The Amazing Flaxseed And Diabetes Natural Treatment Connection Revealed

A simple seed, but so many benefits. If flaxseed is not part of your diet, you are missing out whether you have diabetes or not. For diabetics, there is an amazing connection between flaxseed and diabetes for those looking for a natural cure (type 2 diabetes) or a way to manage blood sugar levels naturally.

The many health benefits of flaxseed

Before cotton became affordable, flax (Linum usitatissimum) also known as linseed, has a fibrous stem which was woven into cloth and is still used in this way today despite the prevalence of cotton, but the oil which was produced from the flaxseed has been used medicinally for thousands of years. It wasn’t until about a thousand years ago that people started eating flaxseed for health and well being. The health benefits of flaxseed include but are not limited to;

1. Cancer

Flaxseed contains the most amount of lignans when compared to other plants. The amount of lignans in flaxseed is about 7 times more than that in its closest competitor (sesame seeds) and as much as 3,200 more than peanuts.

Lignans contain very powerful antioxidants which are crucial for preventing the damaging effects of free radicals in the body. Free radicals are unstable oxygen molecules that in order to stabilize or “heal” themselves, “steal” particles from healthy cells but this only ends up creating more free radicals. The effects of free radicals on the body are thought to increase the risk of developing various chronic diseases and conditions including cancer.

Lignans are particularly beneficial for reducing the risk of breast cancer. Estrogen which is the female hormone can stimulate the growth of cancer but lignans in addition to antioxidant benefits also contain phyto(plant)estrogens, which mimic the action of the estrogen produced by the body but are less potent.

These chemically weaker phytoestrogens bind to estrogen receptors in the body and this helps to stop the effects on the body of the much stronger estrogen produced by the body which allows excessive amounts of this much stronger estrogen to be eliminated from the body which helps to reduce the risk of breast cancer.

Studies have shown that women who consumed lignan reduced their risk of developing breast cancer by about 62 percent when compared to women who did not consume lignan.

Lignans are also beneficial for fighting against prostate cancer as has been shown in various research studies.

Other cancer fighting properties of flaxseed emanate from the polyunsaturated fats including omega-3 fatty acids as well as fiber that it contains. These compounds in addition to lignans help to promote health and well-being and reduce the risk of developing various diseases including cancer. The anti-inflammatory properties of flaxseed also help to protect against cancer and many other chronic diseases.

2. Heart attack

Lignans not only provide antioxidant benefits but as mentioned previously are also a rich source omega-3 fatty acids of which alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is the main type and ALA is able to lower the risk of suffering a fatal heart attack.

3. Cholesterol

Flaxseed is also able to lower the levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol which is dangerous and can lead to heart disease. Flaxseed is rich in a type of soluble fiber that is beneficial for the body which is known as mucilage. This mucilage is tied to the cholesterol lowering properties of flaxseed.

4. Kidney disease

Research has shown that the lignans and omega-3 fatty acids contained in flaxseed are able to reverse the damage to the kidneys caused by lupus which is an autoimmune disease.

5. Hot flushes

The lignans or phytoestrogens contained in flaxseed can be beneficial for women dealing with the various symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes. The estrogen levels of women going through menopause usually start to decrease and instead of going through hormone therapy, phytoestrogens are a natural alternative as they can be used to replace some of this estrogen that is no longer produced by the body because estrogen can help to reduce the severity of hot flashes and phytoestrogens can help with this.

Flaxseed and diabetes

Soluble fiber galore

The connection between flaxseed and diabetes is related to the mucilage that was discussed previously which is the soluble fiber that is available in high amounts in flaxseed. This soluble fiber has been shown by various studies to be able to reduce blood sugar levels which is important to not only manage diabetes but to also cure it naturally.

Diabetes results when the body does not produce any or enough of the hormone insulin or the insulin produced becomes inefficient and/or ineffective (insulin resistance) leading to the accumulation of glucose or sugar in the blood. Insulin is supposed to remove this glucose from the blood and transfer it to the various cells in the body where it is used for fuel or energy for day to day activities.

