Too Much Sugar
Here, There, and Everywhere
If you have diabetes, it simply means that your body’s glucose (blood sugar) delivery system is “kaput” or not working properly. In plain language, diabetes occurs when the body loses the ability to self-regulate blood sugar levels in the body. Either your pancreas is not making enough insulin to meet your needs, or your cells are not able to receive “the-sugar-delivery” that your insulin is trying to make. Before we look at the different kinds of diabetes, let’s look at the warning signs that may indicate you have a problem. People with high blood sugar levels also tend to have high blood pressure and cholesterol. This “triple crown” is not the preakness, but metabolic (stress) syndrome, and more common than you think. The three conditions are almost always tied together.
Many people are surprised when their doctor hands them a diabetes or a prediabetes diagnosis. They go for a routine checkup and their lab work comes back with the bad news that their blood sugar is way too high. But if they were really paying attention, they wouldn’t be surprised. As diabetes develops, it announces itself in all kinds of ways:
- Feeling thirsty,
- Frequent trips to the bathroom,
- Weakness and fatigue,
- Numbness and tingling in your feet (neuropathy),
- Blurred vision,
- Significant weight loss,
- Skin problems, and
- Frequent infections and wounds slow to heal.
It’s easy to get labeled “diabetic” when your blood sugar levels come back high after a random lab test, but that doesn’t mean you have full-blown diabetes. It does mean, however, you have to start paying attention and take action to find a health practitioner who can figure out why your sugar levels are up, rather than just following the standard-medical-bucket-of-care that is customary for the treatment of diabetes.
One of the major reasons people develop abnormalities in blood sugar levels is that they don’t exercise. Exercising changes the way our bodies process foods and respond to insulin. Another reason is eating large food portions that overwhelm your pancreas. There are all kinds of reasons why your blood sugar reading may be too high, and some of those are not diabetes.
Other Contributing Factors:
- Vitamin and Mineral deficiency,
- Lack of sleep,
- Intense exercise, and for some,
- Protein consumption.
Types of Diabetes
Approximately 120 million people in the USA are “diabetic” or “prediabetic”, Type 2 diabetes accounts for about 90% of the cases. Diabetes is divided into categories, and each is characterized by its own set of symptoms and circumstances. While diabetes is usually referred to as a “group of diseases”, they all suffer from a single warning sign—“high blood sugar”—the state of having excessive glucose in the blood due to inadequate insulin production or the body’s cells not responding properly to glucose.
- Prediabetes arises when a person’s blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed as Type 2 diabetic. It is preventable and reversible with lifestyle changes. A fasting blood sugar reading between 110 – 126 mg/dL indicates impaired glucose tolerance or, prediabetes.
- Type 2 Diabetes happens when the cells cannot identify or absorb the insulin put out by the pancreas. It is the dominant form of diabetes and has reached epidemic proportions worldwide. It is preventable and reversible with lifestyle changes. Once called Adult Onset Diabetes, until it became common in kids and teens–especially in those who are overweight. If the fasting blood sugar readings are more than 126 mg/dL on 2 separate occasions, you are considered to be Type 2 diabetic. Click here to learn more about Type 2 diabetes, proper diet, and supplementation.
Type 1 Diabetes usually develops in children or young adults and cannot be corrected with diet or a change in lifestyle. Type 1 is genetically predetermined, and requires daily insulin injections to balance glucose levels.
Latent Autoimmune Diabetes of Adults (LADA) or Type 1.5 Diabetes is a slow progressing form of autoimmune diabetes. Like type 1 diabetes, LADA occurs because your pancreas stops producing adequate insulin, most likely from some “insult or infection” that slowly damages the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. Adults with LADA are often misdiagnosed as having Type 2 diabetes. Those diagnosed with LADA may be able to recover to normal blood sugar levels through lifestyle changes.
Gestational Diabetes can develop during pregnancy, usually during the second trimester, when the body does not produce enough insulin to meet the expectant mother’s needs. However, generally once the baby is born, the mother’s insulin requirement returns to normal and blood sugars return to normal. 5 to 8 % of all pregnant women develop Gestational Diabetes in the 24th to 28th week of pregnancy. A woman who is pregnant needs three times the normal amount of insulin. When the pancreas does not produce enough insulin to meet her requirements, she develops Gestational Diabetes.
Jonathan V. Wright, M.D., is known to deliver “one-of-a-kind expert advice about you and your family’s health that you’ve come to trust.” Hear him set conventional medicine straight about gestational diabetes and what you can do to prevent and even cure the disease!
- Type 3 Diabetes was discovered when researchers at Brown Medical School and Rhode Island Hospital realized that insulin is not only released from the pancreas, but also the brain. Type 3 diabetes is an extension of Type 1 and Type 2, and follows a similar path-physiology as Type 2, but in the brain. Insulin is needed to help the neurons in the brain absorb glucose for healthy functioning, and if the cells in the brain become insulin-resistant, it can lead to Alzheimer’s. Click here to learn more.
Vitamins, Minerals, & Supplements
to Help Control Diabetes
The problem with diabetes, it has a strong diuretic action (frequent urination) which results in loss of nutrients. Yet replacement of lost nutrients is often not considered with traditional diabetic or blood sugar therapy. The best way for you to get important minerals is by eating a healthy diet that is rich in dark green, leafy vegetables. But sometimes that may not be enough.
While there are many herbal supplements that may help control blood sugar (among them cinnamon, and resveratrol), it is important to first supplement with lost essential nutrients–whole food vitamins and minerals. Start with a good whole food supplement (Juice Plus+), then a vitamin-mineral, with extra magnesium, because over 68% of the U.S. population and 80% of type 2 diabetics are magnesium deficient!!
