(Best Syndication News) Diabetes was discussed on the Oprah Winfrey Show Thursday. “People are dropping like flies” and diabetes especially affects the African American Community, according to Oprah.
“I have a radical goal in the next 60 minutes to save millions of lives,” the talk show host opened her show with. As a heart surgeon, Dr Mehmet C Oz, says he sees people with diabetes all of the time. In the United States alone there are 80 million people who have diabetes or on the verge of getting it and there are another 6 million people who have it and don’t know it.
Americans spend $174 billion a year on the disease and that will double in 25 years. That is more than AIDS and all of the cancers combined. “At this rate it will bankrupt our health care system,” Oprah said.
Most diabetes cases are preventable and may be even be reversible. Oz used a graphic to illustrate how diabetes occurs. When you eat something like tortilla chips, it goes into the stomach and then into the intestines. The liver produces bile and the pancreas releases a yellow substance that “washes” the food.
The glucose (sugar) is absorbed into the bloodstream. The insulin from the pancreas collects the sugar from the blood. The sugar scratches the artery and the artery ruptures and forms a scab. This scab will come loose and cause a heart attack. “One quarter of the people I operate on have diabetes,” Oz said. “The scaring process is the hardening of the arteries.” The sugar can also scar the eyes, kidneys and other organs.
Sufferers may lose their kidneys and spend hours a week in dialysis. They may also lose limbs. People may not take it seriously because they feel fine, but then it will strike without warning.
There are 6,000 amputations in the US every year because of diabetes. “People don’t change their lives from what they know, they change their lives because of what they feel,” Oz said. Diabetes can lead to amputations because the arteries get damaged and the blood circulation stops.
We are eating 40 more pounds of sugar this generation than we did last generation. Many processed foods have hidden sugar in them.
Here are the warning signs:
Eventually you will need insulin, even with type-2 diabetes. But it can be reversed in some cases. “Many say that 90 percent of type-2 diabetics can reverse their problem”, Oz said.
The risk factors include:
When you exercise your muscles become “sensitive” to insulin. You don’t want your body to be insulin “resistant”. The belly fat prevents you from using sugar. Once you get a little bit fat it is harder to reverse it. Even if you are a little overweight, you are at risk for diabetes. Smoking can kill your pancreas.
Diabetes is common in the African American community because they tend to eat “cheap food”. Oz said it is harder to find good food in the urban areas of the country. Get food that doesn’t have labels (vegetables etc) and avoid the white foods (sugar, flour, pasta, etc.).
By: Marsha Quinn