Welcome to the tenth edition of Viewpoints, our monthly
Once an almost homespun homily, embroidered, framed and hanging in a cozy
cottage, “count your blessings” has been tattooed indelibly in our minds by a
giant wave and its
deadly wake. Our desire to provide real, tangible help to those affected has
been channeled, for the most part, into sending funds for use by professional
aid organizations, together with our collective compassion – conveying a strong
message of hope.
While we cannot set out to right all wrongs and change the world, we can embrace
the notion of counting our blessings within the context of our own lives. Some
days it seems almost impossible to feel grateful, especially when, on a rainy
Monday morning, a lovely dream is shattered by the 6 a.m. alarm. No question –
it’s a drag, a disappointment, a bummer.
But even in the most seemingly mundane of lives, spots of joy and hints of
happiness are around. It could be finding a perfectly ripe banana in the café at
work, a smile from a stranger or acknowledging a full 24-hours without your bad
knee aching. Small pleasures, you may say, but they add up to an overall sense
Research indicates that we can boost our levels of happiness by taking note of
the three to five things that have made us feel thankful lately. You can take
stock at night before sleep, on a sticky note on your mirror or more formally in
a “gratitude journal”. The benefits are immediate but can be cumulative, if you
make a practice of counting your blessings.
We at Insulite Laboratories are thankful that you’ve found us and that we’re in
the position to influence your heath and well being. That counts for a lot.
“You haven’t failed until you quit trying.”
Don’t be downhearted if success doesn’t come at first.
Keep at it!
Insulin Resistance Links
“Syndrome W” with
Syndrome X and Type 2 Diabetes
A New York Medical College doctor has coined the term “Syndrome W” to describe
Insulin Resistance-related conditions that can lead to the better-known
Cardiovascular Disease disorder called Syndrome X (Metabolic Syndrome). Women
who suffer from PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) seem particularly vulnerable
to “Syndrome W”, which may also be the precursor to Type 2 Diabetes.
Endocrinologist Harriet Mogul has screened hundreds of women since the college
started its Menopause Health Program in 1994. She quickly began noticing a
cluster of symptoms in a certain type of patient who came in to be evaluated for
hormone replacement therapy (HRT).
“Among these patients – a narrow range of health-conscious, non-smoking,
physically active women approaching menopause – there were many complaints of
weight gain, usually around the waist, after years at a constant weight,” said
“When we began seeing these symptoms clustered together with elevated blood
pressure and insulin levels, we decided there was a pattern. Women with the
syndrome also report a detectable increase in appetite, food cravings and
inability to lose weight, despite exercise and attempts to diet.”
Dr. Mogul was sure the women were suffering from Insulin Resistance. She called
their weight gain symptoms “Syndrome W” because their condition would lead,
alphabetically and medically, to Syndrome X, a cluster of disorders also called
Metabolic Syndrome, which includes high blood pressure and abnormalities in
certain blood fats and blood-clotting factors, resulting in Cardiovascular
Insulin Resistance occurs when the body has too few insulin receptor sites or
“doorways” on the cell walls to allow carbohydrates that have been broken down
into blood sugar, or glucose, to pass through and be converted to energy.
Insulin acts as “a key in a lock”, allowing blood sugar to enter through the
cell wall. It also makes sure there’s never too much sugar in the blood stream
by storing excess glucose in the liver and fat cells and shuttling just the
right amount needed for energy at any moment to various cells of the body.
Our bodies become Insulin Resistant when our cells no longer “answer the door”
to insulin. Obesity is the main factor for triggering the change but heredity
also plays a role and even a thin person can become Insulin Resistant.
When glucose is locked out of Insulin Resistant cells, it has nowhere to go and
builds up in the blood stream. The pancreas releases yet more insulin to try to
compensate and, for a while, that works to force glucose through the cell's wall.
Someone with Insulin Resistance can maintain normal blood glucose levels but
requires insulin levels as much as 40% above normal, which can cause the cluster
of significant cardiovascular diseases known as Syndrome X.
In at least a portion of the estimated 60-80 million Americans who are currently
Insulin Resistant, the pancreas will eventually lose its fight to maintain
balanced levels of glucose and insulin, allowing the glucose level to begin
creeping upwards. Untreated, 10% of those who started out simply suffering from
Insulin Resistance are likely to develop Type 2 Diabetes.
It’s only then that people realize they have a problem, which is why Insulin
Resistance has been called a “silent killer” because its symptoms have gone
largely unrecognized until recently.
A 1999 study by researchers at Washington University in St. Louis reaffirmed
what Dr. Mogul had been observing in her female patients; namely that a tendency
to accumulate fat at the midriff, creating a so-called apple-shaped body, is a
strong marker for Insulin Resistance.
