Why resolutions don’t work…

Woah.  It’s been a debaucherous past month and after a bout of the flu, I’m starting to feel back to normal.  Normal, but not optimal which is something I resolved to correct a few days ago.

New Year's Resolutions

Then I read something that made a lot of sense.  It said that resolutions are more of a statement than a goal and that is much easier to continue a certain behaviour because by doing so our needs are being met.  For example, by resolving to go to bed earlier, I would need to consider the benefits I am obtaining from going to bed late.

cost vs. benefits

Perhaps I can watch more TV, have more time to myself, etc.  If I’m serious about going to bed earlier I must be realistic with the payoff.  I’ll be more awake and have more energy but I won’t be able to watch my favourite show.  You need to be happy with the balance you find for you goal to work.

F1.large

Back when I started my studies in Nutrition, I took a course about the social determinants of health, that is, things that affect the outcome of a person as related to the variables shown above  .  Regardless of an individual’s health status, in counseling people on making health improvements, the SMART goal model was introduced as an effective way of turning a desired outcome into reality.

SMART

My resolution was to “get back on track” which is a little broad.  To make it more SPECIFIC, I want to make sure I get at least 8 servings of vegetables a day.  I’m going to do this by having a morning smoothie, a morning snack of hummus and cut of veggies (2 servings), a salad at lunch (2 servings), and another salad at supper (2 servings).

reasons to eat veggies

This breakdown plan is MEASURABLE and adds up to 8 servings a day.  I have the money, time, and resources to make and plan my meals in order to ATTAIN this goal.  This plan of increasing my vegetable intake is RELEVANT to me getting back on track by increasing the amount of important nutrients that will enhance my energy level and vitality.  I’ll try this for the next week and reassess to see if any changes to my goal need to be made.

What’s your 2014 SMART goal?

THE DAILY DL (Dalai Lama):

“I have to be realistic about what I can and can’t do. So whatever I do has to really be worth it. I like to master the things I do.”

– Queen Latifah

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The Mailbox: Let’s talk about pee baby, let’s talk about you and me…

Let’s talk all the good things and the bad things that may be.  Let’s talk about Pee.

Gotta PEE

Dear HJ,
I know you’re obsessed with poop but what about pee? Pee must tell us something about our bodies. I pee a lot and sometimes I wonder if I pee too much or if I drink too much water? I find it annoying at night to get up and pee but I’m so thirsty all the time. Maybe that’s a separate issue. Also what color should my pee be, light I think?! Is it possible I just have a tiny bladder?! Are there food I can eat that absorb better/things to avoid.
Cheers,
Another East End Pee-er
Night
Dear AEEP-E
Doing a number one is mostly fun but sometimes as per your point above it can become a bit of a hassle.  But before you get frustrated with peeing so much, let’s look at the urinary system components and their function is keeping us in homeostasis – that is keeping an internal balance despite a changing external environment.
Homeostasis
Pee is the production of the urinary system which is comprised of the kidney’s, ureter, bladder, sphincter, and the urethra.
Urinary System
You can see above how the US (Urinary System) is anatomically constructed.  When we eat, our body takes what it needs for energy and cell repair and whatever is leftover needs to be excreted.  Poo is solid waste residue and you could consider pee the leftover liquid form of waste.  The average adult excretes about 4 cups of urine each day.
Urine is full of something called Urea and Urea results when proteins are broken down.  Urea travels in the blood stream to our kidney’s where the urea is removed from the blood via filters called nephrons.  Go nephrons!
Nephrons
Urea combined with water makes up urine and when it leaves the kidney’s it moves down the ureters to the bladder.  Every 15 seconds or so, a bit of urine is emptied from the kidney’s into the bladder (via the ureter).
BLADDER
The bladder is a cool organ which can store, in a healthy person, 2 cups of pee for up to 5 hours.  That feeling we get when we have to go to the washroom is a feedback system from the nerves in our bladder to the brain which tell us in increasing urgency that we have to empty our bladder – the more full the bladder becomes, the stronger the sensation becomes.
So, let’s breakdown your questions:
water
Q:  Do I drink too much water?
A:  It’s recommended to drink 8-12 cups a day (1 cup = 8 oz).  If you drink too much water it can lead to a problem called water intoxication when too much H2O causes the required amount of sodium in our body to become depleted.    Athletes may need more than 12 cups a day, and if so, it’s important to ensure that you’re getting enough electrolytes which will help you to avoid the issue of water intoxication.  If you’re a regular person and are drinking 12 cups a day…you’re good.
Q:  Why am I always thirsty?
A:  Constant and excessive thirst is actually a symptom of Diabetes – but if you’re healthy and that possibility has been ruled out, here are some other possible factors:
– Consumption of processed foods which tend to be high in sodium.
– Not drinking enough water
– Age.  As we age saliva production decreases leaving our throats and mouth feeling dry.
– Anti-Histamine medications
– Breastfeeding – especially important to drink 8-12 cups of water
– Humid and hot weather
– Exercise
1341812790306_5510190
Q:  I hate getting up in the night to go pee.
A:  Here are some tips to avoid disturbing your sleep from waking up to urinate via strengthening your bladder.  This applies to people who feel like they always have to pee during the day as well:
– if you genuinely feel like you always have to pee, speak to your doctor and discuss the possibility of an overactive bladder.
– do some kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles.
– build endurance.  Try to prolong the period of time between urination’s by 10-15 minute blocks.
– limit food that can be bladder irritants:  caffeine, soda, milk, tea, citrus, tomatoes, spicy foods, chocolate, synthetic sweeteners.
– keep your sodium intake (excluding athletes) to 2300 mg’s a day – that’s 1 tsp.
– avoid consuming more protein than is necessary. The general rule for protein consumption is between 0.5 and 0.8 grams of protein for each pound.  Ie:  130 pounds x 0.8 = upper limit.
– avoid getting constipated.  If that area of the body is full of poo, it decreases the size of the bladder and results in having to urinate more frequently.
big_Kegel Exercises01
Q:  What colour should my pee be?
A:  At least once a day, your pee should be a pale yellow.  If it’s dark yellow, it suggests you may be dehydrated.  If it’s totally clear, you might be drinking too much water.  Neon yellow?  Are you taking vitamin supplements?  These can sometimes cause the urine to appear a bright yellow.  Red?  Could be an infection (unless you’ve eaten beets) and you should see your doctor.  Murky, brown, cloudy, green, blue urine?  See your doctor.
Urine-chart
Hope this helps!
The Health Junction

