Diabetes mellitus

Edible Innovations: Dr. Wichelecki Makes Good Sugar

From Singapore to the USA and all around Europe, Edible Innovations profiles food makers that engage in improving the global food system at every stage, from production to distribution to eating and shopping. Join us as we explore the main trends in the industry from a maker perspective. Chiara Cecchini of Food Innovation Program — an ecosystem with a strong educational core that promotes food innovation as a key tool to tackle the great challenges of the future — introduces you to the faces, stories, and experiences of food makers around the globe. Check back on Tuesdays and Thursdays for new installments.

In the United States there are over 29 million people who live with diabetes. Globally there are over 371 million people affected. With the numbers rising for both Type 2 Diabetes and obesity rates worldwide, scientists have begun looking to what people are consuming for the answers to these statistics.

These health issues can be traced back to excessively consuming sucrose and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). These two types of sugars have been harshly judged in the media before, and even publicly linked to some serious side effects. This resulted in fad dieting and quite a few individuals deciding to cut sugar from their diets entirely. However, internationally, people still crave the sugars that they are used to eating and cooking with.

Huge amounts of products are distributed and sold daily with sucrose and other sweeteners, and they are almost all very addictive. However, sucrose is not our only option. There are better products for us to consume. Dr. Daniel Wichelecki aims to provide the world with a sugar that is both higher quality and more affordable in comparison to sucrose.

I Promise These 10 Low GI foods can Keep You Fuller For Longer!

The glycemic index helps diabetics make smarter food choices, but it’s also a useful tool for everyone who wants to improve their health by eating low glycemic foods. In a nutshell, the theory behind the glycemic index is that certain types of food provide you with energy for a longer period of time. Meanwhile, other foods may feel filling at first, but they quickly lead to a sudden energy drop.

How Does the Glycemic Index Work?

Every food that contains carbohydrates can be rated on the glycemic index scale. Items that are low calorie, high in fiber and not overly processed score better because they are low glycemic foods. Scores range from 0 to 100, and this determines where each food fits on the glycemic index scale: 1

• Low Glycemic Foods – 0 to 55

• Medium Glycemic Foods – 56 to 69

• High Glycemic Foods – 70 or higher

Do I Need Low Glycemic Foods?

Do you experience an energy crash an hour or two after each meal? Or perhaps you find yourself sluggish at work after dining out with coworkers? Both of these issues can be caused by making unhealthy food choices.

If a large percentage of your calories are coming from high glycemic foods, you’re going to end up feeling very poorly. You’ll also get hungry more quickly. This is a vicious cycle because it causes you to keep increasing your calorie consumption, which leads to weight gain.

The reality is that everyone needs to eat a balanced diet, and sticking primarily with low glycemic foods is a major component of improving your health. It’s okay to eat medium or high glycemic foods from time-to-time, but the trick is to balance them as much as possible with vegetables and fruits from the low glycemic category.

What Are the Side Effects of a High Glycemic Diet?

After eating a lot of high glycemic foods, you’re likely to feel sluggish and run down. You may even feel ill if you’re not used to consuming poor quality calories. Doing this for too long can have an impact on your overall physical and mental health. In fact, studies have found that people who stick with a low glycemic index diet have a reduced risk of developing numerous medical conditions, including: 2

• Depression

• Type 2 diabetes

• Cardiovascular disease

• Breast, colon, pancreas and prostate cancer

• Gall stones

• Stroke

• Metabolic syndrome

• Chronic kidney disease

• Uterine fibroids

Diabetes: Managing the Risk

The most common issue that occurs from ingesting too many high glycemic foods is high blood sugar. Although this doesn’t automatically mean you have type 2 diabetes, it’s definitely a step toward developing this disease.

People who have diabetes face a long list of potential health complications, and they also typically have a lower quality of life. Due to this, it’s critical to do everything you can to reduce your diabetes risk. If you’re already diabetic, you can turn to low glycemic foods to help you manage your condition.

Making the switch to low glycemic foods will help you keep your weight down. Additionally, incorporating these healthier food choices will reduce your insulin levels and resistance. 3

Concentration and Memory Issues

Another big issue that can be caused by a lack of proper nutrients is impaired cognitive functionality. Many people feel fuzzy and have difficulty concentrating a couple of hours after eating a high glycemic meal.

