This week’s focus is on wellness specifically around diabetes. Whether this disease runs in your family or not (it does in mine), I encourage you to learn more about diabetes. The bad news is the chances of developing diabetes increases with age. The good news is that there are ways to prevent or slow the disease through diet.
To learn more about diabetes, I turned to nutrition expert Laura Sabban, MS, RD. Laura recently published an ebook, You Can Lower Your A1c, about the topic and has much to share. Keep reading and you’ll learn why A1c is so important.
Why should you trust this nutrition expert’s advice?
I’m going to tell you why. Besides being my BFF for the past 30+ years, Laura has also been my nutritionist. Every time I’ve had health issues, which is quite often these days during my life after 60 — whether it’s my IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), twisted colon, acid reflux or GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) — her diet advice has helped improve my well-being. I totally trust her recommendations oftentimes more than my doctor because she knows more about nutrition. As the comic Lily Tomlin’s character Edith Ann says, “And that’s the truth.”
Let’s hear what Laura has to say about diabetes…
What is diabetes?
Laura: “It’s a disease of the small blood vessels. Type I diabetes is an autoimmune disorder that burns out the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas. It is less common than type II diabetes which is a failure of insulin to do its job in the body. Just like a ferryboat needs to get to the dock to unload cargo, your insulin ferries sugar from the bloodstream to your cells. If the ferryboat can’t reach the dock because there’s a lot of fat blocking its way, the sugar will remain on the boat: ergo, high blood sugar.
The goal in type II diabetes management, is to melt away the fat layer so the insulin ship can dock and unload its cargo. That is why weight loss can often reverse the disease. Reducing starch and sugar in the diet will also reduce the number of boats your body sends out. I recommend a low carb (but not a no-carb) diet as the best therapy.”
What are the trends for women over 50?
Laura: “As we age, the chances of developing type II diabetes increase. After age 64, 27% of women will be diabetic. It’s pretty common.”
What is an A1c?
Laura: “The proper name for A1c is glycosylated hemoglobin. It refers to the amount of our red blood cells that have a lot of sugar stuck to them, which happens when our blood is too full of sugar. The number is an average of 3 months. The higher the A1c number, the more your blood sugar has been too high.”
What is prediabetes?
Laura: “When an A1c comes back 5.7 to 6.4, you have prediabetes. Below 5.7 is normal and above 6.4 is officially type II diabetes.
Why did I write the book?
Laura: “One day at the hospital, I was giving a diabetic education to a patient by the window. When I was on my way out of the room, the patient by the door beckoned me over. He said he was a doctor and that I just gave the best explanation of diabetes he had ever heard.
So, I thought: I have a unique way of teaching and I wanted to share it with more people. Then I got diagnosed with prediabetes and had to take my own advice. And it worked! So, I wrote an ebook that explains how to reduce your carbohydrate intake safely and fairly easily. Non-diabetics can use the same advice to lose weight.”
Can you share a few tips from your book?
Laura: “Be mindful of your carbohydrate intake. Carbs include not just starches like rice, pasta, and bread but fruit and milk as well. Portions are important too. For example, while fruit is healthy, a small piece of fruit (like an apple) may have the same amount of carbs as a slice of bread.”
How can someone get the book?
Laura: “The book is You Can Lower Your A1c and it’s available to download on Amazon Kindle books for $5.69.”
Enter the giveaway to win a copy of You Can Lower Your A1c
Test your carb knowledge by entering the Rafflecopter giveaway below to win a free copy of Laura’s book (giveaway will be an Amazon giftcard enabling you to download the book). Which food shown in the picture has the least amount of carbs – apple, slice of bread, sweet potato or walnuts? Leave your guess in a comment below and you’ll be entered into the giveaway!
If you want to learn more about carbs, go to Amazon and download Laura’s book. Also tell your family and friends who may have been diagnosed with prediabetes or diabetes to read it. Ooh, ooh, ooh, maybe share with your doctor too!