Just as Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, said a long time ago, “Let food be thy medicine.” For those with diabetes, this is especially true.
One of the most important public health problems in America is the dramatic increase in the incidence of Type II diabetes mellitus. This disease can cause short-term severe health problems, but more often results in severe long-term health risks. When diabetes affects the kidneys, the eyes, the heart, the blood vessels and the brain, often these events will cause permanent organ damage.
With the right treatment and consistent monitoring, diabetes is a controllable disease. Especially with cats, normalizing weight and focusing on the correct macronutrient balance can result in resolution of this disease.
It is estimated that one in every 10 Americans over the age of 20 has diabetes. While the situation is not quite so dire for pets, there still has been a threefold increase in diabetes in the last 30 years in dogs and cats. Some cases of juvenile-onset diabetes are largely genetically influenced, but obesity—and therefore diet and exercise—play integral roles in the development of this disease in adult pets.
An article published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry suggests that specific compounds in cocoa may help with Type 2 diabetes. Researchers from Brigham Young University and Virginia Tech fed animals a high-fat diet, combined with cocoa and found the animals had decreased obesity and a greater ability to handle high blood sugar levels.
by Jamie Lober
Diabetes prevention comes down to becoming educated, making wise lifestyle choices and being screened. The screening criteria are clear-cut. “A fasting plasma glucose greater than 126 [milligrams per deciliter] on two different occasions would be a diagnosis of diabetes, or a hemoglobin A1c that is elevated at 6.5 percent or greater along with a fasting that is elevated greater than 126 ,” states Pat Trymbiski, a diabetes educator and nurse practitioner at Doylestown Hospital. The A1c test measures the amount of sugar that has stuck to the red blood cells over their three-month life cycle.