33 Days Remain to Help Hot New App for Diabetes on MEDSTARTR

33 Days left to help Jennifer assist diabetic patients with her new App.

Donate on MedStartr:  http://beta.medstartr.com/projects/19-endogoddess-diabetes-app-clinical-trial-fundraiser

 MEDSTARTR is the new crowdfunding source for hot Health products. YOU get to donate to the best ones.
    

The EndoGoddess App is terrific for diabetics. It’s created by someone who knows what her patients need.

Today, I’m talking to Jennifer Shine Dyer,MD, MPH, a stylish pediatric endocrinologist and tech entrepreneur with Duet Health Eproximiti.  This former Texan now living in Ohio, loves NYC, fashion, politics, and food is also the founder of EndoGoddess, LLC.

Jennifer is a dynamo who created an App called, The EndoGoddess App to help diabetes patients track their glucoselevels. No more self-entry journaling.  Patients use the App upon checking of glucoses with each meal and bedtime or just once daily to enter all of the glucoses for the day. But she makes it fun. It’s a 21st Century Glucose Journal that rewards you with  free iTunes and a whole lot more.

The EndoGoddess App utilizes a unique social business model for iTunes downloads. The revenue for the iTunes downloads comes from the user’s family and friends who sponsor the user which is a social business model unique to the EndoGoddess App.  That’s right.  Your friends and family reward you when you follow doctor’s orders.

Here’s how it works:  The user enters the sponsor’s email address, and a link to the user’s iTunes account is sent to the sponsor who then submits their desired payment into the user’s account. The feature will be live in coming months.

The main behavior focus of the EndoGoddess App: self-entry glucose. But it also has unique personal, social media, and patient community features. Within the app, users can submit daily diabetes-specific motivational quotes which are screened by Jennifer and then featured on the home page of the app.

The EndoGoddess App also allows the user to customize glucose-check reminder alarms so that adherence triggers are personalized, an additional unique feature. Finally, the EndoGoddess App makes sharing glucose results with doctors and family easy by just touching the share button.

Another cool feature is that information about how to get involved in the diabetes online community (moderated twitter chats, blogs, diabetes camp links, charity links) is provided in addition to original multimedia basic diabetes education content.

Anyone with diabetes who is instructed by their doctor to check their blood sugars 4 times per day can use the EndoGoddess App. It’s also for patients who are checking their blood sugars 4 times per day; typically anyone with insulin-dependent type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Moms who are pregnant, checking their blood sugars frequently due to gestational diabetes can also use the EndoGoddess App.

It provides a more modern form of journal for your glucoses than an old-fashioned paper journal, which also has corresponding carb intake and insulin dosing. The journal has a rewards and points feature.

No more paper journals that look like the one pictured here.

In the next month or so, you will be able to download an iTunes song weekly if your points are high enough. You can keep track of your points on the home page currently upon entering glucoses into the app.

The EndoGoddess App got it’s name from a nickname a patient gave her. ‘Endo’ because she’s an endocrinologist and ‘goddess’ because she likes to wear a little bling everyday.

She was inspired to create the App when she started texting teen patients. She then created a texting app, studied the results in a small pilot study (http://mobihealthnews.com/8599/texting-imrpoves-type-1-diabetes-adherence/) amongst her teen patients which proved that mobile phones make life with diabetes healthier.

Jennifer says, “I then developed The EndoGoddess App to improve upon the initial texting app that I first studied. My patients were the ones that really inspired me to take the plunge into medical technology entrepreneurship full-time so as to get the product in their hands faster.”

Diabetes is hard, and often, patients lose motivation to keep up with it. Diabetes is a unique chronic disease in which the decisions most affecting the health and well-being of patients are made by the patients themselves.

This is the critical reason that the EndoGoddess App targets patient/consumer empowerment primarily rather than just the physician’s efforts to make the largest impact on diabetes-related health outcomes, quality, and costs. In other words, making diabetes easier is a big deal and is the primary focus of the EndoGoddess App.

