Diabetes is fast set to become a major health problem with millions of people across the World who will get this problem. It was previously thought to be genetic in nature. This was especially thought to be true in USA, India, South Asia and some Mediterranean countries. But Diabetes is no longer restricted to those who have a genetic predisposition. It is now a full-fledged ‘lifestyle disease’ and can happen to anyone even if you do not have it in your genes. What this means is that even though one does not have a genetic tendency, you can easily get it if you do not take care of your health, lifestyle, exercise and eating habits. Diabetes was diagnosed and understood in ancient India and was known as ‘madhumeha’ in ancient Indian texts. It affected a relatively smaller proportion of the population. However, in today’s times, it has already impacted millions of people and millions more are at risk. It is estimated that over the next two or three decades, close to ten percent or more of the World’s population will have Diabetes.
Children are also no longer immune to this lifestyle disease. Now we have many children below the age of thirteen who get Type 2 Diabetes or lifestyle related diabetes. There are many babies born with diabetes which is non-genetic or non -Type A diabetes. This has now been linked to lifestyle causes of the mother. Since this is one of the major health challenges of our times, let us look at the causes of Diabetes
Causes of Diabetes
There is a misconception that diabetes is linked to your weight or obesity. Obesity is a trigger for diabetes. However, diabetes is not linked to your weight at all. Even thin people can and do get diabetes. Apart from genetics and weight gain, there are many reasons for diabetes. Some of them have been listed below:
- Incorrect eating and sleeping habits and overeating. Eating or drinking the wrong things at the wrong times and eating a lot of quantity is a problem.
- Lack of physical activity and exercise of some form. Most of our lives are sedentary which causes glucose imbalances in the blood.
- Air pollution is now established as a major cause which can cause metabolic changes and cause diabetes. This is something we cannot do anything about but we can at least make sure we take care of the other causes and minimize the impact of pollution.
- Pollutants and hormones in foods, especially in processed non-vegetarian foods and vegetables grown using chemicals. Most of the food across the World is only prepared with pesticides, hormones, chemicals and preservatives. This causes diabetes.
- Combining certain food groups causes diabetes. A prime example is combining beef or red meat with dairy products, milk or yogurt. We also mix fruits with vegetables or have fruits with meals. This also can lead to diabetes.
- Stress is a major game changer and can cause blood sugar imbalances. In fact, this is one of the main causes for glucose / insulin ratio imbalances leading to chronic and lifetime diabetes.
- Alcohol even in moderation and substance abuse cause insulin imbalances. There are lobbies which ‘tom tom’ the benefits of alcohol. They conveniently forget that alcohol causes diabetes and damages the liver as well as the isle of Langerhans which produce insulin.
Why Worry About Diabetes
Diabetes by itself is not a disease in that sense. It is actually a symptom that the there is an imbalance created in the body. There is something which has gone wrong and we need to correct it. If we do not take action to change our lifestyles or eating habits, then a lot of other diseases can occur. Diabetes is the gateway to ill health. Therefore, controlling your sugar or correcting the Insulin – glucose imbalance is important. In fact, it has been found that people who become aware that they have diabetes, start improving their health and lifestyle. The problem is that at least half of all people who have diabetes (estimates) do not know that they have it, as they are not tested.
Diabetes Is Curable or Reversible
Till now the popular belief was that once you get diabetes, it remains with you forever. However, this is not the case. There are many interventions available in conjunction with your regular medications that help to correct or improve diabetes. Three of the most important interventions are changing food habits, Yoga and stress management.
In many cases, effective management of the condition ensures there is no deterioration of health at all and in fact, many diabetics are healthier than even non-diabetics. This is because they take corrective action and become more disciplined. A lot of diabetics do not get cardiac problems or cholesterol as they become aware earlier on and take good care of themselves.
Yoga and Diabetes Research
There has been a large amount of research done now on Yoga and its impact on Diabetes. There have been multiple studies done in India which show that most diabetics manage to reduce their blood sugar in just six months of regular practice. Most of them reduce blood sugar by half and more than a third reach normal sugar levels. The HBA1C tests become normal and urine sugar also goes down or disappears. This implies that severe diabetics are able to go off insulin or reduce their medication by half or more. Yoga also helps other co-morbid conditions like high blood pressure, stress and cholesterol. So if these also reduce or disappear, diabetes starts reducing or also gets totally reversed.
There has been a recent cohort study concluded by Jaslok Hospital in Mumbai with astounding results. Persons with borderline diabetes or pre-diabetics reverted to normal or did not deteriorate for as long as ten to fifteen years; without any medication! They were only taken through a Yoga program and had to practice it regularly. Some of them were just advised some herbs or meditation and none of them were given insulin. None of these patients developed heart or cholesterol problems. This clearly proves the efficacy of Yoga in prevention and reversal of diabetes.
All of this clearly underscores the importance of Yoga for Diabetes. There are many teachers who give different asanas and techniques which one can practice for diabetes. Each one of them claims that their practices are the best. However, there are two practices derived from the Upanishads and from traditional Hatha Yoga scriptures which provide astounding results for diabetes and all other cardio metabolic diseases also. Both of these techniques and be viewed and followed at the links given below:
Of course you need to practice a proper Yoga for Diabetes program for a few months. If you like the videos above, then you may opt for the online yoga for diabetes program given on the link below, to take charge of your sugar levels.