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Understanding the Link Between Diabetes and Oral Health

I was 28 years old when I was diagnosed to with Type 1 diabetes. I experienced varied reactions: shock, fear, and confusion. I knew that this type of disease could be hereditary and so I dug up my family history. I called my mother who lives in another state and when I asked her about a family member who has had Type 1 diabetes, she told me that my paternal grandmother died from complications caused by the disease. Perhaps this explains why even if there are no physical indications that I am harboring this disease inside me, I still had it.

Doctor’s Warnings

When I arrived home from my checkup, I still could not believe that I have Type 1 diabetes. But looking back, I realized there were telltale signs of the disease that I just ignored. For instance, I would feel so thirsty but several glasses of water couldn’t quench it. I have small wounds that did not heal right away. Even the parts of my body that I scratched would become reddish and look infected. The doctor issued a list of the things that I must do to keep my ailment under control. Here are some of his advice:

  1. Avoid getting wounded 

My doctor warned me to be careful with my skin since even just a small wound can get infected and lead to complications. How about my regular manicure and pedicure? I might also get wounded in the process. What about my being prone to cutting myself whenever I slice something? All this made me wonder if I would be able to avoid the small wounds that used to be harmless.

  1. Change eating habits

Since I grew up at a time when fast food restaurants were the best places to have my meals, I cannot imagine weaning myself avoiding the crispy fries, mouth-watering burgers, and lots of junk foods that I keep in my room plus the bottles of soda that provide me energy each day. Shall I cook all the good foods the doctor recommended? What if I cut myself in the process? But the doctor was adamant that I cut my ingestion of foods that can make my blood sugar level skyrocket.

  1. Exercise regularly

This seems not to bring any problem because I work out regularly. This is the only advice that I welcomed with joy in my heart. Even if the doctor said I might do intense routines to burn all the calories in my body, I did not feel alarmed. This is just something that I love to do and if it is to fight off my disease, I am willing to spend more hours on it.

  1. Get enough sleep

My doctor told me that almost all patients that come to her office with extremely high blood sugar levels have spent sleepless nights. Lack of sleep apparently causes the blood glucose to shoot up. This is not a problem because I have a day job. The only issue is that I will miss all the movies I love to watch at home and all the books that I usually finish reading by dawn. But these are small sacrifices for my goal to control my disease.

  1. Keep a healthy mouth

Did I hear my doctor right? How does my mouth affect my diabetes? I did some research and discovered that too much sugar in the body can make the gums susceptible to diseases such as periodontitis. This can lead to some teeth falling. Infected gums, in turn, can make blood sugar rise. I take pride in my strong teeth, which made me miss several scheduled dental check-ups. Now, I searched for the best dental clinics in our area just to make sure that I would not end up toothless by the age of 40. I discovered there is a dental clinic just a building away from my workplace. I was told by my co-worker that an experienced Brunswick dentist has been treating diabetics who have mouth problems especially gum disease.

In the past two years since I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, I followed all the advice of my doctor. I changed my food preferences and eating habits, I exercised a lot, I never had any scratches, punctures, or wounds ever since, and I am now regularly visiting the dentist near my workplace. Now I have glowing skin from eating all the right foods, I maintain a healthy weight, and I have a slim body as a result of my workouts. Of course, I still have my complete set of teeth attached to healthy gums. I am grateful that I was told by my doctor that my oral health could be at risk because of my diabetes. If I had never known that it could be affected by my condition, I might be a toothless hag today. I can now say that I have full control of my disease, including my blood sugar.

The Benefits of Relaxing Meditation Classes

meditationLife can really be complicated and difficult. With the pressures of career and city living, you just get to a point when everything feels like it’s too much. Even when I strove for balance by going out with friends and having some alone time, I felt like it was not enough. 

A friend invited me to join her for a relaxing meditation class in Melbourne western suburbs. Curious, I decided to come and see how it can help me with my stress levels. I wanted a solution that not just dealt with the physical manifestations of the pressures of life, but at the same time, give me peace of mind. 