I asked Jennifer how she thought the EndoGoddess App would change healthcare for the better. She said that in order for doctors to prescribe the EndoGoddess App and for health insurance companies to perhaps even pay people with diabetes to use the app, a clinical trial must prove that apps make people with diabetes healthier.

So Jennifer is pursuing funding in a creative way using new healthcare crowdfunding site, MedStartr. Traditional funding for clinical trials typically comes from federal sources such as NIH which requires that researchers be either part of a university or a non-profit organization. Most funding mechanisms exclude small businesses like startups.

Medstartr allows the public to be involved in funding projects that they think are important and in new technology that they would like to see in healthcare. I think that this mechanism for funding will confirm to investors that the EndoGoddess App is a product that patients want and will hopefully result in new ventures to allow further growth and development of new products.

As the future, Jennifer is super excited to announce that work on the EndoGoddess Kids App started on June 25th through the 10x accelator program, a mentorship-driven investment program designed for energetic and game-changing entrepreneurs. 10x has partnered with Ohio’s New Entrepreneurs (ONE) Fund, an innovative business accelerator designed to attract and retain the best and brightest talent in Ohio.

Teams such as the EndoGoddess Team are awarded $20,000 to bring a project to life over a 10-week period culminating in a pitch day presentation to interested investors within the community.

The EndoGoddess Team will be creating the new EndoGoddess Kids App built for young children with type 1 diabetes and their families. The app will include a new rewards and gaming feature similar in concept to the classic Tamagotchi virtual pet (pictured attached above). The virtual pet, which will need to be ‘fed’ by recording glucoses within the app, is expected to encourage engagement in daily diabetes glucose checking by the child based on appointment dynamic game mechanics theory. It should be available for download at the end of September or early October 2012.


The EndoGoddess Kids App virtual pet will include a reincarnation of her sweet golden retriever, Cooper Dyer, who passed away last year due to cancer (picture with me and Cooper dressed up in our Golden Globes watching attire is attached). So, needless to say, the EndoGoddess Kids App is a labor of love for me.

You’re going to be seeing or hearing about a lot of new Apps in Health, but the problem is the best ones are not necessarily the ones getting funded.

Some get promoted by people who have a vested interest in it or they have a personal relationship with the person, so a lot of crap gets a green light. The person who ends up suffering is the health consumer.  I love products that are actually developed by people who are passionate about helping people and have found a need through their own work and personal experience.  I like to feature people and products or services that end up helping you and deserve funding.  Fortunately, there is now a crowdfunding source for health.  Medstartr.  It allows the community to pick the Best in Class helping it come to market. EndoGodess App is on it. 

So, let’s  help Jennifer Shine Dyer SHINE: People can now donate to the EndoGoddess App here:  http://beta.medstartr.com/projects/19-endogoddess-diabetes-app-clinical-trial-fundraiser

 
 

You can follow Jennifer on the following:

Jennifer’s Blog/website: http://endogoddess.blogspot.com/

Jennifer’s Website: http://www.duethealth.com/

Jennifer on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jennifershinedyer drjenshinedyer@gmail.com

Jennifer on Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/EndoGoddess

Here is a video of Jennifer explaining the name of EndoGoddess at an international conference in Paris last month:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q4GMjwIZPEg

 

 

Diabetes facts

The prevalence of diabetes has reached epidemic proportions

WHO predicts that developing countries will bear the brunt of this epidemic in the 21st century. Currently, more than 70% of people with diabetes live in low- and middle income countries.

