Overcome A Genetic Predisposition To Type-2 Diabetes
If your parents both have red hair, it’s inevitable you’ll have red hair too. But if your folks developed Type-2 diabetes, does that mean you can’t escape developing it? Absolutely not!
Type-2 diabetes can be avoided or even reversed. If you have a genetic predisposition for Type-2 (that’s around 70% of people in North America, perhaps 80% in the world) and there’s a history of diabetes on both sides of your family, you’re not doomed to develop it.
You can turn off genes that trigger Type-2 diabetes by making smart lifestyle choices. For instance, increasing physical activity decreases insulin resistance; dodging processed carbs lowers blood sugar; and managing chronic stress responses helps to reduce body-wide inflammation. So, don’t despair if you have a family history; instead, see it as a red-flag warning that the time to start flipping off those genes is now!
Turning off your type-2 disposition
Scientists in Great Britain believe they’ve found a gene, called TNFR5, which, when overexpressed, seems to damage insulin-producing pancreatic beta cells. And that gene becomes overexpressed when it’s exposed to excess glucose and bad fatty acids. But the researchers found that if you prevent that overexpression, beta cells thrive.
Your best steps? You can help to inhibit the expression of that gene by not exposing it to excess blood glucose levels (ditch those processed carbs, added sugars and syrups) and lousy fatty acids that come from saturated fats in meats and whole dairy.
You’ll be surprised at how quickly you are rewarded for your efforts to upgrade your lifestyle. Genes that predispose you to Type-2 diabetes are particularly happy to turn off. Seems they sense when you’re trying to upgrade your lifestyle habits and they turn off even before you’ve lost much weight. That may be why some folks who get bariatric surgery see blood sugar levels return to normal even before they leave the hospital! The genes can tell you’re on your way to better health. And it’s worth noting that other studies have shown that six years following bariatric surgery, 62% of the people who had Type-2 showed no signs of diabetes.
If you’ve developed Type-2 diabetes, don’t give up! At Dr Mike’s Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute, a programme of managed intensive treatment sets a goal (for people who present at the clinic) of totally reversing Type-2 diabetes and living full-time with an A1C of 5% to 5,8%. Sixty percent of folks achieve that! Also, often family members have Type-2 diabetes but genetics is not the cause – or not the only cause. Shared environmental risk factors, such as a sedentary lifestyle, poor nutritional habits, inadequate stress management, depression, etc, can foster the condition. But no matter who you are or what your family history is, if you think you can’t avoid diabetes, think again. Talk to your doctor and make a plan. Here’s your starter kit:
1. Avoid the Five Food Felons like the plague:
All added sugars and sugar syrups (such as high-fructose corn syrup), all trans and most saturated fats, and any grain that isn’t 100% whole.
2. Plan on walking 10 000 steps a day
Either that, or the equivalent (Google “step counter conversions Vermont” for a chart that lets you figure out equivalents).
3. Adopt a stress-management programme (mindful meditation), and practise it twice a day.
4. If you already have diabetes or pre-diabetes,
there are armies of folks out there to help you. Diabetes educators are a tremendous resource; they can help you create a personalised exercise and diet programme. And intensive programmes, similar to Dr Mike’s, are in hospitals across the country. Many are reimbursed by health insurers. So remember, express your desire to dodge Type-2 diabetes, and you can keep those genes from expressing theirs!
For more info, here’s an article from Harvard Health that might be insightful.
Remember, diabetes is not a sentence. Even celebrities like Halle Berry turned their diagnosis into a motivator. Read this story around how she deals with her diabetes.