The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force released new recommendations on March 16, 2021 for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes screenings.
The USPS Task Force is recommending that all adults ages 35-70 who are overweight be screened for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. They also recommend that care providers recommend a lifestyle change intervention if prediabetes is found. (Examples could include participation in a diabetes prevention program and/or counseling and follow-up on healthy lifestyle change with a credentialed health professional.)
I've included Center for Disease Control (CDC) stats on overweight and obesity in US adults age 20 and over: almost 75% are classified as overweight using 2017-2018 data ... so the Task Force recommendation to screen overweight adults age 35-70 will apply to a large percentage of adults.
You'll have seen a number of articles about prediabetes here in the blog. Below I've summarized a few key take-aways:
We all need to know how to protect ourselves and our families from prediabetes and avoid diabetes.
Key information about added sugars can make all the difference.
Did you know?
* these and many other sugar facts can be found at the University of California San Francisco website: sugarscience.ucsf.edu.
What is added sugar?
Added sugars are sugars added during processing. Until recently, the US food label (the Nutrition Facts label) just showed total sugars - so consumers had no idea how much was naturally occurring sugar, and how much was added sugar. Now, for the first time ever, the this label is required to include added...
In 2020, Covid-19 has placed a spotlight on the immune system.
In conversations about health and wellness, the immune system doesn't come up much. Until now, we've tended to talk about obesity and heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Those of us with a passion for prevention and maximizing our human 'health-span' generally talk about lifestyle and taking action to avoid these chronic conditions, while the rest of the medical community talks about managing poor health (after it arrives) with medications. The functionality of the hugely complicated miracle that is the immune system has been assumed to be fine until we get sick and either undergo a treatment which is known to derail the immune system (such as chemo for cancer), or are diagnosed with an immune disorder. Most of us don't have any real idea of the state of our own immune system and how it might handle a new, major threat like Covid-19.
The Covid-19 response is still evolving. What is unknown...
There's a lot of confusion out there about prediabetes. What is it? Why do I have it? Is it really that big a deal?
Prediabetes is a BIG deal.
Often, prediabetes is described as "slightly high blood sugar". It is easy to feel a false sense of security. "Slightly" anything doesn't sound so bad, does it?
Here's what that "slightly high" blood sugar really means: INTERNAL METABOLIC ARMAGEDDON.
"Slightly high blood sugar" is the tip of the iceberg - the bit we can see. It is the warning that 'here be dragons'. It hints at the giant, invisible monster hiding beneath so perilous it can sink a Titanic.
When blood sugar starts to go up, it is a signal that our body's internal systems are unraveling.
Our HERO BODIES take whatever we throw at them - dozens of years of pizza and donuts and binge-watching TV and sugary drinks as big as our heads - and cope. And cope. And try to cope. And start to fail to cope...
Until we have "slightly high blood sugar".
What if I told you that:
You'll hear all kinds of descriptions of prediabetes, each of which gives you a piece of the puzzle that is prediabetes. Prediabetes is 'slightly high blood sugar". Prediabetes is "insulin resistance" due to being overweight. Prediabetes is when "your blood sugar is higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes". All true - and for many of my clients, all underwhelming.
A description of prediabetes that in my experience is very helpful and motivating, because it actually gives you a visual that points towards what you need to do to stop prediabetes, is that prediabetes occurs when calorie and sugar intake have been so high, for so long, that the liver becomes overwhelmed and fat begins to deposit in our internal organs - organs...
Do you think that switching to honey or brown sugar, or buying sugar free foods is going to help if you have prediabetes or are worried about developing prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes? Think again... AND avoid these 7 mistakes:
#1 Using large amounts of honey, maple syrup or brown sugar instead of white sugar - and thinking it will help. Truth is ... they're all about the same to your body. The good news is that in a month or so, as you decrease added sugars, you'll get used to less-sweet versions of the foods you eat often. Your tastes WILL change... you just have to be patient and tough it out for the first few weeks. Try plain oatmeal with some frozen or fresh blueberries, have fruit for desserts or snacks, and for a treat: unsweetened yogurt with a little vanilla extract, fresh berries, cocoa powder, and a dusting of crushed walnuts or almonds should do the trick!
#2 Buying lots of sugar-free foods. Most foods sold as 'sugar-free' are PROCESSED foods that you should stay away...
80 million adults in the United States have prediabetes and don't even know it.
Prediabetes is a milepost on the way to diabetes. The usual way prediabetes is explained is that "it's when blood sugar is too high to be considered normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes".
Let me explain prediabetes a little differently: Prediabetes happens because of excess. EXCESS calories, excess sugar, excess weight, excess sitting ...
It isn't a quick process. You aren't fine one day, and prediabetic (or diabetic) the next. Many years of excess (daily sodas? late night snacking? too many burgers or pizzas?) cause fat to accumulate in your liver and pancreas. Guess what the liver and pancreas do? Among other things - regulate your blood sugar. Guess what keeps them from doing their jobs? Fat building up where it isn't supposed to be. Too much of a good thing is turning our internal organs into fat-filled piñatas until they can't do their...
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