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Reversing Type 2 Diabetes By Dr. Nas Al Jafari

Although there's no cure for type 2 diabetes, studies show it's possible for some people to reverse it or at the very least control it. Dr. Nas Al Jafari, DNA Health & Wellness Professional, will explain what type 2 diabetes is, how it affects our bodies, why it’s emerging, and how to reverse it.

What is type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is a chronic medical condition in which the levels of sugar, or glucose, build up in your bloodstream. Typically, the hormone insulin helps move glucose from your blood to your cells, where it’s used for energy. But with type 2 diabetes, your body’s cells aren’t able to respond to insulin as well as they should. In later stages of the condition, your body may also not produce enough insulin. Uncontrolled type 2 diabetes can lead to chronically high blood glucose levels, which can cause several symptoms and potentially lead to serious complications.

It causes your body to rely on alternative energy sources in your tissues, muscles, and organs. This is a chain reaction that can cause a variety of symptoms.

Causes of type 2 diabetes

While lifestyle choices are typically what trigger type 2 diabetes, you may be more likely to be diagnosed with it if:

While the definitive trigger of type 2 diabetes is your body’s resistance to insulin, there’s usually a combination of factors that increase your risk of that resistance occurring.

Treatment for type 2 diabetes

To help manage your diabetes try:

Weight loss is the primary factor in those who have experienced a reversal of type 2 diabetes, as excess fat in the body affects insulin production and its use.

More physical activity is a way to improve diabetes, but it may be tough to lose enough weight to go into remission with workouts alone. When combined with changes to your eating, though, exercise helps. A modest, lower-calorie diet plus a big step-up in burning calories could put you on the path to remission.

Lifestyle changes your doctor will most likely advise to help treat your type 2 diabetes may include:

  • eating foods rich in fiber and healthy carbohydrates — eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help keep your blood glucose levels steady
  • eating at regular intervals
  • learning to listen to your body and learn to stop eating when you’re full
  • manage your weight and keep your heart healthy, which typically means keeping refined carbohydrates, sweets, and animal fats to a minimum
  • get about half an hour of physical activity daily to help keep your heart healthy — exercise can help to control blood glucose, too.

 

Another lifestyle change recommended by Dr. Nas is intermittent fasting. Intermittent fasting is a type of diet that involves limiting your meals to a certain window of time, followed by a fixed period of eating little or nothing. Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern that involves periods of eating little to no food, followed by regular meals. Unlike many other diets, it usually focuses on restricting the timing of when you eat and drink, rather than the foods on your plate.

Intermittent fasting is often used as a way to lose weight through calorie restriction. It may provide certain benefits for people with diabetes, but there are risks involved.

The best-known form of intermittent fasting is the 16:8 method which involves eating only during an eight-hour window during the day and fasting for the remaining 16 hours. One meal -- usually breakfast -- is omitted. One case study showed that intermittent fasting helped a few people with diabetes stop using insulin. Still, more research is needed. While intermittent fasting can be done safely, people with diabetes may be at risk of hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia, due to fluctuations in blood sugar during and after periods of not eating.

Work with a healthcare professional, a member of your diabetes care team, or a dietitian before starting any weight loss plan. They can help you lose weight safely and sustainably.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the Mint Basil Market team. Make sure to check our website for diabetes-friendly products!

November 15, 2021 — Mint Basil Team

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