What is type 2 diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes in the world. Where type 1 typically appears when you are young and is largely hereditary, type 2 is considered to be a lifestyle disease and can appear at any point in your life.
Type 2 diabetes means your body has lost the ability to effectively manage blood glucose. Of the two types, type 2 diabetes is considered to be reversible for almost all those diagnosed with it.
Not only are there medications that can help control its symptoms, but recent studies show that changes in relation to diet and maintaining a healthy weight can reverse the condition. This doesn’t mean that making these changes is easy.
Many people with type 2 diabetes suffer a range of complications from depression to loss of limbs, depressed immune systems that lead to increased chance of contracting other illnesses, and they are considered to be at an increased risk for cancer.
While this condition is reversible for most people who are diagnosed with it, there are some for whom the complications have become too great because the condition has been too severe for far too long. The best treatment is prevention.
Most doctors now recommend that people pursue medical treatment as well as natural remedies to try and reduce the strain of side effects on the body.
Should you look into alternative, natural remedies for coping with type 2 diabetes?
There are a lot of reasons why you should be looking into natural remedies when you have type 2 diabetes.
The first thing you have to know is that no natural remedy can cure diabetes, but it can make your overall quality of life better which then allows you to manage and recover from your diabetes.
There are medications on the market that your doctor can prescribe you to help with symptoms and to help manage your blood glucose levels, but they come with side effects.
As your doctor will tell you, the real treatment for almost all forms of type 2 diabetes is a change in lifestyle habits and healthy weight management.
Many will even recommend natural remedies first because adding in the stress of side effects just isn’t going to help you make the changes you need to make.
Which is why you will also find people who have not developed type 2 diabetes, but who know they are at risk for it leaning towards all of these natural remedies and therapies.
Their nature is more of a preventative than a curative. Many of the alternative recommendations involve acquiring habits that simply make your life better – while also providing relief from type 2 diabetes associated symptoms.
How to reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes:
The equation for type 2 diabetes would be too much fat plus too much salt plus too much sugar plus no calorie burning exercise equals weight gain and nutrition imbalance that can result in the condition.
It is called a lifestyle disease because it is most often found in persons who are overweight and who eat poorly. When these two factors are removed, the type 2 diabetes often disappears as well.
There are certain hereditary markers that can make it easier for someone to develop type 2 diabetes with far less extremes in weight gain, but it is almost a guaranteed complication of morbid obesity.
Poor diet, especially a diet rich in salts, sugars and fats can also trigger the condition as the body’s natural insulin supply is overwhelmed and then malfunctions. If you think you may be at risk for this disease, or suspect you have it, you must talk to your condition.
While this is a lifestyle disease that is typically remedied with natural methods, if not treated it can be fatal. Here are some core things you can do change the story your life is writing for you.
Eating less and eating healthily
Changing your eating habits can be very hard. The best approach is to work at eating less and choosing to eat healthier foods. The thing is, for many people who have become so overweight that they have also developed type 2 diabetes, it isn’t just a matter of their eating too much.
Food has become a coping mechanism. Learning how to undo that takes time. While you learn just make sure to monitor how much food you eat and to make healthier choices. Allow yourself the time to learn to live differently.
Move around more
Last year the health news was all abuzz with the latest findings about something called the “sitting disease,” which was seen as being closely related to type 2 diabetes but much more deadly.
The sitting disease refers to the amount of time one sits still. The more you sit the more bad things happen to your body that can affect everything from your blood sugar to your ability to fight off cancer.
The body is designed for movement. While taking on an exercise program is very good, people with type 2 diabetes are going to benefit more from movement that is spread throughout the day.
The idea is to limit sitting to less than 1 hour at a time with a 5 minute break of moving. That movement restores the body’s natural ability to use its metabolic processes. It doesn’t have the same effect if you save it all up and just work out for an hour at night.
You need to get up and move throughout the day. For people with type 2 diabetes this can help to get them into the habit of exercise and to help prevent the common circulation problems many people with diabetes experience. Problems that could lead to the loss of toes or a foot.
Natural remedies for type 2 diabetes
There are more natural remedies for type 2 diabetes then there are manufactured medicines. Insulin and various glucose control medications may be necessary while you begin to add these natural remedies into your life.
The goal is to change your lifestyle habits to reduce and eliminate the type 2 diabetes. While there is medication for it, long term use of the medication can cause very severe complications – so it is better to go the natural route as much as you can.
One of the things proven by recent studies is that the single most effective treatment for type 2 diabetes is to manage a healthy weight. It not only can prevent the symptoms, it can also reverse the effects of diabetes.
There are some cases where weight loss will not help, but they are very rare. This is usually only found in cases where the type 2 diabetes is related to extreme physical trauma such as a head injury or damage to the pancreatic structure.
By getting down to a healthy weight you can reduce your risk for several other major diseases including cancer. The issue for many people with type 2 diabetes is they may be so far out of shape, or overweight, that losing weight is very difficult.
The best method is to have your doctor recommend you to a nutritionist to help formulate a plan based in reducing calories taken in and increasing calories burned. That helps you to begin to build the healthy habits that can prevent a return of type 2 diabetes.
Some people also must be careful in making these changes, especially if they are on medication for the diabetes as working out too much can cause a health crises. Talk to your doctor and set safe and healthy goals for your weight loss.