My purpose was not just to really quiet me from inside, and hopefully, that will help me better cope with what life throws our way. After all, there is really no way to completely run away from reality and hide from anything that can cause stress.

It has now been many weeks since my first meditation class, and I have really found the solution I had been desperate for. Taking the time to be quiet and still, clearing my mind of all thoughts, has really helped me find a balance. In three simple stages, I get to really detach from the stress of life and find a peaceful place. 

The first important stage of meditation is proper breathing. The key is to do it slowly and as quietly as possible. Once you have mastered this, it can help develop the power of concentration.

Concentration is the second stage. Especially in this day and age, it is difficult to really detach yourself from pressures of work, negative thoughts and emotions. But when you learn to concentrate, you are able to ignore these. You can focus your attention on one thing without being distracted.

The last stage is meditation, where you are completely at peace, silent and able to really pull yourself away from external things. This is the end goal of meditating for relaxation.

Although it might seem vague now, imagine being able to really separate yourself from stress. After all, most of the day you are bombarded by e-mails, deadlines, bosses, clients, sad news and all other things that actually weigh you down and affect your emotions. After mastering meditation, you will realize how much stiller and more tranquil you feel deep down inside.

If you are looking to try it, here are some tips for beginners:

  1. Participate in Group Meditation First

In the beginning, you will need the support of a guide. Joining a group can also help you get inspired and connect with other individuals on the same journey. It can eventually support your individual meditation when you eventually try it out yourself. In my experience, it helped me understand the main principles of meditation when I connected with other people. 

  1. Use Some Incense

The smell of incense will purify the air that you will be breathing in. At the same time, it creates an inspiring atmosphere that allows the body and mind to stay calm and still.

  1. Keep Your Spine Straight

When meditating, keep your spine straight and your body relaxed. Most importantly, try to be comfortable. However, do not lie down because you might fall asleep.

  1. Do Some Exercise Beforehand

If you feel a little restless before meditation, you can do some yoga exercises to help you relax and calm down. Or, you can also perform some breathing and stretching exercises.

  1. Try to Keep Your Eyes Open

If you are having trouble in the beginning, do not meditate with your eyes closed. You can choose an inanimate object to concentrate on the entire time. This way, you can improve your focus as well.

  1. Meditate Early in the Morning

This is the best time to do it, to be able to start your day right. For a beginner, try meditating for 15 to 20 minutes. Later on, you can do it for as long as you can concentrate.

  1. Choose the Right Music

The right kind will elevate your consciousness and create a positive environment for meditation. This can also help you tune out external noises that might distract you.

  1. Eat Afterwards

Meditating is easiest when you do it on an empty stomach, or at least two hours after your last meal. 

Meditation for relaxation has been key for me to survive the pressures of life, especially if you are in a demanding job. Being able to find balance has helped me become happier and even healthier. I could sleep better and felt less tension, this is why I decided to incorporate it into my weekly routine. So if you are feeling overwhelmed with life like I was, then go and sign up for a class right now!

Living with Diabetes and Keeping Oneself Healthy

Exercise for DiabetesDiabetes is a metabolic disorder that is characterized by the body’s failure to effectively utilize glucose for a variety of physiologic processes. For some individuals, they may have an inherently defective insulin mechanism where the body is simply not producing enough insulin to move glucose molecules from the blood and into the cells. In many other individuals, especially those towards their middle ages, diabetes is more a condition whereby the body’s insulin may be affected by other factors that severely undermines its ability to move glucose. For example, if the body produces sufficient amounts of insulin but has lost its ability to use insulin effectively, then the body is said to be in a state of insulin resistance. And this is what causes glucose to build up in the blood leading to a pre-diabetic state.

The relationship between diabetes and exercise is based on the physiology of glucose utilization. Cells need glucose primarily for energy. Studies show that sedentary lifestyle and faulty eating habits lead to obesity which is a major determinant in the development of insulin resistance. It is for this reason that, while hypoglycaemic medications can help reduce blood glucose, getting regular exercise and eating sensibly remain the cornerstone of diabetic management.

