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Triple Threat against Diabetes: Alpha Lipoic Acid, Chromium & Vanadium

If you have diabetes, you know there are multiple approaches to managing your health and improving how your body uses insulin. Talk with your holistic physician about employing nature’s own “triple threat” to diabetes – the supplements Alpha-lipoic acid, chromium, and vanadium.

Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA)

Within the body, Alpha-lipoic acid is found in every cell, where it helps turn glucose into energy. People with Type-2 diabetes take ALA supplements to help their body use insulin more efficiently, as well as protect against cell damage and diabetic neuropathy. Food sources include liver, lean red meat, spinach, broccoli, and potatoes.

Chromium

Chromium helps cells make efficient use of glucose. Without chromium, insulin’s action is blocked and glucose levels increase. Chromium deficiency may be a factor in the number of Americans who have diabetes. A chromium supplement can lower fasting blood glucose levels, improve glucose tolerance, decrease insulin resistance, and decrease total cholesterol and triglyceride levels while increasing HDL-cholesterol levels. Food sources include meat, fish and fruits.

Vanadium

Vanadium supports the body’s use of carbohydrates by improving how cells respond to insulin. Prior to the discovery of insulin in 1922, vanadium was used to control blood glucose. While modern conventional medicine does not recognize vanadium as an essential element in diabetes treatment, available studies suggest that the supplement does have a positive effect on blood glucose levels. Holistic practitioners carefully monitor their patients who supplement with vanadium. Food sources include mushrooms, shellfish, parsley, dill weed, unfiltered extra virgin olive oil, and grain products.

References

Triple Threat against Diabetes: Alpha Lipoic Acid, Chromium & Vanadium

If you have diabetes, you know there are multiple approaches to managing your health and improving how your body uses insulin. Talk with your holistic physician about employing nature’s own “triple threat” to diabetes – the supplements Alpha-lipoic acid, chromium, and vanadium.

Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA)

Within the body, Alpha-lipoic acid is found in every cell, where it helps turn glucose into energy. People with Type-2 diabetes take ALA supplements to help their body use insulin more efficiently, as well as protect against cell damage and diabetic neuropathy. Food sources include liver, lean red meat, spinach, broccoli, and potatoes.

The best Alpha-lipoic acid we’ve been using with our clients is Alamax CR, by Xymogen. Highly absorbable and utilized, this powerful antioxidant is especially for blood glucose support, as well as liver, eyes and brain.

Chromium

Chromium helps cells make efficient use of glucose. Without chromium, insulin’s action is blocked and glucose levels increase. Chromium deficiency may be a factor in the number of Americans who have diabetes. A chromium supplement can lower fasting blood glucose levels, improve glucose tolerance, decrease insulin resistance, and decrease total cholesterol and triglyceride levels while increasing HDL-cholesterol levels. Food sources include meat, fish and fruits.

As always, the multivitamin-mineral we recommend, ActivNutrients has these important minerals (chromium, vanadium), as well as the other nutrients you need on a daily basis!

Vanadium

Vanadium supports the body’s use of carbohydrates by improving how cells respond to insulin. Prior to the discovery of insulin in 1922, vanadium was used to control blood glucose. While modern conventional medicine does not recognize vanadium as an essential element in diabetes treatment, available studies suggest that the supplement does have a positive effect on blood glucose levels. Holistic practitioners carefully monitor their patients who supplement with vanadium. Food sources include mushrooms, shellfish, parsley, dill weed, unfiltered extra virgin olive oil, and grain products.

References

Bitter Melon (Momordica charantia)

A cousin of watermelon, cucumber and pumpkin, Bitter Melon is shaped like a cucumber, only larger with lighter green and more gourd-like skin. In tropical cultures, where it’s cultivated, bitter melon is used to support digestion because of its ability to break down carbohydrates. When using for medicinal purposes, the entire plant can be used, dried or fresh, from leaves and stems to the actual juice.

