resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
The Problem With Prolonged Sitting
We need to constantly talk to our patients about spending less time sitting and about what can go wrong with poor sitting postures. The fact is we sit too long in repetitive malpositions.
Let the Patient Tell Their Story
Often when a patient presents with an injury, they want to tell their story. People by nature like to talk about themselves, particularly when they're worried about their health.
Medicalization and Mindfulness
The past several years have seen a veritable explosion of research on mindfulness. Research abstracts we've published in each issue of Health Insights Today under the heading "Mind-Body News" have increasingly reported on studies about mindfulness interventions.
A Glimpse Into China's Top Brain Hospital
The sounds of the city pass through the open window are overwhelming the microphone - car horns, construction machinery - and then there's the family at the adjacent bed talking loudly on cell phones, yet you can still hear the faint beep of our patients monitoring equipment.
The Truth About Herbs
I appreciate the effort and research put into the article written in the June issue of Acupuncture Today regarding pesticides and Chinese herbs.
The Spirit of the Point
After receiving a large amount of positive feedback on my San Zhen Protocols series, I have decided to focus this article on some relevant clinical aspects of acupuncture therapy prior to moving on to San Zhen Protocols III.
When Big Pharma Meets Chinese Medicine
Earlier this year, Bayer made a media splash with their decision to buy the Dihon Pharmaceutical Group Co., a Chinese TCM manufacturer.
Thoughts to Live By
When speaking to your patients about their health make sure to ponder the following points and have them assess if they are making themselves even more sick by the thoughts they have about life. Are these some of the traits and thoughts that your patients might have?
History of Animal Acupuncture: Part II
In Part I of this article, I had gone back to 1969 and tried to describe the atmosphere and events of that year that engulfed many of the younger generation, some who were all the core members of the National Acupuncture Association.
Get Ready For AOM Day
This year, AOM Day 2014 falls on Friday, (October 24th). This is a great opportunity to make your AOM Day celebration or event even bigger by extending it throughout the weekend!
News in Brief
NBCE Launches Computer-Based Testing Era; California Chiropractors Get Expanded DOT Exam Privileges; New Jeff Hays Documentary.
A Healthy Dose of Failure is Vital to Your Success
As an acupuncturist I tend to see people after they have already suffered for years and "tried everything." They are so desperate for some relief that they want to know everything about how to get better, right now.
Thoracolumbar Syndrome: The Great Mimic
The thoracolumbar junction is a common area of joint dysfunction. The most obvious cause is dysfunctional breathing or lack of diaphragmatic breathing. Treating this breathing problem will ultimately be the long-term cure for the syndrome.
Healing Community Trauma in Israel and Palestine
It's the beginning of August and Israel and Hamas have just agreed to a 72-hour ceasefire after a month of brutal fighting. In the last four weeks, 1,830 Palestinians and 67 Israelis have been killed.
Rethinking GMO: Less Panic, More Context
Some of you may have noticed that after writing parts 1 and 2 of “Genetic Modification of Organisms for Human Consumption” a while back [Nov. 15, 2013 and Jan. 1, 2014 issues], part 3 never appeared.
Uncle Sam Needs You
Scrutiny into the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) continues to grow after efforts to reform the DVA by the former Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki, were deemed "a stunning period of dysfunction" by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).
A Commonly Missed Spinal Fixation: The Upper Lumbar Spine (Part 1)
When we think of lower back pain, we tend to think in terms of the lower lumbar spine and the SI joint. These joints and their discs are obviously important. However, we tend to miss fixations that occur just above – in the upper lumbar spine. Three questions come to mind: 1) Why is the upper lumbar spine so important? 2) Why do we miss the fixations here? 3) How can we adjust them?
MPA Media Wins Seven Publishing Awards
MPA Media, publisher of Acupuncture Today, among other titles, has been recognized for editorial and design excellence with an unprecendented seven publishing awards by the ASBPE, the nation's largest organization for business-to-business publications.
Help Secure Our Future by Sharing It
The National Board of Chiropractic Examiners (NBCE) conducts one of the most comprehensive surveys of the U.S. chiropractic profession every 4-5 years.
Improving Our Political Effectiveness
The November 2014 elections are right around the corner; members of Congress, governors and state legislators are all running. Now is a good time to talk frankly about our overall political involvement.
The Science Behind Happiness
Are you happy right now? Whether yes or no, there are a myriad of reasons why you feel that way. A whole academic discipline has developed to find out what causes or obstructs happiness, and how to amplify it.
