Type 2 diabetes: Consume this green powder daily to significantly lower blood sugar

A type 2 diabetes diagnosis sends a very clear signal that your blood sugar levels are too high. Blood sugar is a type of sugar that enters your bloodstream through eating food. Type 2 diabetes doesn’t usually produce symptoms in the initial stages but consistently high blood sugar levels, a feature of diabetes, causes the body to undergo adverse changes in the long-run.

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Unstable blood sugar levels may seem benign but it can damage the vessels that supply blood to vital organs.

Eventually, this can increase the risk of deadly complications such as heart disease and stroke.

Luckily, you can bring blood sugar levels under control by making healthy lifestyle changes.

One of the most important adjustments you can make is eating a healthy, balanced diet.

While there is no single miracle worker, evidence shows that specific ingredients have a particularly potent effect on blood sugar levels so it would be wise to include them in your diet.

One ingredient that has yielded promising results is holy basil, a herb that is native to India.

According to medical site LiveStrong, holy basil, taken in powder form, has been shown to lower fasting and post-meal blood glucose levels.

Fasting blood glucose is a test to determine how much glucose (sugar) is in a blood sample after an overnight fast.

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In one study, 40 type 2 diabetics were asked to stop all of their diabetes medications.

Half of the patients were given 2.5g of holy basil leaf powder daily, and the other half were given a placebo for four weeks.

The groups were closely monitored and at the end of the study, holy basil was found to reduce fasting blood glucose levels by approximately 17.6 percent, and post-meal blood glucose levels by 7.3 percent.

Animal studies also support these claims.

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In one study, rats that received holy basil extract saw a 24 percent decrease in blood sugar after 30 days.

Blood sugar in rats that were fed holy basil leaf powder also decreased after a month.

General dietary tips

There’s nothing you cannot eat if you have type 2 diabetes, but you’ll have to limit certain foods.

According to the NHS, you should:

  • Eat a wide range of foods – including fruit, vegetables and some starchy foods like pasta
  • Keep sugar, fat and salt to a minimum
  • Eat breakfast, lunch and dinner every day – do not skip meals

Despite the NHS’s advice, it is important to restrict your intake of starchy items because they are often high in carb.

Carbohydrate is broken down into glucose relatively quickly and therefore has a more pronounced effect on blood sugar levels than either fat or protein.

Type 2 diabetes – how to spot it

“Many people have type 2 diabetes without realising. This is because symptoms do not necessarily make you feel unwell,” says the NHS.

If you do experience symptoms, these can include:

  • Urinating more than usual, particularly at night
  • Feeling thirsty all the time
  • Feeling very tired
  • Losing weight without trying to
  • Itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
  • Cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
  • Blurred vision

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Stomach bloating causes: Bloating after meals could be a sign of this deadly condition

Stomach bloating can be a sign you’ve wolfed down your meal. But does it happen after every time you eat? It could be a sign of something more sinister.

Eating should be an enjoyable experience, but feeling the bloat afterwards can ruin the fun.

The tight, stretched and full feeling can be extremely uncomfortable and, usually, it’s a reminder to remember our good manners.

Chewing with your mouth open can result in excess air being swallowed, which leads to bloating.

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However, keeping the lips sealed while eating could still lead to a bloated stomach – what gives?

The deadly condition leading to bloating after meals could be stomach cancer.

According to Cancer Research UK, most stomach cancers start in the gland cells in the inner stomach lining – these are called adenocarcinomas.

Some cancers begin in the immune system cells in the stomach – known as non-Hodgkins lymphoma.

Cancer Net lists possible symptoms of stomach cancer. These are:

  • Indigestion or heartburn
  • Pain or discomfort in the abdomen
  • Nausea and vomiting, particularly vomiting up solid food shortly after eating
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sensation of food getting stuck in the throat while eating

It explained: “It is important to remember that these symptoms can also be caused by many other illnesses, such as a stomach virus or an ulcer.”

Advanced symptoms of stomach cancer may include weakness and fatigue, vomiting blood, blood in the stools, and unexplained weight loss.

Cancer Research UK stated that around 50 percent of stomach cancer cases occur in people aged 75 and older.

The charity added that this specific type of cancer tends to be more common in men than women.

Stomach cancer risk factors

An infection with Helicobacter pylori (H.pylori) causes around 40 percent of stomach cancers.

