Archive:

Tags

134 Executive Drive, Lafayette, IN 47905, 765-448-6489

765-448-6489

Posts for tag: diabetes

I have faced my fair share of diet challenges in life like most of you. One of them is the picture above: Dr. Sue is an amazing cake maker and she also makes some pretty amazing chocolate-coated strawberries!

This week, we are talking about how to apply the Minimum Effective Dose (M.E.D.) to our diets. M.E.D. is the concept of applying just enough of something to effect a positive change.

M.E.D. is really a way to get right to making changes in our lives without overthinking or planning things. Think of it as looking for the biggest bang for your buck.

WHAT IS THE LEAST I CAN DO FOR THE LARGEST OUTCOME?  


Two of the biggest culprits in the Standard American Diet are grain (including wheat and corn) and sugar.

Grain… Tastes Good But… (and hips and thighs and belly!)


There is no doubt you can go to the bookstore right now and find one magazine that promotes a diet high in complex carbohydrates (whole grain) and, right next to it, one that promotes eating grain-free (keto, paleo, etc.). I have actually written pretty extensively on this before on our blog under Paleo – Carbohydrates: What Kind and How Much?. But, for our purposes today, here are some facts about grain (wheat, corn, etc.):

  • Grains raise blood sugars
  • Grains have a high calorie count
  • Certain proteins in grain can cause inflammatory/auto immune reactions

These three issues can result in: diabetes and diabetes-related health issues, obesity, and obesity-related health issues, inflammatory diseases and symptoms (pain, stomach and gut issues, worsening fibromyalgia and arthritis, possibly lead to brain degeneration and worsening neurological issues). Some people have greater reactions than others, in terms of active disease states, but the scale doesn’t lie in terms of weight gain.

Reduce or eliminate grain in your diet = lose weight and get healthier.


M.E.D. for that right away? Every time you go to have a grain product, reduce it by half and replace it with a) nothing, b) vegetable, c) fruit. Start making your sandwich open faced, instead of with two slices of bread. Only eat one roll instead of two at dinner. Cook an egg and eat it with 1/2 your regular amount of oatmeal. Have an apple instead of a granola bar. You get the idea. In a few weeks, cut everything in half again. You’ll get used to it!

I Do Love Me Some Sugar!


The second thing I am going to suggest as a dietary M.E.D. is straight-up sugar. There are a lot of forms of sugar, but the two largest culprits in the U.S. are high-fructose corn syrup (found in pop, candy bars, ice cream, cookies, really, anything that is sweet and packaged) and table sugar (the sugar we bake with).

Sugar has two of the same issues that grains do, namely:

  • Raises your blood sugar (leads to diabetes and related disorders)
  • Has a high calorie count (leads to obesity)

In addition, while you might be able to make the case for grains having some B-vitamins (often added in) and fiber (you can get more than enough, if you eat a healthy amount of vegetables), but sugar really has no redeeming nutritional value whatsoever. I didn’t say it doesn’t taste good, just that it has no redeeming nutritional value! Any more sugar is like the surgeon general ads that warn you against smoking. Who doesn’t know that?

So, if nobody is arguing that we can benefit from reducing sugar, how can you do that? Following the “Half Approach,” outlined above in the grain section is a good start. Another simple hack would be to have a big glass of water before you’re going to partake in a sugary snack. Often times, the water will make you feel fuller and you are less likely to eat as much or at least as fast.

Finally, if you are going to eat sugar in your snack, see if you can combine it with protein or fat. This can do two things: it can slow the rate it is digested and reduce spikes in blood sugar, and the protein and fat may be more effective at making you feel full sooner, as opposed to just consuming the sugary snack alone.

Don’t Forget the 85/15 Rule!


I graduated from chiropractic college over 30 years ago (yeah, I was pretty young!). I don’t remember a lot about the ceremony, but I do remember one thing the commencement speaker said. It was something to the effect “that we had just spent a lot of time, energy, and money learning how to get sick people healthy, but not to forget to have an ice cream cone once and awhile along the way. You never now when you might step out on the street and get hit by a car, and it would be terrible if you had never had ice cream!”

Now, I really don’t want anything bad to happen to you, but I have found life a little more enjoyable when I work hard on diet and exercise 85% of the time, and take it easier 15% of the time. I think this rule can apply to food as well!

Next week, we will look at some M.E.D. recommendations on exercise.

Yours in Health,

Care Chiropractic
Lafayette, Indiana

By Dr. Doug Williams
February 20, 2018
Category: Paleo

High Carb? Low Carb? No Carb? Help!

