By Bob Condor

Being consistent? It’s almost a lost art form these days. How many professional ballplayers play for one team their entire careers? For that matter, how many people work for just one company? Who never grows up and raises kids in their same hometowns? Which of your friends truly listens to you each time?

For anyone diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, there is a lot to be said for consistency, circa 2008 or not. A September study published in the New England Journal of Medicine shows that people with Type 2 who carefully and tightly control their blood sugar can lower risk of heart attack and death over a long time frame.

Researchers call it a “legacy effect” and makes a strong case for following a successful eating plan and dietary supplement routine in the first 10 years after diagnosis (something you can read about in extensive detail in the new Barton Publishing diabetes natural remedy report). The study points out the protective element of the legacy effect is established in that first decade after diagnosis.

There’s a parallel here. People who go on diets and then off diets are found to gain more weight back than they lost, inadvertently adding pounds when good intentions slip away. The yo-yo dieting also wreaks havoc with the immune system and unduly taxes the heart, lungs and kidneys. A person would be better off eating a mostly healthy diet featuring fresh produce and whole grains while still splurging on the occasional deep-dish pizza or chocolate mousse rather than cycling near-starvation diets with late-night raids of the fridge.

In the new study, researchers at the University of Oxford in England studied more than 4,200 newly diagnosed diabetes patients. They found careful control of blood sugar also lowered kidney disease and vision loss, two common and scary effects of unchecked diabetes. Public health officials in both England and the U.S. took the opportunity of the study’s release to re-emphasize that people with Type 2 diabetes who are consistent (there’s that word again) with monitoring their blood sugar will improve quality of life for years


For a full list of Barton Publishing Reports including kidney damage, high blood pressure, and diabetes click here.

What’s instructive is to realize keeping a tight control on blood sugar also helps a diabetic individual to connect what foods and supplements are helping—and what part of an eating style might be causing more problems than some favorite foods are worth (and it’s just sugar we are discussing here; the new Barton report names a number of common foods that are surprisingly unhealthy for anyone with Type 2 diabetes). There are some superfoods for Type 2 diabetes, and at least one will surprise you as well.

Anyone with Type 2 diabetes would do well to re-consider relaxing their blood sugar reins, especially if you were diagnosed less than 10 years back. But, honestly, this new study acknowledges that while a bit more slack after the first decade appears to be less harmful, the researchers made it clear at a professional meeting in Europe this month that they plan followup studies to track if the people who stay loyal to blood sugar monitoring might reap other benefits not evaluated in their study.

Plus, blood sugar monitoring is becoming less demanding for the patients. New technology (yes, some of it is good, such as our ability to connect online) is rapidly developing to allow wrist-watch monitoring with frequent readouts—all at an affordable price.

“Bob Condor is the Daily Health Blogger for Barton Publishing . He is also the Living Well columnist for theSeattle Post-Intelligencer . He covers natural health and quality of life issues and writes regularly for national magazines, including Life, Esquire, Parade, Self, and Outside. He is a former syndicated health columnist for the Chicago Tribune and author of six books, including “The Good Mood Diet” and “Your Prostate Cancer Survivors' Guide.” He lives in the Pacific Northwest with his wife and two 11-year-old kids.