Find a trainer or join an online group to provide you with more support as you start making these changes. The benefits of losing weight will transform your life in ways you just didn’t think possible. Even if you have severe complications from type 2 diabetes, this remains the best way to prevent further problems.
One of the issues with handling stress, anxiety and depression with medication when you have type 2 diabetes is that many kinds of medication also interferes with your blood sugar control.
This is why you will often hear meditation recommended as a way to manage stress and depression. Numerous studies have shown that meditation for 15 minutes a day can help you lower the physical symptoms of stress and alter your brain chemistry. That means you may begin managing your symptoms with medication.
The issue is that people don’t realize that there are 100s of different types of meditation that can be done and have the same effect. Some people find guided meditations to be perfect, while other people find recordings of the meditations increase their anxiety.
Those people may want to try silent meditation or walking meditation. There are moving meditations, meditations that use drawing and writing as vehicles and many more. The important thing is to pick the one that helps you to relax and be OK in the moment.
Don’t worry about what someone else is doing, find the meditation that is your own to start getting the benefits from it. Meditation can help you with anxiety, stress and depression more in the long term than medication because it teaches you the skill of getting through.
Try alternative therapies
Alternative therapies are also sometimes referred to as “complementary therapies.” Very often they have a rich historical background of practice. Well-known examples would be acupuncture, homeopathy and aromatherapy.
These alternative therapies were originally developed as there was no advanced medicine in these areas. As medicine advanced, many of the practices fell off – only to return as an alternative to the side effect heavy medicines now in use.
There are many therapies that also have some evidence that they are effective in helping those with type 2 diabetes. Not all of them will work for everyone, but it is worth trying a few to see if they will work for you.
The easiest way to understand how homeopathy works is to look up the definition of a placebo. There is no evidence to support the claim that the minute doses of herbs and medicine in homeopathic products does anyone any good, but there is a lot of evidencesupporting the placebo effect.
Even if you don’t believe in homeopathy it may work for you, which is one of the oddities about how placebos act. It can help you to reduce stress, reduce anxiety, sleep better, gain more energy and control your appetite.
For people with type 2 diabetes there are also several different protocols recommended by homeopathic doctors that help some to lose weight and control their blood sugar.
As helpful as the placebo effect may be it is not enough to treat type 2 diabetes alone. It can be an ideal complementary therapy with your regular medical protocol to help you faster. There is one word of caution about homeopathy.
Many of the products are based on sugar pills, taking too many of those can not be a good idea for those with type 2 diabetes. You could be better off with the tinctures and extracts, but be careful they are the oil or water based ones – not the ones made with grain alcohol. Even a small amount of grain alcohol can be too much sugar for you.
Aromatherapy can be surprisingly effective in helping to relieve a great many of the symptoms associated with type 2 diabetes. What it isn’t, however, are randomly scented candles. There is a science to how Aroma therapeutic products are suggested for use for a variety of conditions.
There is some evidence that it can be very beneficial for those suffering from stress and anxiety, and some types of depression. If you are reluctant to take medication for those issues but want to try aromatherapy as an alternative – ask your doctor.
Most doctors are in favor of using natural remedies whenever possible because it increases the ability of low doses of medication to work when necessary and prevents unwanted side effects from occurring.
The only concern with aromatherapy is that some of the products used with it may not be safe for animals, especially birds. Other than that, it is a safe, non-invasive type of therapy that is very much worth a try.
Depending on who you talk to, acupuncture is either one of the best things ever or an absolute scam. The truth is that it is a practice several hundreds of years old and in recent decades has been extensively studied by Western medicine.
There is a lot of positive indication that acupuncture can help relieve tension, stress, help with pain management and reduce anxiety. What any practitioner will tell you is that acupuncture is not a natural remedy in and of itself – it won’t help if you aren’t making any other changes in your life or following your doctor’s advice.
Whether or not it will become a part of how you manage your type 2 diabetes can only be discovered by being willing to try it and see what it can do for you. Hypnosis
One of the benefits of hypnosis, whether you think it works or not, is that it doesn’t cause harm in any way or form. Now that this is out of the way it is time to talk about whether or not there are forms of hypnosis that can help with type 2 diabetes.
That is your first lesson about hypnosis, there is more than one type. Some people have found hypnosis to be very effective with learning new eating habits and to establish how to avoid overeating. Others find that the types of hypnosis that work on relieving stress and anxiety to be very helpful in managing their lives as well.
The key to discovering whether or not hypnosis can work for you is to remember that there are several different types, and the hypnosis is a supporting therapy – not an answer.
You still have to follow your doctor’s instructions and work to create new lifestyle habits, but hypnosis may be an important part of the puzzle. It may also not suit you at all, and that is just fine too.
Living with type 2 diabetes
The most important thing to remember about living with type 2 diabetes is that you can learn to live with it, and to live a better life because of it. That may sound like a strange thing to say but type 2 diabetes is a lifestyle disease.
Many people can even “lose” the diagnosis when they lose the extra weight and make additional diet and exercise changes. This means that when you combine natural remedies with your prescribed treatment you stand an even better chance of improving your life.
The key – however – is that the changes you make must be the kind of changes you can sustain. That means go slow and work to change habits. This is a better approach than any crash program.
Your doctor may recommend weight loss surgery or medications to radically change your weight, but you have to use the natural remedies to create the life that can sustain the changes they made to preserve your health. In the end, you can do this.
With the right medical care, and a good support system, you can live with type 2 diabetes until it isn’t a problem for you anymore.