Dr. Mogul is still studying the reason why the Insulin Resistance underlying
“Syndrome W” begins in mid-life in her patients. “There seems to be a switch
that goes off at 40,” she said. “The genes do change and there are some major
metabolic changes at 40.”
Certain groups of women seem particularly vulnerable: “a very high percentage of
Asian, Middle Eastern and Hispanic women … also women who have had PCOS
(Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) … and Ashkenazi women.”
Keeping overall weight down is the best way to avoid “Syndrome W”, according to
Dr. Mogul. “Watch the calories and watch the carbohydrates. And don’t make the
mistake that low-fat means low-calories,” she said.
Click here to read about a System that is scientifically designed to reverse Insulin Resistance and prevent the disorders it can cause.
EXERCISE MAY PROTECT AGAINST HEART DISEASE
CAUSED BY ELEVATED CRP
Regular exercise may offer a new life-saving
benefit. Researchers have discovered that physical fitness could have an
anti-inflammatory effect that protects against heart attacks.
A study* compared the level of C-reactive protein (CRP) in 135 women from three
different ethnic groups. CRP is a protein found in the blood and is released by
the body in response to infection and injury. An elevated CRP level indicates
inflammation in and around the arteries leading to the heart and is associated
with a two to five-fold increase in the risk of heart attack.
Researchers also discovered significantly lower levels of CRP among the most fit
Caucasian and Native American women compared to less-fit members of their
respective racial groups. But the African-American women in the third group
failed to show the same strong correlation. Authors of the report say an
extensive long term study is now needed to look at the effects of how activity
levels influence CRP in different racial groups and whether the overall risk of
Cardiovascular Disease does change as a result of exercise.
Physical fitness was determined by testing women on a treadmill, with speed and
angle of elevation increased every two minutes. The women, who continued until
they reached their point of exhaustion, were divided into three levels of
fitness – low, moderate and high.
Levels of CRP, based on blood samples, were assessed by race, fitness, obesity
and waist size. The highest levels were found in African-Americans, followed by
Native Americans and then Caucasians. Women with low fitness in the Native
American and Caucasian groups had significantly higher CRP levels than those in
their own moderate and high fitness racial classifications.
CRP was also substantially elevated in women with the highest body mass index
(BMI), which assesses body weight relative to height. People with a BMI ranging
from 18.5-24.9 are healthy, from 25.0-29.9 are overweight and 30.0 and greater
are considered obese. Average CRP in women with a healthy BMI was close to half
that of overweight women. Obese women had more than twice the CRP level of the
People with elevated CRP levels should begin regular exercise with guidance from
their physicians, said Dr. Michael J. LaMonte, Director of Exercise Testing and
Research at the LDS Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah, and one of the study
*Cross-Cultural Activity Participation Study: a collaborative study by the LDS Hospital, Utah, the University of South Carolina and the University of North Carolina.
DR. MARY'S VIEW:
“Exercise moderately to help prevent
to Cardiovascular Disease.”
study confirms what we at Insulite Laboratories have been advocating for years,
namely that exercise reduces the risk of future disease and injury to the
cardiovascular system. The research is additional confirmation that having a
lower BMI correlates to having lower CRP. We are now able to prove with solid
science what we know from looking around us – being leaner and fitter increases
your cardiovascular health.
Several studies have even suggested that CRP is a more sensitive indicator
than cholesterol testing for the predictive value of Cardiovascular Disease. An
article in the New England Journal of Medicine on November 14, 2004 confirmed
that, at least in women, an elevated blood level of CRP is strongly predictive
of future cardiovascular events such as heart attack and stroke.
We strongly urge our customers - and everyone - to exercise moderately to help
prevent the progression to Cardiovascular Disease. This progression happens
slowly over decades but it can be reversed much faster with appropriately
healthy lifestyle changes.
If your physician cannot provide guidance for your exercise regime, consider
contacting a fitness club in your area. Most have personal trainers on staff
that are skilled at tailoring a program to meet your specific needs.
Dr. Mary Shackelton, MPH ND, is the Medical Director of Insulite Laboratories.
|WEIGHT LOSS: MYTH OR FACT?
Myth: Starches are fattening and should be limited when trying to
Starch is an important source of energy for your body. Foods that are rich in
starch (also called complex carbohydrates) include potatoes, rice, bread and
beans, together with some vegetables like squash, yams, sweet potatoes, turnips,
beets and carrots.
In fact, food high in starch can be low in fat and calories. But their fat and
calorie content may lead to weight gain when they are either eaten in large
amounts or made with rich sauces, oils or other high-fat toppings like butter,
sour cream and mayonnaise.
Try to avoid high-fat toppings and opt for starchy foods that are high in fiber
like peas and beans.
|CONSULT DR. MARY
Q. How do insulin and glucose affect infertility?
A. PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) is the cause of 25% of female
infertility cases in America. It may also be a factor in 20% or more of first
trimester miscarriages in the U.S., which total about 1 million a year.
