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Diabetes Developments - A blog on latest developments in diabetes by David Mendosa

Entries Tagged as 'Diabetes Developments'

Eating on Vacation for Diabetes

March 7th, 2013 · 2 Comments

Everyone eats differently on vacation than at home. Those of us who have diabetes probably vary our diet less than others, but being away from our usual places always means eating different food.

On vacation we eat out more and usually go to restaurants that we have never seen before. For me, that’s one of the joys and surprises of vacation.

Since New Year’s Day I have been vacationing with a friend in a rented condo on Pine Island in Southwest Florida. Neither of us had ever been to this relatively undeveloped barrier island off the coast from Fort Myers and Cape Coral before.

Another friend, Dyveke Kanth, lives in Sweden and like me, follows a low-carb diet. She writes for the Swedish low-carb high-fat website LCHF.se and has followed a very low-carb diet for years. “I think that it is the only right way to eat even if you do not have diabetes,” she says.

When I wrote Dyveke that I was vacationing in Florida, she asked me, “How is it going with the food in Florida? Is there anything for you to eat there?”

A Reddish Egret Catches a Fish for its Breakfast
(Estero Island, Florida, January 15, 2013)

Good questions! I had the same concerns as I planned my vacation here. But finding good low-carb food here has not been as difficult as Dyveke and I had thought it would be.

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Posted in: Diabetes Developments

The Trouble with Glucose Testing

March 4th, 2012 · 6 Comments

A big new review shows that people who don’t use insulin are wasting their time and money when they test their blood glucose.

I agree.

And I still recommend that everyone who has diabetes test his or her blood.

Do I contradict myself? I don’t think so.

The new review comes from the Cochrane Collaboration, the most respected group that reviews scientific studies. Six European experts reviewed a dozen randomized controlled trials of 3259 people with diabetes. The review, “Self-monitoring of blood glucose in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus who are not using insulin,” just appeared in the Cochrane Library.

The main conclusion of the study is that, “Glycaemic control in patients with type 2 diabetes who are not using insulin is small up to six months after initiation and subsides after 12 months.” I’m surprised that it has even a small effect.

Actually, blood glucose testing doesn’t have any effect on our levels. Testing is a tool that we have to learn how to use. And few of us are lucky enough to have a doctor or nurse who will take the time to show us what to do.

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Posted in: Diabetes Developments

The New EndoGoddess App

November 11th, 2011 · 1 Comment

A few years ago I started to track the iPhone apps for people with diabetes. For more than 10 years on my website I have been tracking software programs that we can use to manage our condition. But I soon gave up the chase for diabetes apps.

We have far too many even to name. This afternoon I counted 355 iPhone apps for “diabetes.” All of these apps also run on the iPod Touch as well as the iPad. Another 111 are optimized for the larger screen of the iPad.

Since I have diabetes, an iPod Touch, and an iPad, these apps interest me greatly. Until now, the top app has probably been Glucose Buddy. Of the 639 ratings for the current version, 419 people give it 5 stars, the top rating. Glucose Buddy is easy to use.

But an important challenger has just appeared. I happened to learn about it while waiting for a bus at the Medicine 2.0 convention that I attended at Stanford University earlier this month.

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Posted in: Diabetes Developments

Fitness and Photography for Fun

September 10th, 2008 · No Comments

My new blog,  “Fitness and Photography for Fun” is a special part of my Web site. The reason for it is to inspire other people — particularly people with diabetes — to get the exercise they need in a way that they enjoy.

For me it’s photographing nature. For some people it’s listening to music they love on their iPod. For others it’s going out with friends.

When you do something that you love, it’s easy. Even if it’s also exercise. I make my exercise easy and enjoyable for myself by taking along my camera whenever I go out.

When I was in high school, I got my first film camera. I went digital a few years ago. I love to take photographs of the beauty of nature everywhere that I go.

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Posted in: Diabetes Developments

The Best Time to Lose Weight

August 13th, 2008 · 2 Comments

Any time is a good time to lose weight if your body mass index is over 25. So I’m surprised to learn that there is a best time.

