Diabetes Basics Part 30

frankenstein

The next question is someone telling us that their blood sugar has been rising lately and their doctor now wants them to take medication.  First of all, if one is a diabetic, medication is often prescribed at the outset, although some do wait and watch a bit, if one is borderline.

Dr. Hite explains that our pancreas has been secreting excess insulin to control our blood sugar for a long time to compensate for insulin resistance, which is true, the problem is that he sees this as a good thing, when in fact this is what causes our diabetes, the insulin resistance resulting from this long term exposure to excessive insulin levels.

He then tells us that the amount we produce is no longer sufficient to open the key to the door to let in enough glucose, so we need help doing more of that.  The real problem though is that our blood is being flooded by more and more glucose, and this is well known, but not so much to him it seems.

We’ve studied this and discovered that all the excess glucose in our blood is from this excess secretion, which means that our cells do fine with an appropriate amount, an amount a non diabetic would have if not for this excessive glucose being added inappropriately, and this also shows that this is not a matter of glucose not getting into our cells, it’s a matter of not enough excess glucose getting into our cells, which we may not even want.

The cells sure don’t want it, and that’s why they are resisting it.  In any case, the only sensible approach to this problem would be to look to reduce the amount of excess glucose being put into our blood, this isn’t just the main problem, it’s the only problem.

If we just ignore the problem, this is just going to make us worse over time, because we then see escalating amounts of this excess glucose being secreted as the normal restraints to this, which is insulin sensitivity in our pancreas and liver, continue to deteriorate over time, and it is very clear that this is exactly what happens with conventional treatment.

So now that we understand what we need to be doing, we can look at his take on the various medications that are used.  He starts with the oral insulin secretagogues, pills that cause our beta cells to secrete even more insulin.

We may wonder though, aren’t they secreting too much insulin already?  Who cares.  How high do they raise our insulin levels to?  No matter.  It’s all about looking to cram more glucose into our cells and damn the torpedoes.

I looked at a study recently that measured just how high these drugs raise our insulin, and with just a low dose, fasting insulin levels were 25 to 30 times higher than what is accepted as healthy, and 5  times higher than what we consider to be quite unhealthy and in serous need of being remedied.

So in other words, this isn’t just the disease of hyperinsulinemia, it’s 5 times or more higher than that, extreme hyperinsulinemia.  It isn’t that this class of medication just raises insulin, they keep it high all the time, in a magnitude that we normally only see during an after meal insulin spike.

So this does reduce blood sugar for a time, but how does this do beyond the short term?  Well, predictably, it makes us worse, it makes insulin resistance worse in particular, it makes managing our blood sugar more difficult, it simply fails.  No matter though, it works for a time, here’s a prescription for this and we can pat you on the back for a while until the crap hits the fan and then we can say sorry we tried, we’re doing our best for you, let’s try something else.

Now if someone’s insulin levels were actually low, bringing them up would be a fine idea, and even perhaps medically necessary.  Too low is no good, but too high is no good as well.  The goal with hormones always needs to be to seek to normalize their levels, and jacking them up with no regard to either their starting levels nor how high they may go is utter malpractice.

Dr. Hite mentions that one concern about this class of medication is hypoglycemia, but an even bigger concern is hyperinsulinemia, and that part comes with a prize every time.

He then mentions metformin, which is the least harmful of the anti diabetic medications, and does work to increase AMPK, a desirable characteristic, as low AMPK is a factor in the excess glucose production that we are speaking about, the only sensible target here.

Metformin has been shown to reduce excess glucose from the liver by 33%.  It also causes a reduction in insulin levels, also a good thing.  The issue with this med is that it does produce a number of undesirable side effects, and also elevates lactic acid levels, which are very rarely deadly but this is simply not a desirable thing to have.  There are several natural medicines that you can take instead of this, which have the same benefits but don’t come with the nasty side effects, like berberine for instance.

Next, we look at a class of meds known as TZDs, which work by activating something called PPAR, which is a good idea in itself, but this stuff ends up raising this way too much, in a dangerous way actually.  The target here isn’t PPAR restoration, it’s blood sugar lowering, and who cares if we kill people by raising it too much, as long as we don’t kill too many.

However, it is felt that some TZDs do kill too many, although they all do really, too many people die of heart attacks with one, too many people get cancer with another, and way too many people get fat with this stuff too, because it does work quite well in jamming too much glucose into cells, which gets stored as fat.

There is no safe formulation of this stuff and taking it is simply a terrible idea, and even medication loving Dr. Hite offers some caution here in taking it.

The next class he discusses is the incretins, which include GLP-1 agonists which are injected, and DPP-4 inhibitors, which come in pill form,and raises GLP-1 indirectly.  GLP-1 is a hormone that plays a significant role in blood sugar regulation and one that is low in type 2’s.  So raising it surely seems like a good idea.

However, with these medications, we seek to raise it to levels many times normal, and hormones aren’t to be messed with in such a way  So you end up with hormonal resistance in fairly short order, where they just stop working, and along the way this creates mutations in the pancreas among other things, and in an autopsy, it was discovered that all the patients had pancreatic tumors that were on incretins, including those only on it for a short duration.

It also creates mutant cells in the pancreas that are both beta and alpha.  This is the way Dr. Frankenstein may have approached treating diabetes actually, and it does give us a pancreas worthy of him.

We’ll move on to discussing injecting insulin in the next article.

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