When insulin is unable to perform its duties, this glucose accumulation in the blood can increase the risk of developing diabetes or leading to diabetes related complications (heart and kidney disease, limb amputations, diabetic coma, etc).

One aspect of managing diabetes naturally is by following a customized diabetic diet to help control the amount of glucose deposited into the blood.

This is what is so amazing about flaxseed and why it is so important for diabetes natural treatment. The soluble fiber in flaxseed helps to slow down digestion which means that the digestion of the carbs and sugars in the food that we eat and conversion of this into glucose to be deposited into the bloodstream will be slowed down which helps to prevent blood sugar spikes. This shows the importance of flaxseed for diabetes natural treatment.

If you are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes, one of the ways of preventing you from developing type 2 diabetes is to increase your intake of this soluble fiber.

Weight loss

Another connection between flaxseed and diabetes is weight loss. Many people with diabetes especially those with type 2 diabetes are overweight. Getting your weight under control is an important aspect of natural diabetes treatment and this is another area that flaxseed can help.

In addition to soluble fiber, flaxseed also contains insoluble fiber (roughage). Both types of fiber are important for weight loss because they help you feel fuller faster and keep hunger pangs away for longer which can help you eat less and help with your weight loss goals. Overweight diabetics who are attempting to lose weight should always increase their fiber intake for the reasons discussed and flaxseed can help with this.

It is also important to remember that many people with type 2 diabetes also deal with high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, heart disease, etc, and as discussed previously, flaxseed can also help with these various health issues.

The connection shown above between flaxseed and diabetes makes this amazing seed crucial and an important part of any diabetic diet.

Getting the most

1. Flaxseed oil and diabetes

Flaxseed oil is produced from the seeds and many people skip out on the seeds and reach for the oil but you may want to think again. You may want to consider passing by the oil firstly because you will not get the all important fiber and secondly because while the oil may contain some health properties, most of the lignans, protein and minerals are found in the actual seeds and not the oil. Since you need fiber as a diabetic, pass on the oil and reach for the seeds instead.

Flaxseed oil is also easily perishable and must be stored in the refrigerator once opened.

2. Must be processed

Flaxseed is available in two varieties i.e. brown flax and golden flax (also known as yellow flax) which generally have similar nutritional compositions.

While some people love to sprinkle whole flaxseed on salads or fresh baked bread, the body cannot process whole flaxseeds. They will simply pass through the body undigested which means that you will not get the full benefits of flaxseed including soluble fiber.

Flaxseed must be processed but the ground flaxseed goes rancid very quickly so store it in the fridge but do not use after 30 days or so. While you can easily find ground flaxseed in grocery stores, it is not as fresh as freshly ground flaxseeds so think about getting a cheap spice or coffee grinder or other seed grinding tool so that you can grind two tablespoons or more of whole flaxseed and have it fresh to use each day to add to smoothies, oatmeal, sprinkled on hot or cold cereal, sprinkled on salads, etc.

While ground flaxseed (flaxseed meal) does not last more than 30 days or so when stored in the refrigerator, whole flaxseed can last 6 to 12 months or 1 to 2 years if stored in the refrigerator.

Safety precautions

Flaxseed is generally safe but it does contain a minute amount of cyanide which is not enough to harm an adult but could possibly harm a fetus or infant so avoid flaxseed if you are pregnant or nursing and do not give it to children under the age of two.

The minute amount of cyanide in flaxseed should not be harmful to most people if you only consume the recommended daily amount which is 2 to 3 tablespoons of ground flaxseed. It is also important to remember that there are usually very small amounts of cyanide that are constantly present in human tissue which are constantly being metabolized so the cyanide in flaxseed should not really be a cause for concern. Other plants such as cruciferous vegetables also contain small amounts of cyanide.

A tablespoon of flaxseed contains about 5 to 6 milligrams of cyanide but for cyanide to be dangerous to the human body, it would have to be in amounts of at least 1,000 milligrams.

