Changing lifestyle to help reduce diabetes and symptoms in Oxford, Abingdon and Bampton
In the UK alone 2.5 million people suffer from type 2 diabetes and nearly one-tenth of the entire NHS budget is spent managing diabetes and its complications. That is nearly £9 billion a year spent on this deadly disease. Diabetes and the complications surrounding it is one of the most serious health risks in the nation and a financial burden on the health system.
One of the more serious complications of type 2 diabetes is hypertension or high blood pressure. Hypertension affects nearly 70% of patients with diabetes and is twice as likely to occur in people with diabetes as in those without diabetes. With those who suffer from type 2 diabetes, the news is even grimmer. An estimated 40-50% of all people with type 2 diabetes have arterial hypertension which means a blood pressure greater than 160/95 mm/Hg.
Adults who have both type 2 diabetes and hypertension have a greater chance of developing kidney and coronary heart disease, making it even more imperative that these individuals get their blood pressure checked often.
Although a deadly combination, the news is not all bad. Making minor adjustments can make a big difference. A leading expert in hypertension and diabetes recently stated, “Hypertension and diabetes can significantly increase the risks of heart disease, and having both together can be deadly. Over 90% of cases of hypertension can be helped by simple lifestyle changes. Studies are beginning to show that even type 2 diabetes can be reversed in this way too”.
Use of complementary therapy
Many people are turning to complementary therapy to make those changes in lifestyle. By working closely with patients to determine their individual needs and then develop a specialised treatment for those clients that provide an effective method of controlling high blood pressure.
Whatever the treatment for high blood pressure, it all starts with the knowledge that comes with a blood pressure check. This is best done by your GP.
Not everyone wants to take medication to treat hypertension, so by developing a plan of action, you can start tackling the underlying causes – weight, diet, exercise, salt intake, alcohol consumption etc.
How Talking therapies, hypnotherapy and nutritional therapy can help reverse diabetes
Tackling lifestyle problems, cutting back on sugar-laden foods, carbohydrates, alcohol and junk food, using SFBT, CBT, mindfulness, nutrition and hypnotherapy we can help reduce the chances of developing problems such as weight gain, hypertension and diabetes.
How hypnotherapy can help
Hypnotherapy can also help reduce the anxiety that comes with a major disease such as diabetes, lowering the anxiety helps an individual to gain control over the restricted diet and become more disciplined with choices of food.
How Nutritional therapy can help Diabetes
Creating a nutritional plan of foods to reduce and foods to increase can start reversing the effects of diabetes. Food diaries will be initially used to assess your current food intake. A blank meal planner will be produced so you can slowly change the eating habits by each day reducing one food and introducing a new food into the diet. The problem with many diet plans is that they expect you to change all in one go, but experience has shown the best way to change a habit is to slowly replace the poor habit with a more helpful one.
How Mindfulness can help with Diabetes
Mindfulness helps people be in the here and now and helps reduce worrying. The person is present when eating, so chewing mindfully helps a person from overeating. Breathing techniques help relax the person and distraction techniques are really helpful when someone emotionally eats, as it can help disrupt the bingeing process.
How Cognitive Behavioural therapy can help Diabetes
CBT is all about what drives us, how we think and changing our beliefs. If we struggle to do something, CBT can help us understand why we are having problems, then find ways of dealing them more effectively.
Sometimes we eat the foods we do because we have had it drummed into us that waste is bad, that there are starving people in India or Africa that would desperately like that food. We are made to feel guilty and those negative programmes impact on us when we are trying to change diet or loss weight. It can also be cultural. In certain countries to be large is a sign of wealth.
Rosemary came to me because her doctor had warned her she was pre-diabetic. Blood pressure and cholesterol were high and she desperately needed help stick to a diet. She was in her late 60s but was very active, and didn’t look overweight – Anyone who follows Dr Michael Mosley knows that he found out he was pre-diabetic despite looking slim – the fat is held around the main organs of the body.
For the first couple of weeks was all about monitoring what she was currently eating, and although at home she was quite conservative in what she ate when working in committees and going around to friends, she felt obliged to tuck into the food offered up, mostly biscuits.
Struggling with the waste food idea meant she couldn’t throw any food away, it had to be eaten. Her mother had drummed this into her during post-war austerity. Consequently, when she held dinner parties there was a lot of food left over which she ate.
Goals for therapy
3 main goals of therapy were:
1) Lose 1 stone
2) Change her diet from sugar-laden foods to more vegetables, fish and protein.
3) Alter the way she thought about her relationship with food.
Over the course of the next 6 weeks, she was able to reduce most of the unhealthy food and introduce more vegetables into her diet. She used to make a large box of salad on a Monday and add to it as the week went on, so each salad was slightly different, so she didn’t get bored.
Rosemary still struggled, though when she went out to see friends for lunch, they would dish up wonderful desserts and she was too embarrassed to say no. I explained to her that this wasn’t a diet fad, she was about to develop a very serious disease that could cause serious complications. I suggested she explain this to all her friends – they would understand. It worked. She came back 2 weeks later having dinned out at least 3 times and each time her friends had provided her with a sugar-free alternative.
Also see: Weight loss
Penny Ling is a widely experienced hypnotherapist who has worked with everyone from top executives to stroke victims since 2007. She has been editor of Hypnotherapy Today Magazine and is a supervisor and mentor for members of the AfSFH and NCH.
Read Penny’s inspiring story “How I beat all my phobias”, or find out more how hypnotherapy could help your problem by downloading “How Solution Focused Hypnotherapy can help with life”. Feel free to send Penny a message here.