  • An estimated 285 million people, corresponding to 6.4% of the world’s adult population, will live with diabetes in 2010. The number is expected to grow to 438 million by 2030, corresponding to 7.8% of the adult population.
  • While the global prevalence of diabetes is 6.4%, the prevalence varies from 10.2% in the Western Pacific to 3.8% in the African region. However, the African region is expected to experience the highest increase.
  • 70% of the current cases of diabetes occur in low- and middle income countries. With an estimated 50.8 million people living with diabetes, India has the world’s largest diabetes population, followed by China with 43.2 million.
  • The largest age group currently affected by diabetes is between 40-59 years. By 2030 this “record” is expected to move to the 60-79 age group with some 196 million cases.
  • Diabetes is one of the major causes of premature illness and death worldwide. Non-communicable diseases including diabetes account for 60% of all deaths worldwide.

Lack of sufficient diagnosis and treatment

  • In developing countries, less than half of people with diabetes are diagnosed. Without timely diagnoses and adequate treatment, complications and morbidity from diabetes rise exponentially.
  • Type 2 diabetes can remain undetected for many years and the diagnosis is often made from associated complications or incidentally through an abnormal blood or urine glucose test.
  • Undiagnosed diabetes accounted for 85% of those with diabetes in studies from South Africa, 80% in Cameroon, 70% in Ghana and over 80% in Tanzania.
  • The number of deaths attributable to diabetes in 2010 shows a 5.5% increase over the estimates for the year 2007. This increase is largely due to a 29% increase in the number of deaths due to diabetes in the North America & Caribbean Region, a 12% increase in the South East Asia Region and an 11% increase in the Western Pacific Region.
  • Type 2 diabetes is responsible for 85-95% of all diabetes in high-income countries and may account for an even higher percentage in low- and middle-income countries.
  • 80% of type 2 diabetes is preventable by changing diet, increasing physical activity and improving the living environment. Yet, without effective prevention and control programmes, the incidence of diabetes is likely to continue rising globally.
  • Insulin is vital for the survival of people with type 1 diabetes and often ultimately required by people with type 2 diabetes. Even though insulin’s indispensible nature is recognised by its inclusion in the WHO’s Essential Medicines List, insulin is still not available on an uninterrupted basis in many parts of the developing world.

Diabetes costs – a burden for families and society

  • The financial burden borne by people with diabetes and their families as a result of their disease depends on their economic status and the social insurance policies of their countries. In the poorest countries, people with diabetes and their families bear almost the whole cost of the medical care they can afford.
  • In Latin America, families pay 40-60% of medical care expenditures from their own pockets. In Mozambique, diabetes care for one person requires 75% of the per capita income; in Mali it amounts to 61%; Vietnam is 51% and Zambia 21%.
  • Expressed in International Dollars (ID), which correct for differences in purchasing power, estimated global expenditures on diabetes will be at least ID 418 billion in 2010, and at least ID 561 billion in 2030. An estimated average of ID 878 per person will be spent on diabetes in 2010 globally.
  • Besides excess healthcare expenditure, diabetes also imposes large economic burdens in the form of lost productivity and foregone economic growth. The largest economic burden is the monetary value associated with disability and loss of life as a result of the disease itself and its related complications.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) predicted net losses in national income from diabetes and cardiovascular disease of ID 557.7 billion in China, ID 303.2 billion in the Russian Federation, ID 336.6 billion in India, ID 49.2 billion in Brazil and ID 2.5 billion in Tanzania (2005 ID), between 2005 and 2015.
  • Unless addressed, the mortality and disease burden from diabetes and other NCDs will continue to increase. WHO projects that globally, deaths caused by these health problems will increase by 17% over the next decade, with the greatest increase in low- and middle-income countries, mainly in the African (27%) and Eastern Mediterranean (25%) regions.

Source: IDF, Diabetes Atlas, 4th edition

 

In 2009, Manny Hernadez published a two-part series on HealthCentral.com reviewed all services that offer online blood glucose tracking tools that he was aware of. He reviewed 7 options. They’re worth a look to see how Glucose Tracking has progressed.
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Again, let’s help Jennifer Shine Dyer SHINE & help diabetic patients by donating to the EndoGoddess App here: http://beta.medstartr.com/projects/19-endogoddess-diabetes-app-clinical-trial-fundraiser 
 
 

Dr. Oz: How to Boost Your Metabolism All Day Long

Here are some fantastic tips from Dr. Oz on how to boost your metabolism all day long:

6:30 A.M.
Do a little yoga. It can double your metabolic rate first thing in the morning. I recommend a gentle cycle of two sun salutations. If you’re new to yoga, check out my seven-minute morning routine (which also includes a few strength-building exercises).