Physical exercise help burn fat to reduce the impact of insulin resistance. The more body fat that is lost, the better it is for insulin to perform its function. Furthermore, exercise can help reduce the stress which many diabetics have because of their condition. Cortisol, a major stress hormone, effectively blocks the production of insulin in an attempt to force the body to use glucose as fuel necessary for the fight or flight response during stress. Cortisol also has a constricting effect on blood vessels restricting the more efficient flow of blood. Diabetics who are in extreme stress are therefore, more vulnerable to the damaging effects of chronic hyperglycaemia. It is for this reason that exercise is needed to help bring about a more balanced sense of wellbeing and to mitigate the effects of stress.

One does not need to hit the gym in order to perform exercises. Any activity that can make you feel good about yourself and help you burn calories and lose weight are considered good for a diabetic. This means that you don’t have to really restrict your physical activity to those exercises in the gym. Here are some physical activities and exercises that are considered safe and effective even for diabetics who are already in their 40s and beyond.

  • Walking or jogging – Definitely one of the most practical ways to stay fit, keep your heart rate slightly elevated, and burn calories. Just make sure that you wear the correct shoes to mitigate the impact to your feet. One of the major issues of diabetics is the occurrence of problems in the feet. You need to make sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your feet.
  • Swimming – For diabetic individuals who may have serious weight issues, swimming is an excellent choice. The buoyant force of the water effectively minimizes the effect of gravity on body weight. Since the body is suspended in water, moving the different limbs can eliminate the impact on joints as well as the feet.
  • Water aerobics – For a more vigorous swimming activity, water aerobics will be a great way to stay really focused in burning those calories in a very efficient way. Aerobics in the water provides additional resistance training as the body attempts to move against the volume of water. This is something that is missing in an aerobic exercise in the gym.
  • Cycling – Whether it is a bicycle or a stationary or exercise bike, cycling is a fun way to help manage your diabetes. While the focus is on the leg muscles, it nevertheless helps in speeding the heart rate to develop cardiovascular endurance as well as improved muscle tone. Improving muscle tone can help in the more efficient burning of calories to help you regain control of your insulin functioning.
  • Tai Chi – While this may not really be considered a physical exercise in the strictest form, it does provide you an opportunity to be mindful of body movements. The goal is for you to manage your stresses, feel more relaxed and calm, and be able to mitigate the negative effects of cortisol on insulin functioning.
  • Dancing – You don’t have to dance the Zumba to gain control over your diabetes. Any moderate to high intensity dance can help you burn those calories while at the same time having fun. You are addressing both the stress component of your diabetes and the insulin resistance of your body.

There are other exercises that you can do if you are diabetic. The important thing to remember is to combine physical activity and good diet and you should do well in your diabetes management.

Foods that Defy Diabetes

diabeticsDiabetes is among the deadliest diseases in the world and more people are developing this condition yearly. The increasing number of cases is only a part of the disturbing facts about diabetes. A lot of the youth are having diabetes and this is very alarming. This shows that the disease does not choose what age, race, and gender of a person is before it attacks.

Food and Diabetes

It is a fact that the basic cause of diabetes is choosing the wrong kinds of foods in the diet. The simplest way, therefore, in combating diabetes is by making changes in what you feed your body.

The American Diabetes Association identified several food groups that give the most health benefits and this includes prevention of diabetes.