The hormonal changes that result from having PCOS are principally related to
elevations in insulin levels. Anytime there is an increase in glucose in the
blood stream, like that which follows a carbohydrate-rich meal, there is a
compensatory rise in insulin production by the pancreas.
Excess insulin can eventually become a constant in the blood, after consistently
elevated carbohydrate consumption or over-nourishment. Increased levels of
insulin are directly related to the onset of PCOS.
The overproduction of insulin has a directly adverse effect on the leutenizing
hormone (LH) which surges midway through the monthly menstrual cycle and is
essential for ovulation. Insulin increases LH and the raised level stimulates
the ovaries to form androgens (male hormones). These cause an increase in cyst
formation which, in turn, results in a decrease in ovulation.
Many women with PCOS also suffer from Insulin Resistance. This latter condition
creates high levels of insulin, which stimulate the ovaries to produce large
amounts of the male hormone testosterone, possibly causing infertility by
preventing the ovaries from releasing an egg each month.
Click here to read about Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and a System that can reverse its underlying condition, Insulin Resistance, as well as treat PCOS symptoms.
“I have been studying Insulin Resistance and have been doing quite a bit
of research on this subject. I am really impressed by your site, as well as the
sound of your products to treat this syndrome.”
- Carrie Power, APN,
|Insulite Laboratories would like to share other experiences like this one to inspire our many clients on the same path. Tell us your story and we will use it in a future issue of this newsletter, web sites and affiliate sites. Please email us at
|DID YOU KNOW?
A SODA A DAY COULD BE A HEALTH RISK
Women who drink at least one sugar-laden soda every day are
substantially more likely to develop Type 2 Diabetes and gain
significantly more weight than females who avoid similar beverages.
Researchers who tracked 91,000 women for eight years via a detailed
questionnaire discovered that those participants who regularly consumed
soft drinks were 85% more likely to develop Type 2 Diabetes than women
who did not. Scientists from the Harvard School of Public Health and
Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston found that the effects of sugary
fruit-flavored drinks were even worse, doubling the risk.
Sodas are loaded with empty calories and can contribute to weight gain
and obesity. But they increase the risk of developing Diabetes because
the drinks contain large amounts of rapidly absorbable sugar, according
to Matthias B Shulze, who presented the study’s findings to the American
“It’s not that sugar everywhere is important. But it seems that sugar
specifically in liquid foods may be relevant,” he added.
Soft drink consumption in the U.S. increased 61% among adults between
1977 and 1997. The incidence of obesity and Diabetes has increased
substantially in the same period. Diet sodas that use sugar substitutes
do not, however, increase the risk of Diabetes.
The study showed that, over a four-year period, weight gain was highest
among women who increased their non-diet soda consumption from one or
fewer drinks a week to one or more a day. An average 12 oz can of
regular soda contains 150 calories from the equivalent of ten tsp of
sugar added to the drink.
Researchers adjusted their findings to take into account increases in
the consumption of other kinds of foods and snacks, including red meat,
French fries, sweets and fruits. They also allowed for levels of
exercise, smoking rates and other lifestyle issues. But the study still
came to the conclusion that weight gain was down to drinking sodas.
A Diabetes expert not associated the study said it was well conducted
but cautioned against making a direct connection between sugars found in
soda and the risk of Diabetes without more research. Karmeen Kulkarni of
the American Diabetes Association said similar results might be found if
researchers studied other food with little nutritional value, such as
chips, cakes or cookies. She added that women in the study who drank
more sugary sodas tended to live less healthy lifestyles – smoking more,
getting less exercise and eating more calories and less fiber.
The National Soft Drink Association replied that the study was
“unconvincing and inconclusive,” adding there were questions over
certain factors that could create inaccuracies.
a separate development, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
recently cited the unrestricted sale of sweetened soft drinks in schools
as a possible contributing factor to the increase in weight problems
One in every six kids in the U.S. is overweight and another one in three
risks becoming the same. The percentage of overweight American children
has nearly doubled since 1980. Today, 10% of 2 to 5-year-olds and more
than 15% of 6 to 19-year-olds are overweight.
By consuming one 12 oz sweetened soft drink a day, a child increases the
risk of obesity by 60%. Adolescent boys drink the most soft drinks in
school but 56-85% of all school-age kids consume at least one soft drink
Diabetes is also on the increase among children. The obesity-related
disease was once thought to occur only in adults. But if trends in
obesity continue, Diabetes is likely to develop in one in three American
children born in 2000.
The AAP is also concerned that selling sweetened sodas in schools could
lead to a decrease in consumption of healthier drinks like milk. One
result may be dental cavities from the high sugar content and erosion of
enamel of the teeth from the acidity.
