Diabetes Affects More Than Just the Patient

Diabetes is often called a family disease because if affects more than just the diabetes patient. If impacts the immediate family and the relationships of close friends as well.

Being diagnosed with diabetes can be a difficult thing to handle. In one fell swoop, it affects you for possibly the rest of your life. You can no longer eat your normal foods with abandon, you constantly have to test your blood sugar level, you possibly have to take medicine, and, in the worse cases, you can end up losing limbs or doing major damage to body organs.

So having diabetes is no picnic. But it’s difficult for the family, friends, and other loved ones as well.

One of the first and most important changes required is a change in the patient’s diet. Suddenly there are whole categories of foods that are “off the table.” The patient has to learn a great deal and become familiar with procedures for planning healthy meals. He has to learn how to look at a fast food or restaurant menu and decide which foods are OK to order. And at home, if the family cook doesn’t want to continuously be responsible for cooking two sets of meals, entire menu plans may change – forcing the others in the family to adjust to the diabetic’s nutritional needs.

Another potential change that affects the entire family is the additional medical attention that the person with diabetes will need. Depending on the severity of the illness, the family’s income situation may be impacted drastically. The family as a whole may be forced to buy cheaper foods, clothes, and other items. And if the diabetic is a child, he will probably need more attention than the other children, possibly leading to the other children feeling jealous because they are now receiving less attention.

Living with diabetes is especially difficult for teens to handle. The teen years are already difficult enough. And what teenager wants to stand out as being different from the rest? They want to be with their friends, eat what their friends eat, drink what their friends drink, and so on. And now they discover that they risk doing damage to their body and health, if they try to emulate their friend’s eating habits. For a teenager, this can very easily lead to feelings of being isolated and different. And teens don’t like to be different from each other.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. With the right attitude, the illness can in fact strengthen relationships. This is a chance to treat the disease as a learning experience for the family by helping the family to learn and practice better dietary habits. As the entire family begins to eat healthier meals, not only is the chance of other members developing diabetes decreased, their overall health is increased as well.

This can also be used as an opportunity to strengthen friendships and discover who your real friends are. Diabetes is nothing to be ashamed about and a teenager shouldn’t hide it from his or her friends. If a “friend” is willing to drop you because you are “afraid” to drink or eat the things that the in crowd is doing, then they are not truly your friend. Good friends are worth their weight in gold, and a good friend will understand and stick by you regardless of your illness.

Find the Right Lyme Doctor

The first step into Lyme is a doozy – finding the right doctor and treatment protocol for you, your budget, your insurance, your geographical location, and your particular body with Lyme.

Starting out, find the best, most qualified Lyme doctor using natural treatments you can find. No matter what state he or she is in and how hard it is to get there. What matters to start with is that they are conquering Lyme the best way possible and having success doing it. There are a dozens of LLMDs now, but not all of them use enough variety of treatment to tailor the protocol to each individual. There is a handful of doctors using outside the box treatments and no antibiotics and having great success. You can’t be choosy based on where they are – just on how they are doing.

I would then find a local doctor of natural bent that could support this long distance treatment and that you could use for quick short term checkups. Building this team is crucial. Absolutely crucial. Both these doctors need to understand detoxification and how Lyme works. If they don’t know about neurotoxins and ammonia damage and Post Lyme Syndrome and avoiding herxing then RUN FOR THE DOOR.

Interview different doctors and have them lay out their protocol recommendation for you or your loved one. Compare and contrast their protocols then go back and ask questions about the discrepancies to fully understand where they are coming from. Be sure about their comprehension of the human body and the Lyme. Ask them for testimonials and success rate. When you are in the lobby of each doctor’s office (every time) make friends.

I introduce myself to everyone who comes into the lobby of my doctor and I talk to them, really talk to them. You don’t know me so you don’t know how hard this is for me because I’m not a “love talking to strangers” kind of person. It is critical for you to know the success rate and treatment protocol of other patients and if they are feeling better. Later, I realized I must keep up the “talking to everybody phenomenon” because the newbies, like I was, need to hear about success and that they picked the right place. It is incredibly encouraging to hear from patients “this place is healing me”. We are on this journey to encourage one another.

The husband of a friend of mine has some horrible form of cancer that I cannot pronounce and she said the other patients in the traditional cancer program where they are is depressing. No one in the program is getting better and she sees death everywhere they go and every time they are there. SCARY! I would run for the hills. Every program is not for everyone, but the wellness numbers should safely be in the 80% and 90% to be sure the doctors know what they are doing.

The bad news I have to break to you before we even get into this fight, is that you will not find cooperation from your health insurance carrier in the battle. Finding even a traditional MD that insurance will cover all the treatments and services is rare. It sucks, but I have to be honest with you so you are not caught off balance and surprised. Almost all of us are paying cash or going in debt to get through this thing. To the insurance company’s defense (I have no idea why I’m defending their position) most of these treatments against Lyme are ground breaking and have only been used for a few years. Anything that new, insurance companies are scared to death over providing funding for.