  1. Fiber- Rich Foods. A high fiber diet means inclusion of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, beans, and seeds. Not only do they make you feel full faster, they will also take those nasty oils and fats that accumulate in the bloodstream and eliminate them from the body. Fibrous foods can improve blood sugar control, lower the chances of having all sorts of heart diseases, plus make you lose weight by helping you not to overeat.
  1. Leafy Greens. Vegetables that come in a bright green hues means only one thing. They are laden with so many nutrients that are important in lowering the risk of getting diabetes. Experts have reported on the significance of green vegetables in the diet as they are associated with lowering HbA1c levels, one of the parameters used in determining diabetes.
  1. Non- Green Vegetables. Aside from the leafy greens, there are also vegetables that are full of nutrients despite being multi- colored. These are those non- starchy vegetables that are also proven good for diabetes prevention. Mushroom, eggplant, garlic, peppers, and onions are just some examples.
  1. Fresh Fruits. A good dose of fiber and nutrients won’t hurt, especially with those who want to avoid diabetes. Fruits are better alternative to sweet desserts so the risk is reduced further. There are even fruits like orange, melon, kiwi, and berries that have less sugar than others so glycemic effects will be minimized.
  1. Sprinkling some spice on your favorite food could help deter diabetes. Spices and herbs are rich with anti- oxidants that prevent some conditions that are associated with diabetes. Cloves and cinnamon will add more flavors, but will not increase blood sugar.
  1. Beans as Carbohydrates. Foods that are rich with carbohydrates are equal to consuming large amounts of sugar. With beans, carbohydrate is balanced with moderate protein and a lot of fiber. This means that the calorie content is reduced and less sugar is added on the blood. Diabetes can be avoided, but beans also serve as a great protection against colon cancer.
  1. Seeds and Nuts. For people who struggle with losing weight, a healthy serving of nuts and seeds may help. Seeds from pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower, plus macadamias, hazelnuts, pecans, and almonds are better choices than chips and other unhealthy snacks. They will also lower the chance of having insulin resistance which is a predisposing factor of diabetes.
  1. Healthy Protein. Most protein- rich meat in the market is laden with bad fat. There are healthy kinds of protein like salmon, sardines, and other kinds of fish that are rich with Omega- 3. Prawns and scallops too have this kind of healthy oil. For poultry, those that are organic or were fed with grass instead of feeds are the best.
  1. Green tea. Diabetics can drink coffee (no sugar). Although green tea has some amounts of caffeine, it can be tolerated and it has both detoxifying and antioxidant properties which are good for cleansing the body of everything bad including excess sugar.
  1. Some people love to munch on dried seaweed snacks. This is pretty good considering that seaweeds like nori, kombu, and wakami all contain minerals, protein, as well as healing compounds.

Once you are inflicted with diabetes, you suffer for the rest of your life. A lot of those who have it often regret their food choices prior to the condition. They relied on meat and unhealthy carbohydrate as their main source of energy. They got weak in the process and got diabetes in return. Worst is that diabetes is only the start. Pretty soon complications like heart ailments and kidney disease follow and managing the aftermath is made even harder.

This is why it is important to have some precautions that will lessen your chance of having it. Controlling what you eat can do wonders to your body, especially with maintaining a normal blood sugar. Giving your body superior nutrition is better than taking diabetes medication. Life expectancy will be improved, and a high quality of health is assured when you choose the right foods that defy diabetes.

Filling Nutrient Deficiency with Food Supplements

With the fast-paced lifestyle that we live today, many people are prone to getting sick. We all know that illness and diseases cause paralysis to our daily routine therefore, we must keep ourselves in the best of health. In the next passages, you will learn the importance of taking supplements as a method in achieving good health.

Needless to say, enriching your food with vitamins and minerals is fundamental for staying fit and healthy. In order for you to have a normal, happy life you need to be in a good shape. Numerous people try to stay in their best shape by combining strenuous physical exercises with suitable food regimens, while trying to reduce stress and bring positive improvements in their lifestyle. Eating healthy, organic meals will contribute to a healthier body and will provide one with a better perspective on life.

Experts advise that people eat healthy and consume primarily fresh veggies, red meat, nuts and yoghurt, while avoiding fatty and sugary meals. Nutritional professionals also prefer to evaluate the condition of every person on an individual basis before assigning the right regiment for them. In all cases, a healthy diet should be effectively combined with good-quality meals. Your food regiment should be so diverse that you should leave little room for illness, immunity breakouts or nutritional deficiencies. 

Only a qualified professional can provide you with the tips to stay healthy based on your personal needs.  A professional will also recommend places where you can buy high-quality dietary supplements. There are numerous reputable nutritionist and doctors in the Melbourne area. You are advised to find someone with the right qualifications and years of experience before booking your appointment.

