Staying Healthy with Diabetes Essay

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The American Heritage Dictionary definition of diabetes is "a chronic disease of pancreatic origin, marked by insulin deficiency, excess sugar in the blood and urine, weakness, and emaciation." When you have diabetes, your body cannot use the food that you eat in the proper way. In a person without diabetes, when he or she eats, the food is broken down into blood glucose or blood sugar. After the food is in the form of glucose, the glucose is carried to all the cells of the body for energy. In order for the cells to receive the glucose, a hormone made in the islet or B-cells of the pancreas called insulin acts a receptor on the cell membrane to let the glucose enter inside the cells. In contrast, in people with diabetes, the body does not …show more content…
Like in the Pyramid, there are six different categories under which these exchanges are grouped. Under each of the six categories, there is a list which contains different foods that have almost the same nutritional value. Using the exchange lists gives the diabetic a variety of food choices and will help one monitor the amount of food one is consuming each day. This balance of food along with exercise and medication, if it is necessary, are what promotes a normal blood sugar level in a person who has diabetes. See MEAL PLAN and STARCH/BREAD, FRUIT, VEGETABLE, MILK, MEAT, FAT, and FREE FOODS LISTS from FHP Health & Wellness Library: Managing Diabetes Through Diet (http://www.fhp.com/text/diabetes.htm).

Nutritional Therapy

The most important goal in the successful treatment of every person with diabetes is Nutritional therapy. The primary importance of Nutritional therapy in diabetics is to encourage blood sugar control and regulation. Nutritional therapy has five specific goals:

1. To maintain glucose levels in the blood as close to normal as possible by creating a balance between food intake and activity levels along with other treatments such as insulin or oral glucose lowering medications;

2. To accomplish optimal lipid levels in the blood;

3. To give enough calories for achieving or maintaining a normal weight for adults, normal development and growth patterns in children, and for allowing an increase
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