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Publication: Diabetes Update
The Best Thing

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Diabetic Digest - Wednesday, October 10, 2007
News, updates and help from and for the diabetic community.


I was looking back at some editions of the Diabetic Digest 
from 2005 and 2006. 

About a year ago, this is what I had to say: 

"Since the visit to my doctor I have given up fast food. 
That's right, no more fast food for me. I gave it up cold 
turkey and it is working out great for me. 

I gave it up three weeks ago and I've lost over 7lbs. I 
feel better, I eat better, I sleep better. I've been 
exercising more often too. A little bit goes a long way. 
Walking for 30 minutes each day helps in so many ways. 

I'm curious how I'll feel in two weeks when I write you 
again... and how much weight I'll lost and what shape I'll 
be in."

I just can't believe that it has been a whole year since I 
stopped eating fast food. It's amazing how much my health 
has improved since I made this wise decision. My blood 
pressure is great, my cholesterol is great and my last A1C 
Blood Test was at 5.8 so I couldn't be better. 

Giving up fast food was the best thing I could have done 
for my health, my diabetes and my life. 


Diabetic Update Newsletter 
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Long-lasting Insulin Yields Mixed Results

LONDON (Reuters) - Patients with type 2 diabetes are less
likely to reach target blood sugar levels on the long-
lasting insulin, Levemir, than on shorter-acting products,
researchers said on Friday.

However, Levemir (Novo Nordisk) is associated with less
weight gain and is significantly less likely to cause low
blood sugar, or "hypoglycemia," that can cause mental
confusion and progress to coma.

The findings, from the first year of a 3-year study compar-
ing three types of insulin, suggest Levemir is a useful
base treatment but is not enough on its own, Rury Holman
of Oxford University told a medical meeting in Amsterdam.

"It would be wonderful if we had a miracle cure but we
don't," he said in a telephone interview.

Holman's study, involving 708 patients who had poor control
of their disease despite taking two oral diabetes drugs,
found all the insulins helped but only 8 percent of
patients achieved target of a blood sugar levels, or
HbA1c, below 6.5 percent with Levemir.

That compared with 17 percent and 24 percent who hit the
target when given NovoMix or NovoRapid, two other Novo
Nordisk insulins injected two and three times a day

Type 2 diabetes is closely linked to obesity and is on
the rise worldwide, fuelled by poor diet and sedentary
lifestyles. Most patients will ultimately need insulin

"The take-home message is that adding insulin is successful
but most patients are likely to need more than one type
of insulin," Holman said.

The final two years of the study, due to report in 2009,
will assess how often a second insulin needs to be added.
This should give doctors better guidelines for insulin use
in future.

Holman's study was presented at the European Association
for the Study of Diabetes annual meeting and published
online in The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM).

It was sponsored by Denmark's Novo Nordisk, the world's
biggest maker of insulin, whose Levemir product competes
with Lantus from Sanofi-Aventis.

"It shows you need a portfolio of insulins you can combine
and intensify, so that if Levemir alone doesn't take you
below target then you need to add NovoRapid," said Mads
Krogsgaard Thomsen, Novo Nordisk's chief scientific

For many patients, Levemir would be the best bet,
especially if they had an HbA1c level below 8.5 percent
when starting insulin treatment, he said. Holman's
research showed this group did as well on the basal
insulin as on shorter-acting ones.

It was pointed out in a NEJM editorial that the fact only
a minority of patients got to target on any of the insulins
and Levemir was less effective than expected was disappoint-
ing, but the best approach still appears to be adding a
basal insulin to oral therapy.

Copyright 2006 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.

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Burden of Diabetes Care Rivals Disease Complications

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Many diabetic patients say the 
inconvenience of staying on top of their disease and the 
discomfort of daily insulin injections harms their quality 
of life as much as diabetes-associated complications, new 
research suggests. 

"An important minority of patients believe that comprehen-
sive diabetes treatments have a significant negative impact 
on quality of life that is comparable to that of life with 
complications. We did not know that such a large proportion 
of patients would report this," lead author Dr. Elbert S. 
Huang, from The University of Chicago, told Reuters Health. 

A typical diabetes patient takes several medications each 
day, including two or three different pills to control 
blood sugar levels, one or two to lower cholesterol, two 
or more to reduce blood pressure and a daily aspirin to 
prevent blood clots. They must also exercise and stick to 
a strict diet. As the disease progresses, the drugs 
increase, often including insulin shots. 

To study the burden of diabetes care, Huang and colleagues 
interviewed 701 adult patients with diabetes who were seen 
at Chicago area clinics. The subjects were asked to rank 
treatment benefits as well as the impact that various 
complications had on quality of life. 

As expected, patients were most distressed by end-stage 
complications, especially kidney failure, stroke, or blind-
ness. They were slightly less concerned about amputations 
or diabetic retina damage, and still less about angina 
(chest pain), diabetic nerve or kidney damage. 

Patients also disliked intensive treatments, especially 
intensive blood sugar control, with multiple daily insulin 
injections, and what the authors called comprehensive 
diabetes care, which was intensive blood sugar control 
plus other medications. 

Many patients found both complications and treatment 
onerous. Between 12 and 50 percent were willing to give 
up 8 of 10 years of life in perfect health to avoid life 
with complications, the authors found, while between 10 
and 18 percent of patients were willing to give up 8 of 
10 years of healthy life to avoid life with treatments. 

"This tells us that we need to find better, more convenient 
ways" to treat diabetes and other chronic illnesses, Huang 
said in a university statement. 

SOURCE: Diabetes Care, October 2007.

Copyright 2006 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.

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                     Diabetic Recipe

               Diabetic Brownies in a Jar

2 cups graham cracker crumbs (approx.24 crackers)

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

3oz semi-sweet chocolate

1 1/2 teaspoon sweet n low (6 packets)

1/4 teaspoon salt

Add the above ingredients to your jar.
Have tag read: Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix ingredients with 1 cup skim milk, blend well.
Bake in greased 8x8x2 pan for 30 minutes.
Cut in 2 inch squares while warm.


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Copyright 2007 by NextEra Media. All rights reserved.

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