THE DAILY DL (Dalai Lama)

“Happiness is like peeing in your pants.  Everyone can see it, but only you can feel its warmth”

–  Unknown Author

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What’s Your Favourite Healthy Breakfast?

eggs-on-toastSpicedOatmealShake1-copy-1024x682Porridge with berries (1)

When Biology Fails: Coping With Health Setbacks

Of all the books I’ve read on nutrition, Healthy at 100 by John Robbins was the one that really brought it all together.  This book is about how to extend your lifespan at any age by adopting a lifestyle that encompasses lots of movement, social ties, mental stimulation, and a healthy diet (lower in calories, saturated fats, dairy, and animal based protein and higher in fresh vegetables, fruit, nuts, seeds, and whole grains).  You can find more details on this amazing book in prior post Aging Joyfully: A Lesson from the Oldsters.

healthy_at_100

You may have heard the phrase, genetics load the gun, lifestyle pulls the trigger and I think it’s easy to feel by adopting a healthy lifestyle we are immune to illness or things going awry with our health.  If I eat well and exercise diligently, my heart will be protected and I won’t have to worry about Type II Diabetes.  By meditating, I can relieve stress, anxiety, and depression and keep my mind sharp.  By maintaining social ties strong, I will enhance my sense of community and feel supported.

healthy

It can be extremely hard to reconcile when something goes wrong even though great strides are being made to ensure that health is being maintained.  I was having a discussion about this very topic with a close friend and she had some wise words on the matter and she stated that “we are human beings, vulnerable to all the mysterious forces out there…that’s all….we can eat right, be fit, but we cannot control the many things about our anatomy and biology that confront us with.”  In that sense, our biology and anatomy can seem a little abstract.

genetics

So, how do we bounce back from either short or longterm health setbacks?  In Healthy at 100, Robbins describes this despair many feel when faced with such a situation and reflects upon a letter he received from a woman who became sick despite following a healthy diet and lifestyle.  Robbins responded to his reader and said:

“I hope in time she would be able to see that it is possible to make healthy choices, not in the belief that by doing so she would never be ill or die, but because she knows that suffering occurs in every human life, and she wants to prevent as much illness as she can and alleviate as much suffering as she is able”.

