Monday, November 09, 2009

World Diabetes Day - November 14th, 2009

There are 5 days left until World Diabetes Day (WDD) 2009. This international campaign to educate and prevent diabetes is led by the International Diabetes Federation. On November 14th, 2009, join people all over the world in lighting a candle for WDD, or find out other ways to get involved.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

November is American Diabetes Month

This November, join the American Diabetes Association in a national movement to Stop Diabetes.

Here's how you can get involved:
  • Share -Inspire others by sharing your personal story by word of mouth, social media sites (Twitter, Facebook) and by blogging.
  • Act - Consider walking or riding your bike more often to get some extra exercise.
  • Learn - The ADA and are both useful resources for those living with diabetes or at risk for the disease.
  • Give - Help raise money for diabetes research and education.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Foot Care Tips for Diabetics

People with diabetes are at high risk for foot problems and lower extremity amputations. In order to lower your risk for foot problems, it is important for diabetics to care for their feet. Here are a few simple tips from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons which will keep your feet in tip-top shape, despite your diabetes.
  • Wash your feet daily with soap and water. Dry them carefully after washing.
  • Apply a rich moisturizer, avoiding the spaces in between your toes.
  • Trim your toenails straight across to avoid ingrown toenails.
  • Avoid antiseptics, sharp tools and using heating pads on your feet.
  • Prevent circulatory problems by quitting smoking.
  • Avoid sitting with your legs crossed.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Top 20 Super Foods for Diabetics

Here are the Top 20 Super Foods for Diabetics. Not only are these foods a great way to control your weight and blood glucose levels, they are also easy to find and prepare.

Join me in counting down the Top 20 Super Foods for Diabetics based on fiber content, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals:

20. Yogurt - an excellent source of calcium, vitamin B2, zinc and protein.
19. Tomatoes - high in vitamin C, potassium and lycopene. For optimal lycopene absorption, cook your tomatoes instead of consuming them raw.
18. Tea - whether you drink it hot or cold, tea contains antioxidants which may prevent disease. White and green teas have more antioxidants than black teas.
17. Soy - even if you aren't a vegetarian you can still benefit from the protein, zinc, iron and potassium present in soy beans. For maximum protein, try baby green soybeans called edamame.
16. Spinach - loaded with vitamins and minerals including B2 and B6, potassium, zinc, fiber and beta-carotene.
15. Raspberries - packed with fiber and vitamin C.
14. Red Onions - a good source of fiber, potassium and folate.
13. Oatmeal - the soluble fiber in oats can lower cholesterol, improve blood pressure and stabilize blood glucose. Oats also provide vitamin E, B, magnesium and potassium.
12. Nuts - walnuts, almonds, macadamia nuts, pecans and hazelnuts help lower LDL (bad) cholesterol. Nuts are also a great source of fiber, protein, vitamin E and healthy fats.
11. Melon - high in vitamin C and potassium. Includes watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, casaba and more.
10. Apples - the soluble and insoluble fiber in apples may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and may stabilize blood glucose.
9. Cranberries - packed with vitamin C and antioxidants.
8. Flaxseed - high in fiber and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a fatty acid with similar benefits as omega-3 fatty acids. Which brings us to...
7. Fish - salmon, trout, tuna, sardines, mackerel and herring are especially rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
6. Carrots - cooked or raw, carrots contain beta-carotene, which provides vitamin A, and are a great source of fiber.
5. Broccoli - with more vitamin C per 100 grams than an orange, fiber and beta-carotene, broccoli truly is a super food.
4. Beans - high in fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals.
3. Red Grapefruit - a truly heart-healthy fruit, rich in vitamin C.
2. Blueberries - fiber, vitamin C, antioxidants make blueberries effective disease fighters.
1. Asparagus - high in fiber, vitamin B folate and vitamin C.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Halloween Tricks and Treats for Diabetics

It's mid-October, and the only thing scarier than Halloween are the sugar levels of all that candy!

Here are some simple tricks-and-treats to keep help manage your diabetes, while still staying in the spirit of the sweet-filled holiday.

