In early 2020 the entire world was reminded of a term not widely used since 1918 when it was used in conjunction with the Spanish Flu; the term is “pandemic” and is now related to the 2020 worldwide outbreak of the coronavirus (Covid19).
Most people are familiar with the term “Type 2 Diabetes” as it’s quite prevalent worldwide.
However, not everyone may know that diabetes is a pandemic. Yes, diabetes has affected so many people that it is pandemic.
This year the CDC in conjunction with the following organizations: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Division of Diabetes Translation, Indian Health Service, Division of Diabetes Treatment and Prevention, American Diabetes Association, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics and JDR collaborated and released a report with the following “quick” facts:
- Total: 34.2 million people have diabetes (10.5% of the US population)
- Diagnosed: 26.9 million people, including 26.8 million adults
- Undiagnosed: 7.3 million people (21.4% are undiagnosed)
- Total: 88 million people aged 18 years or older have prediabetes (34.5% of the adult US population)
I find the number of prediabetics especially troubling because that number includes only people aged 18 or older, and doesn’t address the number of overweight children who may develop type 2 diabetes and the complications that can occur. Insulin resistance is when cells in the muscles, fat, and liver don’t respond well to insulin and can’t use glucose from your blood for energy. To make up for it, your pancreas makes more insulin. Over time, your blood sugar levels go up.
That’s why it is so important to schedule regular physical exams with your primary care physician. Usually, blood work is ordered prior to the exam, and those results give your doctor a good picture of what’s happening inside your body. You may have no outward signs of insulin resistance, but the results of your blood tests show up in numerical ranges that tell your doctor exactly what’s going on.
The main causes of insulin resistance may be overeating (especially eating high carbohydrate foods) and increased body fat, particularly in the belly area. Other factors include high sugar intake, inflammation, inactivity, and genetics. There may also be other health conditions contributing to developing type 2 diabetes such as a fatty liver, PCOS, adrenal fatigue, and high blood pressure.
And if the simple act of aging doesn’t come with enough changes and challenges, diabetes often occurs after the age of 45!
Insulin resistance increases your risk for progressing to diabetes. You could be insulin resistant for years without knowing it. This condition typically doesn’t trigger any noticeable symptoms. So, it’s important that your doctor regularly checks your blood glucose levels, especially if you have what some describe as an “apple shape.”
Is there any good news?
One of the best ways to reverse insulin resistance is to lose excess weight, even a loss of 5% of your body weight will help! Eliminate as much processed food as possible, and learn to be a sharp-eyed label reader to avoid foods with added sugar. And, naturally, eating whole foods low in carbohydrates that are also nutrient-dense and fiber-rich combined with more physical movement and strength training not only helps you reduce, but will also improve your overall fitness and lower your blood glucose levels.
Getting enough sleep (seven to eight hours per night) and drinking enough water not only helps you lose excess weight, but also helps you feel more energetic and mentally alert. If you wonder just how much water your body (and brain) requires, here is a helpful tool to help you calculate the optimum amount of water you need.
I’m a transformational health coach with a passion for helping type 2 diabetics lower their A1C and blood glucose, lose energy-draining excess weight, improve their fitness, and better manage their diabetes. My mission is to help people with insulin resistance avoid type 2 diabetes.
Reach out to me through The Wellness Universe for a free strategy call to plan your new healthy lifestyle.
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I am passionate about helping people, especially those born into the Baby Boomer generation who find themselves overweight, overstressed and not physically fit.