When Biology Fails - Pic 4

When faced with a health set back, it may be useful to consider productive coping mechanisms. Coping is best defined as “what people do to alleviate the hurt, stress or suffering caused by a negative situation or event”.  There are a few coping mechanisms that are thought to be healthy such as; mindfulness/cognitive techniques, exercise, and dietary practices.

Stress Reaction

In mindfulness, the idea is to try to stay in the present moment which helps prevent ruminating over the past and worrying about the future.  Mindfulness is practiced through breathing exercises, body scans, yoga, and sitting meditations.  The idea is to allow thoughts to pass without judgement through our mind.  Instead of attaching value to thoughts, we just let them pass.  The topic of mindfulness is quite expansive, but a great place to start is with a book called “Full Catastrophe Living” by Jon Kabat-Zinn who brought this technique into the mainstream.  Kabat-Zinn explores the idea that mindfulness can allow one to avoid a typical stress reaction and adopt a less harmful, stress response.  In the diagram above, you can see that the implications of reacting to stress, such is the case when dealing with illness, can in of itself cause health problem.  For some free online mindfulness exercises, check out this site from UCLA.

CBT Model

In cognitive behaviour therapy, the model outlines that thoughts, mood, behaviours, and physical reactions are all connected within the scope of our current environment.  By challenging distorted or unrealistic thoughts, we can improve our mood, behaviour, and physical health.  A great book on this topic is called “Mind Over Mood” by Dennis Greenberger and Christine Padesky.  This site has a complete toolkit if you want more information on CBT.

Exercise

Depending on what your health setback is, you may or may not be able to exercise.  If you’re able to even walk, this is probably going to help you feel better from a mental standpoint.  excercise causes endorphins and neurotransmitters that makes us feel happy to be released and simultaneously boosts the immune system.  It’s a great way to release energy and get your mind off your stressors, including illness and disease.  Workout out 2-3 times per week for at least 35 minutes at 60% of your max heart rate seems to offer the most immediate benefits.  Check with your doctor to see what type and intensity of activity is safe for you.

healthy-eating-plate-web1000

And finally, when you’re dealing with an illness or healing from a health related event, it’s crucial to give your body the fuel it needs for recovery.  Making sure you eat a balanced diet with lots of fruits and veggies, lean quality protein, and slow releasing carbohydrates is key.  One specific nutrient you want to look for at healing agents including Omega-3 (fish, flax seeds) which is very anti-inflammatory.  You’ll also want to load up on methyl donors which essentially help our body balance stress.  These include B Vitamins (folate, B6, and B12 especially which are found in large amounts in green leafy veggies), SAMe (must be taken in supplement form), and DHEA (also comes in supplement form only.  Check with your medical professional before taking any supplements to ensure their safety.

THE DAILY DL (Dalai Lama)

“Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity.”
– Hippocrates
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On the road again…stay healthy while traveling

Eating healthy while on the road isn’t an easy thing to accomplish but can definitely be achieved with some planning.  It’s pretty common to return home after a trip feeling sluggish, sleepy, and bloated – here are some tips to help you avoid those pesky symptoms.

1.)  Bring your own snacks.  When I travel, I try to bring a trail mix with pumpkin seeds, dates, pecans/almonds, and pistachios.  Pack it in a plastic ziplock and squeeze it in your backpack or purse.  Homemade muffins, Cliffbars, and of course fruit are other ideas.

2.)  Stay on a healthy eating schedule.  Eat breakfast!  Most hotels have a coffee pot so you can get some hot water and mix it with instant oatmeal.  Top it off with some fruit and nuts.

3.) Research healthy restaurants in advance.  As a general rule, vegetarian places offer a healthy array of nutrient dense foods that will keep you feeling and looking great.

4.)  Choose smart meals.  When eating out, choose lean proteins such as chicken, beans, and fish alongside salads, steamed veggies, and complex carbohydrates.  Bring half of your meal back to your hotel and ask the staff to store it for you – maybe you can eat the rest of it for lunch the next day.

5.)  Avoid drinking alcohol and coffee especially on the plane and make sure you stay hydrated by drinking water frequently.

6.)  Run. It’s the most versatile way of exercising when you don’t have a gym nearby and it’s also a fun way of exploring the place you’re visiting.

7.)  Get a good night’s sleep before you leave and while you’re on the road.  It’ll help keep your blood sugar levels stable and prevent cravings.

8.)  Take a multivitamin.  While traveling, we often get run down and are more susceptible to picking up bugs.  By getting enough sleep and taking a multivitamin you can give your body a crutch to lean on.