H.pylori is a bacteria that lives in the mucous of the lining of the stomach.

For most, it won’t cause any issues, but long-term infection may lead to inflammation and stomach ulcers.

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Another risk factor is smoking tobacco, with one in five cases of stomach cancer being related to the harmful habit.

The risk of stomach cancer increases in those who drink three or more units of alcohol each day.

Three units of alcohol is equivalent to one large glass of wine (ABV 12 percent).

It’s also the same as one pint of lager, beer or cider that has an ABV of 5.2 percent.

Cancer Research UK point out that the most common symptoms of stomach cancer include:

  • Difficulty swallowing (dysphagia)
  • Weight loss
  • Indigestion (dyspepsia) that doesn’t go away
  • Feeling full after eating small amounts
  • Feeling or being sick

If you’re concerned about any of your symptoms do speak to your GP – regardless of the coronavirus pandemic.

Your health is just as important now as it was before the start of the global crisis.

Medical professionals will still try to make time for people concerned about cancer.

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Dementia symptoms: Three warning signs in your sleep to watch out for

Dementia is a terrifying prospect because there is no known way to prevent it and it becomes increasingly destabilising for the person affected and their loved ones. Dementia is not a disease in itself but a collection of symptoms associated with brain damage. Spotting these symptoms can be tricky at first because they can be easily confused with general defects of ageing.

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It is imperative to stay alert to the warning signs of dementia because the sooner you receive a diagnosis, the sooner you can take steps to slow the onset.

There are a number of symptoms associated with sleep that may help you spot dementia.

In fact, according to Dementia UK, sleep disturbance is very common in dementia, with a significant percentage of people with dementia experiencing disturbed sleep at some point in their condition.

“This may involve people waking up during the night confused, sleeping during the day and being awake at night, waking too early as well as an increase in restlessness in the early evening or night making it difficult to get to sleep,” explains the health body.

Sleep can be particularly worrying for people with Lewy body dementia.

Lewy body dementia, also known as dementia with Lewy bodies, is the second most common type of progressive dementia after Alzheimer’s.

As Dementia UK explains, many people with Lewy body dementia experience REM sleep behaviour disorder, which can cause vivid nightmares and violent movements during the night, insomnia, excessive daytime sleeping and restless leg syndrome.

Understanding the link between dementia and sleep disturbances

According to Dementia UK, these problems arise as dementia can affect the part of the brain that controls our circadian rhythms, otherwise known as our body clock.

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“This leads to a disruption in the sleep/wake cycle and can be extremely difficult to manage both for the person but also their family carers,” explains the health body.

In addition, people with dementia may be experiencing other problems which can disrupt sleep, such as anxiety, depression or untreated pain.

“They may have decreased activity during the day or may struggle to relax if they are in an environment that feels unfamiliar,” says Dementia UK.

As the health site points out, this may be even more difficult during the coronavirus outbreak, as many usual routines and levels of activities have been reduced causing increased levels of distress for families.

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Why sleep is critical for someone with dementia and tips to aid the sleep-cycle

“Good sleep hygiene for the person with dementia and the carer can help to reduce difficulties such as avoiding caffeine, alcohol and heavy meals prior to bedtime,” explains Dementia UK.

What does the health site recommend?

Trying to maintain a regular routine and including some exercise and/or activity during the day is important as is reducing the frequency and length of any daytime napping if possible.

“A good environment for sleep is essential which includes making sure the temperature is not too hot or too cold and reducing noise or bright lights,” says the health body.

Other key tips

If the person with dementia needs to get up during the night to use the toilet, try using a low level light and keeping the light on in the bathroom so they are less likely to disturb others, says Dementia UK.

“Having a night light and a clock which indicates day and night may help orientate someone with dementia and reduce distress,” it adds.

Sleep and dementia risk

Certain sleep routines may raise your risk of developing dementia too, research has found.

According to a study conducted by the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, sleeping more than nine hours per night was linked to a decrease in memory and episodic learning, both risk factors of dementia.

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Parkinson’s disease: The lesser-known symptom which lies in your bowel movements

Parkinson’s disease gets progressively worse over time but picking up  the condition early on can help those affected to manage their symptoms and maintain  quality of life for as long as possible. Finding little clues help one to identify the condition in the early stages and constipation has been described as one of the lesser-known signs.

