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Obesity-->Diabetes-->Diabetic Neuropathy

In recent years, it seems like we are hearing about the risks of obesity in the news, on television, from our healthcare providers. You might think, "I am only a few pounds overweight, so what's the big deal?" or "I only get to live once, and I want to be happy. So,
I'm going to eat what I want, when I want."  Okay...

I am a child of the 50's.  Back when I was young,  processed foods were not as commonplace as they are now; they were sort of an "emerging market."  My mother cooked mostly from scratch, and I think we were a lot healthier, in at least some respects. Antibiotics and steroids were not  used in cattle or poultry feed; GMO foods were not yet in existence, and the use of preservatives and dyes was nothing like it is at present. Nowadays, people are a lot busier, and the depend on the mass market of processed foods to keep meals on the table. Carbohydrate addiction is a growing problem today. I don't think we are really better off this way. I do believe that these processed foods are largely responsible for the problem of overweight, and the increased risk for Type II diabetes, infammatory conditions, and fibromyalgia.

You might or might not be aware of the fact that those extra pounds put more stress on the joints, especially the knees and hips.  As if that is not enough, those extra pounds contribute to a change in metabolism--and this is NOT a change for the better. Obesity is a cause of  insulin resistance, which is the hallmark of Type II diabetes. If you are diagnosed with this form of diabetes, you may be able to control it, but it will rule the rest of your life.

And what does Type II diabetes have to do with pain management?  Like any other illness, there are complications that can occur.  Diabetics have to be mindful of many potential issues with cardiovascular disease, retinopathy, etc. etc.  The pain management problem stems from a complication known as diabetic neuropathy. This problem is really a family of problems that develop over time in a person with diabetes.  The reason for the problem is mainly that the blood glucose levels in these persons does not stay in the normal range all the time.  The better the patient is able to control the diabetes, the better the neuropathy is controlled.  Still, 60 to 70 percent of diabetics have to deal with this painful condition.

Tomorrow: what are the symptoms of neuropathy?

Sources: NIH
              NYU Langone Medical Center
              The Better Health Store 
               Dr. Oz (via


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