Other precautions with flaxseed relate to allergic reactions. Some people may be allergic to flaxseed and if so, stop using it or reduce the dose.

Some people may also experience bloating and flatulence when they first start consuming flaxseed. If so, start with small amounts and gradually build up.

What A Man With Diabetes Can Do To Get His Erection On

There are a large number of men in the U.S. and abroad whose sex life is suffering dramatically because they have diabetes and it is affecting their sexual function. Nearly 50 to 75 percent of men with diabetes end up having erection problems at one time or another, and for some, this is like a jail sentence. Some of these guys even have a normal sex drive and their glands are working fine, but for some reason or another they cannot entertain a rock hard erection. What are their options?

Well, most of the men who get diabetes end up having sexual problems nearly a full 10 years earlier than normal guys on average. In both cases, diabetes or not, men have more sexual problems as they age, and erectile dysfunction grows along a similar path. The root causes of the dysfunction vary. Some men with diabetes develop problems with the nerve endings, and for other men, blood vessel constriction or muscle function – all caused by diabetes – could be the culprit. The most common solutions for these guys is to take Viagra or Cialis or some other chemicals in a pill to get it up. These options are not typically the most optimal, mostly because of the side effects of these medicines, and because they sometimes interfere directly with the root cause of the erectile problems, and can make them even worse.

There is a better than 50% chance that a man with diabetes over 50 years old will have these kind of issues. The main reason why this occurs is because diabetes typically manifests itself by the age of 35 or so, and over the next 10-15 years, this condition can damage the blood vessels and nerve endings that are responsible for erections. Men who are diagnosed with diabetes need to take action to fix their love muscle as soon as they can, even before actual symptoms take hold, this is critical. Natural cures can be a better option for men in most cases, simply because they work with minimal side effects, if any.

Besides the fact that taking strong chemicals with harsh side effects can be dangerous, especially when you are over 50 years old, another huge problem is that guys with diabetes also have a lot more problems with their hearts than regular guys. The chemical solutions sound even lees desirable when possible interactions with heart medications can have seriously dangerous consequences. While taking a 100% natural cure like Vimax can have some of the same interactions with heart medications, the incidence of this is markedly less than with chemical based solutions.

The natural cures typically work in harmony with the body, to strengthen those systems that are failing, and to help the energy store to be better utilized. Additionally, natural remedies and herbs are well-known to have medicinal-like qualities, but in dosages that are much less than their chemical counterparts. A man with diabetes or with a heart condition should consult a physician before taking Vimax, or any other male enhancement product. In most cases, there will be no problem with taking Vimax, as the formula is well-known to not have the harmful side-effects or dangerous interactions with heart medicines.

If a man’s physician approves his use of Vimax, he can look forward to a free 15 day trial of Vimax pills, and a 60 day money-back guarantee direct from the company to soften the blow – if the product does not produce the visible results that he is looking for. Vimax has become the most popular 100% natural male enhancement product primarily because it helps a man to achieve rock hard erections, and can increase his overall size permanently. Another side benefit of trying Vimax will be an increase in his sex drive, along with an increase in his sexual stamina. This definitely sounds like a good reason to ask your doctor if Vimax might be an excellent solution for you.

Is Sushi Okay For Someone With Type 2 Diabetes?

Being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes can come as a bit of a shock. In truth, news like that can really put you into a bit of a tailspin. You may not have an inkling of what type of ramifications that this would bring about for your day-to-day life. However, a diagnosis of Type 2 Diabetes is not nearly as dire as it may sound. In fact, by making a few simple adjustments to your diet and exercise program you can ensure that you will be able to manage your Diabetes without too much strife.

When looking at how to adjust your diet you may come up with some questions regarding specific types of food. Being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes does not mean that you cannot indulge in the foods that you have previously enjoyed. In fact, sushi is probably one of the most speculated foods for those dealing with diabetes. So, Is Sushi Okay for Someone with Type 2 Diabetes?