Holistic physicians and researchers are interested in Bitter Melon for its effect on blood glucose levels in patients with diabetes mellitus. Chemicals in the extract act similar to insulin. A number of studies have found that bitter melon juice, fruit and dried powder have a moderate effect on lowering blood glucose. In other studies, a “plant insulin” injection given to patients with Type-1 diabetes showed a decrease in blood glucose. The decrease was not as significant for patients with Type-2 diabetes, but there was a decline in blood glucose levels compared to a control group. It seems that source and type of preparation, as well as individual patient factors, may play a role in the effect of bitter melon on diabetes, which will inspire further research.

Blend bitter melon into various foods and enjoy it several times a week when in season. Although considered relatively safe, consult your holistic practitioner to determine the appropriate type and amount to use for your particular needs. If you are pregnant or nursing, only use the supplement under the care of a qualified practitioner.

References

Bitter Melon (Momordica charantia)

A cousin of watermelon, cucumber and pumpkin, Bitter Melon is shaped like a cucumber, only larger with lighter green and more gourd-like skin. In tropical cultures, where it’s cultivated, bitter melon is used to support digestion because of its ability to break down carbohydrates. When using for medicinal purposes, the entire plant can be used, dried or fresh, from leaves and stems to the actual juice.

Holistic physicians and researchers are interested in Bitter Melon for its effect on blood glucose levels in patients with diabetes mellitus. Chemicals in the extract act similar to insulin. A number of studies have found that bitter melon juice, fruit and dried powder have a moderate effect on lowering blood glucose. In other studies, a “plant insulin” injection given to patients with Type-1 diabetes showed a decrease in blood glucose. The decrease was not as significant for patients with Type-2 diabetes, but there was a decline in blood glucose levels compared to a control group. It seems that source and type of preparation, as well as individual patient factors, may play a role in the effect of bitter melon on diabetes, which will inspire further research.

Blend bitter melon into various foods and enjoy it several times a week when in season. Although considered relatively safe, consult your holistic practitioner to determine the appropriate type and amount to use for your particular needs. If you are pregnant or nursing, only use the supplement under the care of a qualified practitioner.

In addition to bitter melon in your diet, our favorite daily product for blood glucose metabolism is CinnDromeXTM. Safe and highly beneficial, CinnDromeXTM features significant quantities of key ingredients that support insulin utilization and glucose metabolism, with a patented, 100% water-soluble, 10:1 concentrated form of cinnamon, American ginseng, green tea, gymnema, and alpha-lipoic acid help protect pancreatic cells, support insulin sensitivity, and provide antioxidant activity, as well as chromium for enhancing insulin activity. Don’t forget to add cinnamon to your diet for even more (delicious) support!

References

Essential Fatty Acids

Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are an excellent addition to your diet, especially during the holiday season when foods high in sugars, carbohydrates, cholesterol, and food allergens can tempt us. Essential fatty acids help support your system during times of poor diet by reducing inflammation, balancing blood sugar, decreasing lipids like triglycerides and cholesterol in your bloodstream, and preventing hardening of the arteries.To get the health benefits of EFAs, add in Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids to your diet in the form of organic, wild caught fish, oils such as flax, coconut, olive and avocado, and nuts such as walnuts. To add in EFAs as a supplement, talk to your Doctor about adding in a high quality fish oil to your regimen. Always talk to your doctor before making any significant changes to your diet or supplements.

References

Essential Fatty Acids

Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) are an excellent addition to your diet, especially during the holiday season when foods high in sugars, carbohydrates, cholesterol, and food allergens can tempt us. Essential fatty acids help support your system during times of poor diet by reducing inflammation, balancing blood sugar, decreasing lipids like triglycerides and cholesterol in your bloodstream, and preventing hardening of the arteries.To get the health benefits of EFAs, add in Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids to your diet in the form of organic, wild caught fish, oils such as flax, coconut, olive and avocado, and nuts such as walnuts. To add in EFAs as a supplement, talk to your Doctor about adding in a high quality fish oil to your regimen. Always talk to your doctor before making any significant changes to your diet or supplements.

