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

Entries Tagged as 'Psychosocial'

Mindfulness Leads to Better Blood Glucose

April 27th, 2016 · Comments Off

Credit: Pixabay

Better blood glucose levels are linked to mindfulness in a new study by Brown University researchers. Because sustained high blood glucose levels lead to the complications of diabetes and prediabetes, nothing could be more important for us.

The study measured several physical and psychological health indicators in 399 volunteers who participate in the New England Family Study. Eric B. Loucks, PhD, and five colleagues published the study, “Associations of Mindfulness with Glucose Regulation and Diabetes,” in the March 2016 issue of the American Journal of Health Behavior. Dr. Loucks is assistant professor of epidemiology at Brown University’s School of Public Health.

Only the abstract of the study is free online, but on my request a representative of Brown University provided me with a copy of the manuscript that Dr. Loucks had written for publication. This let me learn all the details of the study and provided an analysis of how the findings relate to those of us who have to live with diabetes or prediabetes.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

The Good News About Diabetes in 2015

January 22nd, 2016 · Comments Off

The year 2015 brought more good news to people with diabetes than any year since a doctor told me 22 years ago that my A1C level of 14.4 meant that I had diabetes. At that time I weighed more than 300 pounds and didn’t get any exercise.

But because I have been a journalist for most of my life, I decided to learn everything I could about diabetes. For the past two decades I have written about diabetes here, and for the past 10 years I have shared what I know about managing it in my posts and slideshows at HealthCentral.com.

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Phyllisa Deroze

I know that diabetes isn’t a progressive disease, in spite of what some people think. I also know that well-managed diabetes causes nothing. From my personal experience I know that you can be healthier than you ever were — if you get more active, lose weight, take your medicine, and cut your stress.

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Posted in: Diabetes Developments, Psychosocial

Did You Set Your Diabetes Goals?

January 18th, 2016 · 1 Comment

I celebrated the new year on December 21, when it started. Like me, you can celebrate it with good intentions for diabetes health.

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Most people celebrate ten days later on what our calendar says is New Year’s Eve. After a night of partying, it’s typical to respond with good intentions to turn over a new leaf in the next 365 or 366 days. These resolutions are made to be broken because we not only aim too late but we also aim too high.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

Diabetes Educators Can Help Us Manage Blood Glucose

January 13th, 2016 · Comments Off

Diabetes self-management education, which is known as DSME,  leads to a statistically significant decrease in A1C levels. That’s the conclusion of a systematic review of 118 studies. But this review doesn’t support the recommendation of the American Diabetes Association that the best time for this education is right after diagnosis.

The Worse Your Level the More This Helps

The review shows that this diabetes education typically improves blood glucose control by about 0.6 percent more than the usual care that we get. While this may not sound like a lot, it is. For example, if your A1C is 9.0 you can expect that it will drop to 8.4 after you get educated in this way.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

Give Thanks This Year for Your Diabetes

December 11th, 2015 · 1 Comment

During this holiday season, when most of us in the Western world have too much to eat, I encourage you to give thanks for the abundance we can enjoy even while we suffer from diabetes. Consider, if you will, what diabetes and gratitude have in common?

Actually, they share two important things. First, they share the month of November every year, and second, all of us who have diabetes have much for which we can give special thanks.

diabetes month

By presidential proclamation November 2015 is “National Diabetes Month.” On October 30, President Obama called on all of us to “raise diabetes awareness and help prevent, treat, and manage the disease.”

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Posted in: Psychosocial

Social Relationships Reduce Our Risk

August 24th, 2015 · 2 Comments

When you nurture your social relationships, you are doing something as important for your health as your physical activity, your weight, and the other well-known risk factors. For those of us who have diabetes, managing our blood sugar certainly has to come first, but nothing else matters as much as having a healthy social life.

Friends

If you are socially isolated, you increase inflammation in your body and damage your immune system. It can be a factor leading to diabetes, arthritis, and heart disease. But when you surround ourselves with supportive friends, even managing your blood sugar is easier.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

Reduce Stress to Improve Your Diabetes Control

June 27th, 2015 · 6 Comments

Article By Cathy Bykowski

Stress. Only six letters long, yet this word is so incredibly powerful. Stress has the ability to influence so much of our lives, relationships, moods, and health. For people with diabetes, stress can be particularly damaging. However, understanding what stress is, how it affects your body, and how to overcome it can begin to take its power away.

Stress is the result of your daily demands outweighing your available resources. At any given minute you have a set number of resources, which can be tangible, like money or food, or intangible, like time or patience. As long as you have enough resources to meet the demands that are placed on you, life is good. For example, your bills (demands) come in and you have plenty of money (resources) in your bank account. No problem – your demands are easily met by your resources and you have no stress. However, if the demands that are placed on you are greater than your resources, you feel it. For example, let’s say you are working against a deadline that is fast approaching. You may feel that the work you still have to do (demands) is much greater than the time left to do it (resources). This is when you experience that familiar feeling called stress.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

How Awe and Other Positive Emotions Help Us Manage Diabetes Inflammation

April 14th, 2015 · 11 Comments

The Awe Inspiring Site of the Grand Canyon

The Awe Inspiring Site of the Grand Canyon

(My Photograph from the North Rim)

We manage our diabetes better when we feel positive emotions, the most important of which is awe. This is the conclusion of research that the American Psychological Association’s professional journal Emotion will publish.

Jennifer Stellar, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Toronto, is the lead author of a study linking emotions and those proteins in our bodies that regulate inflammation. It connects with earlier studies had linked those proteins with the development of diabetes.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

The Best Trick to Get Enough Sleep for Diabetes Health

April 13th, 2015 · 7 Comments

Did you really believe that you need to get 7 or 8 hours of sleep every night to for your diabetes health? Most sleep researchers will tell you that. I even parroted their views in my previous article,“How Much Sleep Is Right for You?” But they’re wrong.

When we are wise enough, however, we can trick our body into believing that it has enough rest. In fact, a new study proves that this trick works.

The problem is that most of the experts fail to take into account the multiplier effect of an afternoon nap. But now some them have seen the light. The Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism a few days ago published their new study online ahead of print.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

How Much Sleep Is Right for You?

April 10th, 2015 · Comments Off

People have the smallest risk of getting type 2 diabetes when they get 7 to 8 hours of sleep at night, a new study concludes. Many of us get less than that, and it’s not hard to accept that we need that much. But what’s hard for me to accept is their finding that more than 8 hours of sleep is as bad for us as getting too little sleep.

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This study is a meta-analysis of 10 previous studies that Diabetes Care (a professional journal of the American Diabetes Association) just published in its March 2015 issue. Only the abstract of the study, “Sleep Duration and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes,” is available free online, but my friend and colleague, Dr. Bill Quick, sent me the full-text.

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Posted in: Psychosocial

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