1. Remember, one piece of candy will not kill you. However, opt for sugar-free options if you feel the need to splurge.
2. If you have been suppressing your sweet tooth, Halloween is not an excuse for a candy buffet.
3. Just because you are diabetic doesn't mean you can't pass out candy to trick-or-treaters or take your own children out. Plus, there are always candy alternatives such as popcorn balls or coupons.
4. This is the perfect time to educate the neighborhood kids about sugar moderation and diabetes.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

H1N1 "Swine" Flu Vaccine to be Available Shortly

On September 15, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced its approval of four vaccines against the H1N1, or “swine” flu, virus. According to federal officials, 6-7 million doses of vaccine will be available starting the first week in October, with millions more doses to be shipped in the following weeks.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that the rate of doctor visits for flu-like symptoms is higher than typically expected at this time of year. However, the vaccines currently available for seasonal flu do not protect against the H1N1 virus.

Although there will eventually be enough H1N1 vaccines for everyone in the United States, healthy adults are encouraged to hold off on being vaccinated so that people who are most at-risk from the flu can receive the vaccine first. Those identified as at-risk include pregnant women, people who live with or care for children under 6 months old, health-care and emergency service workers, people from 6 months to 24 years old, and those from 25 to 64 years old who have a chronic health disorder, such as diabetes or a compromised immune system.

Since the flu is spread primarily by the coughing and sneezing of infected people, those who have the H1N1 flu are advised to stay home and limit their contact with other people to prevent the spread of infection. It is also important to wash your hands with soap and water or to use hand sanitizer to avoid spreading the virus through contact.

For more information visit the CDC's H1N1 "Swine" Flu page.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Managing Gestational Diabetes with a Diabetic Diet

3-5% of pregnant women will be diagnosed with gestational diabetes. While this condition is rare, it is important to know how to manage the disease during your pregnancy. One of the easiest ways of managing your gestational diabetes is by following a healthy, diabetes-friendly diet. The diabetic diet you follow during pregnancy will help regulate your blood sugar and ensure the health of your baby.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when planning a Gestational Diabetes Diet:
  1. Meet with your doctor to discuss your personalized meal plan that will be focused on helping you maintain normal blood glucose levels. Ask any questions you may have, and be sure you are clear on what foods are appropriate for you to eat as well as how much you should eat.
  2. Avoid sugar and all foods high in sugar. These will create unnecessary and harmful spikes in your blood sugar.
  3. Choose complex carbohydrates, including vegetables, grains, cereals, beans, peas and other starchy foods. These take longer to break down in your body and help regulate your blood sugar.
  4. Place emphasis on foods that are high in fiber in your diet, and choose foods that are low in fat.
  5. Eat bedtime snacks that contain both protein and complex carbohydrates to encourage your body to maintain a constant level of blood sugar.
  6. Be sure to eat 3 consistent meals a day with several snacks at similar times each day in order to provide adequate nutrition to you and your baby as well as regulate your blood sugar naturally.
For more information about Blood Sugar Levels and Pregnancy, please visit American Diabetes Services.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Disney to Air Hannah Montana Diabetes Episode

Disney Channel will air a special juvenile diabetes episode of Hannah Montana September 20th at 7:30 PM.

The episode depicts Miley Cyrus and Lilly (Emily Osment) reacting to the knowledge that Oliver (Mitchel Musso) has been diagnosed with Type I diabetes. The two girls then play "food police" at a sweet 16 party to keep Oliver away from certain foods.

Disney has also enlisted their own popular Type 1 Diabetes spokeperson, Nick Jonas, to star in a public service announcement to air during the show.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

The Diabetic Jet-Setter's Survival Guide

Air travel for diabetics has gotten progressively easier over the last 10 years, coming a long way from when diabetics were constrained to bus and train travel due to security concerns about diabetic supplies. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) have teamed up to offer time-saving tips for jet-setting diabetics.
  • Pack Extra Medicine and Supplies - Pack twice as much medicine and supplies as you will need. Put half of it in your carry-on and half in your checked baggage, just in case you lose your luggage or have an emergency situation.
  • Stock Up on 3 oz. Containers - Make sure your containers are less than 3 oz. and that they are stored in a clear, one-quart plastic bag.
  • Label Your Prescriptions - Make sure your name, pharmacy, doctor and dosage are identified on your prescription labels.
  • Box Up Syringes - There is no limit on the amount of syringes you can bring on board, but they should be placed in a hard shelled box for protection.
  • Identify Yourself as a Diabetic - As you approach the security check-point, make sure to tell security that you have diabetes. It is also a good idea to have proof of diagnosis of the disease, although this is not required.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Diabetes Increases Risk of Amputation

About 82,000 legs and feet are amputated each year in the United States because of diabetes. The disease affects 23.6 million people in the USA and increases the risk of lower extremity amputation by 15%.

