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    Top 7 Breakthroughs for Diabetes 2 in 2016

    by Carissa Andews - October 24 , 2016


    Most of us are well aware of diabetes, but unless you live with the chronic illness the ramifications can be hard to imagine. With World Diabetes Day just around the corner on November 14th, it’s a good time for all of us to get a better understanding. Our bodies are miraculous things; working incessantly to keep us alive and maintain everything in balance. However, when you suffer from diabetes, it means your pancreas either doesn’t produce any, or enough insulin (a crucial hormone that stimulates your cells to absorb sugar from the blood). When your body’s blood sugar is chronically elevated, bad things happen.

    Nearly 30 million Americans suffer from diabetes, with over 422 million suffering worldwide. This means, one out of eleven people have diabetes. Diabetes is a major cause of blindness, kidney failure, heart attacks, stroke, and even lower limb amputation due to poor circulation and nerve damage. Luckily there are new breakthrough medications like Jardiance and Invokana, along with new technology to help you manage.

    by lbrfzhjpf.gmail.com, despositphotos.com
    by lbrfzhjpf.gmail.com, despositphotos.com

    Type 1 and Type 2 Differences

    There are two main types of diabetes; Type 1 and Type 2. Followed by the temporary third form women can obtain while pregnant, known as gestational diabetes.

    Type 1 is characterized by the absence of insulin production in the body, which results in the need to administer insulin daily. With our current knowledge, Type 1 is not preventable and there’s no known cause.

    Type 2 is characterized as the body’s ineffective use of insulin, and often is the result of excess body weight and being physically inactive.

    While there is no prevention for Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 is largely preventable. Prevention often takes the form of a healthy, balanced lifestyle. This includes eating healthy, nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy weight. It also includes avoiding tobacco use, since it increases the risk of becoming diabetic.

    For those suffering from Type 2 diabetes, reversing it completely once you have it is highly unlikely. While losing weight and becoming more active will improve your overall health, it unfortunately won’t erase your diabetes. It will surely improve your symptoms, though. You may be able to come off your diabetic medications, or be labeled ‘pre-diabetic.’ But just how much your health improves is dependent on your genes, how long you’ve been diabetic, and how severe the disease is within you. If you lose weight and are more active, but still need medication, don’t be hard on yourself. There are many slim people who are still managing their diabetes, too.

    New Medications

    1. Jardiance (by Boehringer Ingelheim, approved by FDA May 2014) – Jardiance (empagliflozin) is an oral medication for Type 2 diabetes that helps control blood sugar levels in the body. It works by stimulating the kidneys to get rid of glucose from your bloodstream through urination.

    2. Invokana (by Janssen, approved by FDA March 2013) – Invokana (canagliflozin) is an oral medication for Type 2 diabetes that also helps the kidneys get rid of excess glucose from your bloodstream through urination.

    3. Afrezza (by MannKind, approved by FDA June 2014) – Afreeza (insulin inhaler) is a fast-acting form of human insulin that’s inhaled through the mouth. It can be used for both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Though Type 1 diabetics will also need a long-acting injectable insulin. Type 2 diabetics may be able to use Afrezza as their only medication to control blood sugar.

    Prevention Breakthroughs

    4. Coffee – Studies are currently being conducted to study the link between coffee consumption and the reduced risk of Type 2 diabetes. According to Marilyn Cornelis, PhD, a nutritionist and assistant professor at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, epidemiological studies suggest “the more coffee, the better” for diabetics. Click here to read more.

    5. Online risk checker – There are roughly 86 million Americans who are considered to be pre-diabetic. 90% of those people have no idea. When someone is pre-diabetic, their blood sugar levels are higher than they should be, but no yet in the diabetic zone. Through awareness, many people have the chance to turn things around. By using a quick online test, you may be able to find out if you have prediabetes. Then, take the necessary actions to get things under control. Take the test here: Do I have PreDiabetes?

    New Technology

    6. Dario Meter (by LabStyle Innovations) is a compact meter that snaps into the phone jack of your smartphone (sorry all you iPhone 7 users!). An “all-in-one” meter, this device includes disposable lancets, an integrated cartridge of 25 test strips, and the ability to read the results directly onto your smartphone. The FDA is currently reviewing the device for approval in the US.

    7. Apps to use

    BG Monitor Diabetes for Android – track it all, calculate the amount of insulin you need, set reminders, create spreadsheets and graphs—you name it!

    • Blue Loop for Android and iOS – made for kids and their parents.

    • Diabetes in Check for iOS – simple and intuitive. Includes a journal, meal planner, recipes and food guide. Track meds and even log into message boards for support.

    • Diabetic Connect for Android and iOS – easy social design. Track your blood sugar, connect with others who manage diabetes, follow blogs, join in on discussions, and more.

    • Glucose Buddy for Android and iOS – a comprehensive tracking app. Track food, insulin dosages, and blood sugar. Graph your blood sugar over time and connect with others. Set up alarms to remember to test your blood throughout the day.

    Living with diabetes doesn’t have to be miserable. If you weren’t fortunate enough to prevent your Type 2 diabetes, rest easy knowing there are advancements and breakthroughs happening all the time. These are just a small sampling of the numerous advancements, both small and large, happening recently. We hope this list helps you manage your diabetes, and hopefully reduce their effects on your daily life.

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    Carissa Andrew considers herself a triple threat: write, design and marketing. Her passion lies in mixing these three together with creativity and sass.


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