Diabetes is a lifestyle dis-ease. The good news is that blood sugar imbalances, insulin resistance and diabetes can be managed and are 100% preventable! You can reverse diabetes naturally through a combination of diet, reducing toxic load, environmental and lifestyle lifestyle choices.
Conventional methods for managing diabetes usually consists of following a diet that is high in grains, fructose and omega-6 vegetable oils (the very items that lead to diabetes), low in protein, minimal healthy fats, and low fat and non-fat items, along with prescription medications such as metformin to manage diabetes, blood sugar and insulin. These drugs come with a laundry list of side effects including headaches, dizziness, sinus infections, vitamin B12 and folate deficiencies, stroke, kidney disease, heart disease, loss of limbs and eyesight, and they do not address the root cause or teach healthy lifestyle. There is a better way!
★ Eat nutrient-dense, organic real food! Make 2/3 of your plate fibrous veggies, colorful plants and leafy greens. Include healthy fats and an ample amount of organic protein. An article published in the Nutrition Journal concluded that a lower-carb, higher-protein diet is far superior to a low fat diet to reduce insulin levels and improve insulin sensitivity.
★ Avoid fructose corn syrup, processed carbohydrates, gluten, wheat and all grains. It is especially important for those who are insulin resistant, pre-diabetic or diabetic to eliminate all soda including diet soda, pasteurized dairy products, sugar, artificial sweeteners, fruit juices, high-sugar fruits, corn syrup, hydrogenated fats, omega-6 vegetable oils such as soybean oil and canola oil, grains, wheat, gluten, alcohol and tobacco.
★ Eliminate all boxed, canned, microwavable foods, fake foods and fast foods. Consuming fast food 2 or more times a week results on average, in an extra weight gain of 10 pounds and doubles the risk of prediabetes.
★ Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate! Drink a minimum of half your body weight in ounces of filtered water every day away from meals.
★ Enjoy green tea, white tea, yerba mate tea, dandelion tea and organic coffee. Stop drinking soda, including diet soda. Consumption of soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages are associated with an increased risk of metabolic syndrome, obesity and diabetes.
Just one sweetened drink a day raises risk of diabetes by 25 percent!
★ Coffee can lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 30 percent! Research in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that the components responsible for this protection include magnesium, phenolic compounds, and quinides that have been shown to improve insulin sensitivity. Other compounds in coffee have antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic properties. Just be sure it’s organic coffee.
Start your day with a cup of keto coffee: brew up a pot of organic coffee. Pour 12-16 ounces into a Vitamix or high-powered blender. Add one teaspoon of coconut oil or MCT oil and two scoops of of grass-fed collagen. Blend and enjoy!
★ Fruits: Diabetics and those with elevated blood sugar benefit greatly when they limit consumption of high-sugar fruits. The best fruit choices for those with insulin resistance and diabetes include tomatoes, berries, organic apples, avocados, grapefruit, lemons and limes. Blueberry and apple lovers have a 23% lower risk of developing diabetes. If you’re pre-diabetic or diabetic, limit fruit intake to just one serving daily.
★ Spice it up! Turmeric and cinnamon control post-meal insulin spikes and reduce the glycemic load of a meal. One study reported that 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon daily lowered blood sugar, cholesterol and triglyceride levels in those with type 2 diabetes.
★ No snacking! Every time you snack you raise insulin. Stick with three nutrient-dense meals. Less frequent eating has been shown to reduce glucose levels, improve satiety and reduce hunger compared to more frequent meals.
★ Avoid all artificial sweeteners including NutraSweet, Splenda, Sucralose, Equal, TruVia, and aspartame, and any product with sucralose, fructose and agave syrup, which create an aggressive insulin response and increased visceral fat. If you wish to use a sweetener, sparingly sweeten with stevia instead of artificial sweeteners. Stevia will not elevate blood sugars and has zero calories.
★ Drink this beverage 5-15 minutes before meals (when you’re at home): 8-10 ounces of filtered water, 1-2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, the juice from a fresh lemon or a fresh lime, a pinch of each: Celtic sea salt, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and ginger. Drink this beverage before meals to reduce the insulin index of the meal and help digestion.
★ Close up the kitchen by 6:00pm and do not eat until 6:00am the next morning.
★ Prepare more meals at home. Doing so gives you complete control of what goes into your food.
★ Get to bed by 10pm at the latest. Aim for 7-9 hours every night. Lack of sleep disturbs lipid profiles, glucose metabolism, androgen production, cortisol and other hormones, blood pressure, body fat levels, immune function and memory.
★ Sit down for meals (without electronic devices or any distractions), eat slower and chew your food thoroughly before swallowing. A European study found that people who eat faster have high blood sugar and a two-and-half times greater risk of developing diabetes.
★ Heal your gut. Research has found a direct link between diabetes, intestinal permeability aka leaky gut and dysbiotic gut bacteria. Whether or not you have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, it is crucial to optimize digestion, identify any pathogens such as Candida overgrowth, fungal, yeast, parasite and bacterial infections, and heal the gut.
