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Wednesday, November 13, 2019

November is Diabetes Awareness Month: A simple healthy nutritional approach will help keep the disease at bay.

A renowned British diabetes specialist noticed that during the war—when food shortages removed the white flour, white sugar, and excessive meat protein and fats from the typical British diet—the death rate from diabetes decreased by fifty percent. If the scientist were still alive, he would be surprised at the healthy eating trend today, the number of food blogs advocating clean, healthy eating, all challenging the way we choose, and prepare our meals.

And yet, diabetes is on the increase.

 Diabetes has now become a severe cause for concern.  The disease affects almost 425 million people, according to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF)   four times more than the figures for 1980. Alarmed by these dramatic figures, IDF and The World Health Organization created World Diabetes Day November 14 in 1991.
IDF’s concern continues - they forecast a high of   629 million sufferers by 2045, mostly with the more common Type 2 diabetes caused if you're inactive, have poor eating habits, and are overweight. People with Type 1 diabetes are different; they need to have insulin injections for life because their pancreas isn’t making enough of the hormone insulin injections, whereas, in Type 2, the pancreas produces insulin, but it cannot reach the cells.

Type 2 diabetes is all about unhealthy lifestyle habits creeping up on you as you get older. What's vital to understand is that insulin controls the amount of blood sugar, gaining access to our cells; it instructs the body's cells to absorb blood sugar for energy or storage. With Type 2 Diabetes, your blood glucose levels are high, and our insulin sensitivity is decreased. This means that the excess sugar stays in the bloodstream waiting for insulin activity to kick in so it can get to the cells to provide the energy we so need.

Also important to know is that diabetes has an influence on your good and bad cholesterol. It tends to lower good cholesterol and raise bad cholesterol. This combination is not right because when it happens, you risk having a heart attack or stroke. If left unmanaged, diabetes can also lead to increased susceptibility to cuts and bruises, skin, kidney and bladder infections, and problems with vision.

Study of olive oil, Mediterranean diet, and Diabetes

Can olive oil have an effect on our good cholesterol and diabetes?  Have a look at this study that links the Mediterranean diet, olive oil, and lowering of blood sugar.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil from Casas de Hualdo Spain  - Harvested  October 2019

A small study was carried out at Sapienza University in Rome, involving only twenty-five participants, all without diabetes, to look at the influence diet had on blood sugar in healthy metabolism. Each of the participants partook of a typical Mediterranean lunch consisting of fish, grains, vegetables, and fruit. They had this meal on two separate occasions; the first time they added 10 gm (roughly 2 teaspoons) of extra virgin olive oil to their meal, and the second time, they added 10 gm of corn oil.

They all had their glucose levels measured two hours before and after each meal. The results showed that the glucose level (blood sugar levels) was much lower after the extra virgin olive oil meal. The results also showed reduced levels of LDL—the bad cholesterol—with the olive oil meal. On the other hand, the research team found that after meals with corn oil, the participants had significantly higher levels of LDL.

"Lowering blood glucose and cholesterol may be useful to reduce the adverse effects of glucose and cholesterol on the cardiovascular system," said the principal researcher.
Olive oil appears to be the better fat in this study.  It might just be the weapon you need to fight diabetes, the right fat to incorporate in a Mediterranean eating plan.

Being responsible for monitoring and controlling blood sugar doesn’t have to be complicated.  A lot depends on simple eating methods, good exercise routine and  will power of course.

Extracts from   7 Wonders of Olive Oil  published in 2017 by   Authors Alice Alech and Cécile Le Galliard


  1. nutrition is the most important for people with diabetes.

    best books for diabetes management

  2. A very good resource for everybody that wants to read a good blog.
    Very efficiently written information. It will be valuable to everyone who uses it, including myself. Thanks a lot.Diabetes Clinic in Navi Mumbai

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. Thank you so much for your feedback. If there's any health subject you'd like covered in 2020, please get in touch.