6:40 A.M. 
Drink cold water. Five hundred milliliters of H2O (a little more than a pint) may spike metabolism by 30 percent for as long as an hour. Water triggers the sympathetic nervous system, which in turn stimulates your metabolism. Cold water may also force your body to use energy to warm it.

6:50 A.M. 
Take 500 milligrams of white bean extract. In a 2007 study, people who took the extract (which may slow the absorption of carbs) for 30 days experienced a significant improvement in their muscle-to-fat ratio. That’s good news for metabolism since muscle burns about three times more calories than fat.

7:00 A.M. 
Eat a protein-packed breakfast. Digesting protein takes up to seven times more energy than digesting carbohydrates or fat. Try making a dozen hard-boiled eggs on Sunday, and eat one or two each day.

8:00 A.M. 
Enjoy a cup of joe. Caffeine promotes an increase in norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter that keeps your sympathetic nervous system activated and your metabolic rate humming. According to research, coffee may increase the amount of energy you burn by 16 percent for up to two hours.

9:30 A.M. 
Take 50 milligrams of forskolin. Recent studies indicate that compounds in forskolin—an extract derived from a medicinal plant—might break down fat and help raise levels of thyroid hormones, which play an important role in regulating the speed of metabolism.

10:00 A.M.
Snack on tahini dip. Tahini is made from sesame seeds, a rich source of zinc. And zinc may increase the production of leptin, a hormone that improves metabolism and curbs appetite.
11:15 A.M.
Chew a stick of sugarless gum. New England Journal of Medicine study found that this mindless activity can help your body burn 19 percent more calories per hour. (At that rate, if you chewed gum every waking hour, you’d lose 11 pounds over the course of a year! And likely drive everyone around you nuts.)
12:00 P.M. 
Go for a brisk 15-minute walk. A trip around the block can triple your metabolic rate. This boost continues after you stop moving because the body consumes more oxygen, a crucial player in metabolism, when it’s recovering from exertion.
12:45 P.M.
Spice up lunch with peppers. Capsaicin, the key substance that makes chili peppers hot, stimulates your “fight or flight” stress response and may increase metabolism by 23 percent. Peppers may even improve your muscle-to-fat ratio: Research suggests that capsaicin inhibits the generation of fat cells.
2:00 P.M. 
Sip a cup of green teaThis miracle beverage pairs caffeine with a compound known as EGCG—and together they create an even greater bump in metabolism than caffeine alone. Studies also indicate that green tea may reduce body fatand trim the waistline.
5:00 P.M.
Use your muscles—with your mind. Believe it or not, visualizing a workout can actually trick your body into strengthening your calorie-zapping muscle: A Cleveland Clinicstudy discovered that participants who spent 15 minutes a day imagining flexing their biceps had a 13.5 percent increase in their strength after three months.
5:15 P.M.
Use your muscles—with your muscles. After age 30, we lose 3 to 8 percent of our muscle mass per decade, which is one of the main reasons metabolism slows. To counteract that loss, aim to do two to three 30-minute strength-training sessions a week, using moves that engage as many muscles as possible, like squatsplanks, and lunges.

6:30 P.M. 
Cook dinner with coconut oil. Most of the oils we eat are converted largely into fat. But coconut oil, with its unique molecular makeup, is rapidly converted into energy—and may causea 12 percent bump in your metabolism.

6:55 P.M. 
Add dairy to your meal. Calcium can help improve your muscle-to-fat ratio in two ways: It binds with fat to reduce the body’s absorption of fat. And any remaining calcium typically circulates in your bloodstream, helping to break down fat cells.