★ Manage inevitable stressors. Stress is a direct cause of type 2 diabetes (diet is the #1 cause). Many people are unaware that stress disrupts cortisol levels, which directly affects blood sugar. Stress comes in many forms including insomnia, sleep deprivation, underlying infections and viruses, poor diet, leaky gut, extreme temperatures, chronic inflammation, environmental chemicals and toxins, nutrient deficiencies, unaddressed emotions, and autoimmunity.
★ Minimize chemical exposure (heavy metals, fluoride, pesticides, herbicides, glyphosate, plastics, phthalates). It’s important to test for and rule out heavy metal toxicity. Toxins bind to insulin receptor sites on the cells and block the cells so they can’t respond to insulin, thereby increasing risk of diabetes.
★ Install water filters in your home, especially the kitchen and bathroom. Use only fluoride-free toothpaste. Fluoride as an endocrine disruptor capable of interfering with thyroid function, insulin production, and glucose metabolism.
★ BPA exposure (plastic water bottles, dental sealants, plastic wraps, thermal receipts, canned foods, and so many other items). A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) that found BPA is linked to heart disease, diabetes, estrogen dominance, cancer and liver problems in adults.
★ Diabetics benefit from monitoring glucose levels in a fasted state at least 2x/day before meals. If you’re exercising you will need to test your glucose levels more frequently. Glucose levels are influenced by carbohydrate intake, stress, glandular and liver function. When a fasting glucose level is >100, diabetes is imminent.
★ Beware of certain pharmaceutical medications and OTC drugs that raise blood sugar and also increase risk of diabetes. These include cholesterol-lowering statin drugs.
★ No blue light at night. Turn off your smartphone, shut down your computer and unplug the WiFi two hours before bedtime.
Study after study has found evidence that blue light at night raises blood sugar, influences metabolism, disrupts hormones, causes insulin resistance, and increases risk of diabetes, heart disease, depression, anxiety, and even cancer.
★ Spend more time in nature away from the city and polluted air. A study in the journal Diabetes reported that air pollution is a risk factor for diabetes. The results of the study revealed that people who already have an impaired glucose metabolism, so-called pre-diabetic individuals, are particularly vulnerable to the effects of air pollution.
★ Early morning sunlight. A study published in the journal Endocrine Today reported that increased bright sunlight exposure may be associated with a reduced risk for type 2 diabetes and heart disease by lowering blood insulin and lipid levels.
★ Know your lab values and balance your body chemistry with nutrition via a functional blood chemistry analysis. There’s a huge difference between clinical lab ranges versus optimal lab ranges from a functional health perspective. Fasting insulin, triglycerides, glucose, C-reactive protein, homocysteine, uric acid and hemoglobin A1C are important markers in assessing blood sugar management, diabetes, inflammation and cardiovascular risk.
★ It’s extremely important to rule out any hidden food sensitivities, heavy metal toxicity, Candida overgrowth, parasites, pesticide overload, bacterial infections, viral infections, mycotoxins, biotoxin illness, CIRS, and other underlying health issues that can be pre-disposing factors of inflammation, oxidative stress, autoimmunity, adrenal dysfunction, pancreatic dysfunction or other health problems that result in diabetes, insulin handling problems or hypoglycemia.
★ The power of movement and daily activity cannot be underestimated; from a brisk 20 minute walk to a 30-minute strength training session, it all counts towards reducing and eliminating the pre-diabetes (insulin resistance) syndrome and controlling diabetes.
★ Begin some form of exercise that you enjoy and be consistent!
★ Walking is excellent activity to start with for those who have been sedentary for many years. Research has found that a daily 3mph brisk walk decreases diabetes risk by a whopping 58%.
★ Strength training is far superior to steady state aerobic/cardio style exercise to prevent obesity, increase insulin sensitivity and manage blood sugar. Excessive long duration steady-state aerobic exercise increases cortisol levels, which elevate insulin levels.
★ Balance sympathetic activities with calming, mind-nourishing parasympathetic activities such as yin or restorative yoga, meditation, grounding, breathing exercises, spending time in nature, Qi gong and Tai chi, all helpful for optimizing cortisol levels and balancing hormones.
★ Diabetes drugs such as metformin are a band-aid to a lifestyle problem.
Metformin side effects: digestive distress, lactic acidosis and cause nutrient depletion (vitamin B12, CoQ10 and folate). Research studies have reported metformin’s effects on a variety of hormones, including decreased testosterone in men and lowering of thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) in both men and women.
Although we are each unique in our biochemistry, there are basic nutrients that offer nutritional support to manage blood sugar and diabetes, and help reduce cravings.
The obesity epidemic and the number of individuals diagnosed with diabetes and insulin resistance is at an all time high and will continue to increase due to unhealthy lifestyle choices. A study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development predicts that by the year 2020 nearly 75% of the American population will be overweight or obese. A shocking prediction: three-fourths of all Americans will be either pre-diabetic or suffer full-blown type 2 diabetes.
NOW is the time to take control and responsibility for your health. Health is a choice. You can avoid insulin resistance, balance your blood sugar, reduce your insulin levels, and prevent, manage and reverse diabetes.