Sue Marshall blogs about diabetes for Desang

UK Obesity barometer launched — we’re getting fatter

February 7, 2011
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The UK Obesity Barometer shows that around 1.2 million people in the UK moved into the ‘overweight’ or ‘obese’ category over the festive season* pushing levels to a new high. The LighterLife UK Obesity Barometer shows that although overweight or obese averages decreased in some regions, overall, the nation has piled on the pounds over the last few weeks.

Whilst over one third of people questioned before the holidays in the UK were worried about putting on a few pounds over the festive season, the LighterLife UK Obesity Barometer shows that, in reality, over a million people have piled on enough weight to slip into the overweight or obese categories (Overweight Body Mass Index (BMI) = 25–29.9, Obese BMI = 30+).

The LighterLife UK Obesity Barometer has been developed with the National Obesity Forum to track the changing rates of obesity by region across the UK throughout 2011.

Dr David Haslam, chair of the National Obesity Forum, said: “We all know obesity rates are rising so we are pleased to support the LighterLife UK Obesity Barometer as a way of tracking obesity levels and raising awareness in the UK.  People often put on weight at Christmas time, however it will be interesting to see how many can shift the excess pounds in the next few weeks and months. For those who have a BMI of 25 or more, they are at increased risk of health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, so it’s important that the weight gained is lost. The barometer will prove invaluable to track the weight of the nation at both a regional and national level.”

The barometer will highlight weight across the regions in the UK and people will be able to see how this fluctuates over this coming year.  Tips and advice for those worried about their weight are also provided with links to helpful advice on the LighterLife website.


Researchers Explore Potential Replacement for Insulin

April 12, 2010
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More research into how the weight loss hormone leptin works with insulin for better blood sugar control…

New research suggests that multiple daily insulin injections may one day be a thing of the past for people with Type 1 diabetes, according to a recent article published by BusinessWeek.

Researchers experimenting on mice say that the weight loss hormone leptin may one day replace or complement insulin shots in helping people with Type 1 diabetes maintain better blood sugar control. Previous research suggested the hormone may help people with Type 2 diabetes.

People with Type 1 diabetes do not produce insulin, the hormone that helps control the level of sugar in the blood, and therefore must inject the hormone into their body on a regular basis. People with Type 2 diabetes produce insulin, but their body does not use it efficiently. Some people can control their Type 2 diabetes through diet and exercise, but most need to take a pill or even insulin injections to regulate the sugar in their blood.

For this study, researchers treated Type 1 diabetic mice with insulin, leptin or a combination of the two hormones. What they found was that those treated with leptin or the combination of the two hormones showed better blood sugar control, lower cholesterol and lower body fat.  Researchers say the next step is human trials to see if the treatment works in humans.

via: Researchers Explore Potential Replacement for Insulin

Big Fat America –

January 11, 2010
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This is just a part of a very good article by Michael Maiello — editor of Markets and Intelligent Investing at Forbes: “What we really need, and the food industry hates this, is more disclosure. By all means use pesticides, hormones, antibiotics and genetic modifications, just tell me you’re doing it and I’ll decide on a case-by-case basis what I think is appropriate. The food industry has fought labeling at every turn, arguing, oddly, that if it is forced to say that a product is the result of genetic modifications that people will think there’s something wrong with it. But some people already think there’s something wrong, and it’s not right to slip them products they don’t want to eat.”

via Big Fat America –

Livwell’s gluten-free breads, cakes and pastrys

December 15, 2009
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Livwell’s Circle Rolls (Bagels), Teardrop Flat Breads (Naan), Toasting Bread Buns (English Muffins) and Square Dinner Rolls (Ciabatta) have all been awarded prescription status and are now available to order from pharmacies nationwide.

Livwell is one of the leading suppliers of tasty gluten free bread, cakes and pastry products and already enjoys prescription status for its range of gluten, wheat and milk free sliced white and brown bread, white rolls, baguettes and flat breads.

Made from high quality ingredients to the exacting standards that have been Livwell’s hallmark for generations, all of the new products are guaranteed free from gluten and offer a delicious alternative to bread for sandwiches, snacks and as meal accompaniments.

Livwell’s Commercial Director, Paddy Cronin says “Livwell’s growing range of prescription lines demonstrates our commitment to providing coeliacs with tasty and wholesome food gluten free food whilst our new welcome pack is a valuable source of information to help them to manage their disease and to make informed choices.”

The PIP codes for the products are as follows and they can be ordered from pharmacies nationwide;

Circle Rolls PIP code 335-4750

Tear Drop Flat Breads PIP code 339-8591

Toasting Breads Buns PIP code 335-4735

Square Dinner Rolls PIP code 351-8552

Livwell also produces an extensive range of gluten, wheat and milk free products including cakes, muffins, scones and pancakes. They are available from selected retailers and by visiting All of Livwell’s products are guaranteed free from Codex wheat and contain less than 20ppm of gluten


December 1, 2009
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A new website based around the glycaemic index links steadier blood sugars to weight loss, but irrespective of the need to lose weight using knowledge of teh GI in anyone’s every day diet is of great benefit, especially if they have diabetes as the GI was initially investigated as a means to help diabetics avoid highs and lows of blood sugars.

“By simply switching from high GL foods to more natural, less refined low GL foods you can steadily shed unwanted excess weight, increase your energy and importantly help balance your moods. This is due to the blood sugar balancing effects of eating low GL foods, which also make it an ideal plan for diabetics.”


2 Your Health:Blood test prevents neuropathy | WCBD

November 19, 2009
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Looks like we diabetics may need to start keeping an eye on our triglyceride levels as well as our blood sugar levels: High levels of glucose and/or poor control over glucose levels have long been thought to contribute to an increased risk for peripheral neuropathy. Now, investigators say triglycerides may also play a role.

via 2 Your Health:Blood test prevents neuropathy | WCBD.

November 19, 2009
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This is less extreme than actually having weight loss surgery, and uses the mind to make magical weight-loss happen. It could be the ideal solution for some people with weight issues, or at least be part of the plan.

The development of the Gastric mind Band (GmB) therapy originated from a brief conversation Martin Shirran had with a client at Elite who had previously attended the clinic for therapy to stop smoking, who said, “I just know that if I had a Gastric Band fitted like my neighbour the weight would drop off me.”


Probiotics and health

November 18, 2009
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Helpful publication from the British Nutrition Foundation: The health effects of probiotics have been applauded as ‘miraculous’ one minute and labelled with ‘misleading health claims’ in another. It is no wonder that there is widespread confusion amongst consumers. To help address this confusion, the British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) has published a scientific review – Probiotics and health: a review of the evidence – to draw together complex probiotic research.

via Probiotics and health.

The Cooking Academy — back to basics

November 16, 2009
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The number of meals cooked in a family home has dropped dramatically; nearly 50% of us used to prepare at least one home cooked meal a day, whereas now only 15% prepare a meal a day for their family. The explanation for this drop can be contributed to society’s growing obsession with time as well as the availability of prepared family meals.


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