There are more than 25.8 million people living with diabetes in the U.S., according to the CDC. They also say that adds up to just more than eight percent of our total population. It’s a tricky disease to manage and an expensive one, with a total annual cost of $2 billion. More startling? Eighty percent of cases are reversible, but that part is up to you.
If you’re one of the nearly two million newly diagnosed cases of diabetes each year, it can be worrisome, to say the least. The word strikes fear in those who have it, and worry in their loved ones. Life as you know it seemingly changes in an instance. But that’s OK. It’s a hard reality check to follow, but one that can literally save your life.
With Dr. Sarah G. Khan, our resident pharmacist and diabetes education expert, we’ve created your one-stop guide to diabetes for new patients. We’ll answer your questions, provide you with resources, and give you options to manage or reverse your disease.
1. Do you want to manage or correct your diabetes?
“I think diabetes is a combination of both managing and correcting,” explained Dr. Khan. “There are other factors such as illness and stress that raise blood sugars which aren’t always under a person’s control.” Ask yourself which path you want to take.
If you want to manage…
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Since 2011, US News and World Report has been releasing an annual list of the best diets and this year is no different. That goes for the rankings, not just the perpetuity of the list. It seems the analysis by US News done in 2012 matches identically to the “new” list they released for this year as the top spots in each category are exactly the same as they were last year. While four new diets were added to the top rankings in each category overall, the top two diets for each category remained the same. It certainly speaks to the longevity and consistency of the diets they review.
They look at only 29 diets in eight categories (with the addition of plant-based diets this year) and work with an expert panel of nearly two dozen leaders in the industry, including David Katz, MD, Robert Kushner, MD, and Lisa Sasson, RD. As well, they “mine” medical journals, government research, and other sources to create not only in-depth profiles for each diet but to accurately rank each diet.
According to their announcement, “Every diet received robust scrutiny, and we converted the experts’ ratings to scores and stars from 5 (highest) to 1 (lowest) to construct eight sets of Best Diets rankings.” This year, those rankings are as follows:
Best Overall Diet
1. DASH Diet
2. TLC Diet
Best Weight Loss
1. Weight Watchers
2. Biggest Loser
2. Jenny Craig
2. Raw Foods Diet
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For the fifth year we’re excited to announce our Most Popular Diets of 2012 list! And it’s a good one!
While Weight Watchers gave up the number one position in 2011 for the first time in our history, they reclaimed the top spot this year earning them the title of Most Popular Diet of 2012. As they are weeks away from celebrating their 50th anniversary, they announced Weight Watchers 360 to help people establish healthy, lasting habits right at the new year.
In a sort of diet tag, 17 Day Diet moved to number two, a more than respectable position for a series of weight loss books that has been hard at work since its debut in late 2010. This year 17 Day Diet expanded its value to its loyal followers with the publication of a cookbook and an anti-aging plan. One of only two brands that makes multiple appearances on the list, 17 Day Diet’s Meal Plan, facilitated by Bistro MD, landed at number 24 (down from number 3 in 2011).
For the first time in our list’s five-year history, acai doesn’t show up. It seems the heyday for this diet pill has run its course, but hasn’t taken the entire supplement industry down with it. Dr. Oz’s hyped promotion of raspberry ketones landed it at number 19 on the list, no doubt stealing a lot of thunder from acai.
Jillian Michaels is the only other brand that makes multiple appearances on our list, as she does every year. Her nearly five-year-old workout DVD 30 Day Shred took position 8, an improvement over last year’s number 10 ranking. Right after that is her Detox and Cleanse product, and anchoring the list at number 20, down from number 4 in 2011, is her Jillian Michaels Online subscription program. Her exit from both Biggest Loser and The Doctors in the past 18 months may have caused a slight decline, but her popularity is rarely wavering. In fact, America’s Toughest Trainer returns to NBC’s Biggest Loser for season 14 in January. We expect to see her on the list again next year.
CLICK HERE to view the Most Popular Diets of 2012
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Our kids can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to their diet. New research is pointing to an elevated consumption of sodium in children that’s leading to another childhood health issue: high blood pressure.
Just like type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure was once thought of as an adult disease – something that happened to adults who spent a lifetime of shaking too much salt on their food and getting too little exercise. It seems this isn’t true anymore.
NPR’s food blog, “The Salt,” reported about new findings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The new research found that children between age 8 to 18 are taking in nearly 1,000 more milligrams of sodium than is recommended and this is resulting in high blood pressure.
In fact, 15 percent of the children in the study were found to have high or elevated blood pressure. It’s important to note that the association with high blood pressure was higher in those children who were also overweight.
What’s interesting about these statistics is that these kids aren’t getting their sodium from too many shakes of the salt shaker, which may be the culprit for their grandparents; they’re getting too much sodium from the abundance of processed foods in their diets.
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By Dani Stone
The DASH Diet for Weight Loss: Lose Weight the Healthy Way – and Keep It Off – With America’s Most Respected Diet is a new diet book written by Thomas J. Moore, MD and Megan C. Murphy, MPH with Mark Jenkins and slated for publication on April 17, 2012. The diet, originally intended to lower blood pressure, prevent diabetes and stop hypertension is now being touted for its comprehensive weight loss approach.
The DASH Diet is based on the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) study created in 1993. Dr. Thomas Moore, co-author of the book, gathered in Bethesda, Maryland with a group of 50 researchers, all with one common goal, “design an eating pattern that would lower blood pressure.” After years of research and working with volunteers who agreed to be recipe/meal plan guinea pigs, the results surpassed research goals with volunteers on the DASH diet lowering their systolic blood pressure by at least 11 points, sometimes enough to replace anti-hypertensive medication.
But wait, there’s more! DASH researchers also noted additional benefits including lowering the risk of heart attacks, kidney stones and colon cancer, and it helped people lose weight. U.S. News & World Report agreed, ranking the DASH diet the #1 Overall Diet in 2011. The diet is successful because it encourages counting calories, reducing salt intake and eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein.
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