Sushi has become more and more popular. Part of that popularity is due to the nutritional values in sushi. Sushi is chocked full of lean proteins and vegetables. Not only that, but sushi is an incredibly beautiful type of food. There is something incredibly fun about eating it, and it has become a culinary wave that has been sweeping the nation.

However, those who suffer from Type 2 Diabetes need to approach sushi with a bit of caution. Those who are diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes typically have diets that are full of high glucose foods that cause their blood sugar to be off kilter. White rice is a perfect example of those high glucose foods that can prove detrimental to your blood sugar levels. Most traditional pieces of nigiri sushi and sushi rolls are constructed with a fair amount of this rice. It is important that you take into account how much of that rice you are eating when you are having sushi. Additionally, not all rolls are constructed with healthy ingredients. In fact, you will often find some very elaborate rolls that are filled with fried ingredients or heavily sugared sauces.

There is an exception to this logic within the realm of sushi. Sashimi, is actually sushi without the rice. This is a perfect option for those who tend to have a diet that is too rich in high glycemic foods.

So the answer to the question “Is Sushi Okay for Someone with Type 2 Diabetes?” is yes and no. Yes, sushi is a healthy alternative to other types of foods. However, you have to be careful about it because there are hidden health dangers in it. As with most foods, the key is to eat in moderation. Too much of anything can never be good for you!

Symptoms of the Onset of Diabetes

The most common symptom my patients have of the onset of diabetes is: none!

Most of my patients are adults who I see on a regular basis, many of whom receive blood testing periodically. Patients who are at risk for diabetes – who are overweight or have a family history of diabetes – are often diagnosed on routine blood tests done for other reasons. Usually these patients exhibit no specific symptoms.

Historically, excess thirst, frequent urination, weight loss, and increased hunger have been cited as classic diagnostic signs. Sweet tasting urine is another, but modern day doctors rarely use this diagnostic test. (Most doctors don’t know how regular urine tastes, anyway.) The latin words, diabetes mellitus, mean “run-through honey.”

However, by the time a patient’s blood sugar is high enough to cause these symptoms, diabetes is usually quite advanced.

What causes thirst and frequent urination in a diabetic? The kidney normally is capable of absorbing all the glucose that flows through it. However, above a certain threshold, usually around a blood sugar of 200 to 300 mg/dL, the kidney can no longer absorb all the blood glucose, resulting in the sugar “spilling” into the urine. Glucose in the urine acts as a diuretic, causing increased volume of urination and therefore increased urinary frequency.

Because some of the calories from diet run right through a patient with diabetes, weight loss can occur, especially in children with Type I diabetes. Type I diabetic children tend to be thin and eat more to make up for what they are losing. Most Type II diabetics (which accounts for most adult diabetes) are overweight to begin with and may not exhibit weight loss. Some are happy if weight loss occurs and therefore delay seeking medical attention. Type II diabetes is no longer a disease limited to adults. Overweight teens and pre-teens are also at risk.

The current definition of diabetes is a fasting blood glucose reading of only 126 mg/dL, much lower than the level where patients exhibit the above symptoms. However, recognizing subtler symptoms of diabetes may lead to the diagnosis at blood sugar levels below those that produce thirst and frequent urination. Sometimes a patient will complain of fatigue (mental or physical). In women, recurrent vaginal yeast infections or a yeast skin rash under the breast may be associated with diabetes. Occasionally men complain of a yeast rash in the groin area. Some patients describe mild discomfort urinating or a change in vision.

The laboratory definition of diabetes has changed over the past few decades, with the threshold for diagnosis dropping lower and lower. Along with this, treatment goals for blood sugar now aim at normal or nearly normal blood glucose levels. With our improved understanding of how obesity leads to diabetes, insulin resistance is now recognized as a pre-diabetic condition.

Rather than wait for symptoms to occur, if you are at risk for diabetes, check with your doctor, who may want to perform simple blood testing. Or take advantage of your local health fair or chain pharmacies, who often offer free diabetic testing.

Copyright 2010 Cynthia J. Koelker, MD