Diabetes

Stand Up for Health

February 22, 2013 Written by JP

Cost is one of the most popular excuses used to avoid good health practices. In some instances, there’s a kernel of truth to the assertion that money assists with the promotion of wellness. A few examples include greater access to medical care and a wider array of alternative and complementary therapies. On the other hand, exercising regularly, getting adequate sleep and stress management are usually completely free of charge. This past week, researchers from Kansas State University (KSU) added one additional, 100% free activity that just might save your life while, at the same time, lower projected health care spending. According to Dr. Richard Rosenkrantz, of KSU, “We know that with very high confidence that more physically active people do better with regard to chronic disease compared with less physically active people, but we should also be looking at reducing sitting”.

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Posted in Diabetes, Exercise, Heart Health | No Comments;

Coconut Sugar Review

February 1, 2013 Written by JP

Over the last few years, coconut sugar has become a serious contender in the natural sweetener market. According to proponents, it’s an environmentally sustainable sweetener with several advantages over common “table” sugar. For starters, it’s a rich source of the essential mineral potassium. Beyond that, coconut sugar also prominently features inulin, a prebiotic carbohydrate with a very low glycemic index that may support digestive and immunological health.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 2 Comments & Updates

Alpha Lipoic Acid Question

January 4, 2013 Written by JP

Today’s column is a response to the first health related question that was posed to me in 2013. During a recent consultation, a client inquired about the relative merits of an antioxidant compound commonly known as alpha lipoic acid. She noted that it’s frequently cited as one of the more potent antioxidants because it supposedly works in concert with other free radical scavengers such as glutathione and vitamins C and E. A recent review in Frontiers in Ethnopharmacology, a prestigious medical journal, supports this claim and details various others functions of a-lipoic acid including its ability to: a) chelate heavy metals; b) lower systemic inflammation; c) regulate gene expression; d) repair damaged proteins in the body.

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Posted in Diabetes, Heart Health, Nutritional Supplements | 20 Comments & Updates

Almond Butter Tip

September 14, 2012 Written by JP

If you follow me on Twitter, you’ve probably noticed that I regularly post tips about how I promote wellness in my own life. When putting together my “tip tweets”, I try to share information that is practical in nature. One example is the way I sometimes use almond butter as a meal replacement.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 7 Comments & Updates

Non-Alcoholic Wine

September 12, 2012 Written by JP

Recently, an intriguing study published in the journal Circulation Research made headlines in the mainstream news. In the trial, a group of scientists from Barcelona, Spain compared the effects of conventional and de-alcoholized red wine in 67 men at risk for cardiovascular disease. The researchers also tested the impact of gin in a cross-over, randomized manner. The surprising results of the trial revealed that only the non-alcoholic red wine induced a significant reduction in blood pressure. Specifically, they noted a drop of 2 mmhg diastolic and 6 mmhg systolic blood pressure. In real world terms, this equates to an estimated 14% lower risk of coronary heart disease and 20% decline in stroke incidence.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Heart Health | 10 Comments & Updates

White Kidney Bean Extract

August 20, 2012 Written by JP

What if you really could have your cake and eat it too? I’m not asking you to consider a profound philosophical concept, but rather posing the question quite literally. The dream of many dieters is to one day be able to eat high carbohydrate foods without familiar consequences such as high blood sugar, an unhealthful lipid panel and weight gain. Until recently, this was universally accepted as “pie in the sky”. However, nutritional scientists have uncovered certain food based extracts that may, in fact, offer hope in this arena.

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Posted in Diabetes, Diet and Weight Loss, Nutritional Supplements | 10 Comments & Updates

Sweet Potatoes for Diabetes?

August 8, 2012 Written by JP

Are sweet potatoes really healthier than regular, “white” potatoes? In a word: yes. For starters, the most obvious difference between the two relatives is the vibrant orange color of the so-called “sweet” variety. Carotenoids, much like those found in carrots, are naturally occurring pigments which impart this easily identifiable characteristic of sweet potatoes. Apart from their well established antioxidant properties, select carotenoids, such as beta carotene are used by the body in the manufacture of Vitamin A, an essential nutrient. But, that’s not all that sets sweet potatoes apart from paler potatoes. Sweet potatoes are also higher in fiber and Vitamin C, and equivalent in most other nutrients including potassium. However, before you feel too good about ordering a side of sweet potato fries, you should also be aware that they’re not all they’re cracked up to be – especially for diabetics.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 6 Comments & Updates

Is Maple Syrup Healthy?

July 23, 2012 Written by JP

Natural sweeteners, whether agave nectar, honey or stevia are often perceived and/or represented as reasonably healthy, especially when used in moderation. Support for this theory typically stems from two prevalent beliefs. The first asserts that natural substances are more compatible with the human body than synthetic counterparts, such as aspartame (Equal), saccharine (Sweet’N Low) and sucralose (Splenda). Secondly, there are claims that some natural sweeteners are actually good sources of nutrients. In both instances, modern science can help “separate the wheat from the chaff” when it comes to sweeteners of all kinds.

