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Monday, September 28, 2015

86 Million People In The U.S. Have Prediabetes

Are you at risk? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 86 million people in the U.S. have a condition known as prediabetes meaning that an individuals blood glucose (sugar) is not normal, but it is not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. For anyone with prediabetes, blood sugar concerns begin long before a diabetes diagnosis. Without significant lifestyle changes to improve overall health, 15% to 30% of people with prediabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within five yearsplacing them at risk for serious health problems, including heart disease and stroke. But type 2 diabetes is preventable. Studies show that taking active steps to control your blood sugar levels can prevent or delay the onset of the disease.

What you eat makes a difference. Your pancreas makes a hormone called insulin. Among its various roles, insulin is responsible for controlling blood sugar levels. In an ideal state, the body maintains the blood sugar level in a moderately narrow rangenot too low (hypoglycemia) and not too high (hyperglycemia). Stability is key. Since insulin responds directly to what you eat, eating the right foods in the right quantities will provide you greater success in controlling your blood sugar levels without medical intervention. Leading diabetes research centers advocate for a daily diet consisting of a macronutrient ratio of approximately 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, and 30% fat as ideal to promote balanced blood sugar levels. But the quality of the foods you chose is just as important as the quantityaim for lean proteins, healthy unsaturated fats, and slower-to-digest carbohydrates, such as fiber-rich fruits and vegetables (avoid processed foods and sugars).

Nutritional support and increased physical activity can help. Burning calories through exercise helps your cells take glucose out of your blood, so daily exercise is beneficial to managing your blood sugar levels. But for some, exercise alone is not enough. In those instances, medical foods and targeted nutritional supplementation may provide key vitamins and minerals to support insulin and control blood sugar. They may also contain slow-digesting carbohydrates, fiber, and branched-chain amino acids (found in proteins) to provide enhanced support.

Schedule an office visit today to discuss nutritional and lifestyle therapies to help you manage blood sugar levels and promote overall health.

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