Chapter 2.13 - Diabetes
In this chapter, Dr. Donache presents Complementary/Alternative Medical (C.A.M.) Therapies for the prevention and treatment of the different types of diabetes, including Type 1, insulin dependent diabetes, and Type 2, non-insulin dependent diabetes.
The chapter includes an overview of the disease's symptoms, conventional treatment methods, and alternative therapies, including Bio-Energetic therapies, Bodywork and Movement therapies, and Mental / Emotional treatments.
This chapter is taken from Dr. Donache's upcoming book, Finding Balance - Integrating Complementary/Alternative Medical (C.A.M.) Therapies for the Prevention of the Top 30 Diseases in America. Each section of chapter 2, which describes alternative treatments for each of the top diseases, is available for download on this website.
Table of Contents
Glossary of Terms Used in this Chapter
Additional Disease Descriptions and Treatments Available for Download
Table of Contents
- ABOUT THIS DOCUMENT
- CONVENTIONAL APPROACHES
- Testing for Diabetes
- Long-Term Complications
- Diet and Weight Loss
- Checking Glucose Levels
- Issues and Answers
- C.A.M. THERAPIES
- BIO-ENERGETIC THERAPIES
BODYWORK AND MOVEMENT THERAPIES
- Nutrition and Supplements
- Enzymatic Therapies
- Rainforest and Western Herbs
- Rainforest Herbs
- Western Herbs
- Homeopathic Remedies
- Essential Oils
MENTAL AND EMOTIONAL SUPPORT
- Therapeutic Bodywork and Massage
- Traditional Chinese Medicine
- Hatha Yoga Postures
- PRODUCT ORDERING INFORMATION
- GLOSSARY OF TERMS
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The two types of diabetes discussed here are Type 1 (insulin-dependent diabetes) and Type 2 (non-insulin-dependent diabetes). A newer category of diabetes has been classified as Syndrome X, highly treatable without the use of medications.
Type 1 diabetes usually is diagnosed in children or young adults. Type 2 diabetes, which is much more common, generally affects people after age 40. In one study, diabetes occurred in only 5.9% of men and 3.8% of women younger than 60 years, but in nearly 20% of men and women older than 85 years. Although still uncommon, of major concern is a significant increase in Type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents, most likely due to rising rates of childhood obesity.
Type 2 diabetes is caused by a complicated interplay of genes, environment, insulin abnormalities (reduced insulin secretion in the beta cells and insulin resistance in the muscle cells), increased glucose production in the liver, increased fat breakdown and possibly defective hormonal secretions in the intestines. The food we eat is broken down into simple sugars such as glucose, which is the source of energy for many of the body's cells.
In diabetes, the body has trouble using glucose, so blood glucose levels become abnormally high. The body does not make enough of a hormone called insulin, or if it does, in the case of Syndrome X, the body does not use the insulin right away. Early symptoms of diabetes may include the following:
- Extreme thirst
- Excessive Hunger
- Frequent urination
- Unexplained weight loss
- Blurry vision that changes from day to day
- Unusual tiredness or drowsiness
- Tingling or numbness in the hands or feet
- Frequent or recurring skin, gum or bladder infections
If left untreated, the long term complications of diabetes may result in:
- Heart Attacks
- Kidney failure
- Loss of limbs due to poor circulation (gangrene)
A physical exam, patient history and blood tests are needed to confirm a diagnosis.
One role of the pancreas is to regulate the amount of glucose in the blood. Tiny structures inside the pancreas called the islets of Langerhans secrete hormones. These islets have several types of cells. They include beta cells, which produce the hormone insulin. Normally, these beta cells release insulin after a meal. The insulin passes into the bloodstream. Both insulin and glucose travel to liver, muscle and fat cells. Insulin attaches to specific sites on the cells. This prompts a gate to open, which allows glucose to enter the cell, where it is stored or changed into energy. In diabetes, these functions break down and the body can no longer process simple sugars. In Type 1 diabetes, the beta cells cannot produce any insulin. In Type 2 diabetes, some insulin may be produced. It attaches to the cells, but gates in the cell walls may fail to open and less glucose can enter.
Lifestyle changes such as what you eat and when you eat, whether you exercise, smoke or drink alcohol, makes a difference in the course of diabetes. Blindness, cardiovascular disease, and dental problems are increased risks. Numbness in the feet may create unawareness of ulcers, sores, and poor circulation. Sexual dysfunction, poor circulation of blood, kidney and liver dysfunction may be problematic side effects of this disease. People with diabetes tend to develop heart and blood vessel disease earlier than individuals without diabetes. A healthy diet and exercise routine, coupled with adherence to a treatment regimen will help reduce these risks.
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Glossary of Terms
- Sugars and starches. Food that can be easily changed to glucose.
- A condition in which the blood sugar level is high.
- Diabetic Coma
- Unconsciousness that results when inadequate insulin therapy in a Type I diabetes patient leads to extreme levels of ketone acids in the blood.
- Fasting Blood Sugar Test
- A test that measures the sugar level in the blood after 6-8 hours of fasting.
- Glycosylated Hemoglobin (HbAk) Test
- A blood test that indicates blood sugar levels over several months.
- A condition in which the blood sugar level is high. Can lead to diabetic coma.
- A condition in which the blood sugar level it too low.
- Insulin A
- hormone made by the pancreas that helps the body use sugar by letting the sugar pass into the cells.
- Islets of Langerhans
- The areas in the pancreas that produce insulin.
- The substance that is produced when body fat is used for energy. A build up of ketones can lead to a diabetic coma.
- A medication for treating Type II diabetes. Causes the liver to release less glucose more efficiently by increasing insulin sensitivity.
- A gland near the stomach that releases insulin. Also produces fluids that aid in digestion.
- Any group of medications to treat Type II diabetes. Causes the beta cells of the pancreas to release more insulin.
- Type I Diabetes (Insulin-Dependent Diabetes)
- The form of diabetes that usually begins in a person younger than 30. In this condition, the body stops making insulin.
- Type II Diabetes (Non-Insulin-Dependent Diabetes)
- The form of diabetes that typically begins in people over 40. In this condition, the body does not use its own insulin supply properly. However, insulin preparations are often used in the treatment of Type II diabetes.
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