The aim of this article is to give the reader a basic knowledge of the causes and symptoms of diabetes types I and II. The article will then go to describe some drug treatments along with the side effects. The use of a diabetes friendly diet and treatment with natural supplementation will be described. At the end of the article the reader, suffering from diabetes types I or II should have enough knowledge to make some objective decisions concerning their own treatment.
Diabetes Type I (insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus)
Millions of people suffer from adult-onset diabetes mellitus. The onset is usually from the early teens into the twenties. The main problem to this group of people is sugar. However, it is not sugar as such but how the body reacts to it. The problem arises when the body cannot produce enough insulin (created in the pancreas). The main symptoms include intense thirst, frequent urination, and rapid weight loss. Left untreated diabetes type I (noninsulin dependent diabetes mellitus) can lead to damage to the eyes, kidneys, heart, and nerves. Untreated diabetes type I can eventually lead to coma and death. The onset of this disease is so insidious that many people suffering this condition do not realise they have it.
Diabetes Type II (noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus)
Type II diabetes, which is often referred to as insulin resistance, is a little more complex. Usually not starting until the early to mid-forties the causes may have been building up over many years. In diabetes type II the problem is not just a lack of insulin but a defect in the receptors for insulin in the cell walls of fat and muscle tissue, and the liver. This causes an inadequate transfer of of glucose into these organs. The symptoms of an ‘insulin resistance’ are increased urination and thirst, worsening over a few weeks.
Long term complications of Types I and II are generally the same. However, people with diabetes type II can suffer high incidences of stroke, hypertension and heart disease.
Treatment By The Use Of Drugs
Insulin: there are many different trade names. Function: to control blood sugar levels in people with diabetes type I, and sometimes with type II. Side effects: raised cholesterol and blood pressure, obesity.
Oral Hypoglycemic Agents (sulphonylureas): tolbutamide, tolazamide, glipizide, gliquidone, amongst others. to lower blood sugar by stimulating the pancreas to produce more insulin. Side effects: increased risk of death from heart disease with long term use.
Biguanides: metformin hydrochloride (glucophage). Function: to increase insulin activity in muscle and fat tissue by preventing the liver releasing extra extra glucose into the bloodstream. Side effects: nausea, loss of appetite, and abdominal cramps.
Glucosidase Inhibitors: acarbose (glucobay). Function: to prevent a rise in blood glucose after eating a diet high in starchy, high-fiber foods. Side effects: wind, bloating, flatulence, malabsorption of nutrients.
Treatment of Diabetes Type I and II by the use of diet
Diet of the person suffering diabetes type I or II is extremely important. However, it needs to be tailored specifically to the individual as no two people benefit the same. The person with type I usually have to be on a very regimented diet. Calories must me managed precisely so that the correct dose of insulin is taken. Blood sugar level needs to be monitored at regular intervals to asses control of the disease. The diet of people suffering type II is somewhat controversial. The advice used to be to eat a low fat, high starch, moderate protein diet, similar to the diet healthy people are supposed to follow. However, recent research as indicated that this type of diet for the person suffering noninsulin dependent diabetes mellitus can raise insulin to dangerous levels (caused by high starch consumption). Anthropological studies (studies on our ancestors) have shown that there was very few cases of diabetes in the people of that time. Compared to the average person today these ‘hunter gatherers’ ate much more meat and animal fat, and ate very little in the way of grains and other carbohydrates.
Treatment Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus And Noninsulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus By Natural Supplementation
Bilberry: vaccinium is a fruit is a rich source of anthocyanidins and proanthocyanidins, which are just two types of flavonoids. Diabetes suferers often have damage to their capillaries supplying the eyes, kidneys, extremities. Flavanoids have been shown to protect capillaries.
Bitter Melon: momordica charantia contains phytochemicals that appear to work in the same way as sulphonylurea drugs (see above), without the side effects.
Gymnema: gymnema sylvestre contains gymnemic acid which acts on the tongue to block the ability to taste sweetness. This helps people with a ‘sweet tooth’ stop eating ‘sweet treats’. Gymnema itself appears to stimulate the the production of insulin.
Optimum Diabetics is a proprietary blend of all natural ingredients to help maintain the health of the person suffering diabetes types I and II. Active ingredients are bitter melon, fenugreek, garcinia, gmnema, vanaqdium, chromium, evening primrose oil, alpha lipoic acid.
It can be seen that there is no one clear cut remedy for the person suffering either type I or type II diabetes mellitus. The ‘jury seem to be out’ on the exact sufferers should follow. However, all corners agree that the now standard ‘western’ junk diet of high sugar, low fiber foods is bad for a diabetic. All agree that overweight can exacerbate both types of the condition. Therefore keeping body fat within the recommended range and getting some exercise can only do the diabetic good.