Diabetic Digest - December 23, 2015
I want to wish all of my wonderful readers a very Merry Christmas!
As 2015 comes to a close I would just like to thank you for reading. And, it's so nice to hear from so many of you.
So, enjoy this year-ending edition of the Diabetic Digest, which includes two great news stories from the diabetic community.
Oh, and my most recent A1C was an amazing 6.4! That made my doctor and I very happy.
Make sure to have a Happy and Healthy New Year, too!
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*-- Diabetic News --*
Number of new diabetes cases begins to decline in United States
ATLANTA - New diagnoses of type 2 diabetes have dropped by about 20 percent in the last six years, the first sustained decline in about 25 years, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Analysts said they were unsure if the disease has peaked or if people are doing more to prevent it, but the declines link up with other reports on improvements to diet and exercise in the United States.
The decrease of new diagnoses from about 1.7 million in 2008 to 1.4 million in 2014 represents a sharp drop, the CDC reported, and shows a slow reversal of the continuous increase in new cases that started in the early 1990s.
The number of yearly diagnoses remains double what it was in 1990 -- there were about 600,000 diagnoses that year -- but rises appear to have peaked in 2008 and have now decreased steadily since then. Researchers have been cautious to embrace the small annual drops, however their consistent downward direction appears to be a trend.
"It's not yet time to have a parade," Dr. David M. Nathan, director of the Diabetes Center and Clinical Research Center at Massachusetts General Hospital, told the New York Times. He said, however, the decline in cases during the last several years shows "it has finally entered into the consciousness of our population that the sedentary lifestyle is a real problem, that increased body weight is a real problem."
Obesity has been a growing problem in the country since at least the early 1990s, as a recent study showed nearly 75 percent of men and 66 percent of women in the United States are overweight or obese.
*-- Diabetic News --*
Plant hormone may help control blood sugar, diabetes
GENOA, Italy - Abscisic acid, which is found in plants and mammals, can reduce sugar levels in the blood when taken at low doses, researchers in Italy found in a small study, showing potential as a diabetes treatment.
In plants, the hormone is involved in many plant developmental processes and survival, leading researchers to test its effects on glycemia in rats and humans using extracts from fruits and vegetables.
Dr. Mirko Magnone, a researcher at the University of Genoa School of Medicine, said in a press release abscisic acid was likely not a cure for diabetes, but that it could be used to treat or possibly prevent the condition.
The researchers first gave rats either a synthetic abscisic acid, an abscisic acid-rich fruit extract, or a placebo after an oral glucose load to raise levels in their bodies. When researchers compared glycemia and insulinemia profiles in the animals, they found abscisic acid lowered levels in both in rats.
Researchers then gave humans an oral glucose load or normal breakfast and lunch with a fruit extract or a placebo, with results similar to those observed in rats.
The results of both tests suggest the hormone's effect of lowering blood sugar reduces chronic stimulation of beta cells that release insulin, helping them to survive and function properly for a longer period of time.
"Mom always said, 'eat your veggies,' and now science backs up this advice," said Dr. Gerald Weissman, editor-in-chief of the Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, which published the study. "High blood sugar levels predict the later consequences of diabetes, and while this hormone may not be a cure for diabetes, it should prove very useful in helping to control progression of the disease."
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