Friday, April 19, 2013

Pharmacists War on Diabetes Month

By Terry Orr
(Type 2 Diabetic)

A War with Diabetes!!!

Why the War?
An estimated 23.6 million Americans have diabetes.  Unfortunately, 5.7 million Americans don't know they have the deadly disease.  Pharmacists are one of the most available health care professionals and have the greatest potential to impact the threat of diabetes. 

Complications of Diabetes:

Heart Disease & Stroke: Diabetics are 2 to 4 times more likely to die from heart disease and stroke than non-diabetics.  Sixty-five percent of diabetics will die of heart disease or stroke.
Blindness: Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in adults age 20-74.
Kidney Disease: Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure.
Nervous System Disease: 60 to 70% of diabetics have a mild to severe form of nervous system damage.  The results of such damage include impaired sensation or pain in the feet or hands, slowed digestion of food in the stomach, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other nerve problems.
Amputations: Diabetes is the leading cause of non-traumatic lower limb amputation.  
Complications of Pregnancy: Poorly controlled diabetes can increase the risk of miscarriage or cause major birth defects.
Sexual Dysfunction: Diabetes significantly increases the risk for sexual dysfunction in both men and women

Here are some of the new drugs in the War on Diabetes:

Invokana will be sold by Johnson & Johnson and treats patients with type 2 diabetes in a new way, by causing blood sugar to be excreted in the urine. Many existing drugs work by affecting the supply or use of insulin. FDA approved this drug in late March of this year.

Dapagliflozin by AstraZeneca/Bristol-Myers Squibb, The drugs offer a different way than insulin therapy to lower blood sugar, preventing excess sugar in the kidneys from reentering circulation and allowing glucose to exit the body via urine.

LY2605541 - by Eli Lilly/Boehringer Ingelheim, a potential long-acting insulin option.

MK-3102 by Merck & Co., a once-weekly DPP-4 inhibitor.

Taking Control

Mayo Clinic Type 2 Diabetes Prevention: 5 tips for taking control (Changing your lifestyle could be a big step toward diabetes prevention — and it's never too late to start) consider these tips:

Tip 1: Get more physical activity

There are many benefits to regular physical activity. Exercise can help you:
Lose weight
Lower your blood sugar
Boosts your sensitivity to insulin — which helps keep your blood sugar within a normal range
Research shows that both aerobic exercise and resistance training can help control diabetes, but the greatest benefit comes from a fitness program that includes both.

Tip 3: Go for whole grains

Although it's not clear why, whole grains may reduce your risk of diabetes and help maintain blood sugar levels. Try to make at least half your grains whole grains. Many foods made from whole grains come ready to eat, including various breads, pasta products and many cereals. Look for the word "whole" on the package and among the first few items in the ingredient list.

Tip 4: Lose extra weight

If you're overweight, diabetes prevention may hinge on weight loss. Every pound you lose can improve your health. And you may be surprised by how much. In one study, overweight adults reduced their diabetes risk by 16 percent for every kilogram (2.2 pounds) of weight lost. Also, those who lost a modest amount of weight — at least 5 to 10 percent of initial body weight — and exercised regularly reduced the risk of developing diabetes by almost 60 percent over three years.

Tip 5: Skip fad diets and make healthier choices

Low-carb diets, the glycemic index diet or other fad diets may help you lose weight at first, but their effectiveness at preventing diabetes isn't known nor are their long-term effects. And by excluding or strictly limiting a particular food group, you may be giving up essential nutrients. Instead, think variety and portion control as part of an overall healthy-eating plan.

Be sure to see your primary healthcare provider and discus the plan best for you.

References and Links:

(All images from Google) 

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