Hormones and Diabetes: It’s Not So Sweet

Diabetes Basics

Did you know that the medical term for diabetes is actually “Diabetes Mellitus”?  (Although you probably never hear it called that.) Diabetes affects approximately 30.3 million people (9.4% of the population) in the United States, (Tom Hanks, Nick Jonas and Halle Berry to name a few) while another estimated 84.1 million people have prediabetes and don’t know it. What you probably know is that it has something to do with sugar. To put it simply, diabetes is a chronic condition in which the body does not produce enough of the hormone insulin, resulting in high levels of the sugar “glucose” in the bloodstream.

Every Type is Pretty Terrible

There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2. Both types of diabetes are lifelong diseases that affect the way your body regulates blood sugar, or glucose. Glucose is the fuel that feeds your body’s cells, but to enter your cells it needs a key. Insulin is that key. People with type 1 diabetes  (often known as juvenile diabetes) don’t produce insulin. You can think of it as not having a key. People with type 2 diabetes don’t respond to insulin as well as they should and later in the disease often don’t make enough insulin. You can think of this as having a broken key. Of the two, type 1 is the most severe.

When Hormones Have Their Way

Hormone imbalances definitely influence blood sugar levels. To better understand how hormones affect diabetes, it is important to identify which hormones can impact those levels in the blood. Insulin is the hormone that affects blood sugar levels the most, but it’s not the only one. Glucagon, Amylin, Epinephrine, Cortisol and Growth Hormone are others that are best left to medical minds. Let’s just say when it comes to diabetes, unbalanced, they’re “bad”.  This, we can all understand.

Some Serious Stuff Here

Many people with diabetes often “poo-poo” it, not believing it can really do that much damage. But consider just some of the symptoms and health-related problems:

  • Increased thirst and urination
  • Nerve pain
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Blurred vision
  • Hunger
  • Weight loss or gain
  • Fatigue
  • Dry mouth 
  • Depression
  • Slow-healing wounds, cuts, or sores 
  • Itching skin
  • Increased susceptibility to infections
  • Heart and blood vessel disease
  • Kidney disease

Still think controlling it isn’t something to think seriously about?

Eat This Up

The first thing people think about when it comes to diabetes and diet, is deprivation. No this, no that, and absolutely, positively, never-ever anything sweet. Not so. It’s just all about portion. That box of Valentine candy? Have a small piece or two, just don’t devour the whole thing or dig into a 5-lb chocolate heart. (Cupid won’t die if you don’t). A diet for diabetics is a sensible, healthy diet for anyone; fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and heart-healthy fats. It’s about cutting back on sodium and processed foods. And really cutting back on carbs which are most easily broken down into sugar.  What are a few examples of things you should you totally try to avoid?

  • Frosting (Sorry, but you can ‘t get caught up in the cupcake craze)
  • Bagels
  • Soda (sugar-free is fine)
  • Sugary cereals- (Fruit Loops can really send your blood sugar in loops)
  • Stick margarine
  • Jarred tomato sauce- (Sure, it’s easy, but…Prego is a no-go)
  • Bacon (No more “Bs” in your BLTs)
  • Maraschino cherries (And the sugar-laden cocktails you love them in)
  • Soy sauce
  • Smoothies (Just being green, doesn’t make them healthy)
  • Vanilla cappuccino with whipped cream and hazelnut drizzle (Or any other Starbucks specialty where tons of sugar make them so special.)
  • The devilish duos of anything breaded and fried (bye-bye chicken McNuggets)
  • Fatty red meat (liverwurst’s the worst)
  • Hot dogs

It’s All in the Balance

Before you go bonkers over diabetes, you have to remember that it can be all about hormone imbalances. And imbalances, if treated correctly, by the right medical specialists, can be balanced. The place to start, is getting a good and accurate measure of your hormones, especially those that can contribute to diabetes. And in the Denver area, there’s no better place to do that than at Denver Hormone Health. Every one of the doctors that are at Denver Hormone Health are hormone specialists that know everything there is to know about hormones and getting them back in balance. Simple tests can tell them how they can help you if they determine you’re pre-diabetic or diabetic. Even if it turns out you’re not, they can see if something isn’t in balance with all the other hormones floating through your bloodstream. In any case, all they care about is getting you back to feeling your best. Call the experts at Denver Hormone Health now.

Diabetes doesn’t have to get you down.

