Diabetes Prevention

April 29, 2014

Don Allred

Type II Diabetes is rampant in our society today.  There are roughly 20 times more diabetics in America today than there was in 1960.  Almost 10% of all adults in the U.S. have diabetes and that percentage is much higher for certain populations,  including Hispanic, Native Americans, and African Americans. 

If we don’t have diabetes ourselves chances are that we have a close friend, family member, or associate with Diabetes.

We don’t know for sure why the incidence of Diabetes has risen so dramatically over the past few decades, but there are a few factors that I believe are at least contributing to the problem that I would like to bring up for your consideration.   Based on the numbers, since pretty much all of us are at least at risk for developing diabetes,  we all should be interested in ways to help prevent and treat this condition.

Here are some recommendations I would have for all of us to help with this issue:

  1. Stop drinking soda or soft drinks. Most are loaded with highly concentrated sweeteners which make the glucose-control mechanism in our bodies work overtime to manage. Many of you will say, “Well, I only drink diet soda”.
  2. Don’t be fooled into thinking that artificial sweeteners in diet drinks do not put strain on that same glucose-control mechanism in our body. These drinks have fewer calories, but are not without culpability in this issue.
    In addition to soda, avoid an excessive amount of sugary foods, sweets, and highly processed carbohydrate-rich foods in your diet. These include white pastas, white breads, and flour tortillas.
  3. Maintain your weight in a health range. A Body-Mass Index of <26 is preferable. Keeping your waist smaller than your hips has also been shown to lower your risk of diabetes. Fat cells inhibit the ability of insulin to perform normally in our bodies.
  4. Get regular exercise. 150 minutes per week of walking, bicycling, swimming, sports, or similar exercise is recommended for all of us if we are otherwise healthy enough to exercise.
  5. Develop an “active” attitude. Stop taking the parking space closest to the store. When walking during your daily activities, add an inch to the stride of every step. Rather than asking your kids to fetch things for you in the home, get out of your chair and fetch it yourself.

Following these suggestions will help you and your family fight the battle against diabetes. They will also help you feel better and be healthier in many other ways.