The average American teenager consumes about twice as much sugar as
recommended by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Kids who fill up on
sugar and fat-loaded foods miss out on nutrients and do not eat
recommended amounts of fruit.
Although funds for school budgets are often provided by the sale of soft
drinks, the AAP questions the price paid in terms of the health of
“The biggest room in the world is the room for improvement.”
Never settle for second best in
pursuing your goals.
INSULITE LIFESTYLE: TIPS
at a desk all day doesn’t have to play havoc with your diet. A sedentary job
can make you prone to snacking. So here are some suggestions for avoiding weight
gain in the workplace.|
- Divide your lunch in two. Eat half during your lunch break and save the other
half for those mid-afternoon hunger pangs. Bring a healthy meal from home as
often as possible.
- Drink lots of water. It’s good for your body in so many ways, including
weight loss, and it also suppresses appetite. Don’t forget to keep a bottle or a
full glass on your desk at all times.
- Have healthy lunches with your co-workers. Everyone will be encouraged if you
all share the same weight loss goals and suggestions for healthy meals. You can
chat on the move so go for short walks during your lunch break. Stroll into a
park to eat your lunch if the weather is fine.
- Keep moving in the office. Place your wastepaper basket far from your desk so
you have to walk over to it. Keep your telephone out of reach so you have to
stretch or even get up and walk to answer it.
- Exercise outside office hours. Think about walking to work at least some
days, if it’s not too far. Join a gym near the office and use the time you’d
spend being stuck in rush hour traffic to work out. By the time you’re
finished, the worst of traffic will be over and you’ll be fitter.
is still among the most misunderstood foods and it really needs to be
Also known as soybean curd, tofu is a soft, protein-rich, cheese-like
substance made by curdling fresh hot soymilk with a coagulant, most commonly
nigari or calcium salt (sulfate). The curds, which can also be produced
using acidic liquids like lemon juice or vinegar, are then usually pressed
into a solid block.
First used in China around 200 BC, it is now dietary staple throughout Asia.
Its popularity stems from the fact that tofu has the amazing quality of
soaking up flavor like a sponge. Pop it in a pot of spicy chili, for
example, and it tastes like chili. It adds texture and flavor to anything
and is ideal in any casserole or soup.
American grocery stores stock three main types. Firm tofu is higher in
protein, fat and calcium than other forms. It is dense and solid and
maintains its shape better in stir-fry dishes and soups or on the grill.
Soft tofu blends well and is good for Oriental soups, while silken tofu is a
creamy, custard-like product which is ideal for pureed or blended dishes.
The Japanese eat silken tofu with just a touch of soy sauce and topped with
In addition to high-quality protein, tofu can be a good source of
B-vitamins, iron and calcium. It has little saturated fat, contains no
cholesterol and is also very low in sodium. Generally, the softer the tofu,
the lower the fat content.
Tofu is usually found in the produce section of a grocery store, though it
can be stocked in the dairy or deli sections. It is most commonly sold in
water-filled tubs, vacuum packs or in aseptic brick packages. Unless it
comes in the latter form, tofu should be kept cold. Check the expiration
Left-over tofu should be rinsed and covered with fresh water for storage.
Change the water daily to keep it fresh and consume the tofu within a week.
It can be frozen for up to 5 months. Once defrosted, it has a pleasant
caramel color and a chewy, spongy texture that is great on the grill and
soaks up marinades.
As an introduction to this healthy food, why not try this easy-to-make
creamy tofu dip with ginger and scallions?
Use a food processor or blender to combine all the ingredients, except the
scallions and water. Puree until smooth, adding water as necessary to
achieve a creamy consistency. Transfer to a bowl and garnish with scallion
greens. Serve with trimmed endive leaves or other fresh vegetables.
- 1 lb tofu (preferably medium or soft), drained
- 1 jalapeno Chile pepper, seeded and minced
- 1-2 cloves of garlic, minced (1-2 tsp)
- 2 tsp minced fresh ginger
- 2 tsp sugar (to taste) or Stevia
- 2 scallions, whites minced, greens finely chopped for garnish
- 2-3 Tbs tamari or soy sauce
- 2 Tbs rice vinegar
- 1 Tbs sesame oil
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1-2 Tbs water (if needed)
well on the way to reversing your Insulin Resistance and preventing its related
conditions such as PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome), Metabolic Syndrome
(Syndrome X) and Pre-Diabetes. You are also taking important steps to achieving your desired weight loss goal
and the healthy lifestyle you deserve.
Remember that persistence is crucial.
We at Insulite Laboratories are
committed to your success and your well being. We're here to help you.
Please contact us with any questions or to order the Insulite System at firstname.lastname@example.org
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