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Constipation is a common complication of Parkinson’s disease.

Many people who have Parkinson’s disease notice difficulties with constipation before they notice motor symptoms such as tremor or stiffness.

Constipation may appear years before other symptoms of Parkinson’s, and often appears before a diagnosis is made.

Signs and symptoms of constipation include having fewer than three bowel movements per week, passing hard, dry or lumpy stools, having to push or strain to have a bowel movement, painful bowel movements, feeling as though the rectum is blocked or a feeling as though the rectum is full, even after having a bowel movement.

Parkinson’s disease has a wide-ranging effect on the brain and the body, many of which researchers have yet to fully understand.

There are several factors attributing as to why constipation is prevalent with Parkinson’s.

People with Parkinson’s have a lack of dopamine which is a neurotransmitter involved in controlling muscle movement. 

The dopamine sends signals that helps the muscles to move.

People with Parkinson’s have a lack of this and therefore this makes it more difficult for the bowel muscles to push matter through the GI tract, leading to constipation.

Research suggests that Parkinson’s disease impacts the physiology and functioning of both the anus and rectum.

Researchers found that people who’d been recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s were more likely to have reduced anal sphincter pressure.

This causes anorectal changes which causes constipation for Parkinson’s sufferers.

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Poor muscle coordination is another cause of constipation.

Parkinson’s disease weakens the muscles of the bowels and pelvic floor.

That means that those muscles may be unable to contract, or they might relax instead of contracting.

Either of those malfunctions can make it difficult for a bowel movement to occur.

The NHS said: “It’s thought around one in 500 people are affected by Parkinson’s disease.

“Most people with Parkinson’s start to develop symptoms when they’re over 50, although around one in 20 people with the condition first experience symptoms when they’re under 40.

“Men are slightly more likely to get Parkinson’s disease than women.

“Although there’s currently no cure for Parkinson’s disease, treatments are available to help reduce the main symptoms and maintain quality of life for as long as possible.”

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Adele's Former Personal Trainer Shares His Top Quarantine Health and Fitness Tips

Adele created a huge buzz when she posted a photo of herself with a new look and to celebrate her 32nd birthday on May 5.

London-based personal trainer Pete Geracimo is one of the health pros behind Adele’s fitness journey, having worked with the 15-time Grammy winner ahead of her 2016 and 2017 world tours.

"She quit smoking, reduced her drinking, got rid of sugar and stopped eating processed foods," Geracimo recently told PEOPLE. "She made healthier food choices and is training regularly."

The London-based trainer believes that there are lots of small, significant steps that you can take to keep in shape within the confines of your own home.



Set Your Timer

When it comes to getting the most out of a workout it's best to do mini circuits of exercises within a time limit. It keeps us focused on the task, pushes us to work harder to beat the clock, and stops us from wasting time procrastinating or being distracted by things in the house.

You will actually get the most out of your workout and spend less time doing it. I put a certain someone through her paces with mini timed circuits and, yes, I got an earful for it but it worked like a charm!

Challenge Yourself

One positive about being in quarantine is it allows us to work discreetly on things we're weak at in the comfort of our own homes. So in many ways, it's the perfect time to set ourselves daily challenges where we do an exercise or movement or whatever form we wish and progress it every day.

For example, learning to do a push-up. Start with one. Then with each passing day, add an additional repetition. You can even split the task to be performed in the morning and afternoon. You'll be surprised how quickly this will build your confidence and momentum and the next thing you know, you'll be doing 30+ push-ups in a row. Challenge accepted and beaten!

The Power of One

Another bonus of lockdown is that it allows us time to focus on our eating lifestyle so that we can filter out bad habits. A great rule of thumb that I tell my clients is to just change one thing and to do it for two solid weeks before attempting to change anything else. The problem most people face is that they try and change too much too soon and end up failing miserably.

Here's a list I told a certain songstress to slowly get rid of … processed food, sugar, dairy and reduce alcohol intake. I think you all know how that turned out! So, don’t do it all at once. Make it a gradual elimination.

All in Proportion

The one thing that I’ve been enjoying about being in quarantine is that I've reignited my love for cooking easy, creative meals again: 15-minute prep time dishes that take no time at all and include a diversity of ingredients.