To ensure your body has enough of these critically important EFA’s, especially EPA, we recommend high-potency OmegaPure EPA, 1-2 soft gels per day, with food.

For a delicious treat, highly absorbable fish oil as a creamy treat, our favorite is High Potency Omega-3 Citrus Sorbet!

References

Fiber

Experts agree, dietary fiber is an important tool in fighting and preventing heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and even obesity. Most experts agree that a key defining characteristic of dietary fiber is that it’s derived from the edible parts of plants that are not broken down by human digestive enzymes, but the official definition is still up for debate. One complication in defining fiber is that fibers come in variety of forms, some soluble, some insoluble, some viscous, some fermentable and others not. Like soluble fibers, viscous fibers lower serum cholesterol by reducing the absorption of dietary cholesterol. Soluble fiber may also reduce the amount of cholesterol manufactured by the liver. Viscous fibers help normalize blood glucose levels and increase insulin sensitivity, making them helpful in preventing and treating type 2 diabetes. Viscous fibers also slow food as it leaves the stomach, providing a full feeling and helping to prevent overeating and weight gain. Animal studies have also suggested some dietary fibers may help lower blood cholesterol levels. In addition, fermentable fibers help maintain healthy populations of friendly bacteria which enhance the immune system by preventing harmful bacteria from growing in the intestinal tract. Insoluble and non-fermentable fibers help maintain bowel regularity, decreasing the risk of colon cancer and hemorrhoids from straining and constipation. The many forms of dietary fibers can be found among a spectrum of foods, from bran, oatmeal and whole grains, to legumes, root vegetables and cabbage, and even in fruits including apples, strawberries and citrus fruits, among others. Still, some of the best food sources of fiber include turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, navy beans, eggplant, raspberries and cinnamon. With the verdict still out on what is definitively a fiber, the simplest way to make sure you’re getting all the vital fiber your body craves is to eat a healthy and balanced diet including a variety of these foods.

References

Fiber

Experts agree, dietary fiber is an important tool in fighting and preventing heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and even obesity. Most experts agree that a key defining characteristic of dietary fiber is that it’s derived from the edible parts of plants that are not broken down by human digestive enzymes, but the official definition is still up for debate. One complication in defining fiber is that fibers come in variety of forms, some soluble, some insoluble, some viscous, some fermentable and others not. Like soluble fibers, viscous fibers lower serum cholesterol by reducing the absorption of dietary cholesterol. Soluble fiber may also reduce the amount of cholesterol manufactured by the liver. Viscous fibers help normalize blood glucose levels and increase insulin sensitivity, making them helpful in preventing and treating type 2 diabetes. Viscous fibers also slow food as it leaves the stomach, providing a full feeling and helping to prevent overeating and weight gain. Animal studies have also suggested some dietary fibers may help lower blood cholesterol levels. In addition, fermentable fibers help maintain healthy populations of friendly bacteria which enhance the immune system by preventing harmful bacteria from growing in the intestinal tract. Insoluble and non-fermentable fibers help maintain bowel regularity, decreasing the risk of colon cancer and hemorrhoids from straining and constipation. The many forms of dietary fibers can be found among a spectrum of foods, from bran, oatmeal and whole grains, to legumes, root vegetables and cabbage, and even in fruits including apples, strawberries and citrus fruits, among others. Still, some of the best food sources of fiber include turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, navy beans, eggplant, raspberries and cinnamon. With the verdict still out on what is definitively a fiber, the simplest way to make sure you’re getting all the vital fiber your body craves is to eat a healthy and balanced diet including a variety of these foods.

Also, if you’re intentionally avoiding fruit and grains (especially for blood sugar challenges!), in addition to eating veggies with EVERY meal, take a serving of this fiber for optimal health, digestion, weight control and healthy cholesterol! Just follow label instructions, and be sure to stay hydrated. OptiFiber Lean.

