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Diabetes Mellitus

Diabetes Symptoms resized with border

The highest prevalence of diabetes is found in Indian and African ethnic groups and even more concerning is the amount of young children that are being affected even at a very young age.  Known as ‘sugar’ disease in the African community where many of the long term complications like amputations, loss of vision are well known.  Diabetes is a disease which prevents the body from using sugar (glucose) in the blood stream normally.

The body’s supply of sugar comes from our food; carbohydrates, proteins and fats.  Our bodies convert all our foods down to glucose which it uses for energy.  Normally the glucose in the blood (the blood sugar) keeps within a constant level.  This is vital for optimum bodily functioning.  But in the diabetic it rises above normal.  This happens because the diabetic either lacks insulin and/or becomes insulin resistant.  Insulin is produced by the pancreas, a gland located behind the stomach. 

There are two categories of diabetes.  Insulin dependent and non-insulin depend.  Insulin Dependent sometimes called Juvenile onset Diabetes/Type 1 Diabetes, as it generally is diagnosed in young children, although some adults also might fall into this category.  Non-insulin dependent diabetes/Type 2 Diabetes is much more prevalent being diagnosed from teenage years upward. This chart shows the differences.

Type 1 Diabetes  Type 2 Diabetes 
 Young onset - less than 35 years   Older onset
 Rapid onset of symptomd eg ketoacidosis.       No obvious symptoms in the early stage
 Non - obese

 Obese 

 Body cannot produce insulin.

 Insulin secreation can be normal or abnormal. 

 Body cells are resistant to insulin.

 Generally managed with insulin injections, 

 diet and controlled execise.

 Generally managed with oral medication or injections,

 diet and exercise. 

Mild diabetes can go undetected for years. Correct food choices and supplementation can often prevent the progression of the disease and/or delay its onset.

Being aware of the implications and complications of diabetes is vital.  Because diabetes is a ‘silent’ disease it has profound negative effects on health on a daily basis, but perhaps more importantly are the long term negative effects.  The complications can impair vision to the extent of blindness, makes hypertension (high blood pressure) worse, causes kidney disease to the extent of kidney failure, affects blood vessels on extremities, such as hands and feet, to the extent of gangrene and amputation. Feet are particularly at risk.

Stabilizing blood sugar levels and improving control in small blood vessels can be a daunting task for many.  With some simple workable guidelines, good results can be obtained without drastic intervention processes.  Being a ‘silent’ disease though, many are walking around oblivious to the fact that they are walking around with a time bomb in their blood stream.

The people at the greatest risk of developing diabetes are the following:

  • Certain ethnic groups such as Indian and African
  • People 40 years old and older.
  • Family history. For example an immediate relative; a parent or aunt and uncle with diabetes
  • History of impaired glucose tolerance,
  • Sufferers of vascular disease like hypertension (high blood pressure), hyperlipidaemia (cholesterol problems), strokes
  • Women who had diabetes during pregnancy and/or women who delivered large babies (4.0kg or higher)
  • People who are overweight, especially when the fat is deposited around the belly.
  • Chronic hypoglycaemia

Common signs/symptoms:

By the time the following symptoms occur diabetes would be full blown: 

  • Excessive thirst (polydipsia)
  • Excessive urination (polyuria)
  • Urination at night while sleeping (nocturia)
  • Visual disturbances
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss (usually only presents if diabetes is very far advanced)
  • Infections – often persistent 

Before diabetes is ‘confirmed’ with a blood test it has been shown that metabolic imbalances in this area have been prevalent for at least five years previously.  It would be wise and prudent to intervene immediately when signs and symptoms of low blood sugar (hypoglycaemia) occur.

It has been suggested that hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) can often lead to diabetes.  This can be corrected and sorted with a hypoglycaemic eating plan and specific supplements to stabilize these pathways.  It would be wise to treat these symptoms and take the early warning signs seriously.

Be proactive:

Step 1

Ask to have a fasting insulin and fasting glucose blood test done. A finger pin prick test is not a reliable indicator of your blood sugar status. The graph is an indication of where the healthy levels of glucose in the blood should be.

If glucose fasting diagnostics are not conclusive, further medical testing needs to be done.  An ostrich mentality thinking that it will never affect me is damaging to oneself and irresponsible towards our families.

Step 2

Stabilize blood sugar levels with sensible food choices.  Three meals a day and in many cases two nutritious snack foods during the day are required.  Choose foods that are unrefined, unprocessed and as natural as possible balancing the protein and carbohydrates. Ensure that meals do not consist only of carbohydrates or a high ratio thereof.  Adequate fibre must be included with all meals. Cut out the fruit juices, cold drinks, sugar in teas and coffees etc. 

Examples of proteins: eggs, fish, meat, cheese, soya,

Examples of carbohydrates: Low GI breads, brown rice, legumes (baked beans/lentils), sweet potatoes.

Examples of fats: 1 to 2 teaspoons of vegetable oils per day. Use olive oil fresh. Do not cook with it as it denatures. Reduce all animal fats to a minimum.

Fresh leafy greens and legumes of all kinds are excellent as additional nutritious foods and help with fibre intake.

A quick answer in solving the food choice issue is to use On the Run.

Step 3

Aim for your ideal weight. For some it may mean a long hard look at portion sizes and the ratio between carbohydrates and protein on the plate. Their ratio must be the same. Short-term weight loss improves insulin sensitivity.

This is a serious disease and needs to be treated as such. 

Recommended Supplements:

Sally T. Glucose Tolerance Supreme

GTF4

Product Details

R 189,61


Because stabilization of blood sugar levels is of utmost importance this product provides a variety of nutrients that are crucial in the metabolic processes of glucose metabolism.   Deficiencies of any of these nutrients can impair this intricate process.  Feedback from a multitude of people have shown the efficacy of this product.

Sally T. Alpha Lipoic Acid:

ALA2

Product Details

R 119,22


To stabilize blood sugar further and balance insulin levels, extra Alpha Lipoic Acid has also been added to this pack.  An extra bonus of this is the unique qualities of Alpha Lipoic Acid in detoxifying the liver and assisting the excretion of heavy metals.  Its use as an anti-oxidant is invaluable.

Sally T. Stress Less:

StressLess9

Product Details

R 131,13


Blood sugar that is unstable and oscillates through the day is stressful to our bodies at a cellular and metabolic level.  By using this high potency B-Complex improved results are secured.

Sally T. NAC:

N-acetylcysteine (NAC) is a natural sulphur-containing amino acid derivative found naturally in foods and is a powerful anti-oxidant. It is produced in all living organisms from the amino acid cysteine. Being a powerful anti-oxidant it helps the body eliminate free radicals and heavy metals, which improves cellular health. 

On The Run:

On the Run5

Product Details

R 245,78


It can be used as a meal once, twice or even three times per day as well as a snack.  It is packaged in a sachet for convenience. Have a bottle of water handy and a meal can be had in an instance. It is a unique drink which actually gives the feeling of fullness, with very few kilojoules and no planning. The best for last!  

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