Last week the government decided to stop the Diabetes Get Checked programme, as it was found to be ineffective, since it made little difference to reducing blood sugar levels in people with Type 2 Diabetes. This programme cost New Zealand 8 million dollars last year and 48 million in total since it began 10 years ago.
Many naturopaths believe the failure of the program was due to a lack of recognition of the importance of making strict dietary and lifestyle changes. Naturopaths consider diet to be of fundamental importance to all aspects of health, people with Type 2 diabetes have a greater need than most to pay strict attention to diet.
The official government guidelines in New Zealand regarding diet for weight loss are extremely vague. The guidelines in a inoffensive, but ineffective way encourage rather than give clear instructions on changes. For example reduce as much as possible and try to avoid ....takeaways, fast foods ..... biscuits, cake...... sugary drinks etc
Naturopaths on the other hand believe these foods to be detrimental to health and the naturopathic message is clear - avoid these foods tor the best possible health.
In my naturopathic practice I have found that by making strict dietary changes, and ensuring nutrients important to support stabile blood sugar levels are available, and making lifestyle changes, the blood sugar levels in people with type 2 Diabetes improve.
It is in my opinion, not at all surprising that obesity, and type 2 diabetes are increasing when people are given such vague advice. It is like saying to someone with lung cancer try to reduce smoking as much as possible although it could be argued that this is good advice, it does not help the person with lung cancer understand that smoking causes and exacerbates cancer. A direct focused message such as stop smoking completely gives the person a far greater prognosis.
People with Type 2 diabetes and obesity need that sort of clear message too.
Contact Jaine Kirtley for more information, references and to book your consultation.
2. Ministry of Health CTRU: Clinical Guidelines for Weight Management in New Zealand Adults. In. Edited by Ministry of Health N. Wellington, New Zealand: Ministry of Health; 2009.http://www.moh.govt.nz/moh.nsf/indexmh/clinical-guidelines-for-weight-management-in-nz-adults