Imagine yourself building your meal … pick a protein, pick some veg and pick a carb.

Now we all know that a big problem with today’s ‘diets’ is portion control. Everything seems to be super-sized. So, if you can't be bothered to measure out your food portions, a trick that I use when sizing up my food is to use my hands. One hand equates to the amount of total protein. My other hand equates to the combined total portion of carbs and fat.

Of course, nothing is more accurate than actually measuring your food. However, I’m realistic and know that people can't be bothered to measure. So, by eyeballing the measure and then ONLY eating until you feel satisfied and NOT stuffed, you can roughly get a good idea of the right portion size.

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Stomach bloating – the lunch food swap to ‘beat bloating’ and avoid trapped wind

Stomach bloating affects most people at some point in their lifetime, according to the NHS. But you could avoid feeling bloated by simply adding more cucumber to your daily diet, it’s been claimed.

Bloating can make the stomach feel swollen, hard, and it’s generally quite uncomfortable.

Your bloating pain may be caused by eating certain gassy foods, or by eating too fast or too much.

But, one of the best and easiest ways to limit your risk of bloating is to start eating more cucumber, it’s been revealed.

Cucumber is a great lunchtime snack for anybody that usually feels bloated due to its high water content, according to TV doctor, Dr Oz.

It’s a natural diuretic with a low fibre content; both of which help to release pressure inside the gut.

Eating cucumber can stimulate urination, which will subsequently make people feel slimmer, he added.

Everyone should consider eating cucumber on a regular basis to avoid feeling puffy, which can have a knock-on effect on our overall health.

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“This feeling is not only physically uncomfortable but also may affect our mood and self-esteem,” said Dr Oz.

“We all will experience bloating from time to time. Often caused by natural processes during digestion, bloating is typically triggered by the accumulation of fluid or production of gas in the body.

“The occasional puff up can be reduced through some wise food choices and lifestyle changes.

“If you’re already bloated, cucumbers can make a great tummy-flattening snack. The high water and low fibre content of these tasty vegetables can cause increased urination, which in turn, makes you feel slimmer.”

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Meanwhile, you could also lower your chances of stomach bloating by eating more bananas, he added.

The potassium in banana counteracts the effect of sodium in the body.

Sodium causes the body to retain water, and may lead to bloating.

Maintaining a balance between sodium and potassium is crucial for water balance, he said.

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Your bloating pain could be caused by constipation, trapped wind, irritable bowel syndrome, or even by swallowing too much air.

You could swallow air by drinking through a straw, or by talking with your mouth full of food.

People are more likely to feel bloated after a big weekend – especially around the festive season.

Speak to a doctor if your bloating symptoms don’t go away, said the NHS. It could be caused by something more serious, including ovarian or bowel cancer.

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Active commuting could make children’s return to school better for their health and the planet

Children in the UK and across the globe have not been at school for some time, and this prolonged absence from the daily routine has given many of us a chance to think about what should happen when schools re-open. One way to address some of the ongoing problems of the pandemic while making a real difference to children’s lives and the health of the planet would be to adopt more “active commuting.” This is simply walking, cycling, wheeling or scootering to school, rather than being driven or taking public transport.

Not so long ago walking to school was the norm. Being active in this way is crucial if we want our children to be healthy in terms of fitness, wellbeing and levels of body fat. It also reduces dependence on fossil fuels and air pollution from traffic, benefiting our health and the environment. New studies have already shown that air quality has improved in cities around the world as pollution from cars has significantly reduced due to the pandemic.

But when it comes to the media and public policy, focus tends to fall on adults being active in their daily commute. For example, the UK government last week urged people to cycle and walk more to avoid public transport where possible if they had to return to work.

Overlooking youngsters has created an invisible crisis of inactivity in recent years. In many countries active commuting to school is in steady decline. Our research network of 49 countries recently found that only a minority of children walk, cycle or scooter to school, and things are getting worse rather than better.

Disappointing findings

For example, in Scotland—which is typical of most high-income countries—around half of primary school children do something active to get to school these days. This number falls steadily with age among secondary school pupils. At weekends, levels of physical activity are even lower, when journeys by car are even more likely.

These disappointing research findings persist despite a policy environment that is generally supportive of active commuting in Scotland. As in so many high-income countries, the problem stems from a combination of things: lack of policy implementation, a car-dependent culture and parents who are reluctant to allow their children to walk or cycle to school.

