White Kids Have Highest Diabetes Rate

Last year The New York Times took a look at the diabetes epidemic ravaging New York City. The series revealed that genetics (and a poor diet) give Asians and Hispanics an increased risk of developing type-2 diabetes. From Living at an Epicenter of Diabetes, Defiance and Despair:
The fact that East Harlem is roughly 90 percent Hispanic and black, groups believed to have a genetic predisposition to the disease, explains part of the problem. There are also other factors: bad food habits, little exercise, rampant poverty and, according to health officials, poor access to medical care.
More from East Meets West, Adding Pounds and Peril:
Asians, especially those from Far Eastern nations like China, Korea and Japan, are acutely susceptible to Type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease and the subject of this series. They develop it at far lower weights than people of other races, studies show; at any weight, they are 60 percent more likely to get the disease than whites.
And here’s a reminder that diabetes can effect everyone, regardless of race, religion, creed, or whatever. New research has determined that white children have the highest rate of type-1 diabetes in the United States. Julie Steenhuysen of Reuters reports:
"We found more type 1 diabetes than we expected in whites, blacks and Hispanics," said Dr. Dana Dabelea of the University of Colorado in Denver, who led the study.

"Although the rates of type 2 diabetes are relatively low, we did find type 2 in all racial and ethnic groups, including non-Hispanic whites," she said in a telephone interview.

Type 1 diabetes occurs when the immune system goes haywire and starts attacking itself, destroying insulin-producing cells in the pancreas needed to control blood sugar. People with type 1 diabetes must take daily insulin injections.
Now, you don’t have to suffer needlessly from type-1 or type-2 diabetes. Dr. Fuhrman believes that a nutrient-dense vegetable-based diet is essential for improving a diabetic’s quality of life and, in the case of type-2 diabetes, curing the disease. Check out these posts:
Don't Settle For Diabetes
I have achieved marked success with diabetic patients and the success at becoming "non diabetic" or almost "non-diabetic" regularly occurs on the Eat to Live program whether the patient follows a strict vegan diet or not. I describe the diet-style as a "vegetable-based" diet because the base of the pyramid is vegetables, not grains. Even though most animal products are excluded, it is not necessary to adopt a completely vegan diet to achieve the goals. I offer patients the choice of adding two servings a week of low fat fish, such as tilapia, flounder, sole, and scrod, as well as an egg white omelet, once or twice each week. A few servings of very low saturated-fat animal products each week can be interspersed with the vegan meals without diminishing the results achievable from the vegetable-based diet.

Hope for Type 1 Childhood Onset Diabetics

With a truly health-supporting lifestyle, including exercise and real food designed by nature, the type 1 diabetic can have the same potential for a long, disease-free life as everyone else. Even though the type 1 diabetic still will require exogenous (external) insulin, they will no longer need excessive amounts of it.

Fat is the Chief Enemy of the Diabetic

From Dr. Fuhrman’s book Fasting and Eating for Health:

Fat in the diet of the diabetic not only accelerates the disease process but also interferes with the uptake of glucose by the cells, thus further raising the blood glucose level.

Experiments described in the medical literature have tested the effects of high-fat diets on insulin intolerance. In one study, healthy young medical students were fed a very high fat diet containing egg yolks, heavy cream, and butter, and within two days all of the students had blood sugar levels high enough to be labeled diabetic.1 Complex carbohydrates have been shown to have the opposite effect.2

Fat in the food we eat prevents the proper utilization of insulin and more insulin is needed to process the glucose when fats are included in the meal. Additionally, the fat on one’s body makes the cells resistant to insulin, and the pancreas must produce more insulin to compensate. This is due not only to the additional insulin demanded by the extra body mass of fat cells, but also to the fact that the fat in and around normal tissue, like muscle and internal organs, interferes with insulin uptake into these tissues. The major contributors to fat in the American diet are animal source foods such as meat, fowl, fish, and dairy products, as well as cooking or salad oils.
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Portion Control, Weight-Loss, and Diabetics

New research claims that diabetics can lose weight with portion control. Robert Preidt of HealthDay News reports:
Over six months, about half of 122 patients (average age 56) used the portion-control plates and bowls, while the rest of the patients received usual care consisting of dietary assessments and teaching by dietitians.

The patients who used the portion-control plates and bowls lost an average of 1.8 percent of their body weight, compared to an average of 0.1 percent among those who received usual care.

The University of Calgary researchers also found that 16.9 percent of the patients who used the portion-control plates and bowls, which were donated by a U.K. company called The Diet Plate, lost at least 5 percent of their body weight, compared with 4.6 percent of patients who received usual care.
This is all well and good, but, Dr. Fuhrman doesn’t think portion control is a great idea. Actually, he finds it kind of futile. Here’s an example why, from Bad News for Portion Control:
It is meaningless to compare foods by weight or portion size. Let me provide an example to explain why this is the case. Take one teaspoon of melted butter, which gets 100 percent of its calories from fat. If I take that teaspoon of butter and mix it in a glass of hot water, I can now say that it is 98 percent fat-free, by weight. One hundred percent of its calories are still from fat. It didn’t matter how much water or weight was added, did it?

TV and Diabetes

Okay, a couple weeks ago we learned that watching entertaining TV can make you fat, and now, it seems TV can lead to poor diabetes control in children. Reuters reports:
The researchers evaluated 538 children and adolescents, average age 13 years, from the eastern part of Norway who had had type 1 diabetes for an average of about 5 years. The time spent watching television and time using a computer was obtained in interviews with the subjects or the parents of very young children.

The average A1C was 8.6%. This measurement is the amount of glycosylated hemoglobin in the blood in relation to the amount of normal hemoglobin, and reflects the degree to which blood glucose levels are controlled over the long term.

The investigators found that as the average number of hours spent in watching television increased, so did the participants' A1C level, their body mass index or BMI, and the total amount of insulin they needed on a daily basis.

Dropping the Smack Down on Beer

The Diabetes Blog is all fired up about beer and the shady marketing behind it. Take a look:
For people with diabetes, being aware of carbohydrate content in food and drinks is highly important. With regard to beer, it's important to be cognizant not only of its direct effect on blood glucose levels, but also for the added fat it may be adding to your midsection. The classic Beer Belly, if you will. But, what is it about beer that makes it so bad for your belly?

For one, when you drink beer, twenty percent of the alcohol is absorbed from your stomach into your bloodstream; the rest is absorbed by your intestines. From there, the alcohol makes its way through your liver, where it is broken down -- leading to the creation of two waste products: acetate and acetaldehyde. These waste products then signal your body to stop burning fat, while at the same time your body actually starts MAKING fat from another alcohol waste product, known as acetyle CoA. As a result of all this, the more you drink, the less you become able to burn fat -- and, the more fat your body creates from the build-up of acetytle CoA.

Cure Diabetes: Tips from a Familiar Source

Tired of taking insulin and being a slave to your diabetes? TheDiabetesBlog taps a familiar source for advice. Are you a doctor mystery guest? Do you recommend a vegetable-based diet? Check it out:
The Eat To Live dietary style is a vegetable-based diet designed to maximize nutrient per calorie density. It is the most effective treatment for those with diabetes, more effective than drugs. For a type 2 diabetic, this approach has resulted in complete reversal of the diabetic condition in the vast majority of patients and for a type 1 diabetic it solves the problems with excessive highs and lows and prevents the typical dangerous complications that too frequently befall those with diabetes. Joel Fuhrman, M.D is a board certified family physician specializing in nutritional medicine for overweight and diabetic patents.