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By Lisa Shaker-Knopp (
For the last 11 years, I have been on a mission to avoid becoming a Type 2 diabetic. Why? 
Because my entire family on my fathers side suffer from a condition known as metabolic syndrome, or syndrome x, also know as insulin resistance. And, that is what my father passed away from on August 22, 2004.  
Let’s first define metabolic syndrome. From what I have been trained, metabolic syndrome is a collection of five main signs, and we only need 2 or 3 of those signs to become insulin resistant. 
  • Abdominal obesity: a waist circumference of 40 inches or more in men and 35 inches or more in women. 
  • Serum triglycerides 150 mg/dl or above.
  • HDL cholesterol 40mg/dl or lower in men and 50mg/dl or lower in women.
  • Blood pressure of 130/85 or more.
  • Fasting blood glucose of 100 mg/dl or above.
Some of the risk factors for developing Type 2 diabetes include, genetics, ethnic background, obesity, family history and metabolic syndrome.  Prevention is a big deal. It’s especially important to make diabetes prevention a priority if you’re at increased risk. That is my story. I have been insulin resistant most of my life, but I did not know it! 
But what is type 2 diabetes? It is when your pancreas has become dysfunctional and starts to overproduce insulin to keep up with your intake of carbohydrates. When the pancreas goes into overdrive, the outcome is the pancreas’s inability to respond properly to the influx of the excess insulin. This leads to fat storage, especially in the belly region. Eventually, even though the pancreas is working at its best to produce more and more insulin, the body tissues (for example, muscle and fat cells) do not respond and become insensitive to the insulin. This is the point that a person becomes diabetic, as the body is no longer able to effectively use its insulin to maintain normal blood sugar levels.
I have been taught that it is mostly what we put in our mouth, and good food combinations that help reverse this monstrosity. And, the good news is, you can “reboot” your pancreas, much like a computer that goes offline. Once you understand what foods trigger the over production of insulin, remove those temporarily, and then slowly reintroduce them, but in a different pecking order.  
It is my passion in life to teach people about the pancreas and how it works. I know that living a low fat, low carb daily diet is the main key, along with some exercise. One of the best tools is using the to help you on your journey of preventing, or reversing Type 2 diabetes.  It’s all about the food/fuel we put in our mouths. Once you own what foods have a higher glycemic index, and either eliminate or reduce those, you can create what I call a “live it” plan, not a “diet plan”.  So far, 11 years after my father’s passing, this has helped me to avoid this dreaded diagnosis. I am still fighting with insulin resistance, but I have the tools to help me. 


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