those we have to be aware of when managing our diabetes…

You might be thinking “What’s the connection between diabetes and the menopause?”

Well, for ladies reaching that certain age, it can be very traumatic – especially when some of the effects experienced can easily be mistaken for those we have to be aware of when managing our diabetes…

For a diabetic taking medication, keeping blood sugars at the right level is a balancing act. If sugar levels drop too low, because of not eating enough or at the right times, you suffer a hypoglycemia episode (sometimes called ‘hypo’ for short). For me, this usually manifests itself as shaking; irritability; sweating and a faint-headed feeling.

If you are diabetic and have ever had low-blood sugar you may recognize some of these symptoms, amongst others. A quick ‘glucose fix’ usually settles it within 5-10 minutes.

Now, compare that to some of the symptoms of starting the menopause; hot flushes [I call them ‘power-surges’ ;)] – similar to the sweats of a hypo; mood swings – akin to the irritability you might experience during a hypo. It’s very easy to confuse the symptoms you are feeling.

When I first started the menopause, I frequently confused waking at 2 a.m. in the morning in a cold sweat as a hypo and took a quick sugar boost to settle myself. That pushed my blood sugar levels up when I didn’t need it. Not a good idea!

It was only after visiting my Doctor to talk about these frequent, unexpected hypos I discovered I was starting the menopause (I was in my late 40s, so it was rather unexpected, normally it doesn’t occur until early-to-mid 50s).

If you are a lady, with diabetes controlled by medication, and you are in your early 50s and you start having frequent, unexplained hypos – check your sugar levels before ‘treating the condition’. And get your Doctor to check your symptoms. You may be confusing symptoms of diabetes and the menopause.

And guys; if your lady normally has great control of her diabetes and suddenly seems to be showing the same symptoms when she was getting her diabetes into balance (if you knew her then) please be supportive and understanding, she’s going through one hell of an experience, but I promise, she will come through and be her normal, loving and charming self once again.

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Supplements for Diabetes Treatment

A number of supplements have shown promise as diabetes treatments. These include the following.

Cinnamon

Chinese medicine has been using cinnamon for medicinal purposes for hundreds of years. It has been the subject of numerous studies to determine its effect on blood glucose levels. A 2011 study Trusted Source has shown that cinnamon, in whole form or extract, helps lower fasting blood glucose levels. More studies are being done, but cinnamon is showing promise for helping to treat diabetes.

Chromium

Chromium is an essential trace element. It is used in the metabolism of carbohydrates. However, research on the use of chromium for diabetes treatment is mixed. Low doses are safe for most people, but there is a risk that chromium could make blood sugar go too low. High doses also have the potential to cause kidney damage.

Vitamin B-1

Vitamin B-1 is also known as thiamine. Many people with diabetes are thiamine deficient. This may contribute to some diabetes complications. Low thiamine has been linked to heart disease and blood vessel damage.

Thiamine is water-soluble. It has difficulty getting into the cells where it’s needed. However, benfotiamina, a supplemental form of thiamina, is lipid-soluble. It more easily penetrates cell membranes. Some research suggests that benfotiamina can prevent diabetic complications. However, other studies have not shown any positive effects.

Alpha-Lipoic Acid

Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) is a potent antioxidant. Some studies suggest it may:

  • reduce oxidative stress
  • lower fasting blood sugar levels
  • decrease insulin resistance

However, more research is needed. Furthermore, ALA needs to be taken with caution, as it has the potential to lower blood sugar levels to dangerous levels.

Bitter Melon

Bitter melon is used to treat diabetes-related conditions in countries like Asia, South America, and others. There is a lot of data on its effectiveness as a treatment for diabetes in animal and lab studies.

However, there is limited human data on bitter melon. There are not enough clinical studies on human. The human studies currently available are not of high quality.

Green Tea

Green tea contains polyphenols, which are antioxidants.

The main antioxidant in green tea is known as Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Laboratory studies have suggested that EGCG may have numerous health benefits including:

  • lower cardiovascular disease risk
  • prevention of type 2 diabetes
  • improved glucose control
  • better insulin activity

Studies on diabetic patients have not shown health benefits. However, green tea is generally considered safe.