PUTTING THE HEALTH PUZZLE TOGETHER

Hormone Puzzle

WORKING IN PERFECT HARMONY

Having a life worth living isn’t about one thing, it’s about a lot of things. Nutrition. Exercise. Balanced hormones. All working in synergy, a marriage of all that your body needs. The right mix is what makes us feel our best. A fail-safe formula for physical and mental success. But where do most of us fit into the equation? Uh…do we really have to say it? How do youapproach the conundrum? Do you control it, or does it control you? For all the fanfare of “Just Do It”, most people don’t. We don’t do it, we haven’t done it, we don’t even like thinking about doing it. So we put on a huge set of health blinders and go on our not-so-merry ways.

THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE DEADLY

How and what we eat, is just a piece of the pie. Colorado has retained its crown as the least-obese state in America each year, but the state’s widening waistlines mean that superlative is in jeopardy. Eating well, well what does that mean exactly? How much food you need depends on many factors, including your height, age, sex, general state of health, job, leisure time activities, physical activities, genetics, body size, environmental factors, body composition and what medications you may be taking. But here’s the killer;studies link unhealthy eating to nearly half of American deaths caused by diabetes, strokes and heart disease. (Be still, my heart).

BURGERS BIGGER THAN PIKES PEAK

From burger bonanzas to bakeries to family restaurants to vending machines to movie theater concessions, our meals and snacks are taking on gargantuan proportions. “Normal”, seems skimpy. “Let’s go out for a bite”, is an oxymoron. (Not to mention nutritionally moronic.) We don’t eat plates of food, we inhale platters of it. The food scene is a malnutrition minefield loaded with calorie bombs, laden with lousy choices. (That we gobble up, no less.) Sugar. It’s everywhere. And it’s not so sweet when it comes to your health. Deep-fried, deep dish, deep trouble. Fast food is a fast way to die. The fast food industry in the united states is worth approximately 198.9 billion U.S. dollars. By 2020, this figure is forecasted to exceed 223 billion. Yet we love, and want to scarf it all.

FOR EVERY DUMB CHOICE, A SMART ONE

As we’ve said, bad nutrition can have more than a bad effect on every part of your body from head to toe.  Just so you have it, below is a list that can feed your overall fitness:

  • Eggs-protein
  • Tomato sauce-heart
  • Dried plums-bone density
  • Walnuts-memory and coordination
  • Brussel sprouts-cancer
  • Apples-lung cancer
  • Bok choy-bones, pms
  • Steel cut oats-digestions
  • Salmon- heart smart omega 3
  • Avocados-healthy fat absorb other nutrients
  • Canned pumpkin-cancer fighters
  • Spinach-avoid blood clots, strong bones
  • Cauliflower-cancer fighting
  • Scallops-protein
  • Collard greens-healthy eyes
  • Olives-heart healthy
  • Brown rice-build bones, convert food to energy
  • Oysters-strong immune system
  • Edamame-cholesterol lowering
  • Strawberries-halt growth of cervical and colon cancer
  • Kiwi-asthma wheezing
  • Bran flakes-reduce inflammation, melt belly fat
  • Sunflower seeds-heart health, fights infection
  • Black beans-help arteries star relaxed and pliable
  • Sardines-more than 100% Vitamin D and top source of omega 3
  • Asparagus-bone building, diuretic
  • Fat free milk-muscle building, ultimate energy drink
  • Bananas-fiber, slimming
  • Baked potato-more pressure lowering potassium than banana
  • Flaxseed-may prevent endometrial and ovarian cancer
  • Sweet potatoes-vision and immune system
  • Greek yogurt-twice protein as regular
  • Wheat germ-immune booster
  • Dried tart cherries-control blood sugar, reduce insulin, lower cholesterol
  • Green and black tea-prevent hardening of arteries
  • Blackberries-more antioxidants than strawberries, cranberries or blueberries
  • Peanut butter-keep blood vessels healthy
  • Canola oil-heart healthy
  • Blueberries-improve memory by protecting your brain from inflammation, boosts communication between brain cells
  • Watercress-cancer fighting
  • Barley-lowers cholesterol, helps control blood sugar
  • Shitake mushrooms-as much d as glass of milk

Not that you’re supposed to dump the bunch into your grocery carts. Even incorporating a few, can help.