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Posted in Diabetes, Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink | 8 Comments & Updates

Pomegranate Juice Controversy

June 20, 2012 Written by JP

Pomegranate juice has been in the news lately for all the wrong reasons. In September 2010, the Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint against POM Wonderful LLC, a leading manufacturer of pomegranate extract and juice. In May 2012, an initial decision was announced which stated that some of the claims made in POM advertisements were deceptive in nature and/or overreaching. The order, put forth by Chief Administrative Law Judge D. Michael Chappell, specifically took note of representations that pomegranate extract and juice were capable of preventing, reducing or treating erectile dysfunction, heart disease and prostate cancer.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Heart Health | 19 Comments & Updates

Jicama Three Ways

June 18, 2012 Written by JP

One of my favorite, summer snacks is fresh jicama. It’s got everything you can possibly hope for in a healthy, low carb treat. Jicama is crunchy, refreshing and is kissed with just the right note of sweetness. This under appreciated root vegetable, which is also known as Mexican turnip or yam bean, is a noteworthy source of dietary fiber, potassium and Vitamin C. And, since it’s largely comprised of water, jicama is also an excellent way to stay hydrated as the thermostat rises. As a bonus, a generous, one cup serving of jicama contributes less than 50 calories to your daily tab.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 4 Comments & Updates

Berberine for Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome

May 23, 2012 Written by JP

Berberine is a naturally occurring plant alkaloid found in a number of medicinal herbs including barberry, goldenseal and oregon grape root. In China, a significant amount of money and time has been applied to investigating the potential of this phytochemical in managing a host of conditions and diseases. Diabetes and heart disease top the list of health concerns presently being evaluated. The findings of a current batch of studies may very well catapult berberine supplements into the bestseller category in China, the United States and beyond. Whether or not this turns out to be a positive development remains to be seen.

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Posted in Alternative Therapies, Diabetes, Nutritional Supplements | 7 Comments & Updates

High Fructose Corn Syrup

May 18, 2012 Written by JP

New research from UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine reveals that daily consumption of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) impairs learning and memory in rats. This finding has lead to a slew of headlines this past week with titles such as, “Sugar Makes You Stupid”. If accurate, this may come as a surprise to anyone who’s encountered one or more of the television commercials financed by the Corn Refiner’s Association. In the slickly produced ads, the prevailing sentiment is that HFCS affects the body in the same way as any other sugar source. In fact, there’s currently a push to rename HFCS to “corn sugar”.

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Posted in Diabetes, Diet and Weight Loss, Food and Drink | 4 Comments & Updates

Matcha Tea

May 14, 2012 Written by JP

It’s frothy. It’s green. It’s a type of tea, but decidedly different looking and tasting than most brews. It’s matcha! Whether you’ve tried it or not, you’ve probably seen matcha-based drinks being sold in coffee shops and health food stores from Los Angeles to Tokyo. The claim is that matcha is essentially an elevated form of green tea. But, is this assertion backed up by anything more than historical accounts and slick advertisements?

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Posted in Detoxification, Diabetes, Food and Drink | 7 Comments & Updates

Anti-Aging Travel Tips

May 9, 2012 Written by JP

If you’re a frequent traveler, you know how challenging it can be to remain on a healthy diet. Often times you don’t have control over what time you eat, where you eat or your dining companions. Changes in time zones, exposure to recirculated air on planes and the general stress of being in unfamiliar circumstances and locations add to the pressure many business travelers experience. In short, travel can contribute to the aging process and lower your defenses, unless you prepare a game plan ahead of time that will help you cope with the uncertainty of life on the road.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 3 Comments & Updates

A New Prebiotic Ingredient

May 7, 2012 Written by JP

There’s an old adage that says to avoid foods that contain ingredients you can’t easily pronounce. The purest interpretation might lead one to steer clear of processed foods altogether. I’m fully supportive of this philosophy provided that it works for you. However, in my experience, most people eat at least some pre-packaged or refined foods. And, much to the chagrin of purists, sometimes hard to pronounce ingredients are actually quite good for you.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 4 Comments & Updates

Nopal Cactus for Diabetes

February 22, 2012 Written by JP

Next week I’ll be taking my work on the road. More specifically, I’ll head down south to Mexico for a fact finding mission and informational exchange. One of the planned areas of discussion will focus on an edible cactus commonly known as nopal or nopales, as diabetes and prediabetic conditions (i.e. metabolic syndrome) are quickly reaching an epidemic level in Mexico. Nopales, when eaten as a part of one’s daily diet, may offer a valuable tool in turning the diabetes tide in Mexico and beyond.

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Posted in Diabetes, Food and Drink, Nutrition | 10 Comments & Updates