Lets face it, with billions of dollars to be made on fast food franchises each year, we are unlikely to see a basic change in the way most people eat and diet is a major factor in developing diabetes.
Many Americans, and anyone following a typical American diet, will eventually develop diabetes. But if detected early it can be treated before amputation or other complications.
Diabetes causes or contributes to about a quarter million deaths in the U.S. every year.
Yet people ignore it and fail to get tested while being concerned with car accidents which kill about 50,000.
Many people are terrified of lightning, which kills about 80 people per year in the U.S., mostly males between 15 and 44, mostly in the South and Midwest.
Diabetes is essentially a condition where the human body doesn’t properly use sugar. Not too surprisingly, consumption of vast quantities of sugar can often trigger this condition.
But detecting diabetes usually requires fasting, after which blood is drawn and laboratory tests confirm the condition – usually long after it is irreversible or even easily treated.
There actually are some simple compounds which can increase the way the body utilizes blood sugar, such as many very inexpensive chromium compounds, but no one who consumes the average diet is very concerned with their health so they never investigate or learn about these simple treatments which help even if they don’t alter their diet or loose weight.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if fast food franchises decided that keeping customers alive and buying junk food years longer was worth the minute expense of adding chromium to their buns?
The simple spice cinnamon also helps in the fight against high blood glucose levels.
“In one study, volunteers ate from 1 to 6 grams of cinnamon for 40 days. One gram of ground cinnamon is about half a teaspoon. Researchers found that cinnamon reduced cholesterol by about 18% and blood sugar levels by 24%.
In another study, volunteers ate cinnamon and rice pudding after a meal. These volunteers had reduced blood sugar levels.”
That’s not conclusive yet, but it also isn’t injecting yourself with insulin or having your foot amputated.
So we could reduce diabetes with good diet, and a couple inexpensive and safe minerals and spices – obviously the government will publicize this and diabetes will cease to destroy lives wholesale.
OK, OK! Now that we’ve all had a good laugh, lets be practical.
The government isn’t going to do anything and people aren’t going to instantly get any smarter, so diabetes will remain an incredible burden on individuals and on our health care system.
However; just as we eventually saw the presence of blood pressure testing stations everyplace from pharmacies to grocery stores, we may soon see diabetes testing stations which only require the individual to place their arm on a sensor pad.
A company named versalight (versalight.com) has developed Scout DS which is totally noninvasive, screening for high blood sugar levels by using optical sensors to look for collagen-linked advanced glycation end products which have been shown to be elevated in diabetics. Collagen is the main protein found in skin.
“VeraLight is a privately-held medical device company that was established in 2004 to develop the SCOUT DS noninvasive screening device for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. The SCOUT DS is the first noninvasive optical skin test that can replace conventional blood-based diabetes screening. The easy to operate SCOUT DS needs no blood and does not require fasting. The patient simply places a forearm on the portable table-top unit, and a quantitative result is reported in under four minutes.
SCOUT DS is Indicated for Use for the noninvasive screening of individuals 18 years or older who are at risk for prediabetes and/or type 2 diabetes to determine whether diagnostic testing is necessary. Prediabetes is defined as impaired glucose tolerance.”
This won’t be perfect. For example, it usually gives false results when testing tattooed skin and probably won’t work on those with very dark skin pigmentation.
But consider if this device is so simple to use that people just sit down and rest their arm on a pad for a few minutes and learn if they have a highly-treatable, life-threatening disease which, if untreated will leave them crippled and facing early death.
Wouldn’t it be worth deploying as widely as possible even if there are false results? After all, any false positive would, at the worst, involve a simple blood test to confirm.
“Data from the 2011 National Diabetes Fact Sheet (released Jan. 26, 2011)
Total prevalence of diabetes
Total: 25.8 million children and adults in the United States-8.3% of the population-have diabetes.
Diagnosed: 18.8 million people
Undiagnosed: 7.0 million people
Prediabetes: 79 million people*
New Cases: 1.9 million new cases of diabetes are diagnosed in people aged 20 years and older in 2010.”