Holistic Treatment of Managing Diabetes
Diabetes affects nearly 26 million people in the US, of all ages, about 8 percent of the population. Estimates indicate that nearly 19 million people have been diagnosed with diabetes, while 7 million remain undiagnosed. Even managing diabetes can be a daunting task.
Diabetes is broken down into two main types: type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. A vital component of metabolism is glucose. Glucose is a sugar that comes from food and is also formed and stored inside the body. It is carried to our cells through the bloodstream, and is the main source of energy for our cells and tissue.
We process glucose with insulin, a hormone produced in the pancreas. There are two main types of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2.
Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes
In type 1 diabetes, the pancreas is unable to produce insulin. In type 2 diabetes, the body cannot process insulin properly. The causes of type 1 diabetes are generally thought to be hereditary and genetic. Type 2 diabetes, on the other hand, is largely associated with being overweight, a high-fat or high-carbohydrate diet, a lack of physical activity, and other factors. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), type 2 diabetes accounts for nearly 95% of diabetes cases in the United States.
When the blood doesn’t get sufficient insulin, glucose levels build up. This is called hyperglycemia, or high blood sugar. It is important to know that hyperglycemia may not have any initial symptoms.
Early signs include frequent urination, intense thirst, weight loss, and exhaustion. When unmanaged or protracted, hyperglycemia turns severe and deadly, with symptoms that include vision problems, nerve damage, blood-vessel damage, recurrent infections (which in serious cases have necessitated limb amputation), kidney disease, stroke, heart disease, and other circulatory disorders.
A person with type 1 diabetes must take insulin injections or use an insulin pump. For type 2, medication may be prescribed to assist the body in the metabolic process. Some type 2 scenarios may require insulin as well. Each case is unique.
Blood sugar level can also go low, called hypoglycemia. This can occur when the insulin or medication intake is overcompensated. Hypoglycemia has a long list of symptoms. Early signs include sweating, headaches, dizziness, and tremors. Untreated, it can produce numbness, seizure, and loss of consciousness.
To deal with the immediate effects of low blood sugar, diabetics will carry around sweets or a kit with a glucose shot.
Individuals with diabetes have become accustomed to a series of regimens to keep their glucose in the target range. This will include insulin or medication, strict diet, exercise, and several routine tests.
They may also wear a bracelet or necklace (or even a tattoo) featuring a symbol indicating he/she is diabetic and who to contact in emergency. In addition to regular doctor’s visits and testing – particularly for a youth who may not be accustomed to the discipline necessary – a diabetic may have a health care team assigned to help administer their unique program.
Holistic Diabetes Remedies
Anyone with diabetes must continue all medical advice and insulin regimen, and if you or anyone suspects they may be diabetic, the standard medical tests should be done at once.
But beyond that, there are some basic steps that have been found to help with managing diabetes:
- Reduce or eliminate sugar, saturated fats, and trans fat from your diet.
- Proper nutrition, eating plenty of fresh vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes.
- Do not skip meals.
- Vitamin D has been found to help with diabetes.
- Choose fish or plant-based proteins over poultry or red meat.
- Get regular exercise.
- Reduce stress.
- Get proper sleep.
Non-Diabetic Hyperglycemia and Hypoglycemia
Is it possible to have high blood sugar (hyperglycemia) or low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) without being diabetic? The answer is yes. Causes of both conditions can vary, but include certain medications, antidepressant and antipsychotic drugs (Zyprexa, Cymbalta), alcohol, and street drugs. Other factors that can affect blood glucose levels are disorders of the cardiovascular system, liver, pancreas, and kidneys. Natural or holistic methods to address high or low blood sugar would include the same points listed above.
Further study and Solutions
The subjects of diabetes and blood sugar are extensive and could not possibly be covered in one short article. To help you further study managing diabetes, we have provided a list of references featuring a cross-section of views:
- National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse (NDIC)
- Eight Remedies To Treat Diabetes Naturally
- Reducing Diabetes with a Natural Diet
- Natural Treatments for Diabetes
- Another Disastrous Diabetes Drug
- Diabetes Information for Teens
- Non-diabetic Hyperglycemia
- Non-diabetic Hypoglycemia
- Home Remedies for Hyperglycemia
- Herbal Remedies for Hypoglycemia