- JUICE PLUS+: This whole food supplement is non-GMO and gluten free; contains no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives; and contains no added starch. Click Here to see a full product label.
A low carb diet includes many vegetables, but not many fruits (because of their sugar content). Juice Plus+ provides your body with these important phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals without the sugar! Experts now recommend MORE than five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. To be honest, that’s not always easy, but Juice Plus+ makes it easier to supplement your diet with the most important active ingredients in fruits and vegetables without the high sugar content. Whole fruits and vegetables, fresh from the fields, provide the basis for numerous Juice Plus+ scientific studies (click here). For a complete list of Juice Plus+ products click here.
Find out what happened when Melissa added Juice Plus+ to her Diabetes Nutritional Protocol (Play 2 Minute MP3 Audio)
- MAGNESIUM: A diabetic’s ability to control blood sugar levels is closely tied to their magnesium levels, as the mineral plays an important role in insulin receptor cells. A study published in the journal Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism found that taking oral magnesium supplements helps individuals who have become insulin resistant avoid developing type 2 diabetes. Magnesium can have a strong laxative effect, you may want to try using transdermal magnesium therapy by Ancient Minerals Magnesium Lotion. Use transdermal magnesium oil (1-2 oz on the skin) or magnesium flakes in a daily bath or foot bath for 2-3 months—unless you have reduced kidney function, then precautions must be taken to prevent too much accumulation in your system. In one study, 51% percent of patients improved their blood glucose levels taking just 382 mg of supplemental magnesium (over 4-months), compared to just 7% taking a placebo [Diabetic Metabolism June 2015].
- ZINC: Low blood levels of zinc are associated with higher blood sugar (glucose) and greater insulin resistance. [Diabetes Metabolism April 20, 2015]
- THIAMIN (Vitamin B1): Diabetics are typically thiamin deficient. [International Journal Clinical Practice June 2011] In one study 100 milligrams of thiamin taken 3 times a day resulted in a significant decrease in blood sugar (glucose).
- VITAMIN C: Diabetics have at least a 30% lower circulating vitamin C blood concentration than healthy adults. [Nutrition Reviews July 1996] Supplemental vitamin C helps to reduce fasting blood sugar levels and long-term blood sugar levels (hemoglobin A1c) and normalizes vitamin C levels which are typically low among diabetics.
- VITAMIN D: In a 6-month study, 4000 units of vitamin D given to 30 diabetic patients significantly reduced their insulin levels and long-term blood sugar control (hemoglobin A1c).
In summary, minerals are absolutely essential to blood sugar health and insulin sensitivity. Rather than taking single minerals, you may want to take a single supplement with various minerals in it. There are several high quality formulas available: Dr. Dave’s Magic Minerals and Jarrow Formula’s Mineral Balance.
While many herbals supplements may help control diabetic blood sugar,
4 Stand Out and Should be Considered:
- RESVERATROL: In a study of adults with diabetes and fatty liver disease, resveratrol supplementation reduced insulin resistance, blood sugar (glucose) and lowered abnormally elevated liver enzymes. [Digestion Liver Disease March 2015] However, regular resveratrol has a very low rate of absorption in the body—75% of it leaves through urine and feces. Whatever does get absorbed only stays around in your body for a few minutes. Some of the better brands are:
- Resveratrol 100 by Jarrow is 100 percent trans resveratrol.
- Juice Plus+ Vineyard Blend is a whole food supplement.
- PolyResveratrol by Thorne Research contains pure resveratrol, along with ingredients that sweep away free radicals.
- NOW Foods Natural Resveratrol (GMP) Good Manufacturing Practice regulations promulgated facility.
- CINNAMON: Dosage may control effectiveness. A 40-day study of adult diabetics showed that 1000 mg, 3000 mg or 6000 mg of cinnamon reduced fasting serum glucose 18-29%, triglycerides 23-30% and LDL cholesterol 7-27% and total cholesterol 12-26% (effective as statin drugs). [Diabetes Care Dec 2003]
- BOSWELLIA: A dose as low as 400 mg has been found to be effective in humans. [Jundishapur Journal Natural Pharmaceutical Products 2012]
- GYMNEMA SYLVESTRE: A 400 mg dose of Gymnema was shown to reduce blood sugar readings and 5 of 22 subjects were able to discontinue using their drugs. [Journal Ethnopharmacology Oct 1990]
The above diabetic blood sugar supplement regimen works very well for most people. But please, if you are working with a doctor or another health care provider, let them know what you are doing. It’s best to have their support and supervision.
That’s because the supplements might reduce your blood sugar levels too quickly (hypoglycemia). Although reducing your blood sugar levels is exactly what you want to do, reducing it too quickly or by too much will cause hypoglycemia or unsafe blood sugar swings. And we don’t want that. Work closely with your doctor and keep track of your blood glucose levels.
If you are on medication, the goal one day is to get off them and just rely on a healthy diet and exercise (and supplements if they are appropriate for you).
Let me remind you again, as you eat better, take healthy supplements, and exercise, your diabetes will improve naturally.
A sensible approach to using supplements is to try one new supplement every few weeks. That way, you can see what kind of effect it has on your diabetes and general health. If you do well with it, bring in a new supplement at that point. Pace yourself. Another reason not to hurry is that if you add two or three supplements at once and begin to experience a side effect, such as stomach upset, you won’t know which supplement to blame. Also, bringing in two or three supplements at once could cause a dangerous hypoglycemic reaction.