Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Lorcaserin and Prediabetes

The FDA has approved four anti-obesity drugs for long-term use in the past several years. The anti-obesity drugs are: contrave, a combination of bupropion and naltrexone; qsymia, a combination of phentermine and topiramate; saxenda, which contains the active ingredient liraglutide that is used to treat type 2 diabetes; and lorcaserin which has the brand name belviq. In this post, we are going to focus on lorcaserin that has been found to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes.

In the study, done at the Brigham and Woman's Hospital in Boston, MA, researchers concluded that taking lorcaserin twice-a-day can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by as much as one fifth. Lorcaserin controlled "high blood sugar in obese and overweight patients." Further, the use of lorcaserin, in conjunction with lifestyle interventions, "significantly reduced incidence of diabetes, increased rates of diabetes remission and reduced the risk of diabetic microvascular complications."

As stated above, lorcaserin is FDA approved for weight loss. And the aforementioned study shows that for obese individuals with abnormally high glucose levels, lorcaserin should be considered as a treatment option. And combining lorcaserin with physical activity and lifestyle changes might be especially effective.

Indeed, lorcaserin has been found to improve metabolic parameters. In one study, investigators found that lorcaserin can lower fasting glucose. And finally, in another study, researchers have determined that lorcaserin "improved multiple cardio metabolic parameters through both weight loss dependent and independent mechanisms.”

Therefore, as implied above, lorcaserin should be considered by practitioners when they are treating a patient who is overweight or obese and who experiences overweight or obesity related metabolic diseases. This may be particularly true for overweight or obese patients with prediabetes.

In the future, using lorcaserin for the treatment of those prediabetic patients who are overweight or obese may gain wide acceptance. Lorcaserin's effectiveness in weight loss and improved metabolic parameters may benefit many patients.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Nuts, Insulin Resistance and Prediabetes

There is a lot of concern today about prediabetes. It is estimated that more than 84 million adults in America have the condition. And prediabetes is often a forerunner of type 2 diabetes. Insulin resistance is also often a forerunner of type 2 diabetes. And many of the risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes and prediabetes are also associated with insulin resistance. Therefore, interventions that can minimize the risks for insulin resistance may minimize the risks for diabetes and prediabetes. One study indicates that eating nuts may reduce the risk of insulin resistance.

Insulin is a hormone made by the pancreas. The hormone removes sugar from the bloodstream and takes the sugar to the cells. Insulin resistance happens when cells in your body will not accept the glucose that insulin is trying to deliver. Prediabetes typically occurs when there is some insulin resistance and the pancreas is not making enough insulin to cause the cells to accept the glucose.

Eating nuts may reduce the risks of insulin resistance, therefore, reducing the prediabetes state. The study that showed that eating nuts may reduce the risks of insulin resistance was done at Pennsylvania State University. According to the researchers, “eating an average of 52g of nuts a day can reduce the likelihood of developing insulin resistance.” Further, “eating nuts was … tied to significantly reduced fasting insulin and insulin resistance … in people with prediabetes.”

Diet has always been an important part of fighting prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. And now we are learning more about those foods that might be most helpful in the fight. Indeed, if nuts can be effective in helping individual control glucose, clinicians and other providers should endeavor to work with patients to help them include nuts in their daily diet. This can be an easy addition to the diet with great health benefits.

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