Diets in Review - Find the Right Diet for You

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Natural Fructose in Fruit is Fine; It’s the High Fructose Corn Syrup That Gets Us in Trouble

Remember a time when you were eating, but never felt full and ended up eating more food? This could be caused by the consumption of fructose. As reported by Medical News Study, researchers found glucose and fructose have an influence on parts of the brain that control appetite.

The study, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Assocation (JAMA), found that fructose produces hormones in the brain that will leave you feeling hungry. However, the study did find that glucose will leave you filling fuller and satisfied. Glucose is a type of sugar you get from food, which your body takes and turns into energy.

Since fructose makes your brain think you are still hungry and causes you to eat more, could there be a link between fructose and obesity?

Our resident dietitian, Mary Hartley RD, comments on the study’s new findings, saying, “Excessive fructose intake may have a link to obesity, but it is too early to tell. It is very difficult to single out a particular nutrient to blame. In addition, obesity is a multifactorial problem and contributing factors are not the same for all people.”
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Managing Your Diabetes With Free iPhone Apps

My life, like many others’, is centered around my iPhone. I can’t imagine my life without it. Web developers realize the increase in smartphone use could be helpful in managing diabetes and there are apps that can help diabetics count carbs and track their blood sugar trends. I reviewed a few of the free apps for the iPhone to see if they could be beneficial for diabetics.

Bant

This is a great starter app but there are definitely some limitations. It logs glucose readings but doesn’t indicate a before meal reading or post-prandial (1 hour post meal). These readings are the best for truly seeing how well the sugar is being controlled or how different foods can affect the blood sugar. It has the ability to upload your information to Twitter (#bant) and there is an online community for support and to share ideas. You can also upload your results to websites like www.healthvault.com so your doctor can see your trends at your next appointment. I think adding a medication reminder to help taking insulin or oral medications would be a useful tool to help people stay on track. Currently this app does not have nutritional information to help with tracking calories and carbohydrates.


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What Exactly is Diabetes?

The American Diabetic Association states that diabetes “is a group of diseases characterized by high blood glucose levels that result from defects in the body’s ability to produce and/or use insulin.” It’s important to understand that there are certain risk factors for diabetes but just because someone has it, doesn’t mean it’s their own fault for being unhealthy or overweight. There are several forms of diabetes but the one that gets the most attention is Type 2. I’d like to take a moment and explain each type, including the less common ones. Logically, it makes sense to start with Type 1.

Type 1 Diabetes is also known as juvenile diabetes because it is often (but not always) diagnosed during childhood. A Type 1 diabetic does not produce insulin. The exact causes of Type 1 diabetes are unknown, although genetics are clearly a factor. Another theory is that certain viruses may cause or make the body more susceptible to Type 1 diabetes.


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RECALL: Defective Glucose Test Strips

Opitum Test StripsThe Food and Drug Administration said yesterday that 359 million blood glucose test strips are being recalled for giving faulty readings. The government agency is working with Abbott Diabetes Care to facilitate pulling the defective strips from the market, which may make blood glucose levels look lower than they really are. The faulty strips were sold in retail stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico, and were manufactured between January and May of 2010.

The affected glucose test strips are sold under a variety of brand names: MediSense Optium, Precision Xceed Pro, Precision Xtra, Optium, Optium EZ, and ReliOn Ultima blood glucose monitoring systems.

The incorrect readings “can lead users to try to raise their blood glucose when it is unnecessary or to fail to treat elevated blood glucose due to a falsely low reading,” says the FDA, “both scenarios pose health risks.”


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The Coffee and Sugar Brain Power Connection

Coffee and sugar seem to go together in many ways. Whether you stir some directly into your java or nosh on a sweet treat while you drink your cup of Joe, the two seem to go quite literally hand-in-hand in most cultures. (Think sugary coffee drinks in America or pastries in France or even espresso with dark chocolate in Italy!) With so many of us trying to lose extra pounds, many of us are forgoing the sugar, as most sugar provides extra calories, causes a spike in insulin and provides no real nutritional value. However, new research is finding that the combination of glucose (sugar) and caffeine can boost brain power!


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