More than 60% of all non-traumatic lower extremity amputations occur in diabetic patients. Diabetic feet are at risk because of the way the disease influences sensation, blood flow and ability to fight infections through neuropathy and vascular disease.

Many diabetics lose feeling in their feet as a result of nerve damage from poorly controlled blood glucose. Once the patient is without feeling in the bottom of their feet, they will not be able to notice if a sharp object pierces the skin or if the skin otherwise breaks, leaving the foot susceptible to infection.

The best way to prevent amputations is through patient education, preventative care and routine foot evaluations by a physcian. These evaluations recognize risk areas and test for sensitivity and blood flow to the feet. The physciain will then complete a plan for the patient which may include home care tips, follow-up appointments, corn and callus removal or the use of special shoe inserts.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Diabetic Eye Disease

High blood glucose can damage your eyes over time, which is why a person with diabetes is at risk for developing diabetic eye disease, especially diabetic retinopathy, cataracts and glaucoma.

Diabetic eye disease is the leading cause of blindness in young and middle aged adults and the longer you have had diabetes, the greater your risk. If you have diabetes, it is recommended that you get a dilated eye exam with an ophthalmologist at least once a year, especially since diabetic eye disease may be present without symptoms.

Here are some tips for diabetics to promote good eye health:

  • Eat healthy. Choose high-fiber, low-fat foods such as vegetables, lentils, beans and whole grains. Eat more fish and chicken. Avoid juice, soda, candy and fried or oily foods.
  • Reach and stay at a healthy weight. Get regular physical activity.
  • Take your medicine as prescribed by your doctor.
  • Monitor your blood sugar daily.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Get a dilated eye exam once a year. Have your ophthalmologist examine your eyes once a year. Finding eye problems early and getting treatment right away will help prevent more serious problems later on.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Not Getting Enough Shut-Eye May Increase Your Risk of Diabetes

An inadequate amount of sleep, coupled with lack of exercise and poor diet, may increase your risk of developing diabetes.

The results of a new study by the University of Chicago confirm that the ability to regulate one's blood sugar is dependent on how much sleep the person gets.

Five men and six women volunteered for the study. All were middle-aged, little overweight and exercised rarely. The study consisted of two 14-day periods: one where they were allowed to sleep 8.5 hours nightly and one where they were restricted to 5.5 hours of shut-eye a night. The volunteers were not allowed to exercise and junk food was made available to them.

When sleeping too little, the volunteers' blood sugar was higher on a glucose tollerance test and they became less sensitive to the blood sugar hormone insulin.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Diabetes on the Rise Among Hispanics

Diabetes is rising in Hispanic populations in the United States, according to 2008 statistics from the National Institutes of Health.

In general, Hispanics are diagnosed with diabetes at twice the rate of Caucasian Americans and many go undiagnosed.

According to the NIH, more than 10% of Hispanics in the United States older than 20 have been diagnosed with diabetes. At 12.6%, Puerto Ricans have the highest diabetes rate among Hispanics, but Mexican Americans and Cubans are not far behind with 11.9 and 8.2 percent respectively.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Living With Diabetes E-Newsletter

American Diabetes just launched a free community e-newsletter for news and information about living with diabetes.
Today's e-newsletter features an interesting article about lowering your glucose levels with cinnamon, information about managing diabetes with diet and exercise alone, and a delicious Shrimp and Snow Pea recipe.

Sign up for the e-newsletter today to recieve the latest news, information and recipes from American Diabetes.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

American Diabetes Launches Free Community Newsletter

American Diabetes recently launched a free community newsletter which includes free diabetic recipes, information about diabetes, news and breakthroughs in the medical field. The newsletter is free and signing up is easy. You can either sign up using the form at the right or on any page on Learn how to avoid foods that are high in triglycerides. Keep yourself in the loop with the latest diabetes news.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Black Tea May Fight Diabetes

According to Science Daily and the Journal of Food Science, black tea may useful in controlling diabetes.

Researchers from the Tianjin Key Laboratory in China studied the polysaccharide levels in black, green and oolong teas. Polysaccharides are a type of carbohydrate which may help retard the absorption of glucose in people with diabetes. The researchers found that the polysaccharides in black tea were the most sucessful at inhibiting glucose and would be the most valuable for diabetes management.

So, drink up! Whether you prefer your black tea hot or iced, with milk or lemon, drink to your health.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Caring for Diabetic Skin

People with diabetes can have complications with their eyes, heart and nerves, but what about the body's largest organ? According to the American Diabetes Association, as many as 1/3 of diabetics develop a skin disorder.

