An Unnatural Progression
A look into the link between Diabetes and Heart Disease
Diabetes and heart disease are two of the most prevalent health concerns facing your health today. Your cultural habits play a big role in the development of these two diseases. If you consume large amounts of carbohydrate in your diet, you are continuing to burden your cardiovascular system.
The mechanism of how excess amounts of sugar affect your blood vessels in an important concept to understand. When you eat carbohydrate (this ranges from whole grains to refined table sugar), your body breaks it down into simple glucose. Once the glucose enters the blood stream, the pancreas releases insulin into the blood. Your insulin is the “key” that can unlock the “door” of the cell in order for the glucose to enter. If you consume too much carbohydrate, over time the pancreas cannot keep up with the demand of producing high amounts of insulin to remove glucose from the blood. It eventually will begin to produce inadequate amounts of insulin and your glucose will become “locked” in the blood stream. This eventually leads to chronic inflammation and irritation of the cardiovascular system. The result is the development of heart disease (high blood pressure, high cholesterol, eventual heart attack).
Like most health concerns, the eventual development of diabetes and heart disease follows a progression of physiologic adaptation. In order to properly treat these diseases, decreasing the reliance on pharmaceutical drugs and switching the approach to allowing the body to recreate a normal physiologic balance on its own is what will create long term health change for people.
Using specific health promoting treatments, I work with my patients to begin changing these maladaptive patterns. It is a holistic approach that addresses all aspects of a person’s health and does not simply focus on suppressing signs and symptoms while trying to play “catch-up” with the bodies ever changing physiology.
While obesity has become the number one cause of preventable disease, our society continues to struggle to understand why it is important to take a preventative approach to these types of diseases. As a naturopathic physician I work to provide the education to the patient and the tools to the body, in order for true healing to occur.
Dr. Jesse I. Buttler
Northwest Natural Medicine, LLC
A Primary Care Approach to Sustainable Health