If you are just joining us, we are working our way through some material on the Paleo Lifestyle. You can check out some of the previous posts here. As you may recall, the Paleo Movement started out primarily as an approach to eating more like humans have historically (and potentially pre-historically) than how we have been eating over the last hundred years or so. Recently, the Paleo Movement has also incorporated exercise, sleep, electronics, and even social interactions. Currently, we are finishing up the section on food. Today, we are going to be covering carbohydrates. Before we talk about the Paleo approach to carbohydrates, let's take a minute and talk about exactly what a carbohydrate is!

What is a Carbohydrate?

While a protein can be used for energy production in the human body, it is not very efficient and way more important as a building block. Fat is a highly efficient form of energy, but takes a little while to get burning. Fat also has some very important roles in hormone and cell production. Carbohydrates, on the other hand, are an energy source that burns fast and hot! They don't take much to get going, but they burn out quick. Carbohydrates also convert to fat in the body, if they are eaten in greater amounts than the body needs.

Sources of dietary carbohydrates include

  • Fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Grains
  • Legumes (Beans)

Carbohydrates in our diet can be either refined or unrefined. Refined refers to how much of the "wrapping" around the carbohydrate has been removed. For instance, if you took an orange and squeezed it for the juice, a high percentage of what you got would actually be pure carbohydrate. If you took that same orange and ate the whole thing, you would get the same amount of juice, plus a lot of fiber.

When You Consume Too Many Carbohydrates in Your Diet

The problem with consuming too many carbohydrates in your diet (and refined carbohydrates, for sure) can be summed up in two words: Insulin Resistance. Insulin is a hormone produced by your pancreas to help get carbohydrates into cells and to help convert excess carbohydrates into stored fat. If a diet is too high in carbohydrates (especially refined ones), then the insulin system works overtime. Do this for too long and it starts to become less efficient, and it will eventually stop working altogether, which results in Type II Diabetes! Diabetes itself is associated with a variety of health issues, including heart disease, eye issues, and numbness and tingling in the hands and feet.

What Do Paleos Do?

The "Go Paleo: Step-By-Step Guide that we have been following from Paleo Magazine emphasizes getting the majority of your carbohydrates from vegetables, then more sparingly from fruit, as it has a higher concentration of sugar (fructose).

It is recommend to stay away from grains and legumes. Grains have several issues: they are higher in carbohydrate compared to fruits and vegetables and, therefore, can raise your blood sugar more quickly. In addition, the primary grain we use in the US is wheat. Wheat has a protein in it called gluten. Gluten can have negative effects on both the gut and nerve system in a lot of people. Legumes (beans) are composed of a material that requires a specific enzyme to break it down for digestion. Most people don't have that enzyme, hence that famous song: "Beans, beans the magical fruit..."

The Paleo approach emphasizes getting your carbohydrates first from eating a lot of dark green leafy vegetables (like spinach), then incorporating vegetables and fruit from a variety of colors. Each color can add different nutrients. It is recommended to limit starchy vegetables, like potatoes and corn, as they have a high percentage of carbohydrate to weight.

What Do You Do, Doc?

Like I have said in previous posts, I try hard to follow the 85/15 rule: Eat right at least 85% of the time and don't worry the other 15%!

Here is what I typically do:

  • Most days, we try not to have any carbohydrates (fruit or vegetable) prior to lunch time. We do this by having either bacon, eggs and coffee, or turmeric tea with coconut cream for breakfast. Then, we try not to eat before noon. This gives the insulin system a long break from bedtime till lunchtime (for us, about 12-13 hours).
  • For lunch, I try to have a salad of salmon, carrots, celery, spinach, flax meal, and avocado, along with an apple and pear, and some nuts and M&M's for dessert.
  • Most dinners are a vegetable and meat, but we do eat chili, burritos, and hamburger rolls with gluten-free flour (dinner would be our highest concentration of carbohydrates).
  • When we bake, it is with 1/3 gluten-free flour, 1/3 almond flour and 1/3 flax/chia mix. The almond flour and flax/chia mix are actually very high in fat and low in carbohydrates. We usually make banana bread and M&M cookies this way, minus half the recommended sugar.
  • Our biggest indulgence are frappuccinos (this probably makes up most of the 15%)!
  • We rarely buy chips, crackers, or cereal.
  • You will see us at restaurants, mostly Chipotle and McAllisters, and that is another place we cheat a little.
  • Pop is rare; carbonated flavored water is the norm.

Again, 85/15 is the goal.

I hope this gives you a little better an understanding of how carbohydrates work and why it is important to chose them carefully. Remember, you don't have to be perfect or finish first to have a successful race, but it is a good idea to be heading in the right direction!

Next week, we will wrap up the eating portion of this series with a Quick Tips and Help Sheet!

Yours in Health,

Doug Williams, D.C.
Care Chiropractic
Lafayette, Indiana