To ensure a better level of brain function throughout the day, eat low glycemic foods along with some protein every 2-1/2 to 3 hours. 4 This will help balance your blood sugar and prevent the dips and peaks that accompany a…

Scientists Cure Type 1 Diabetes for a Year Without Side Effects

A potential cure for Type 1 diabetes looms on the horizon – and the novel approach would also allow Type 2 diabetics to stop insulin shots.

The treatment totally cured diabetes in mice for an entire year without any side effects. The discovery, made at UT Health San Antonio, works by increasing the types of pancreatic cells that secrete insulin.

“It worked perfectly,” said Dr. Bruno Doiron, assistant professor of medicine at UT Health. “We cured mice for one year without any side effects. That’s never been seen.”

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Insulin, which lowers blood sugar, is only made by beta cells. In Type 1 diabetes, beta cells are destroyed by the immune system and the person has no insulin. In Type 2 diabetes, beta cells fail and insulin decreases. At the same time in Type 2, the body doesn’t use insulin efficiently.

The therapy is accomplished by a technique called gene transfer. A virus is used as a vector, or carrier, to introduce…

New Research Reveals How Type 2 Diabetes Affects the Brain

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We know what happens to the bodies of people suffering from type 2 diabetes. Your cells cease to respond to the hormone insulin, which is tasked with carrying sugar out of your bloodstream. Your blood sugar levels rise, which causes your pancreas to produce more and more insulin—over time a futile effort. Your pancreas eventually becomes exhausted; your blood sugar remains permanently elevated. The cascade of deleterious health effects ensues, resulting in, if untreated, death.

Sugar is first to mind when contemplating this disease these days, alongside the fact that type 2 diabetes is an avoidable disease. In the three decades following 1975 worldwide rates increased sevenfold. Yet it is not only sugar doing the damage. The accumulation of visceral fat and lack of exercise are also implicated in the onset of diabetes. Over time your chances of heart disease, blindness, and kidney failure increase.

Brain Health Tips from a Nobel Prize-Winning Scientist Eric Kandel

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Brain Health Tips from a Nobel Prize-Winning Scientist


Eric Kandel

Professor of Brain Science, Columbia University


But what is going on in your brain during this process? We know the risk of dementia increases, but why? A new study in the journal Diabetologia addresses this question.

While obesity increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, a team led by Dr. Sujung Yoon wanted to know how being overweight affects the brains of those with this form of diabetes. They specifically looked at how the cognitive functions of early-stage patients were affected.

Fifty overweight and fifty normal-weight sufferers between the age of 30…

Siren Care’s Smart Socks Help Monitor the Health of People with Diabetes

With a $50,000 grand prize, the TechCrunch Hardware Battlefield is one of the high-profile events at the annual CES conference in Las Vegas. This year’s winner was Siren Care (@SirenCare), a wearables company that embeds electronic sensors into clothing in order to track changes in a person’s health.

The company’s first product is smart socks that people living with diabetes wear. The socks monitor temperature and detect injury in real time, helping to alert people with diabetes who often have nerve damage and are unable to feel pain.

Photo by Hep Svadja

Ran Ma (@RanimalMa), Co-Founder and CEO of Siren Care, was previously the CMO of Voltset, a Danish consumer electronics startup. She successfully ran the Voltset Kickstarter campaign, which raised $113,548 (192% of their goal).

Read articles from the magazine right here on

You launched Siren Care into a category that already had some strong products. Did that worry you?

We do have competitors, which is great. If you don’t have competitors—if no one else is doing something similar— you’re either a crazy genius or you’re just crazy. So having competitors, some of whom have done groundbreaking work, that’s good. It tells me that I’m not completely crazy.

In addition, we are thinking long term. Ideally we are developing technology that can generate product 1, 2, 3 and beyond. We want to make a family of products, using the same personnel, the same technology, the same expertise, and the same intellectual property. We want to conquer our beachhead use case of diabetic foot and then expand into adjacent markets.

Photo by Hep Svadja
Photo by Hep Svadja

We’re about using cutting-edge smart fabrics to make products focused on health and prevention, about using different techniques to integrate electronics into fabrics.

We’re focused on taking wearables to the next level. We want them to be discrete, continuous, and we don’t want you to have to make a behavior change. We want them to fit into your life as it is. So, for instance, our socks are machine washable, machine dryable, and you don’t have to charge them. They are just like normal socks. That’s the next stage of wearables.