A large study that the professional journal Diabetes Care will publish in its October issue indicates that if you have diabetes, the best time to lose weight is right after your diagnosis. Even if you gain back that weight, by taking off the pounds then you have a better chance of keeping your blood glucose and blood pressure levels under reasonably good control.

The study comes from Kaiser Permanente in Oregon and Washington, one of the country’s largest health maintenance organizations with about 480,000 members. Its Center for Health Research in Portland, Oregon, has taken the lead in analyzing the electronic health records of its members. This is one HMO that knows how the improved health of its members can improve the organization’s bottom line at the same time — and acts on that knowledge.
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Posted in: Diabetes Developments, Exercise For Diabetes

Living Longer with Byetta

August 11th, 2008 · 26 Comments

The diabetes drug Byetta can help us control our blood glucose and lose weight. That’s huge — and just the beginning of the story.

Full disclosure: I own 100 shares of stock in Amylin, the company that developed Byetta.

About a year ago, after the Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association in Chicago, I reported here how Byetta can reduce our risk of heart attacks and strokes. These are the most common and deadly complications of diabetes.

Now a study presented at the ADA’s recent Scientific Sessions in San Francisco indicates that the reduced risk to our hearts may lead to previously unheard of benefits. Taking Byetta can lower our chance of dying compared with other diabetes drugs. The Times says that the chance of dying while taking Byetta is about 75 percent lower than on the other drugs.
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Posted in: Diabetes Developments, Diabetes Medication

Conquering Sleep Apnea

August 7th, 2008 · No Comments

You can conquer sleep apnea. I know you can because I conquered a most severe form of it. And I’ve now even given away both of my continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machines, which is the standard treatment for overweight people who have sleep apnea.

About half of all of us who have diabetes also suffer from sleep apnea. While not all of us who have diabetes suffer from it, everyone with sleep apnea suffers. People lose their jobs because they nod off to sleep at work rather than at night. People crash their cars because they fall asleep at the wheel. Even those who don’t get fired or have traffic accidents suffer by being sleepy much of the time.

My fear of killing myself and my passengers by nodding off during an afternoon drive was in fact what finally persuaded me to seek treatment. Four years ago, when I finally began to get my sleep apnea under control with a CPAP machine, I wrote my first article about it. That article, for Diabetes Wellness News, is now online.
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Posted in: Diabetes Complications, Diabetes Developments, Diabetes Medication

Mouth Control

July 31st, 2008 · No Comments

Our mouths are key to diabetes control. And not just what we put in them.

How would you like to reduce your A1C level by 0.67 percent — like from 6.67 to 6.0 — without putting less in your mouth or even increasing your exercise? This third type of A1C control may be the easiest ever.

Research presented at last month’s Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association that I attended in San Francisco made this point. Dr. George Taylor, associate professor of dentistry at the University of Michigan, reported there on recent studies demonstrating the association between periodontal problems and the complications of diabetes. He spoke in the first symposium ever by dentists to ADA meetings.

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Posted in: Diabetes Developments

How to Eat Your Heart Out

July 28th, 2008 · 2 Comments

How can you turn down food that your spouse lovingly sets in front of you?

When does the bonding experience of emotional nurturing in sharing a meal with a loved one override your diabetes diet requirements?

Does the health of your heart ever trump intimacy?

A friend’s dilemma reminded me of these questions and a difficult part of my personal history. A quarter of a century ago when one of my unhappy marriages was failing, I wrote a poem that started like this:

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Posted in: Diabetes Developments, Diabetes Diet

Looking AHEAD to Weight Loss

July 6th, 2008 · 1 Comment

One of the biggest and most important diabetes trials is well underway. But so far it hasn’t received much attention. That will change

The Look AHEAD trial began in 2001 and is scheduled to conclude in 2012. In it they randomly assigned 5,145 overweight people with type 2 diabetes to either a lifestyle intervention or to enhanced diabetes support and education.

AHEAD is shorthand for Action for Health and Diabetes. We sure like catchy acronyms, don’t we!

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Posted in: Diabetes Basics, Diabetes Developments, Diabetes Diet, Exercise For Diabetes

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