Here are some tips to make sure your skin is getting the care it needs:
  • Make sure your skin is always clean and dry. Sprinkle talcum powder in areas where skin touches other skin to reduce chafing, sweating and irritation.
  • Avoid hot showers or baths which can dry out the skin. Opt for lukewarm water and use a gentle moisturizing soap followed by moisturizing lotion.
  • Promptly wash any cuts or scrapes with soap and water and cover the wound with a gauze pad.
  • See your doctor if skin wounds appear serious or don't seem to heal.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Berry Delicious and Nutritious!

According to the US Department of Agriculture, blueberries and blackberries are among the top ten healthiest foods. These berries are loaded with vitamins and antioxidants that have been proven to fight cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
How can berries benefit people with diabetes?
  • Berries are all natural and low in fat, calories and carbs but high in fiber and vitamins making them the perfect diabetic snack.
  • Blueberries contain myrtillin and pterostilbene which help control and lower blood sugar levels.
  • Blueberries also promote circulation and strengthen capillaries and blood vessels to improve blood flow.
  • Blueberries are also great for your memory, eyes and heart.
  • Blackberries deliver 50% of your daily dose of vitamin C and are high in potassium which helps regulate blood pressure.
With all that goodness, it's a good thing its berry season! Stock up on berries: you can freeze them for later, bake with them, eat them as a snack, blend them into smoothie or toss them in a salad. Visit American Diabetes for Berry Recipe ideas.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Diabetes-Friendly Red, White and Blue Recipes for July 4th

The Fourth of July: A time for fun, fireworks, family, friends and FOOD!
Everyone loves an American themed dessert on July 4th. Don't pass on your favorite red, white and blue treat, make it diabetes-friendly instead.

Here's an Independence Day twist on a simple diabetes-friendly recipe:
2. Scoop the prepared mousse into a glass parfait cup, filling it 1/4 of the way.
3. Top with whipped cream until the glass is half full.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until the parfait glass is full. You should have four red and white alternating stripes (see image above).
5. Finish with a sprinkle of blueberries on top for a red, white and blue "Americana Parfait."

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

iPhone App Tracks Carbs, Insulin and Glucose

A new iPhone application from Universal Tracking System allows you to track carbohydrate intake as well as insulin and glucose levels. The App organizes your medical data graphically and by date to make sharing your blood glucose levels with your doctor or family a breeze.

Here is a video demonstrating the features of the App:

Monday, June 22, 2009

Dogs Sniff Out Low Blood Sugar Levels

Dogs in Britain are being trained to warn their diabetic owners when their blood sugar levels drop dangerously low. K-9s are already used to sniff out cancer, drugs and explosives, but this could be groundbreaking for diabetes care.

Dogs' hypersensitive noses are able to identify tiny changes in blood sugar levels which can indicate a hypoglycemic attack. 65% of people surveyed with insulin-dependent diabetes at a hospital in Belfast, Ireland reported their dogs reacting by barking, whining or licking during a hypoglycemic episode.

The Cancer and Bio-Detection Dogs research facility in Southern England currently has 17 rescue dogs undergoing animal training to be paired up with diabetic owners. The facility hopes the research will lead to the invention of an electronic nose to act just like a dog's nose and detect dangerous changes in blood sugar levels.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Diabetic Health Tips: Beat the Summer Heat

The Summer heat can sunburn, dehydrate and exhaust anyone. But those with Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes need to take extra precautions in the Summer in order to regulate glucose levels and prevent dehydration.

Here are some tips to keep you cool in the Summer heat:

1. Hydrate - When heat combines with high glucose levels, dehydration can occur very quickly. Drink plenty of water throughout the day, avoiding juices, sports drinks, sodas, caffeine and alcohol.

2. Avoid the Sun Between 10 AM and 2 PM - When the sun is at its hottest you are more likely to burn, become dehydrated and suffer from heat exhaustion. Exercise in the early morning or late afternoon to avoid over-perspiration which can dehydrate your body.

3. Keep Your Diabetic Testing Supplies Cool - Insulin and Glucose Meters should never be kept in direct sunlight or above room temperature. Keep your testing supplies in a cooler or insulated carrying case.

