April 10, 2011

Just Diagnosed and In a Panic? Part 2

People may get tired of my stating this as some form of this is used in every blog I write about herbs, supplements, vitamins, minerals, and natural remedies. Until people realize how important this is, and how deadly ignoring this can be, I will continue to write this. I am a patient and not in the medical profession.

Because of some of the problems, and the fact that many people will not read labels, or follow their doctor's instructions, I feel compelled to say this for all non-medical subjects.

The following information is for your reading and is not a cure. I am not endorsing any herb, supplement, or natural remedy. At best, many have short-term benefits only until your body gets what it is missing, with a few exceptions.

WARNING! This is important!!! If you are taking supplements or anything not prescribed by a doctor, please make sure that the doctor is informed. Some supplements and natural remedies, when taken with oral medications and/or insulin can cause hypoglycemia, have toxic effects, or even cause death.

It is important that everyone maintain a list of every herb, vitamin, mineral, supplement, and home remedy you are taking and give a copy to your doctor (and do indicate anything new since the last visit). I am aware that many people do not feel this is important, but the consequences for persons with diabetes can have severe medical implications. If you have other medical problems plus diabetes, this may even be more critical.

One statement I get from the naturalists or homeopath followers is what I take is natural and found in nature - the doctor does not need to know. Wrong! Even natural herbal remedies can cause problems when used with prescribed medications. In the USA, not all are manufactured under the Food and Drug Administration's specifications, and some may not be quality checked. They can often have ingredients not mentioned on the label, and some even have chemicals added that when combined with prescriptions can cause severe reactions.

Vitamins: Vitamins can be very beneficial and sometimes are not emphasized enough. Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, and several others are critical if you are on some oral medications. Talk to your doctor about them. Metformin is an example as it can deplete the B12 and additional may be needed. If you have been on Metformin for a long time, your doctor should be testing you for B12 levels. Another issue is some lifestyles can be short of B12 and Omega-3's. See my blog here. I encourage people to find the lifestyle that is comfortable for them. The big caution here is understanding the nutritional needs to avoid problems.

Minerals: This should be divided into two groups, supplemental and trace minerals. WARNING, taking minerals should always be done under a doctors supervision to avoid problems with prescription medications and toxicity. Many people take too large a dosage of trace minerals for too long a period and this can lead to toxic side effects.

Some people avoid all the problems because they are consuming the right fruits and vegetables in quantities that have the vitamins and minerals in sufficient quantities. Talk to your doctor about doing the necessary tests. Most will not need to be done on a regular basis and most U.S. medical insurance companies will cover the tests on a yearly or longer basis. They will cover testing more often if problems are found.

Make sure the doctor covers the test results and gives you a copy for your records.

Part 2 of 3.  To read Part 1 and Part 3 of this blog, click on the links.

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