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June 10, 2009
I’ve been dealing with a bad cold of late, but I’m still keeping an eye on the latest diabetes news. Here are some headlines that have caught my attention recently:
Another recent study out of Korea found that gingko biloba reduced neuropathic pain in rats. Dr. Yee Suk Kim of The Catholic University of Seoul, South Korea, exposed rats with neuropathic pain to cold and pressure in their feet. Rats who had been given a gingko extract exhibited less pain response than rats who had been given a placebo (inactive treatment).
And according to the University of Maryland Medical Center’s Web site, “Ginkgo has been used in traditional medicine to treat circulatory disorders and enhance memory.” There is some scientific support for this use as well, such as a study done last year in China, which showed that ginkgo biloba extract improved coronary blood flow in older adults.
We all know you shouldn’t jump at every piece of “scientific” dietary advice that comes along. In this case, however, magnesium is easy to get, often comes along with other healthful minerals and vitamins, and is associated with strong bones. So why not? Dietary sources of magnesium include green, leafy vegetables, meats, starches, grains, nuts, and milk. Previous dietary surveys have shown that a large portion of adults do not meet the Recommended Daily Allowance for magnesium (320 milligrams per day for women age 31 years and older and 420 milligrams per day for men age 31 years and older).
Glucose control debate
But there’s a problem with this finding, which I’ve exposed before. What the studies included in this analysis show is that controlling glucose with various drugs doesn’t give any health advantage. They don’t say anything about controlling blood glucose with food, exercise, and stress reduction.
Nonetheless, there is a strong element of truth in this report. Focusing on a number such as A1C or weight can distract us from focus on the overall health and the quality of our lives. And that is a mistake. Risking medicine side effects and hypoglycemia may not be worth a 0.5% reduction in A1C. The paper calls for individualizing A1C goals and medicine choices and allowing patients to decide what is right for them. I think we can all agree on that.
Intimacy program meets barriers
You can check out our new sex advice column here. This one focuses on medical treatments of erection problems.
Well, I hope you are all pursuing your “Tastes Good” and “Feels Good” diets. This cold has made it so that I can’t taste anything anyway, but I wish you all some pleasurable eating!
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