Note: This is the ONLY product in the United States with glucomannan fiber from Japan! Give it as a holiday gift – it’s that good.

References

Detoxing: Strengthening Your Body’s Defense Team

Detoxification is a natural healing process that incorporates resting, cleansing, and nourishing the body from the inside out. By eliminating toxins, then fueling your body with healthy nutrients, a planned period of detox can strengthen your body’s natural “Detox Team” and help maintain optimum health.

Holistic physicians and proponents of detoxing suggest following a detox plan at least once per year, with spring and fall being the ideal approach. You may have heard critics argue the human body is designed with just the right physiological processes necessary to clear the body of impurities and maintain health. Unfortunately for many people, lifestyle habits and the environments where we live, work, eat and play often expose us to toxins that our bodies don’t efficiently eliminate.

The toxins you can be exposed to everyday include:

  • heavy metals in the food and water supply
  • environmental pollution
  • chemical food additives
  • smoking; overuse of alcohol or drugs
  • use/overuse of Rx medication
  • prolonged high stress
  • poor quality diet and lifestyle habits
  • frequent colds or chronic illness
Your Body’s Natural Detox Team

Your body naturally detoxifies itself via a Detox Team of organs that work synergistically to neutralize and eliminate toxins, with the goal of keeping the blood and cells free of impurities. The liver leads the Detox Team by processing toxins for elimination. The supporting detox defense players are the kidneys, intestines, lungs, lymph, and skin. When your body’s natural Detox Team becomes compromised, impurities aren’t properly filtered out. This makes it a real challenge for the Detox Team to maintain or restore health and well-being.

Detoxing Boosts Your Health

Following a detox program suited to your personal needs supports the body’s natural cleansing process and boosts your health in many ways:

  • Allows digestive organs to rest
  • Stimulates the liver to process toxins more efficiently
  • Promotes movement of bowels
  • Improves circulation
  • Enhances sweating, which facilitates release of impurities
  • Restores vital nutrients and energy to the body
6 Things to Know Before You Detox

Before you begin a detox, prepare mentally and physically. Plan your dates a few weeks in advance. Inform the people closest to you about the time you’ve set aside to take care of yourself. Clear your schedule of routine obligations that may create stress. Stock up on inspirational music and reading material.

Gather Herbal Support. Herbal and nutritional supplements such as burdock, milk thistle, dandelion, and vitamins C and B protect and support the body’s Detox Team, especially the liver. They also have antioxidant effects that benefit the whole body.

Hydrate! Without enough water, toxins will not be sufficiently flushed from the body. Aim to drink at least 2 quarts of water per day with lemon/lime during a detox.

Dry Brush Your Skin. Look for a brush with soft natural bristles. Begin with light, gentle brushing over the skin (don’t make the skin red). Always brush towards the heart. Shower immediately after to rinse off exfoliated skin.

Get Wet. Therapeutic use of water also supports detoxification. A steam or sauna can accelerate the release of toxins. Hydrotherapy provides support to the muscles and promotes relaxation. Mineral bath salts also help release toxins.

Sweat it Out-Gently. Exercise facilitates digestion, circulation, metabolism and hormone balancing. During a detox, decrease the intensity of your usual exercise routine, but do break a moderate sweat. Get outdoors for fresh air and natural sunlight. Good exercise options are easy hiking, dancing, walking, yoga, or tai chi.

Rest. For your mind and body to fully assimilate the benefits of detoxing, you need good quality sleep. Plan your least stimulating activities (reading, meditation, bathing) for right before bed.

How to Detox?

There are many ways to approach detoxing, from fruit and vegetable juice fasts to herbal tea cleanses. A typical approach is a short period of fasting with proper fluid intake followed by whole or raw foods and beverages before resuming your usual daily routine. There are people who must be under the care of a health practitioner, such as pregnant or nursing women or those diagnosed with certain conditions such as diabetes. In general, it’s important to work with your doctor to select a program that matches your health needs.

