Prevention of Diabetes Type 1

by | Sep 1, 2012 | Features

by Dr. David Bachman

Diabetes Type 2 is a most serious disease fraught with many life endangering complications. In the past 30 years the incidence of this malady has doubled – especially in obese people.
There are certain things one can do to prevent this life shortening complication ridden disease:

  • Stop smoking
  • Lose weight – especially around the waist. Body fat causes cells to become resistant to insulin. As you lose weight your cells become more responsive to insulin. One study found that for adults 60 and older, modest lifestyle changes reduced the risk of going from prediabetes to Type 2 diabetes by 71%.
  • Abstain from a diet of red meat and processed foods.
  • Avoid high fat dairy products
  • Sweets – indulge in minimal amounts – those foods have high levels of sugar, calories, fat and calories with little nutritional value.
  •  Stay away from sugary drinks.
  •  Correct abnormal cholesterol levels – HDL below 35 mg/dl, triglycerides over 250mg/dl and high LDL levels over 100
    A sedentary lifestyle – the Diabetes Prevention Program recommends walking an average of 30 minutes a day five times a week.

    Uncontrollable factors:
    • Race – Hispanics, Asians, Afro -Americans and natural born Indians and Pacific Islanders have an increased incidence for Type 2 diabetes.
    Complications of Type 2 Diabetes
    Diabetes and Heart Disease
    Experts claim two out of three diabetics will die of heart disease and have a two to four time greater risk for a stroke than non- diabetics.
    Also, long time diabetics are at a greater risk for kidney disease, diabetes is the leading cause o kidney failure; in fact 44% of new kidney cases are from diabetics.
    Diabetes and Eye Disease
    High blood sugars injure the blood vessels of the eye, leading to diabetic retinopathy and loss of vision.
    Diabetes and Statins
    A new study conducted by the University of Glasgow, Scotland has shown taking high (80 mg. or more) doses of any statin raises the risk moderately for Type 2 diabetes for middle-aged and older women (about 9% increased risk).

    A new paper published in the JAMA, echoes previous studies that noted an increased risk of Type 2 diabetes in middle-aged and older women taking high doses of a statin compared to those taking a placebo.
    Steven Nissen M.D, a cardiologist at the department of cardiovascular medicine at Cleveland Clinic in Ohio stated, “The evidence is strong that high doses of statins slightly increase the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes; however, the evidence is equally strong that patients on high doses of a statin have reduction in cardiovascular disease.
    David Preiss, MRCP, clinical research fellow at Glasgow University said, “We’re certainly not saying that people should be talking high dose statins. “If you’re somebody who is at high risk for an event, it’s definitely favorable for you, but what you should be doing is every once in awhile getting checked for diabetes.”
    It has been predicted that one out of four Americans has been diagnosed with this insulin resistance problem. The malady is defined for a person who has a high blood sugar level higher than normal but not high enough to be considered a diabetic.

    There are usually no symptoms of this malady but it increases your risk of stroke and heart disease. Research has found pre-diabetics are likely to develop diabetes within 10 years unless you do something about it.
    For those with insulin resistance, cells do not respond normally to insulin, causing glucose unable to enter cells easily, this increases levels of glucose and forces the body to produce more insulin.
    Eventually your cells become more resistant to insulin and the body cannot increase insulin production. If this is unchecked, blood sugar levels rise and you develop Type 2 diabetes.
    Dr. David Bachman is a retired surgeon who practiced surgery and bronchoesophagology for 30 years. He and his wife, Marie, make their home in Russellville where they continue to pursue their zeal for life in the River Valley.
    Editor’s Note: As someone diagnosed first with Pre-Diabetes, I failed to take the ramifications seriously. Consequently, I became diabetic in my late 40s and now deal with high blood sugar and its control on a daily basis. Everyone would do well to heed the warning signs while prevention is still possible. 


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