Half of Adults in the US Have Type 2 Diabetes or Prediabetes. Here’s What You Can Do to Help Protect Yourself…

10 Nov

Diabetes is a big problem.  If you have already been diagnosed, then you already know this to be true.  The dangerous thing is most people with diabetes or pre-diabetes have no idea they have it, and it is silently killing them.  People with type 2 diabetes are twice as likely as those without diabetes to have heart disease, and heart disease is the leading cause of death and complications for people with type 2 diabetes.  It appears that diabetes can affect the structure and function of the left ventricle (the heart’s main pump) before any heart disease symptoms are obvious.   Despite the importance of the heart, there are few treatment options to improve its structure and function.

According to a recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, in 2011-2012, the estimated prevalence of diabetes among adults in the United States (US) was 12-14%, and the prevalence of pre-diabetes was 37-38%, indicating that about half of the US adult population has either diabetes or pre-diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is out of control, and in most cases, it can be avoided through proper diet and exercise.  The first step is eliminating processed foods and sugar.  Just doing that can have a dramatic impact on the disease.

Besides that, exercise is a natural enemy of type 2 diabetes.  In fact, a new study in Diabetologia (the journal of the European Association of the Study of Diabetes) is the first to show that high-intensity intermittent exercise training improves heart structure and benefits diabetes control in patients with type 2 diabetes.  The authors write, “This study demonstrates, for the first time, that exercise can begin to reverse some of the early cardiac changes that are commonly found in people with type 2 diabetes.  Interestingly, the data also suggests that this type of high intensity intermittent exercise benefits both the heart and diabetes control, but the benefits appear to be greatest in the heart.  The strong positive effect of exercise on the heart is, although completely logical, a message that needs to be communicated to people with type 2 diabetes more clearly.”

They conclude, “The data reinforces how important a physically active lifestyle is for people with type 2 diabetes.  Our findings also suggest that exercise does not have to be 30 minutes of continuous exercise – repeated short bouts of higher intensity exercise gives strong benefits to the heart.  Getting more physically active is, quite literally, at the heart of good diabetes control.” 

Remember, we’re always here to help your body heal and maintain the pain free body you deserve.

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