Just accept this fact and be delightfully surprised if yours will pay anything: Insurance will not cover this. Insurance will not cover most of these treatments. Insurance is built around traditional medicine and unless you find an M.D. who can code things in a gray area, your insurance is going to buck. If it’s not a pill and it’s not administered in a hospital- then good luck.

I’ll take a step back at this point and apologize for my abruptness. I am a rip-off-the-bandaid-in-one-fell-swoop kind of girl, so I tend to be direct and to the point. When you are as sick as most of you are, you don’t have time to beat around the bush either. So I’m shooting straight. The good news is that the world changes rapidly and responds to consumer demand. So, as the demand for good Lyme care is increasing and the treatments are becoming more well known, then who knows what can happen.

Foods To Avoid When You Are Pregnant

Just as there are certain foods that you should be sure to stock up on, so too are there foods that you should avoid as though they would give you the plague if you were to breathe in their general area if you were pregnant. Of course, this list changes from year to year so take most of these recommendations with a grain of salt!

If you’re unsure whether a food is safe for you to eat, or if you have heard mixed reports or have a concern based on your individual circumstances, consult your OB/GYN. Since they are regularly required to take continuing education classes and receive frequent updates from the research fields they would be the most qualified to provide you with information pertaining specifically to your pregnancy.

Alcohol is first on the list of No-No’s for Mommies to Be, and with good reason. The amount of alcohol that is safe to consume in a day while pregnant has yet to be determined, and the incidence of known cases of birth defects due to alcohol consumption is on the rise. According to the March of Dimes “alcohol is the most common known cause of damage to developing babies in the United States and is the leading cause of preventable mental retardation.”

On a more personal note, alcohol can also aggravate many of the common side effects of pregnancy such as nausea and heartburn. It also takes up space in your stomach that could be filled with more healthy things, like water or juice. If you can forsake alcohol completely during your pregnancy, that would be the best choice for you and your baby. Does that mean that a sip of your glass when you toast your cousin’s wedding is going to leave your baby scarred for life? No, probably not. Use your good sense. While a sip or two of wine every now and then probably won’t hurt your growing angel, a shot or two of tequila might not be as forgiving. Pregnancy is only nine months long. Your baby lasts a lifetime.

The other scare when it comes to pregnancy eating has come from an unexpected source-fish. Long lauded as the best source of protein for pregnant women, it was recently discovered that fish was also high in mercury, a condition caused by the dumping of waste into the water. Mercury can cause irreparable damage to a fetus’s developing nervous system. The debate as to whether specific fish can be considered safe or not is still ongoing, but pregnant women are currently being encouraged to avoid shark, swordfish, king mackerel, tilefish, bluefish, tuna steak, striped bass, freshwater fish and canned tuna.

While highly processed foods may not cause permanent damage to your unborn baby they usually contain enough preservatives to qualify them as highly suspicious. Remember, anything that claims to be sugar free yet tastes sweet has some form of sugar substitute in it. The question is, what are they substituting? Labels such as “fat free” and “caffeine free” should also be approached with caution. Take the high road here and attempt to buy whole, natural foods as often as possible. Look at the list of ingredients on the label. The longer it is, the less likely it is to be healthy for your baby.

If you have a hard time getting started in the morning without your cup of Joe, now’s going to be the time to learn. Caffeine impedes iron absorption, contributing to anemia in pregnant women who don’t have enough to spare, robs the body of precious calcium and aggravates heartburn all in one fell swoop. It also transfers to your baby through your breast milk, which means that if you like to drink coffee and you’re planning on breastfeeding you can expect a lot of late nights.

Although you could switch to decaf, for the dedicated coffee drinker this is about the equivalent of taking a perfectly good cup of coffee and filling it 2/3 full of water. As a placebo it’s a poor substitute. Instead, try a cup of hot chocolate or apple cider in the morning. (Heating apple juice and adding a little cinnamon works too.) The hot beverage will hit a few of the “wake up” buttons that coffee triggers, and while you’ll probably feel the lack of caffeine for the first week or two you should find that getting through the day gets easier-and hey, pregnant women are supposed to nap regularly anyway!

Unpasteurized cheeses, soft or fresh cheeses such as Brie, deli meats, hot dogs, undercooked eggs, fish, rare to medium well meats and unpasteurized juices are also being added at various intervals to the “no-no” list that OB/GYNs are handing out to their patients in an attempt to stop the spread of pathogens such as E.coli, Salmonella and Listeria, all of which are often present in undercooked or uncooked meats.

Listeria, the leading cause of meningitis in children less than one year old, has the ability to cross the placenta and infect the baby. It can also cause miscarriage. Salmonella has been associated with stillbirth. Even if fetal death doesn’t occur, dehydration from the diarrhea and vomiting that accompany Salmonella infection is a serious risk. A severe infection with E. coli can cause dehydration as well as potentially triggering premature labor or miscarriage.