Posts Tagged ‘diabetes’

OMG! Contact Lenses For Diabetics

If you thought Google Glass was pretty far out, the tech giant’s latest project might have you seeing double.

Google is developing a “smart” contact lens. Yes, a contact lens made with super-tiny chips and sensors and an antenna inside that — of course — you wear right on your eyeball. No joke.

But instead showing you status updates, driving directions or allowing you to take pictures directly from your field of vision like Glass does, the intention for these contact lenses is very specific: to aid people with diabetes. The chips and sensors in the contact lenses are supposed to be able to track glucose levels in a person’s tears. Collecting tears can be difficult so why not get the technology directly to the source?

“Although some people wear glucose monitors with a glucose sensor embedded under their skin, all people with diabetes must still prick their finger and test drops of blood throughout the day,” the project’s co-founders, Brian Otis and Babak Parviz, wrote in a Google blog post. “It’s disruptive, and it’s painful. And, as a result, many people with diabetes check their blood glucose less often than they should.”

Tracking blood glucose, or blood-sugar-concentration, is a way to monitor the spikes and drops that are common in people with diabetes.

Google is still testing the technology in the contact lenses, which could eventually include tiny LED lights that could light up when a wearer’s glucose levels cross above or below certain thresholds, the company says.

~ courtesy of Entrepreneur Magazine and OMG

Should You Eat Breakfast?

Why You Need to Eat Breakfast
Starting your day with a meal
that combines unprocessed or minimally processed grains (oats, Muesli, quinoa) and protein (Greek yogurt, eggs)
improves overall health and your ability to lose weight. Here’s why: Eating
breakfast sets your body up to better metabolize lunch through a phenomenon
known as the second meal effect. The second meal effect describes a
biochemical shift that occurs in your body as a result of eating breakfast that leads to better blood sugar control
after lunch. This doesn’t happen when you skip your morning meal. But
simply eating breakfast isn’t enough.

What You Should Eat for
Breakfast

Most traditional breakfast foods are high in
carbohydrates/sugar, low in fat, and low in protein (i.e. a bowl of cereal). If you
improve the overall nutritional quality of your breakfast
, you’ll reap

benefits beyond just the second meal effect. Here’s your simple plan to makeover
the morning meal
:

1.
Improve the quality of carbohydrates
you’re eating for breakfast. The Cereal

F.A.C.T.S. 2012 report recently released from the Yale Rudd Center for Food
Policy & Obesity found that 63 percent of the cereals in commercials viewed
by adults have a sugar content higher than 20 percent.  Opt for the lower sugar,
high fiber, minimally processed breakfast grains (oats, sprouted grain cereals, etc.) for better focus and mental
performance throughout the morning.

2. Add protein. Having protein-rich

meals throughout the day is a key strategy in maintaining calorie-burning
muscles. Plus, one study found that breakfast was the only meal of the day in
which increased protein helped in satiety and fullness. Make sure your breakfast
contains protein-rich foods like eggs, egg whites, Greek yogurt, or a protein
shake to reap these two metabolic advantages.

The Bonus
Benefit

From a physiological standpoint, I have always found that
starting the day with a nutritious breakfast sets the tone for a day of healthy
eating. By having a well-rounded and nutritious breakfast you are sending a message to
your body that you are going to do what it takes to be fit and healthy. A
unifying characteristic of most of the perennially lean and healthy people that
I know and have coached is that the all eat breakfast.

Here’s one of my
favorite hearty breakfasts:

Blueberry Crunch Yogurt
Bowl

About 500 calories (40% carbohydrates, 30% protein, 30%
fat)

Ingredients:
2/3 cup fresh or frozen
blueberries
¼ cup sprouted grain cereal
1 cup fat-free plain Greek
yogurt
½ scoop vanilla protein
1 Tbsp Chia seeds
2 Tbsp chopped
walnuts

Directions: Mix all the ingredients together in
a bowl and enjoy.

New Berry in Town – Lingonberry the Disease Fighter

The benefits of the berry are starting to seem endless. Blueberries have been shown to be helpful with protecting blood vessels in diabetics. Cranberries have been used for years to effectively treat urinary tract infections. And raspberries have eye-protective antioxidants called lutein. Eating berries in general may also help ward off certain types of cancers.

Berries are an amazing group of fruits. The berry came up with an amazing assortment of plant chemicals called polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidants, to help neutralize the sun’s radiation to avoid damage to its tender flesh. A type of polyphenol called flavonoids give berries their dark coloring and confer health benefits on uswhen we eat them.

One of new berries on the block that science is seriously looking into is the lingonberry; it appears to have higher concentrations of plant polyphenols and may confer even greater health benefits. Well known in Scandinavia, the lingonberry’s Latin name is vaccinium vitis-idaea, and is also known as the cowberry. As a member of the vaccinium species, it is related to the cranberry, bilberry and blueberry. Today, scientists are showing its value in both human and animal studies that are proving to have positive results.

  • Animal studies have shown how the lingonberry can lower inflammatory molecules, block oxidants from destroying tissue, and also help the body replace important antioxidants, like glutathione, which is a master antioxidant in our body.
  •  Lingonberry has also been shown to increase red blood cell and liver enzymes needed for antioxidant protection. We need antioxidants to protect vessels and nerve tissue, and also to help decrease the damage from inflammation
  • Native Americans in North America have a history of using this berry to help those suffering with diabetes and cardiovascular illness
  •  A  2010 Canadian study with First Nation Cree subjects found that the lingonberry was able to reduce the effect of advanced glycation end-products (AGEs). AGEs are the byproduct of sugars and heated protein molecules in the body that accumulate in patients with high blood sugar. These AGEs contribute to the damage in a diabetic’s vessels. This damage is a major contributor to kidney disease, eye disease and circulation problems that can lead to skin sores and amputation.
  • Naturopathic treatments for diabetes include exercise, eating low glycemic index foods (low sugar content) that are cooked at low temperatures and are minimally processed, and blood-sugar-balancing herbs like gymnema and cinnamon. Now, it seems we can add lingonberry to this list.

Although not well known in the United States, lingonberries are available in juice form in some health food stores. They can also be found in jams, and the berries can be bought frozen or in powdered form online. Those with diabetes, blood pressure challenges, and inflammatory concerns, here is a quick recipe (make sure to consult with your physician first) a tablespoon or two of the frozen berries and adding them to one cup of non-sweetened almond milk with a three-quarter cup of ice; blend for a healthy flavonoid-rich treat!

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