References

Detoxing: Strengthening Your Body’s Defense Team

Detoxification is a natural healing process that incorporates resting, cleansing, and nourishing the body from the inside out. By eliminating toxins, then fueling your body with healthy nutrients, a planned period of detox can strengthen your body’s natural “Detox Team” and help maintain optimum health.

Holistic physicians and proponents of detoxing suggest following a detox plan at least once per year, with spring and fall being the ideal approach. You may have heard critics argue the human body is designed with just the right physiological processes necessary to clear the body of impurities and maintain health. Unfortunately for many people, lifestyle habits and the environments where we live, work, eat and play often expose us to toxins that our bodies don’t efficiently eliminate.

The toxins you can be exposed to everyday include:

  • heavy metals in the food and water supply
  • environmental pollution
  • chemical food additives
  • smoking; overuse of alcohol or drugs
  • use/overuse of Rx medication
  • prolonged high stress
  • poor quality diet and lifestyle habits
  • frequent colds or chronic illness

Your Body’s Natural Detox Team

Your body naturally detoxifies itself via a Detox Team of organs that work synergistically to neutralize and eliminate toxins, with the goal of keeping the blood and cells free of impurities. The liver leads the Detox Team by processing toxins for elimination. The supporting detox defense players are the kidneys, intestines, lungs, lymph, and skin. When your body’s natural Detox Team becomes compromised, impurities aren’t properly filtered out. This makes it a real challenge for the Detox Team to maintain or restore health and well-being.

Detoxing Boosts Your Health

Following a detox program suited to your personal needs supports the body’s natural cleansing process and boosts your health in many ways:

  • Allows digestive organs to rest
  • Stimulates the liver to process toxins more efficiently
  • Promotes movement of bowels
  • Improves circulation
  • Enhances sweating, which facilitates release of impurities
  • Restores vital nutrients and energy to the body

6 Things to Know Before You Detox

Before you begin a detox, prepare mentally and physically. Plan your dates a few weeks in advance. Inform the people closest to you about the time you’ve set aside to take care of yourself. Clear your schedule of routine obligations that may create stress. Stock up on inspirational music and reading material.

Gather Herbal Support. Herbal and nutritional supplements such as burdock, milk thistle, dandelion, and vitamins C and B protect and support the body’s Detox Team, especially the liver. They also have antioxidant effects that benefit the whole body.

Hydrate! Without enough water, toxins will not be sufficiently flushed from the body. Aim to drink at least 2 quarts of water per day with lemon/lime during a detox.

Dry Brush Your Skin. Look for a brush with soft natural bristles. Begin with light, gentle brushing over the skin (don’t make the skin red). Always brush towards the heart. Shower immediately after to rinse off exfoliated skin.

Get Wet. Therapeutic use of water also supports detoxification. A steam or sauna can accelerate the release of toxins. Hydrotherapy provides support to the muscles and promotes relaxation. Mineral bath salts also help release toxins.

Sweat it Out-Gently. Exercise facilitates digestion, circulation, metabolism and hormone balancing. During a detox, decrease the intensity of your usual exercise routine, but do break a moderate sweat. Get outdoors for fresh air and natural sunlight. Good exercise options are easy hiking, dancing, walking, yoga, or tai chi.

Rest. For your mind and body to fully assimilate the benefits of detoxing, you need good quality sleep. Plan your least stimulating activities (reading, meditation, bathing) for right before bed.

How to Detox?

There are many ways to approach detoxing, from fruit and vegetable juice fasts to herbal tea cleanses. A typical approach is a short period of fasting with proper fluid intake followed by whole or raw foods and beverages before resuming your usual daily routine. There are people who must be under the care of a health practitioner, such as pregnant or nursing women or those diagnosed with certain conditions such as diabetes. In general, it’s important to work with your doctor to select a program that matches your health needs.

For a quick, comprehensive medical-grade detox, the 6 Day Detox Kit provides what you need to feel better quick, and your body’s detox systems to be functioning much more efficiently! We recommend this detox twice per year, or quarterly.