7:00 P.M. 
Garnish with dill weed or chives. Both of these herbs are packed with kaempferol, a flavonoid that has been shown to increase the production of metabolism-spurring thyroid hormones by about 150 percent.
7:45 P.M. 
Unwind with a glass of wine. Alcohol can raise your metabolic rate for up to 95 minutes. In fact, a large peer-reviewed study found that women who regularly enjoy a drink are seven to eight pounds lighter, on average, than teetotalers.

10:30 P.M.
Hit the hay. Irregular sleep patterns can disrupt the circadian rhythm of your cells, throwing your metabolism out of whack. Do your best to get a steady eight hours of rest each night.

Keep reading: 4 more ways to turn back the clock

Read more: http://www.oprah.com/health/How-to-Increase-Your-Metabolism-All-Day/7#ixzz1wSfYZpRa

5 Foods to Lift Your Mood

Senior editor of Caring.com, Paul Spencer Scott says to try these smart choices when your mood needs a little boost.

The right foods — like the following five — can stabilize blood sugar, eliminate mood swings, and boost neurotransmitters in the brain, all factors that influence your emotions.

1. An omelet — just don’t skip the yolk

Eat it for: The B vitamins and protein. Egg yolks are the vitamin-B-rich part of the egg.

Other examples: Lean beef, wheat germ, fish, poultry

Why they help: A diet rich in B vitamins can help lessen the severity of depression symptoms. B vitamins, especially B-6 and B-12, can help improve neural function — the way the neurotransmitters of the brain send signals, which helps govern mood. There’s also a growing link between vitamin B deficiency and depression. A 2010 study of 3,000 older adults followed over 12 years found that those with lower intake of these vitamins had a higher risk of depression, according to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

The protein in eggs (as with lean meats) helps you feel satisfied longer, stabilizing blood sugar. And eggs can be consumed in a variety of ways, from scrambled to used as a French toast batter to boiled and chopped up as a salad topper — so long as you go easy on the accompanying animal products that are high in saturated fats, like bacon or butter.

2. Nuts and seeds

Eat it for: The magnesium

Examples: Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, cashews, almonds, peanuts. (Green leafy vegetables and whole grains are also high in magnesium.)

Why they help: Magnesium, a mineral found naturally in nuts and seeds, influences production of serotonin, a “feel-good” brain chemical. Magnesium also affects overall energy production.

Bonus: Nuts are also a good source of protein and healthy fats. And as a whole food, they make a healthy alternative to processed snacks, provided you choose unsalted and unsweetened varieties. Salt and sugared coatings don’t add any health benefits and may make you overeat because they set up cravings in the brain for more and more salt or sugar.

3. Cold-water fish

Eat it for: The omega-3 fatty acids

Examples: Wild salmon, herring, sardines, anchovies, tuna (not more than once per week), rainbow trout, mackerel. Fish-oil supplements are a practical alternative for those who don’t eat these cold-water fish at least three times a week, Reardon says.

Why they help: There’s a reason fish is known as “brain food.” Fatty fish such as wild salmon contain the omega-3 fatty acid DHA, which has been shown to increase the membrane quality and nerve function of gray matter in the brain. Twenty percent of the gray matter in the brain is composed of DHA. Some studies have found that DHA consumption especially increases gray matter in the amygdala, the hippocampus, and the cingulate, three areas of the brain associated with mood. People with severe depression have less gray matter in these areas.

Fish is also a great source of lean protein, which stabilizes blood sugar. Eating small amounts of protein with meals can help keep your mood on a more even keel.

4. Ancient grains

Eat it for: The complex carbohydrates

Examples: Quinoa, millet, teff, amaranth, spelt, barley

Why they help: Complex carbohydrates take longer to digest, which means they don’t cause spikes in blood sugar that can create roller-coaster moods. Complex carbs also increase levels of serotonin in the brain.