9.)  Fiber is your friend.  Arg, how many of you have had a rotten bout of constipation while on a trip?  A change in schedule can often bring on intestinal distress causing constipation which is really not fun.  By ensuring you get enough water and fiber you will be helping your digestive system big time.  You can get fiber from fruit, veggies, and whole grains.  If you’re in a real bind (pardon the pun) you can mix two teaspoons of milled flax seeds in a glass of water and drink that followed by lots of water for the rest of the day.  Water is the key to keeping things moving.

10.)  Bring wet wipes. Think about how many people have used the washroom and walked out without washing their hands.  Gross.  Stay germ free with these bad boys that are a travel staple!

Reduce Toxins Through Your Beauty Routine

I would like to think I’m a fairly “eco-aware” person because each year when we go camping, I refrain from washing for three full days as to not contaminate the lake water.

No, come on!  I do more than that.  Biking to work counts, as does reusing, reducing, and recycling.  When I was a kid, we had a compost in our backyard but urban living and hyper vigilant neighbours no longer allow this unique contraption.

But, have you ever thought about what your beauty routine is doing not only to the environment but also to your body?  I hadn’t considered this at all until I read “There’s Lead in Your Lipstick” by Gillian Deacon.  Wow, this book has really opened up my eyes to the plethora of harmful chemicals in everything from a bar of soap to toothpaste and face cream.

There is a list of the most 20 most harmful chemicals in the back of Deacon’s book and when I started checking my products…I found these in almost everything.  Example?  Lauryl Sulfate is in my shampoo – it’s a probably carcinogen.  My lip balm is made with petroleum derivatives.

Chemicals seep into our skin regardless of where it’s applied; feet, hands, head, or legs.  The toxins enter our blood stream and may impact one our multiple systems in our body.  All toxins eventually end up in the liver which may become overloaded over time leading to a weakened immune system.  An overtaxed immune system can’t combat allergies and diseases, and cancer.  This isn’t to say that toothpaste is causing cancer but anything we can do to reduce the load on our liver will help your overall health and wellbeing.  It’s of course, also better for the environment.

Soooo…I tried one of the recipes in the book and created my own deodorant.  I decided to try it out on a day where I was biking 20 km’s and working in a hot kitchen and let me tell you, I did not stink!  Tested on my main squeeze El Branno, my co-worker Amrita, and classmate Emily, I did performed a “drive-by” where they were forced to smell my pits and all reported no stench.

Here is the recipe:

1 tbsp shea butter + 1 tbsp coconut oil + 2 tsp baking soda + 1 tsp cornstarch + 15 drops lavender oil.  Melt the shea butter and coconut oil in a small pot.  Remove from heat and add other ingredients.  Mix well and store in glass pot/jar.  It takes about 1 day to thicken into a paste which you can then use!  Shea Butter and Lavender Oil can be purchased at any health store.  If you’re in Toronto, check out Essence of Life in Kensington Market.

Another DIY project I test out was a moisturizer face mask consisting of 1/2 an avocado mashed and mixed with 1 tbsp of honey.  I added a tbsp of oats and 1 tbsp of water as well since I have sensitive skin.  Smooth it on your face and rinse after 10 minutes.  My skin felt soft and had a nice sheen.

This book is FULL of amazing DIY recipes for every beauty product you can imagine.  It also suggests truly safe and organic store-bought products in case you’re pressed for time or have no desire to create a mess in your kitchen!

Check out David Suzuki’s “Dirty Dozen” chemicals to avoid in your beauty products:

http://www.davidsuzuki.org/issues/health/science/toxics/dirty-dozen-cosmetic-chemicals/?gclid=CLTUlpSaqLACFeUBQAodACj8WQ

The Great Vaccine Debate

Like most people of my generation, I received the typical slew of vaccines against measles, mumps, and polio as a child.  To my knowledge, these vaccines caused no side effects and protected me from some potentially harmful viruses.  Peripherally, I had heard some rumblings about vaccine controversy when Jenny McCarthy claimed they were a major contributor to her son’s autism – in fact, she even wrote a book about the topic called “Louder than Words: A Mother’s Journey in Healing Autism“.

I wanted to find out more on this topic so recently attended a talk called The Politics of Vaccines given by Dr. Chopra who was a Senior Scientist at Health Canada for 35 years and whose job it was to research and approve vaccines.  It’s important to note that Chopra was fired from Health Canada for speaking out publicly about the pressure he and a colleague ensured to approve various drug usage which may skew his views on the topic.