Resveratrol

Resveratrol is a chemical found in wine and grapes. In animal models, it helps prevent high blood sugar. Animal studies have also shown that it can reduce oxidative stress. However, human data is limited. It is too soon to know if supplementation helps with diabetes.

Magnesium

Magnesium is an essential nutrient. It helps regulate blood pressure. It also regulates insulin sensitivity. Supplemental magnesium may improve insulin sensitivity in diabetics.

A high magnesium diet may also reduce the risk of diabetes. Researchers have found a link between higher magnesium intake, lower rates of insulin resistance, and diabetes

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Eating Too Much Sugar Causes Diabetes – Fact Or Fiction?

Like most diseases, there is plenty of fact and fiction and often the two become intertwined and diabetes is no exception. Most people think that eating too much sugar cause diabetes, this is not true.

Diabetes is not caused by eating sugar. Diabetes is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. However, eating a diet high in fat and sugar can cause you to become overweight.

It is being overweight that radically increases your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, so if you have a history of diabetes in your family, I would recommend a healthy diet and regular exercise.

Actually, I remember a story about an ex-patient of mine, let’s call her ‘Patricia’.

We spoke at length about all her risk factors, but she stopped me when I asked her if she had any relatives with diabetes. I couldn’t hold back the laughter, when she informed me that she wasn’t too worried as she didn’t like her relatives and had no contact with them!

Yo can catch diabetes from someone else – Fact or fiction?

This brings me nicely to another common myth about diabetes, that it can be passed from person to person by everyday contact (SOURCE: Diabetes UK). Although we don’t know exactly why some people get diabetes, we know that it is not contagious – it can’t be caught like a cold or flu. There seems to be some genetic link involved particularly Type 2 diabetes. But environmental factors also play a part.

That’s enough Diabetes Fiction now for some fact

Diabetes is a metabolic disorder characterised by abnormally high blood sugar levels due either to lower production of insulin or abnormal resistance to insulin’s effects.

The major symptoms are excessive thirst, frequent urination, muscle cramps, poor healing of wounds, impaired vision and itching.

Heart disease and stroke – caused by diseased coronary arteries supplying blood to brain- are also common complications associated with diabetes.

As people age, insulin production may diminish and/or insulin resistance may increase. If the consumption of food, especially food that causes rapid surges in blood sugar levels, remains high, blood sugar levels may become and remain abnormally high, which is the condition known as diabetes.

The serious consequences of this are collapse, a diabetic fit followed by diabetic coma and if not treated quickly, death can occur.

So diabetes is a killer disease!

Conventional and Complimentary treatments.

One problem with conventional treatments is that they are sometimes cumbersome and, on their own, not always effective. They sometimes have unwanted side-effects and very occasionally serious side-effects have been reported.

This is not to say that oral medication should not be used. On the contrary, they may be life-enhancing and life-saving and they should certainly never be stopped or their dose changed without a doctor’s advice.

But the need for them – and indeed the need eventually for insulin injections – will be greatly reduced with a few simple changes to lifestyle. One of the best things you could do is follow the methods of Doctor Patrick Quillin in his International bestselling book The Diabetes Improvement Program.

I’ve reviewed this book before and it stirred up quite a lot of interest, so I think it’s well worth another mention.

The author, Doctor Patrick Quillin, is renowned in this field and I’ve been impressed with his theses in the past. He uses food and supplements to slow and even reverse all aspects and symptoms of diabetes.

The programme helps to eliminate ketones and provides an abundance of energy. It normalises blood sugar levels, and improves both eyesight and balance. Scratches and scrapes heal much quicker. It will also renew feeling and sensation in numb limbs.

It reverses neuropathy and helps to heal ulcers. All these fantastic benefits have great knock-on effects as well. They help with blood pressure, lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, reducing your risk of heart attack, stroke and kidney damage.

And for those of you that are quite handy around the kitchen, there is a second great book associated with the programme called the Diabetics Cookbook, that lists hundreds of great recipes from all around the world.

Due to the success of the Diabetes Improvement Program last time I mentioned it the publishers have agreed to supply my readers with both the Diabetes Improvement Program and the Diabetic Cookbook at a specially discounted rate. Basically, if you buy both books, you get the Cookbook for just a fiver! That’s half price and not a bad deal if you ask me. To read more about the Diabetes Improvement Program visit my website.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/1847477

 

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