An active commute is a health-enhancing activity consisting of moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity (MVPA—activity which gets the heart rate up). School-age children and young people need at least 60 minutes of MVPA every day for health and wellbeing, but globally only a small minority achieve this modest recommendation.

Our research on over 6,000 children and adolescents who walk or cycle to school found that doing so provided around 17 minutes MVPA per day on average for primary pupils, and 13 minutes MVPA per day for secondary pupils. So it can make a real contribution to achieving that minimum of 60 minutes of MVPA per day.

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Dividends for health and environment

There are other important upsides to an active school commute. The MVPA accumulated will have educational benefits too because moderate to vigorous activity like this stimulates a number of cognitive processes that improve learning. This evidence alone should give schools and families a much greater incentive to encourage active commuting in their children.

There would also be indirect environmental benefits. More children enjoying an active commute more often would reduce car use and the associated carbon emissions. It would also stimulate their curiosity and lead to have a greater appreciation of the outdoor environment.

They would get to know their community and the geography of their area much better. Children need to know how to get around when they’re not relying on cars. This is important for their independence and helps build resilience and self-reliance.

Our research in the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance has identified examples of good practice that other countries can learn from. Japan has the highest rates of active young commuters among high-income countries, at around 90% of children. This has been achieved by 1953 legislation that requires children to attend local schools, which has made walking or cycling to school the cultural norm.

Momentum developed by the recent climate change protests and the COVID-19 pandemic have given us a golden opportunity to instill active healthy habits in our children. They might see walking, cycling and other ways of getting to school that don’t involve cars—or at the moment, public transport—as a useful way of turning their protests and concerns into practical daily action.

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Type 2 diabetes: The 60p vegetable shown to reduce blood sugar levels

Type 2 diabetes is a chronic condition that can be brought under control if you commit to a healthy lifestyle. That’s because the primary threat posed by type 2 diabetes – high blood sugar levels, is kept at bay by healthy living. Diet holds the key to regulating blood sugar levels and certain rules must be followed.

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As the NHS explains, there’s nothing you cannot eat if you have type 2 diabetes, but you’ll have to limit certain foods.

The main culprits to cut down on are starchy items, such as bread, pasta, rice, couscous, potatoes, breakfast cereals.

The reason for this is that starchy foods have a high carbohydrate content.

Carbohydrate is broken down into glucose relatively quickly and therefore has a more pronounced effect on blood sugar levels than either fat or protein.

This also means that some foods present hidden health risks for people with type 2 diabetes.

It is important to get your five a day fruit and veg, for example, but you should opt for non-starchy vegetables to minimise the risk of high blood sugar levels.

Non-starchy vegetables are those which contain smaller amounts of carbohydrate.

In fact, the American Diabetes Association recommends dedicating half your plate to non-starchy vegetables.

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One particular non-starchy vegetable that has been shown to lower blood sugar levels is broccoli.

According to a study published in Science Translational Medicine, broccoli contains an ingredient that can help those with type 2 diabetes control their blood sugar level.

A chemical found in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and sprouts called sulforaphane is thought to be responsible for the blood sugar-lowering effect.

To identify the suitable compound, researchers used computer models to identify gene expression changes linked with type 2 diabetes, and then sift through thousands of chemicals that might reverse these changes.

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The study found participants who took the equivalent of around five kilograms (11 pounds) of broccoli daily saw a reduction in their blood sugar levels of about 10 percent.

According to the study researchers, that reduction is sufficient to reduce complications in the eyes, kidneys and blood.

The finding is not surprising.

According to Diabetes.co.uk: “Vegetables are one of the most powerful defences against complications and a plentiful intake of non-starchy vegetables is highly recommended for all people with diabetes.”

How do I know if I have type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes can be tricky to spot because the symptoms do not necessarily make you feel unwell.

If symptoms do appear, you experience:

  • Urinating more than usual, particularly at night
  • Feeling thirsty all the time
  • Feeling very tired
  • Losing weight without trying to
  • Itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
  • Cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
  • Blurred vision

You should contact your GP immediately if you recognise these symptoms, advised the NHS.

“Early treatment reduces your risk of other health problems,” warns the health site.

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