Throughout his speech, Chopra outlined the sort of politics that are involved in vaccine approval and gave an interesting example of how President Ford was believed to have approved and ordered $200 million dollars worth of a Swine Flu vaccine from Merck in 1976.  It was seen by some as a tactic in his re-election campaign that promised health to all Americans without taking into consideration the necessity or effectiveness of such a drug.

So, this brings me to the effectiveness of vaccines which essentially work by introducing an antigen in small amounts so that the body can create its own antibodies as a protective mechanism.  The problem as seen by some with vaccines is that the drugs go directly into your blood stream and therefore bypass some crucial components of the innate immune system.  There is a theory that skipping the innate immune system and going directly to the adaptive immune system is connected with autoimmune diseases 20-30 years down the line.  The innate immune system works in conjunction with the adaptive immune and skipping this first step is seen as potentially problematic.

When vaccines are given to children, there is a theoretical risk that the immune system at that stage of life is too weak to completely clear the virus and so it will lay dormant.  It’s interesting to note that the flu shot vaccine is contraindicated for anyone with a compromised immune system which includes; kids under 7, the elderly, and people with autoimmune diseases such as HIV/AIDS.

When we look at statistics showing the effectiveness of vaccines it’s interesting to note that those who are critical of vaccines often use graphs such as the one shown below to explain that the decline in communicable diseases is a result of improvements in sanitation rather than vaccines.

This subject is one of great debate and as we get more information from both sides of the argument perhaps a more definitive answer will come to light.  It must be a hard decision for parents who obviously have the ultimate goal of ensuring the health and safety of their children.  What are you thoughts on the topic – are you swayed one way or the other?

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Clean Sleeping Series: Insomnia

When I was younger, there was a period of time where I experienced relentless insomnia.  I’m talking, falling asleep as the sun started to come up…that kind of insomnia.  Every night was a struggle where the anxiety of going to bed would start at supper time and continue through the night with the level of frustration increasing as the hours passed by.

Luckily, the insomnia ended after a series of dietary and lifestyle changes but also by creating a sleep routine and improved environment.  All of these components are referred to as sleep hygiene, and simple modifications can make all the difference in getting proper rest.

You have complete control over your dietary habits and as you can probably imagine, the first thing to watch out for is caffeine.  The University of Marlyand Medical Center suggests that alcohol, caffeine, sugary and spicy foods be avoided 4-6 hours before bedtime.

Lifestyle wise, I do my best to get exercise most days of the week which tires me out and helps alleviate stress and anxiety – though it’s suggested that avoiding intense activity 4-6 hours before bed.  Making sure I go to bed at the same time every night has helped not only the quality of sleep I get but it’s also decreased my migraine headaches.  I do my best to get to bed by 10 pm and often read before hitting the sheets for a minimum of 8 hours per night.

What about your bedroom?  The environment of your room has a huge impact on sleep quality.  Here are some things to look out for:

– temperature:  keep your room cool but not less than 12 degrees (54 F).

– noise: try a fan to create white noise if this is a concern or try earplugs.

– light:  make sure you get exposed to enough light during the day and ensure that all light is eliminated at night.  This includes alarm clocks, watches, cell phones, etc.

Most importantly, keep TV’s, computers, cellphones, and work-related material out of your room.  It should be a place you associate with peacefulness and nothing else.

If you do experience difficulty falling asleep, it’s recommended to get up after 20 minutes of restlessness and do something outside the bedroom.  Read till you are drowsy, take a bath, hang out…but don’t watch tv.

For more on insomnia check out these excellent links:

http://www.umm.edu/sleep/simp_things.htm

http://www.umm.edu/sleep/cognit_theraphy.htm

http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/sleep-related-problems/insomnia-and-sleep

Sunscreen or Sunscam?

Coming from a fair-skinned Irish and British background, my parents constantly reinforced the importance of wearing sunscreen.  I have a blond brother and redheaded sister (see picture below) so Mr. and Mrs. Davies would time sun exposure in 30-60 minute intervals, pull us kids out of the water, and slather Coppertone over every inch of our quite white bodies.

Sunscreen, also referred to as sunblock, sun tan lotion, sun cream, and block out, was first created in 1938 by a German scientist named Franz Greiter and had a SPF of only 2.