“I MEAN TO” MEANS SQUAT.  (REAL SQUATS REQUIRED)

Exercise is another part of the mix. If overdoing it is a pain, not moving is a bigger pain.  Yet 80 million people, aged six and older are physically inactive. What you should be focusing on is endurance, strength, balance and flexibility. Moving those fingers texting at lightning speed doesn’t count. And we spend four hours on our phones every day without even breaking a sweat. Exercise can be as simple as walking or swimming. Boring, you think? (Baloney. Which, by the way is something to dump from your diet.) There are plenty of options to keep the momentum going. Hula hoops, trampolines… kid-like, sure, but fun. (Which makes you stick with it.) But there’s a wild world of workouts out there today from high-flying bungee-assisted dance cardio classes to underwater spinning. From anti-gravity aerial yoga to circuit-based classes that will have you mimicking the hose-slinging, ax-swinging, and stair-climbing movements of firefighters. Whatever you do, your body will say, “Thanks, Sport”.

HOR-MOANS

OK, on to a big chunk of the health maze that might amaze you. Even if you seem to be doing everything (or anything, for that matter, right), hormones can really rake your health. Hormonal imbalances are literally becoming an epidemic in the western world. Cases of infertility, pms, lowered sex drive, impaired thyroid function, diabetes (which is a hormonal imbalance because insulin is a hormone) and irregular mensural cycles have become almost common place instead of being something that only a few people have to deal with. Both men and women can be affected by hormonal imbalances at any time in their lives, and if you or any one you know has ever dealt with such an imbalance, you know how disruptive it can be to a person’s state of well-being. Each hormone in our body has a specific job controlling every cell and organ. When these chemical messengers run rampant through your bloodstream, your entire body takes a serious hit.

AND AS AN ASIDE…

A lot of people think taking supplements can take care of all their woes. But whoa, wait a minute. Just where are they turning to scoop them up? Pharmacy aisles are filled with who-knows-what or what they really do, for that matter. There are big health food chains. Vitamin Shoppes (Yes, with two “p” s and an “e”.) Marketing mavens are beaming over their bottom lines. Then there are the millions of .com companies you’ve never heard of and know nothing about. Even Pinterest and Instagram get in on the game. You think “Amazon”, and think they must be good.

LOOKING FOR A REAL LIFE-CHANGER?

Look no further than Denver Hormone Health. No one gets the big picture better. Instead of a one-stop-shop that takes a one-size-fits-all approach to your overall health, they create tailored, integrated programs depending on what will make you feel your best. All their doctors are experienced in solving the complex puzzle of your unique needs. They start with simple tests that tell them where your hormones stand, and after addressing that, they work out a plan that is supplemented by nutrition and exercise. And as to real supplements, they are used to safely boost and enhance the rest of the program. And the supplements they use are from a company called Xymogen, a family-owned health sciences company with a quarter century of experience offering help and personal attention addressing issues from adrenal and cardiovascular support to immune system and gastrointestinal support. Whatever you need, Denver Hormone Health puts it all together. They help you get with a program and stick to it.

So make an appointment with Denver Hormone Health now.

It’s a win-win. Win. Win. Win.

HORMONES AND HEALTH: FEELING AWFUL ALL OVER

Hormones and Health

HYPER-HYPOCHONDRIAC?

“So, hey, how’re you doing?” you might hear.

So, how do you answer?

Uh, let’s see…queasy, jacked up, run-down, rotten, defective, debilitated, blah, bleh, broken, not so hot, woozy, wobbly, stricken, sick, ick, uck, yukky, ucky, a total mess, at a total loss, down and out, out of it, in the dumps…oh heck, get out the thesaurus. Point is, that at different times in our lives, we all go through feeling like dreck (there’s another apt word). Well, the good news is that it just might be that your hormones are unbalanced. Hormones? Oh groan, something else to worry about. (Hold on, hold on…keep reading…)

WHO KNOWS WHAT A HORMONE IS, ANYWAY? (HONESTY, HERE…NO WIKI WANDERING)

in the simplest of terms, hormones are powerful chemical messengers in your body that are constantly traveling around your bloodstream telling your tissues and organs what to do. (And their word is golden.) They control most bodily functions and are essential for every activity of life. The bummer is that you can’t control them on your own. They choose to play “mayhem and misery”, with every inch of your body, and it’s a game you can’t win.

GOLDILOCKS AND THE 50 OR SO HORMONES

There are about 50 different hormones in the body which effect trillions of our cells. Each hormone has a different effect on our body, and each and every one of those hormones can be out of balance at some point or another during our lives. Here’s how the story goes:

“This hormone is too much”, Goldie would say.

“This hormone is too little”, she might claim.

In both cases, with too much or too little of any hormone, even tiny changes can have serious effects throughout your body. From head to toe. To get to “this is just right”, takes fine tuning to get your hormones in a balance that gets you feeling your best. It can be a bear of a problem.