Also, you have to make sure that you find the right place to purchase your medications and supplements from. You have to identify some Melbourne’s trusted health food stores. These will provide not only a plethora of selections, but will also help one find good supplements from well-known providers. Numerous people hesitate whether it’s a good idea to take vitamins and minerals as supplements, or enhance their diet naturally with the right food.

Why taking vitamins and supplements is a good idea?

Vitamins and supplements cannot do more than enhancing your diet. It is not recommended to replace your diet regiment with any of those. It’s best to extract the nutritional benefits from natural food, and if doctors find out about some deficiencies.

Common supplements include Vitamin D for those who have not been sufficiently exposed to the Sun. Those who are low in vitamin D should consult with a doctor who will prescribe the best for their specific condition. Also, numerous doctors claim that vitamins and supplements on their own cannot promote health. They can only assist the body with coping with a disease and strengthening the body’s defense mechanisms.

Another important supplement is Folic Acid which is strongly recommended to pregnant women for baby growth and development. Typically most grain products in the United States contain folic acid but numerous doctors recommend additional intake for a completely healthy pregnancy. Also, there are numerous vitamins, including vitamin A, vitamin C and vitamin B that are good to enhance your diet regimen.                                 

Vitamins and supplements can be very effective tools for improving one’s condition and strengthening their immune system. One of the best ways to determine their quality is to get background information about who produces them and their certifications. 

After you identify a few chains that provide healthy meals and healthy supplements, you can turn into their loyal client and enjoy a new healthy routine.

It is important to note that vitamins and supplements are not replacements to food products. The normality of the body functioning is always dependent on the kind of food that enters the body. This is the reason why many of us should be cautious on the types of food that we eat because these must contain the right amount if nutrients that will keep our body healthy.

In the event that nutrients are lacking in the food that we eat, this is where the food supplements come in. They fill in nutrients which make a well-balanced diet. The completeness of vitamins, minerals and nutrients allow the body to functioning normally, preventing the entry of sickness and diseases.

If you think that your daily meals aren’t proving the necessary nutrients then incorporating the right food supplements can be a good idea. With this, asking advice from a doctor or health professional is the best way to learn the correct amount and frequency of food supplements to take on a daily basis.

A lifestyle is a balance of everything – proper diet, ample amount of exercise and use of supplements that complete the needed nutrients in every meal. Getting sick cannot be avoided but this can always be prevented.

Prevent Diabetes Even Before it Starts

diabetes 1
Diabetes is a growing pandemic not only in third world countries, where close to 80 percent of diabetes cases are attributed to low income conditions, but also in the Western world, including the United States.  
Close to 350 million people all over the world have diabetes, with experts believing it could very well rise to become the world’s number 7 in the leading cause of death by 2030. In 2012 alone, more than one-and-a-half million people died because of diabetes. The good news is that Type 2 diabetes is highly preventable.

Understanding Diabetes

When you eat, carbohydrates are converted into energy-giving molecules known as glucose, or simply sugar. The sugar is transported from the blood and into the different cells of the body by a hormone called insulin. Insulin is the critical transport mechanism needed to move sugar from the blood and into the cell. 
In diabetes, there is a problem with insulin. In Type 1 diabetes, the body is not producing enough insulin or none at all because of a defect in the pancreas, the organ that produces insulin, or a problem in the production of insulin. In Type II diabetes, the pancreas is otherwise healthy and there is enough insulin in the body. But the main problem is that it cannot get inside the cell.

The end result of all these processes is that sugar in the blood accumulates while cells starve to death. This is because there is no insulin to carry the sugar from the blood and into the cell or that there are certain factors that are preventing insulin from carrying out its job.

Can it be Prevented?

Obviously, the problem with Type 1 is a genetic flaw with the production of insulin in the pancreas. So, there is very little that can be done to prevent it. However, Type II diabetes is highly preventable. 

Diabetes has been closely associated with obesity. Experts have compelling evidence that addressing obesity can significantly reduce the risk of diabetes. Prevention therefore will be directed towards the prevention of obesity or the management of weight issues.