What exactly does SPF (Sun Protection Factor) mean?  Let’s say that without sunscreen, I normally burn in 10 minutes.  Theoretically, wearing a sunscreen with SPF 15 would allow me to be out in the sun for 150 minutes (10 minutes x 15 SPF = 150 minutes).  In reality though, there are many factors which would decrease the allowable sun exposure time such as sweating, exposure to water, rubbing, and even clothing.

SPF numbers only tell you how much protection you’re getting from UVB rays even though most mainstream sunscreens protect against UVB and UVA.  What’s the difference between the two?

UVA – exposure can cause wrinkles, skin cancer, and general aging of the skin.

UVB – exposure can cause skin cancer and burning of the skin.

Here is where the controversy comes in.  Most drugstore sunscreens contain ingredients such as oxybenzone, benzophenone, octocrylene, and octyl methoxycinnamate which protect against UVA and UVB.  When these ingredients are activated by the sun, the chemicals are said to become carcinogenic which poses a problem once it seeps into the skin.

So, what can you do?  Firstly, sun isn’t bad for you in small doses.  20 minutes or so can help you absorb Vitamin D which among other functions helps us absorb calcium.  It’s probably a good idea to try to avoid too much direct sunlight exposure so here are some suggestions:

– Wear a hat

– Cover your arms and legs with loose-fitting clothing to avoid overheating

– Use an umbrella when at the beach

– Sit in shade when possible

If you are going to be in the sun, natural sunscreens that contain Zinc Oxide and Titanium Oxide are safe minerals that help block out harmful rays without reducing melanin production.  Make sure that you look for a non “nano particle” version so that the minerals do not get into your skin.  Here are some recommended brands:

Badger:  http://www.badgerbalm.com/c-24-sun-bug-outdoor.aspx

Heiko (Canadian Brand):  http://www.heiko.ca/

Kiss My Face:  http://www.kissmyface.com/

I plan on trying to utilize shade, wear hats, and covering up when possible.  Aside from that, I’ll probably invest in one of the three Zinc Oxide based sunscreens in order to enjoy the summer with a little more sun savvy know-how.

What will your summer sunscreen strategy be?  Post a comment and let us know!

Canada’s $15.2 billion dollar totally preventable chronic disease

By 2030 it is predicted that 370 million people worldwide will have Type II Diabetes.  What’s interesting is that in 1985 the worldwide T2D population was only 30 million.

How?  Why?

When we eat, our blood sugar levels rise and in order to bring the levels back down insulin is required.  Insulin is a hormone and it helps our cells absorb glucose, which is basically the form of energy we get once our food is broken down.  Type II Diabetes is the result of insulin becoming less effective in lowering blood sugar levels and the impact of this on the body is devastating which leads me to the “bad” of diabetes.

In the case of people with T2D, the pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin OR the body starts to respond well to insulin.  This results in weight loss, fatigue, weakness, nerve damage, blurred vision, dry skin, and infections.  It significantly increases risk of cardiovascular disease, amputation, eye diseases, and kidney disease.

Here are some staggering statistics:

80% of people with Type II Diabetes will die from cardiovascular disease.

The leading cause of non-trauma related amputations is a result of T2D.

50 – 70% of men with T2D suffer from erectile dysfunction.

The current cost of Type II diabetes to the Canadian health care system is 15.2 billion dollars.

Wow right?  Here is the good news.

95% of Type II Diabetes is caused by eating too much food and not exercising enough.  As obesity rates rise, so too does the incidences of T2D.  When we eat too  much the calories that our body doesn’t need are stored as fat and when all the fat cells are full our liver, muscles, and pancreas become a storage locker – specifically with the pancreas this is what screws up our ability to utilize insulin correctly.

So if your BMI is over 25 (check online here to find out what your BMI is:  http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/bminojs.htm) you need to shed some pounds or chances are you’ll develop T2D.

How?

Excerise more and eat less.

30 minutes a day of walking is enough to get you started and check here for some ideas on eating balanced meals:

https://thehealthjunction.wordpress.com/2012/01/04/healthy-eating-plate-snapshot/

Here are some other guidelines for you to follow:

– limit saturated fats (animal fat) and use mono or polyunsaturated fats instead (plant-based fats like olive oil).

– eat more fiber.  25 grams a day is a good start.

– drink maximum of two drinks a day

– talk to your doctor on seeing a dietitian or nutritionist to help you find some healthy eating solutions.