4. Monitor Your Blood Sugar - Heat causes blood sugar levels to fluctuate unexpectedly. Check your blood sugar at least four times a day and extra carry snacks when leaving home.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Father's Day Gift Ideas for Dads with Diabetes

Father's Day is just around the corner. If your Dad has Type 1 or Type 2 Diabetes, why not show how much you care with a gift that celebrates your Diabetic Dad? Here are a few Diabetes friendly gift ideas for Dads:

Low-Carb Gift Basket - Healthy, low-carb snacks are great for diabetics. Well Baskets has an all natural low-carb gift basket filled with vitamin and nutrient rich snacks like smoked salmon, pistachios and artisana nut butter.

Magazine Subscription - Men's Health, Diabetes Forcast and Diabetes Self Management all feature articles, information and news about Diabetes, health, nutrition and fitness.

Donate to the American Diabetes Association - Make a tax-deductable donation to the American Diabetes Association in honor of your Dad. The funds will go toward research to find a cure for Diabetes. Your Dad will also get a personalized e-mail or card with your message to announce your donation.

Cook a Diabetes Friendly Meal - Invite your Dad over for a Diabetes friendly meal. There are plenty of delicious recipes and ideas from American Diabetes. Whether your Dad loves Mexican, Italian, Seafood or American cuisine, American Diabetes has recipes for Appetizers, Entrees, Salads and even Desserts.

Remember - Father's Day is Sunday, June 21st!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

New Treatments Offer Hope for Type 2 Diabetes

According to a recent article, there are new treatments that offer hope for those with Type 2 Diabetes.

In this article, new medications and types of insulin continue to come forward each year. There are types of insulin ranging from rapid-acting to short-acting to long-acting. Multiple categories of diabetes pills are helpful ranging from sulfonylureas, biguanides, thiazolidinediones, alpha-glucosidase inhibitors, and meglitinides. All work in different ways to lower blood sugar, stimulate the pancreas to release more insulin, improve insulin's effectiveness, or block enzymes that help digest starches to slow the rise in blood sugar.

In the past two to four years, two treatments have emerged as growing choices among diabetic patients because they show the ability to effectively control diabetes with little risk of weight gain, a side effect for many patients.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Diagnosing and Monitoring Diabetes using a Spit Test

A new painless method was discovered in detecting diabetes, using saliva, holds promise, suggests research presented Friday at the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE) annual meeting in Houston.

If the research pans out — would forego needle-pricking patients, especially unappealing to the growing number of children with the condition. Instead, patients could simply spit into a cup. It also would cost a lot less as well.

Through the course of his team's research, Nagalla estimates they identified 487 unique proteins, approximately a third of which had not been previously found in human saliva. Of those, 65 proteins indicated a difference between patients with normal blood glucose levels and those with diabetes.

That doesn't rule out using traditional methods of testing diabetes, as using traditional monitors result in more accurate readings.

[Read the entire article here]

Thursday, April 30, 2009

The Cure for Diabetes? A Healthy Diet

Diabetes is one of the most deadly diseases in America. However, a change in your diet may be all it takes to lessen the effects of the disease. Research shows that 80% of new cases of diabetes are caused by lifestyle factors, including diet and exercise. 

A healthy diabetic diet is not unlike the South Beach or Atkins diet. The key is limiting carbohydrate intake, especially simple carbs and sugars. Keeping this one rule in mind will help regulate your blood glucose level naturally. 

This is why American Diabetes Services features diabetes friendly recipes for you and your family to enjoy. The recipes are intended to supplement diabetes treatment, but they are also a great preventative measure for those at-risk of developing diabetes. 

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Enjoy Great Tasting Recipes for Diabetics

Even though a person is a diabetic, that doesn't mean they are deprived of great tasting, delicious meals, especially desserts!

Here is a great recipe that is diabetic friendly for Oatmeal Cookies!

In order to make these diabetic cookies, you'll need the following ingredients:

* 1/2 c. margarine
* 1 egg
* 1 tsp. sucaryl solution
* 1/4 c. milk
* 1 c. flour
* 1/2 tsp. baking powder
* 1/8 tsp. baking soda
* 1 tsp. cinnamon
* 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
* 1/4 tsp. salt
* 1 tsp. vanilla
* 1/2 c. raisins
* 1 c. rolled oats

Cream margarine until smooth. Add beaten egg, sucaryl solution, and milk. Sift and mix dry ingredients and then add to first mixture. Beat in vanilla, raisins, and rolled oats. Drop by teaspoon onto greased cookie sheet and bake. You can use 1/4 cup margarine and 1/4 cup applesauce or 1 banana instead of using the full amount of margarine.

Check out the American Diabetes website for more dessert recipes, as well as side dishes, entrees and appetizers!