If current trends hold, 1 in 5 Americans will have diabetes by 2025 — and 1 in 3 by about a generation after that.
So says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which rightly calls the figures “alarming.” But when you think about our lifestyles — too often sedentary, with unhealthy diets — should we really be that surprised?
“We simply cannot sustain this trajectory,” says the agency’s Dr. Ann Allbright.
Certainly genes also play a role in explaining why 29.1 million Americans already suffer from the disease. It’s characterized by the body’s inability to produce, or properly use, the hormone insulin that’s needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into energy.
But when it comes to those lifestyle issues — which, unlike genes, we can do something about — perhaps the best advice to limit the growing epidemic of diabetes comes from Dennis Marchiori, DC, PhD, current president of the Association of Chiropractic Colleges: “Simply put, when you live healthier, you have a better chance of managing your blood sugar.”
The “DC” stands for doctor of chiropractic. And today’s chiropractors, with a minimum of seven years of education and clinical training, are helping to address the roots of lifestyle-acquired Type II Diabetes through their emphasis on healthy living and natural lifestyles. They’re also well-trained in nutrition, enabling them to construct individualized health regimens for patients that include:
- Eating well-balanced meals that are low in processed sugar.
- Consuming a variety of fiber-rich foods like fruit, vegetables and whole grains.
- Weight management.
“Type II Diabetes is a preventable disease, and choosing a healthy lifestyle is critical,” says the not-for-profit Foundation for Chiropractic Progress’ Gerard Clum, DC.
Of course, especially if you’re new to exercise, a chiropractor’s skill in manual care will also come in handy.
For more information or to find a chiropractor in your area, visit www.F4CP.org/findadoctor.