IT’S EVERYWHERE, IT’S EVERYWHERE

So, what causes all these hormone imbalances? To name a few (ok, more than a few) …maybe you should be sitting:

  • Chronic or extreme stress
  • Type 1 and type 2 diabetes
  • Hyperglycemia (overproduction of glucagon (more insulin produced than there is glucose in the blood)
  • Underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism)
  • Overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
  • Poor diet and nutrition
  • Being overweight
  • Hormonal replacement or birth controlmedications
  • Abuse of anabolic steroids
  • Benign tumors and cysts(fluid-filled sacks) that affect the endocrine glands
  • Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (low levels of cortisol)
  • Endocrine gland injury
  • Severe allergic reactions or infections
  • Cancers that involve endocrine glands
  • Chemotherapy and radiation therapy
  • Iodine deficiency (goiters)
  • Hereditary pancreatitis
  • Turner syndrome (females with only one functioning x chromosome)
  • Prader-Willi syndrome- (what in the…?)
  • Anorexia
  • Exposure to toxins, pollutants, and endocrine disrupting chemicals, including pesticides and herbicides
  • Pituitary cancers

ENOUGH TO MAKE YOU SICK

So, what are some symptoms and signs you might be suffering from a hormone imbalance? Don’t leave now, and don’t fly into an apoplectic fit that you have not just one of the following symptoms, but all of them:

  • Tired all the time/no energy
  • Difficulty getting up in the morning
  • Poor sleep
  • Craving for salty or sugary foods
  • Taking more effort to perform everyday tasks and duties
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Decreased ability to handle stress
  • Increased time to recover from illness or injury
  • Light headed when standing up quickly
  • Depression
  • Lack of enjoyment or happiness
  • Weight gain/loss
  • Food intolerance
  • Sinus problems
  • Alcohol intolerance
  • Excessive allergies
  • Anxiety
  • Digestive disorders
  • Dry and thin skin
  • Excessive hunger
  • No hunger
  • Hair loss
  • Unexplained headaches
  • Immune deficiencies
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Infections
  • Liver disorders
  • Chronic pain
  • Inflammation
  • Blood pressure problems
  • Low body temperature
  • Hot flashes
  • Night sweats
  • Mood swings
  • Poor memory
  • PMS
  • Sleep disorders
  • Tender breasts
  • Weakness
  • Difficulty building muscle
  • Cramping
  • Fluid retention
  • Slow metabolism
  • Irritability
  • Chronic illness
  • Unexplained or excessive sweating
  • Changes in sensitivity to cold and heat
  • Very dry skin or skin rashes
  • Changes in blood pressure
  • Changes in heart rate
  • Brittle or weak bones
  • A bunch of different cancers and hard-to-even pronounce maladies

A DIAGNOSIS FOR FAILURE

Certainly, at this point, the biggest thing you’re suffering from is panic. The point is, there are times you don’t feel well, and well, can’t figure it out. So, you might ignore what’s gnawing at your health and try to go your merry way. No way that’s going to work. Finally, it gets to the point it starts to interfere with your life, so you start on a medical merry-go-round of supposed experts subjecting you to tests you couldn’t even attempt to pronounce. Which are followed by enough different diagnoses to puzzle Einstein. Maybe it’s this. Probably it’s that. Could be both. “Clueless” is the overwhelming diagnosis of all their efforts. Google any of it and you’ll be sure you’re going to die. Slowly. Painfully.

GET THOSE HORMONES HUMMING

Something else you probably don’t know, is that there are two types of hormones that can be used in hormone replacement therapy. There are natural bioidentical hormones that have the exact same chemical structure your body produces, so when used, the body doesn’t know the difference. Then there are synthetic hormones patented by Big Pharma. (Big nightmare.) It’s a little too close to one size fits all. And we know how productive that is. Additionally, because synthetic hormones are not created structurally the same as natural hormones, they often lead to uncomfortable side effects. That’s where Denver Hormone Health comes in. All their doctors are skilled and experienced in the ups and downs of hormone imbalances. They use bioidentical hormones, not what could be dangerous synthetic hormones. Instead of using the “hunt-and-peck” method for discovering what imbalances you might have, the doctors at Denver Hormone Health look at your body as a whole. With simple tests they are able to determine where the problems are, and based on the results, create a unique, tailored treatment plan to get you feeling like you’re ready to take on the world. Which is why going to Denver Hormone Health makes all the difference in the world. Make an appointment at Denver Hormone Health now. And get ready to discover balanced hormone heaven.