Nutrition instructions and a nice detox booklet are included!

References

Fiber

Experts agree, dietary fiber is an important tool in fighting and preventing heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and even obesity. Most experts agree that a key defining characteristic of dietary fiber is that it’s derived from the edible parts of plants that are not broken down by human digestive enzymes, but the official definition is still up for debate. One complication in defining fiber is that fibers come in variety of forms, some soluble, some insoluble, some viscous, some fermentable and others not. Like soluble fibers, viscous fibers lower serum cholesterol by reducing the absorption of dietary cholesterol. Soluble fiber may also reduce the amount of cholesterol manufactured by the liver. Viscous fibers help normalize blood glucose levels and increase insulin sensitivity, making them helpful in preventing and treating type 2 diabetes. Viscous fibers also slow food as it leaves the stomach, providing a full feeling and helping to prevent overeating and weight gain. Animal studies have also suggested some dietary fibers may help lower blood cholesterol levels. In addition, fermentable fibers help maintain healthy populations of friendly bacteria which enhance the immune system by preventing harmful bacteria from growing in the intestinal tract. Insoluble and non-fermentable fibers help maintain bowel regularity, decreasing the risk of colon cancer and hemorrhoids from straining and constipation.

The many forms of dietary fibers can be found among a spectrum of foods, from bran, oatmeal and whole grains, to legumes, root vegetables and cabbage, and even in fruits including apples, strawberries and citrus fruits, among others. Still, some of the best food sources of fiber include turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, navy beans, eggplant, raspberries and cinnamon. With the verdict still out on what is definitively a fiber, the simplest way to make sure you’re getting all the vital fiber your body craves is to eat a healthy and balanced diet including a variety of these foods.

References

Fiber

Experts agree, dietary fiber is an important tool in fighting and preventing heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and even obesity. Most experts agree that a key defining characteristic of dietary fiber is that it’s derived from the edible parts of plants that are not broken down by human digestive enzymes, but the official definition is still up for debate. One complication in defining fiber is that fibers come in variety of forms, some soluble, some insoluble, some viscous, some fermentable and others not. Like soluble fibers, viscous fibers lower serum cholesterol by reducing the absorption of dietary cholesterol. Soluble fiber may also reduce the amount of cholesterol manufactured by the liver. Viscous fibers help normalize blood glucose levels and increase insulin sensitivity, making them helpful in preventing and treating type 2 diabetes. Viscous fibers also slow food as it leaves the stomach, providing a full feeling and helping to prevent overeating and weight gain. Animal studies have also suggested some dietary fibers may help lower blood cholesterol levels. In addition, fermentable fibers help maintain healthy populations of friendly bacteria which enhance the immune system by preventing harmful bacteria from growing in the intestinal tract. Insoluble and non-fermentable fibers help maintain bowel regularity, decreasing the risk of colon cancer and hemorrhoids from straining and constipation.

The many forms of dietary fibers can be found among a spectrum of foods, from bran, oatmeal and whole grains, to legumes, root vegetables and cabbage, and even in fruits including apples, strawberries and citrus fruits, among others. Still, some of the best food sources of fiber include turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, navy beans, eggplant, raspberries and cinnamon. With the verdict still out on what is definitively a fiber, the simplest way to make sure you’re getting all the vital fiber your body craves is to eat a healthy and balanced diet including a variety of these foods.

Also, if you’re intentionally avoiding fruit and grains (especially for blood sugar challenges!), in addition to eating veggies with EVERY meal, take a serving of our favorite fiber, OptiFiber Lean for optimal health, digestion, weight control and healthy cholesterol! Just follow label instructions, and be sure to stay hydrated.

Note: This is the ONLY product in the United States with glucomannan fiber from Japan! Give it as a holiday gift – it’s that good.

If you prefer to drink your fiber (making sure you’re getting enough water, with your fiber!), TruFiber is a tasteless fiber combined with digestive enzymes. Because it is tasteless, it can be added to smoothies and other drinks.


References