While any whole grain is good, so-called “ancient grains” are even better, according to Reardon, because they’re less likely to be man-modified and processed. Packaged, processed, and refined foods made with wheat flour and sugar, in contrast, tend to be digested quickly, causing cause blood sugar to spike. When this happens, the body responds with an oversecretion of insulin, which winds up moving too much sugar into cells — and blood sugars plummet. The end result: poorer concentration, fatigue, mood swings, intense cravings, and overeating.

Ancient grains are increasingly available at mainstream grocery stores and big-box stores such as Costco and Sam’s Club. Look where rice products are shelved. Many ancient grains can be cooked like pasta or rice and served in their place as side dishes, in casseroles, or as a base for fish or chicken.

Bonus: Some ancient grains are a whole-grain alternative for those who are allergic to wheat or have gluten intolerance. (Barley, though, contains gluten.)

5. Green tea

Drink it for: The amino acid L-theanine

Examples: Hot green tea, brewed iced green tea — including flavored varieties like jasmine green tea or berry green tea

Why it helps: L-theanine is an amino acid found mainly in tea leaves; it’s been shown by EEG tests to stimulate alpha brain waves. This can improve focus while also having a calming effect on the body.

“Despite the caffeine, the L-theanine in green tea seems to be profoundly relaxing, with effects that last up to eight hours,” Reardon says. L-theanine is easily absorbed and can cross the blood-brain barrier, adding to its effectiveness.

Clinical depression is a serious illness that requires treatment beyond nutrition, changing what you eat can help beat garden-variety blues caused by stress, and will boost low energy, too.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, be sure to visit: http://www.caring.com

This content was originally published by Caring.com: “5 Food to Eat When You’re Depressed” and this excerpt reprinted here with permission.


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Other non-food things to do

  • Get plenty of sunshine. Natural sunlight is a proven cure for depression.
  • Engage in regularexerciseat least three times per week. Exercise lifts and mood and alters brain chemistry in a positive way.
  • Experience laughter. It’s goodmedicine.
  • Take a quality superfood supplement to get even morenaturalmedicine from the world of plants.

Four more foods for beating depression from Naturalnews.com


Brown Rice:Contains vitamins B1 and B3, andfolic acid. Brown rice is also a low-glycemic food, which means it releases glucose into the bloodstream gradually, preventingsugarlows and mood swings. Brownricealso provides many of the tracemineralswe need to function properly, as well as being a high-fiber food that can keep the digestive system healthy and lowercholesterol. Instant varieties of rice do not offer these benefits. Any time you see “instant” on a food label, avoid it.

Brewer’s Yeast:ContainsvitaminsB1, B2 and B3. Brewer’s yeast should be avoided if you do not tolerate yeast well, but if you do, mix a thimbleful into any smoothie for your daily dose. Thissuperfoodpacks a wide assortment ofvitamins and mineralsin a small package, including 16amino acidsand 14 minerals. Amino acids are vital for the nervous system, which makes brewer’s yeast a no-brainer for treating depression.

Cabbage:Contains vitamin C and folic acid. Cabbage protects against stress, infection and heart disease, as well as many types of cancers, according to the American Association for Cancer Research. There are numerous ways to getcabbageinto your diet; toss it in a salad instead of lettuce, use cabbage in place of lettuce wraps, stir fry it in your favorite Asian dish, make some classic cabbage soup orjuiceit. To avoid gas aftereatingcabbage, add a few fennel, caraway or cuminseedsbefore cooking. Cabbage is also a good source of blood-sugar-stabilizingfiber, and the raw juice of cabbage is a knowncurefor stomach ulcers.

Also worth mentioning:Foods likeraw cacao, dark molasses and brazilnuts(high in selenium) are also excellent for boosting brain function and eliminating depression. Get rawcacaoand brazil nuts atNature’s First Law. Another source for cacao isNavitas Naturals.

