New concern for diabetes has been generated. It has been proved that people exposed to high levels of pesticides develop high blood sugar as an immediate consequence. It is already known that diabetes mellitus has a multi-factorial pathogenesis with a strong genetic component as well as many environmental and lifestyle influences. Emerging evidence suggests that environmental contaminants, including pesticides, might play an important role in the pathogenesis of diabetes.
The prevalence of diabetes in people who are directly exposed to pesticides is estimated to be three-fold higher than in people who are not directly exposed to the pesticides. Farmers are often exposed to high levels of pesticides, and thereby have a higher risk of type 2 diabetes.
HOW PESTICIDES INCREASE THE RISK?
A number of organophosphate pesticides, including malathion, have been found to disrupt beta cell function. Beta cells can respond quickly to spikes in blood glucose concentrations by secreting some of their stored insulin while simultaneously producing more. When the beta cells in the pancreas are destroyed, they become unable to store and release insulin under requirement. Thus, glucose becomes unable to get transferred from blood to the cells raising its concentration in the blood. This situation develops diabetes mellitus. Pesticides are also found to generate insulin resistance in the affected individuals. In that case also, insulin does not respond to the blood glucose levels, developing diabetes mellitus.
LIST OF CHEMICALS INCREASING THE RISK OF DIABETES
The following are the listed chemicals, which are among highly toxic category developing the risk of diabetes mellitus:
- Hexachlorobenzene (HCB)
- Vacor: Producing permanent type 1 diabetes by destroying pancreatic beta cells
WILL ORGANICS HELP US?
‘Organic’ refers to food that is produced using organic farming, which means growing crops without the use of synthetic pesticides and herbicides. The pesticides in food may explain why some of the people have diabetes. Diabetic individuals still have time to switch to eating organic food, which has negligible pesticide residue in it than conventionally grown food does. It is also suggested that organic crops are up to 69% higher in several key antioxidants, such as polyphenols, than conventionally grown crops. Thus, eating organic food helps to manage diabetes naturally.
OTHER MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES
Besides eating organic food, other treatment strategies for diabetes include following, which are involved in every treatment plan for diabetes:
- Avoiding pesticides-exposed food
- Physical activity as much as possible
- Control diabetes by consuming anti-diabetic medications, possibly herbal-supplements, which are devoid of any side effect. A well-known herbal supplement is Fenfuro, which is based on fenugreek seed extract and it is clinically-proven and patented to manage diabetes.
PRECAUTIONS FOR USING PESTICIDE-EXPOSED FRUITS & VEGETABLES
You should take certain measures to minimize any kind of health damage from pesticides. Here are three simple, do-it-yourself tricks, which can be adopted at home:
- Wash your food & wash it right
- Wash all your fruits and vegetables. According to the CSE, washing them with 2% of salt water will remove most of the contact pesticide residues that normally appear on the surface of the vegetables and fruits.
- Almost 75 to 80% of pesticide residues are removed by cold water washing.
- Be more thorough with these fruits and vegetables in specific:grapes, apples, guava, plums, mangoes, peaches and pears and vegetables like tomatoes, brinjal and okra as they might carry more residues in their crevices.
- Vinegar soak
- Whip up a solution with 10% white vinegar and 90% water and soak your veggies and fruits in them.
- Stir them around and rinse thoroughly.
- Be careful while washing fruits like berries and those with a thin peel as the solution might damage their porous outer-skin.
- Blanch & peel
- Treat your vegetables to warm water for a short while and this should remove any leftover residue.
- Peeling is another efficient way to remove residue and highly recommended especially when there might be some residue in the crevices of the fruit.
- When cooking with chicken or meat, cut off the excess fat and skin as it could have absorbed unwanted pesticide residue.
BE CAREFUL, EAT WISELY, KEEP YOURSELF DIABETES-FREE