Photo courtesy of Siren Care

I hand-sewed prototypes in my room. I bought conductive thread from Sparkfun, I used an old Arduino I had sitting around. I took a soldering class at a makerspace called Noisebridge in the Mission area of San Francisco. I went in there and was like, “Can someone help me solder my sock?”

Did those early prototypes help you make your case?

The first couple prototypes were so bad, they were scary: wires coming off everything, the solder was terrible. I’d go to medical conferences to show it to doctors and they weren’t impressed. But I just kept working at it. The electronics got smaller, my app got better, the socks got smoother. Eventually the medical community started to buy into it.

It sounds like you had a lot of setbacks. What kept you going?

Going out and talking to potential customers, potential patients. We talked to nurses, care homes, doctors, wound experts. I went to a lot of conferences. I talked to diabetic patients about the product, and they would get emotional. People were so afraid of losing a toe or getting a foot amputated, losing their independence. I saw the real need. Every time I felt like giving up, I just remembered:…

Do You Know Cinnamon Is A Powerful Spice That Offers Amazing Health Benefits?

Cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia) has been one of the most commonly used ingredient in fragrances, medicine and cooking for ages. It was even used as currency at one point in history. Its rich and warm smell lights up even the coldest of winters, and its slightly spicy taste enhances the flavor of any dish it is added to.

Being a great source of dietary fiber, iron and calcium, cinnamon is truly beneficial to human health, hence it has become extremely popular spice in the healthy dieting circles. Native to Shri Lanka, cinnamon comes from the bark of a tropical evergreen tree, and can be found in rolled sticks, or ground, in powdered form.

There are two types of cinnamon available. The most commonly found is the darker colored, and more bittersweet tasting, cassia type, whereas the Ceylon type is more lighter in color and has a sweeter taste. Some of the most commonly known health benefits of cinnamon include its antioxidant function and the potential to lower blood sugar in people suffering from diabetes.

Cinnamon nutrition profile

1 tbsp of ground cinnamon contains

  • 19 calories
  • 4 grams of fiber
  • 68% manganese
  • 8% calcium
  • 4% iron

With 0 g of sugar or fat, and 3% of vitamin K per 1 tbsp, cinnamon is an excellent ingredient to add to your daily diet due to its positive effect on digestion, immunity, blood sugar levels and heart health. 1

Cinnamon health benefits

Antioxidant ability of cinnamon was analyzed in a 1999 study 2 where the results showed increased antioxidant enzyme activities in rats that were fed a high fat diet along with cinnamon or cardamom. Cinnamon is rich in polyphenols, phenolic acid, and flavonoids antioxidants that help the body fight the free radicals and decrease the oxidative stress in the body that leads to aging and diseases. 3

2. Cinnamon produces anti-inflammatory effects

Active antioxidants in cinnamon produce great anti-inflammatory effects that protect the body from developing serious diseases due to inflammation. 4 5

3. Cinnamon may help preserve heart health

Cinnamon could potentially improve heart health since it proved to be effective in the improvement of important factors of good cardiovascular health – cholesterol levels and triglycerides. In a 2003 study 6, type 2 diabetes patients who consumed 1, 3, or 6 g of cinnamon per…

Gastric bypass controls diabetes long term better than other methods

gastric bypass
STOMACH SURGERY Gastric bypass surgery reduces the size of the stomach and shortens the digestive path for food. While performed for weight loss, the procedure may also bring long-term remission of diabetes.

People who undergo gastric bypass surgery are more likely to experience a remission of their diabetes than patients who receive a gastric sleeve or intensive management of diet and exercise, according to a new study. Bypass surgery had already shown better results for diabetes than other weight-loss methods in the short term, but the new research followed patients for five years.

“We knew that surgery had a powerful effect on diabetes,” says Philip Schauer of the Bariatric & Metabolic Institute at the Cleveland Clinic. “What this study says is that the effect of surgery is durable.” The results were published online February 15 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The study followed 134 people with type 2 diabetes for five years in a head-to-head comparison of weight-loss methods. At the end of that time, two of 38 patients who only followed intensive diet and exercise plans were no longer in need of insulin to manage blood sugar levels. For comparison, 11 of 47 patients who had a gastric sleeve, which reduces the size of the stomach, and 14 of 49 who underwent gastric bypass, a procedure that…