Things to avoid

If you feel you are depressed or at risk for depression, you also need to avoid certain foods and substances. Some commonly prescribed drugs — such as antibiotics, barbiturates, amphetamines, pain killers, ulcer drugs, anticonvulsants, beta-blockers, anti-Parkinson’s drugs, birth control pills, highbloodpressure drugs, heart medications and psychotropic drugs — contribute to depression. If you are taking any of these, don’t quit them without talking to yourdoctor; but be aware that they may be contributing to your condition by depleting your body of depression-fighting vitamins and minerals.

You should also avoid caffeine, smoking and foods high infatand sugar. Keeping your blood sugar stable and getting B vitamins is important for stabilizing your mood. Cacao can be good for mood because it releases endorphins inthe brain, but watch out for milk chocolate and candy varieties high in sugar.

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Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/020611.html#ixzz1sJ20Y5CM

Stay healthy! :-)

Experimental Drug for Type 2 Diabetes

 

 

Type 2 diabetes is a lifelong metabolic disorder characterized by high levels of glucose or sugar in the blood.

Type 1 diabetes is when the body does not generate sufficient insulin

Type 2 diabetes is when the cells do not respond to insulin.

Diabetes type 2 is the most common type of diabetes and affects 90-95% of diabetics. It is characterized by insulin resistance or a defective response by the cells to insulin. In some cases, production of insulin by the pancreas may be reduced.

Glucose or blood sugar provides fuel for the cells in the body. Insulin is responsible for transporting glucose from the bloodstream into the cells. When insulin cannot move the glucose into the cells, glucose accumulates in the blood and can cause diabetes complications such as damage to the nerves, kidneys, cardiovascular system and vision.

What Causes Type 2 Diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is primarily caused by lifestyle factors and genetics. A sedentary lifestyle, obesity, and a diet high in carbohydrates and sweets are the most common causes of diabetes 2.

Signs and Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes

The usual symptoms of diabetes are increased frequency of urination, increased thirst, and increased hunger. People who have diabetes may also lose weight for no apparent reason.

When left untreated, diabetes can result in vision damage. Prolonged high levels of glucose in the blood can cause glucose absorption in the lens of the eye, resulting in changes in its shape leading to blurred vision.

Other symptom of diabetes are skin rashes and wounds that heal very slowly.

Treatment of Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease with no known cure. As such, “treatment” may be a misnomer. A better term might be “management” of the disease. Management focuses on keeping blood glucose levels as close as possible to normal. If you are diagnosed with diabetes type 2, your doctor may prescribe some form of medication. Diet and exercise are also important in controlling type 2 diabetes.

Recent studies show that type 2 diabetes can be successfully managed without the need for medications. A healthy diet that is low in carbohydrates and high in fiber, protein, wholegrain cereals, dairy products, fruits and vegetables can keep blood sugar at normal or near-normal levels. The right diet and exercise help diabetics manage their blood sugar levels and prevent or reduce complications of diabetes such as blindness, kidney damage, nerve damage, and heart disease.

 
HealthDay
 
An experimental drug improves patients’ blood sugar control without increasing the risk of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) in patients with type 2 diabetes, according to the results of a phase 2 clinical trial.
 

Type 2 diabetes is the more prevalent form of the disease, accounting for about 90 percent of cases. Often tied to obesity, type 2 diabetes involves a gradual decline in how insulin responds to changes in blood sugar (glucose).

The new drug, called TAK-875, is a pill designed to enhance the secretion of insulin in response to such changes, which means that it has no effect on insulin secretion when blood sugar levels are normal — potentially reducing the risk for hypoglycemia.

The trial, led by Dr. Charles Burant of the University of Michigan Medical School, included 426 patients with type 2 diabetes who were not getting adequate blood sugar control through diet, exercise or treatment with the first-line diabetes drug metformin.

The patients were randomly assigned to receive either TAK-875 (303 patients), placebo (61 patients), or another diabetes drug called glimepiride (brand named Amaryl).

