Pre-Diabetes- A Widespread Epidemic
I recently sat through a presentation by a conventional medical doctor on Metabolic syndrome and Pre-Diabetes.
He was about 60years old – a bit rotund – and looked the picture of the typical male that just might have metabolic syndrome or pre-diabetes.
His approach was simple – prevention first, medications second.
His approach to prevention was just as simple – Review the suspect labs with the patient. Give the patient a blood sugar monitor to take home and tell them to “go fix themselves” and schedule a follow-up appointment in six weeks. If the patient returns unable to “fix his or herself” then medications should be prescribed.
While I agree with prevention as a first approach, I also strongly feel that a patient should be appropriately guided. The problem here is that the conventional medical doctor has neither the time or the education in nutrition to provide to this patient.
That means that a lot of folks will be prescribed medications without being given a real chance at reversing this condition. To me a real chance means that you get a coach who prepares you for the big game and you practice making changes, and you develop an understanding of the rules of the game before you get out there to face the opposing team. Then and only then will you have a fighting chance of winning.
Pre-Diabetes is serious because left untreated over time it will develop into diabetes. And we all know the complications of diabetes…not to mention it more than doubles the risks of heart disease and cancer.
Here Are the Sad Statistics:
46% of Californians have pre-diabetes (that’s nearly 1 in 2).
48% of Americans will develop pre-diabetes by age 50
Pre-Diabetes is determined via a blood test for both fasting glucose and a Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c).
Fasting glucose range 75-99 – normal
Fasting glucose range 100-123 – pre-diabetes
Fasting glucose range 125 or greater – Diabetes
HbA1c range 5-5.5 – normal
HbA1c range 5.6-5.9 – pre-diabetes
HbA1c range 6.0 or greater – Diabetes
Often I will see a person who shows up in my office shocked to find out that they are pre-diabetic. The story is similar in all of the cases. “My doctor was monitoring my annual labs and just this year told me I am pre-diabetic” (or in more advanced cases diabetic.)
There are risk factors that start to develop in annual blood work that serve as markers to the developing disease. Here they are:
Blood pressure >135/85
Fasting blood sugar range 100-125
Diagnosis of fatty liver
Here’s what I know to be true. Pre-Diabetes and Diabetes are not hereditary conditions. Just because your mother or brother has it doesn’t mean that you should accept that fate too. The likely culprit is the default way of eating that we have been introduced to by our families, our schools, and the community at large. Many of us cook and eat based on the way we were raised and the recipes of our mothers and grandmothers.
So pause here for a moment and think about the health of those family members. Do they have good health or poor health? That should give you a clue that you may have to change your way of eating.
Neither you or I have ever been taught how to properly feed ourselves. Nowhere in the education or the upbringing of ourselves were we ever taught this. It is something that I have had to learn for myself and something that I now share with everyone I know. Because in order to have good health each one of us needs to learn this. It is the reason I published Feed Your Cells and the reason I stick with the basics as the foundations of good health.
It is absolutely possible to reverse pre-diabetes. In fact, it is easier to reverse a pre- condition than it is to reverse an official one. (diabetes in this case).
I have coached countless patients on this and feel confident that with the proper guidance the outcome will be extremely positive. The really great thing about this process are the side benefits of weight loss, reduction of sugar cravings, appetite normalization, more energy, clear thinking and the list goes on. This condition is not your fate. You get to choose your own fate by making different choices.