  • diabetes 2Regular exercises are essential to diabetes prevention. The greater the physical inactivity, the higher the risk for obesity and the greater the chances for diabetes. It is recommended that exercises should be performed at least three times a week.
  • Eat healthy. Include whole grains and a lot of fiber in your diet. Think about portion control and the variety of foods that you eat. High fiber foods can significantly improve your ability to control sugar. Lose weight. Excess fat increases resistance to insulin making it more difficult to bring sugar into the cell. 

Diabetes prevention is more of a choice. By starting at a young age, having enough exercise and a healthy pattern of eating can significantly reduce your risk of diabetes. If you are health buff and would like to read more health topics visit this site.

5 Things to Avoid to Have Healthier and Happier Life

happy lifeIt is true that happiness and health are subjective terms and vary significantly based on our experiences in life. As we grow older, life begins to take a new form, priorities and goals change, and the dreading issues of midlife crisis associated with old age has a tendency to lower the levels of happiness, which in turn can affect  our physical health. The following are the 5 things to avoid in order to have a healthier and happier life.

Negative Thinking

Intense emotions, loss of a family member, breakups, and so on, make you feel low. These negative and stressful situations can leave you feeling miserable. If you bottle up your feelings, they can come out in the form of negativity, anger, rejection, aggression, etc. Negative thinking can do incomparable harm to yourself on various levels. Just imagine a someone who has only negative thoughts filled his mind. Constant negativity can result in many harmful effects such as restlessness and anxiety. It can bring you down and develop a low self-esteem. Therefore, it prevents your growth as a person and from achieving your full potential.

Sitting All Day

Recreational sitting such as sitting in front of a TV for a long time increases the risk of heart related problems, in spite of your physical activity. Naturally, sitting at a desk for longer hours is not good either. People are usually engrossed in their work the whole day. Some even take their work home while others remain mentally occupied with their work. It eventually starts to take a toll on the mind.

Research has shown that sitting all day is bad for the health, no matter how much exercise you perform. Moreover, studies have connected excessive sitting to being obese, overweight, type 2 diabetes, premature death and certain types of cancer. Prolonged sitting is considered to slow the metabolism, which can affect the ability of the body to regulate blood pressure, blood sugar, as well as break down fat deposits.

Drinking Alcohol

Alcohol disrupts the communication pathways of the brain, which can affect the way it functions. These disturbances can change the behavior and mood, making it more difficult to move with coordination and think clearly. Drinking excessively can weaken the immune system, causing the body an easier target for illnesses. Chronic drinkers are also at risk of contracting diseases such as tuberculosis and pneumonia. In addition, drinking too much on one occasion reduces the ability of the body to ward off infections, even until the following day after getting drunk.

Eating Alone

Our diet is not fixed, as it changes after some time. Also, the ability to eat a healthy diet is influenced by the social environment, which includes factors such as friendships, marriage, cohabitation and general social interaction. As we age, we are less inclined to eat well, and the diet often suffers for those older people who are living alone.

People who eat alone are more prone to have a binge feeding. In addition, the eating habits suffer when a person eats alone. Lonely diners tend to eat less healthy meals and fewer vegetables. It seems that people make less effort to eat well when we are eating by ourselves as compared to when someone else is around. Seeing that an estimated one out of three employees eat lunch at their own desk alone, it is easy to figure out how this can contribute to major health problems in the long run.

Bad Relationships

There are people out there who are constantly involved in disappointing relationships. There seem to be always missing. Your needs are not met and your emotions undergo a roller coaster whenever that wrong person is around. If you are in a bad relationship now, you are in for failure without probably knowing it.

Those who are in a disruptive relationship are more likely to have a heart problem. It shows how crucial the quality of the relationship between two persons to the development of chronic illnesses, including congestive heart failure. Moreover, criticism and hostility, the two common behaviors in a negative relationship, can deteriorate the mental health of the person.

As you can see, your happiness and the well-being are related and you should not compromise these two. Ultimately, these positive elements can also reflect your financial and social success. Learn more about wellness and living a healthy lifestyle as you check out my previous article here.