The study was funded by Takeda Pharmaceutical (which is developing the drug), and appears online Feb. 26 in The Lancet.

After 12 weeks, all the patients taking the different doses of TAK-875 had significant drops in their blood sugar levels, the researchers said. A similar reduction occurred in patients taking glimepiride.

However, the incidence of episodes of hypoglycemia was much lower among patients taking TAK-875 (2 percent) than among those taking glimepiride (19 percent) and the same as those taking the placebo (2 percent).

The incidence of treatment-related side effects was 49 percent among patients taking TAK-875, 48 percent among those in the placebo group, and 61 percent among those in the glimepiride group, according to the researchers. They write that they are “excited about the potential of TAK-875 and are eager to conduct larger trials to find out how well this drug works, how safe it is and what its place is in the treatment of diabetes.”

In a journal commentary, Clifford Bailey of Aston University in Birmingham, England, cautioned that, “on the journey to approval of a new class of treatment for type 2 diabetes, many questions will be asked of [drugs such as TAK-875],” including questions of how long they might remain effective, as well as safety issues.

Other diabetes experts had mixed views on the new findings.

Dr. Loren Wissner Greene is clinical associate professor of endocrinology at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City. She noted that glitazones – a separate class of newer drugs such as Rezulin, Avandia and Actos that also target insulin resistance — have all shown initial promise in clinical trials before worrisome side effects began to surface in users (Avandia was recently withdrawn from the U.S. market due to heart risks).

As for TAK-875, it targets a separate mechanism “but again, until more is known about short-term and long-term cardiovascular effects, we need to proceed with moderated enthusiasm for each new drug and drug mechanism,” Wissner Greene said.

English: North facade and entrance of Lenox Hi...

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Dr. Minisha Sood, endocrinologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City stressed that, “given the rising global incidence of type 2 diabetes, the medical community is eagerly awaiting the development of novel agents to add to our existing armamentarium of anti-diabetic agents.”

She said that, “though this study includes a small sample size followed for a short period of time, the results are promising in that TAK-875 appears to be effective for glycemic [blood sugar] control without significant risk for hypoglycemia or weight gain. However, like Wissner-Greene, Sood said that “further investigation is warranted, especially including [heart disease] patients.”

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases has more about diabetes medicines.

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Bydureon Is the First Once-Weekly Treatment for Type 2 Diabetes
 

 person injecting diabetes medication

Jan. 27, 2012 — The FDA has given its nod to Bydureon, making it the first weekly treatment for type 2 diabetes, according to drug’s manufacturer.

Given as a shot, Bydureon (pronounced by-DUR-ee-on) is the long-acting form of Byetta, a twice-daily injection. It works by stimulating pancreas cells to produce insulin when blood sugar is too high. It is used along with diet and exercise to improve blood sugar control among people with type 2 diabetes, the form of the disease most commonly linked to obesity.

The approval marks the third time the FDA has considered Bydureon, which is manufactured by Alkermes PLC and Amylin Pharmaceuticals Inc. Previously the FDA had expressed concerns that it may increase the risk of heart problems. As part of the new approval, Bydureon manufacturers must now conduct a study to determine whether the drug does increase these risks.

The approval is based on results from a 24-week study that showed people who used the new drug had greater improvements in their blood sugar with just one dose per week, compared with people treated with Byetta injection. The most common side effects were nausea, diarrhea, headache, vomiting, constipation, itching at the injection site, a small bump at the injection site, and indigestion.

“With Bydureon, U.S. physicians and patients can now choose a therapy that offers continuous blood sugar control in just one dose per week,” says John Buse, MD, PhD, professor of medicine, director of the Diabetes Care Center, and chief of the division of endocrinology at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine in Chapel Hill, in a news release. “New treatment options are essential for the millions of adults with type 2 diabetes who continue to struggle to achieve optimal blood sugar control.”