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Montana Integrative Medicine :: Bozeman, MT

Obesity and Diabetes

Obesity is a dangerous metabolic conditions that result in increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, degenerative joint disease, and premature death. Obesity in the United States has increased at "an epidemic rate" over the last twenty years. The percentage of U.S. adults classified as overweight increased from 56% in 1994 to 65% in 2002, and obesity increased from 23% to 30% during this same time period. Approximately 16% of children and adolescents six to nineteen years old were overweight in 2002.

Obesity is frequently accompanied by diabetes. Diabetes Mellitus (diabetes) is a chronic condition that affects over 19 million Americans. Type 2 diabetes is the most prevalent form, affecting approximately 17 million individuals. The incidence of type 2 diabetes is growing with a 49% increase in diagnoses for this condition seen between 1990 and 2000. Type 2 diabetes used to be called Adult-onset Diabetes and Non-Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus. New evidence has made these terms obsolete as they are no longer adequately descriptive. This is because the disease is no longer primarily limited to adults, with incidence of type 2 diabetes in children skyrocketing.  Additionally, if the condition is not controlled, insulin administration is required in the later stages of disease management. Type 2 diabetes is thought to be preceded by a condition known as Insulin Resistance Syndrome or Metabolic Syndrome. This is a pre-diabetic state that may involve a decrease in the ability of cells to respond to insulin (insulin resistance), a decrease in HDL cholesterol and an increase in LDL cholesterol, obesity and high blood pressure.

Case: Obesity / Pre-Diabetes / Fatigue

This is the case of a 55 year old man who had been struggling for years spending tens of thousands of dollars on personal trainers and medical testing to improve his health. However, his health continued to deteriorate. He rated his energy at 1 out of 10 (10 being best), and complained of being extremely tired "all the time." He wanted to improve his health, but was too fatigued to exercise. His MetaCT 400 biochemical test panel revealed extremely elevated insulin and fasting blood sugar, inability to produce energy due deficiencies in nutrients required to burn fats and sugars for energy, a raging intestinal fungal infection (candidiasis), and allergies to 18 different common foods such as garlic, eggs, dairy, and almonds. Eating foods to which people are allergic causes a chronic inflammation in the gut that can decrease the ability to digest and absorb nutrients, predispose someone to intestinal infections, cause malnutrition and set someone up for long-term, degenerative diseases such as diabetes and obesity.

Elevated insulin, indicating insulin resistance and diabetes (additionally, his fasting blood sugar was elevated at 134 (normal is 65-110)
Elevated inflammatory markers, risk factors for blood clots (e.g., stroke) and heart disease
Severe vitamin D deficiency, increasing this person's risk for colon cancer
Deficiency in anti-inflammatory polyunsaturated fatty acid, DHA
Inability to burn fat for energy, indicating functional carnitine and vitamin B2 deficiencies
Inability to burn carbohydrates (sugars) for energy, indicating functional deficiencies of vitamins B1, B3 lipoic acid, CoQ10 and the mineral chromium
Inability to utilize branched chain amino acids--functional vitamins B1, B2 and B3 deficiency
Intestinal Fungal Dysbiosis (Candidiasis)
Food Allergies (IgG 90-Antigen Test)

This gentleman was placed on a aggressive plan of dietary modification, exercise and dietary supplements to help correct his biochemical abnormalities, decrease his weight and restore his health. He worked with a nutritionist and exercised regularly. After three months a retest of his fasting insulin showed that it had decreased by 50% (see below) and he had also decreased his waistline by two pant sizes.

Over time, this person will likely be able to reintroduce some of the foods to which he was allergic, but only after following a gut restoration program intended to rid the intestines of the fungal overgrowth, decrease the inflammation and heal and cells lining the intestinal tract. However, the take home message here is that through a simple, customized approach to healthcare based on testing the underlying biochemical abnormalities creating the disease, it's quite easy to improve one's health. What people need first, however, are the data to create the plan, which are provided through testing.