May, 2012, Vol. 12, Issue 05
Gestational Diabetes: Does She or Doesn't She?
By Elaine Stillerman, LMT
Nearly every pregnant woman is tested for gestational diabetes (GD) (or gestational glucose intolerance - GGI) at some point during her second trimester. But what constitutes a "normal" blood glucose level during pregnancy and when maternal or fetal morbidity occurs is controversial.
What is evident in cases of confirmed gestational diabetes is that babies grow larger, weighing over 4000g at birth (fetal macrosomia) or are in the 90th percentile for large-for gestational-age (LGA). And that often increases the likelihood of a surgical delivery and newborn monitoring for hypoglycemia. In the long term, these elevated levels appear to contribute to obesity and diabetes later in the child's life and an increase in the risk of the mother developing type 2 diabetes. On average, however, the rate of confirmed glucose intolerance is small and varies among different ethnic groups. Caucasian women are affected 1% to 2%, Afro-Caribbeans 2% to 3%, and Asians 4% to 5%.
The etiology of defining GD as a medical condition began in the 1950s with a study on women with high sugar values during pregnancy. It was "validated" in 1964 when Drs. O'Sullivan and Mahan, medical researchers, performed a 100g 3-hour oral glucose tolerance test on more than 700 pregnant women who were already hyperglycemic. Their study was to determine if these women were at greater risk of developing diabetes in the future. To no one's surprise, they were. And that led these two men to conclude that the "metabolic stress of pregnancy" exposed women to a "pre-diabetic status." But keep in mind, their research subjects had preexisting high blood glucose levels.
They also made an erroneous correlation that since insulin-dependent diabetes is a known risk to developing babies, this "pre-diabetic status" was as well. But their theory is unfounded. Diabetes types 1 and 2 are completely different in their manifestations and dangers than GD (GGI). For instance, both type 1 and 2 may result in blood vessel and kidney damage, the sequelae of which could be hypertension, insufficient circulation to the lower extremities, possible limb amputation and kidney disease. GD carries none of these risks.
Vacillating levels of high and low blood sugar during early pregnancy in type 1 diabetes might cause congenital malformations or miscarriage. Again, none of these serious complications are caused by GD. The only thing diabetes 1 and 2 share with GD is that the excess glucose goes directly to the babies, making them larger than they would be without the elevated blood sugar levels.
During pregnancy, the pancreas usually produces adequate amounts of insulin to regulate blood sugar levels. However, the hormone HPL (human placental lactogen) inhibits the maternal body's ability to transport the insulin properly out of the bloodstream and into cells, where it is used as fuel, resulting in elevated levels of glucose in the blood - or GD. So, in essence, there is more circulating blood sugar which the baby uses to grow and develop. And as pregnancy progresses, this delicate balance between adequate insulin levels and circulating blood sugar becomes trickier. After eating, blood sugar levels rise and by the time the third trimester comes, blood glucose levels are higher after eating than a woman who is not pregnant. (After a night's sleep, excess insulin goes to work to balance out the extra blood sugar, so morning levels of glucose are actually lower during pregnancy than in nonpregnant women - hypoglycemia.)
But there is a difference between elevated blood sugar levels and diabetes. And current research has not determined when high blood glucose levels, just shy of diabetes, cause harm to mothers and their babies. So screening for GD should come with an understanding, by both mother and her care provider, that the results may or may not be an indication of a serious problem.
Women can actively participate in their health during pregnancy by eating healthy, wholesome foods. They can avoid or control GD by consuming a diet rich in whole foods, high protein and high complex carbohydrates. They can start by eliminating empty calories - soda, white flour, white sugar, fructose and limit sweet desserts. Any food with a sugar content of more than 6 grams (read the label) should be accompanied by a protein source. Milk, often recommended by care providers for the necessary calcium it provides, and yogurt are filled with (milk) sugar and lactose is known to increase blood sugar levels. So consuming excessive dairy products might be contributing to high glucose values.
When eating cereals, the protein and fiber content should be more than 5g per serving and there should be less than 10g of sugar. One third of protein should come from complex carbohydrates. A glycemic index will help some women make healthier choices. And think color when it comes to food choices - the more varied and deeper the pallet, the healthier meals will be.
Clients with GD can still enjoy the benefits of massage. However, it is important to remember that massage, in general, lowers glucose levels. So you have to make sure your client's blood sugar level doesn't get too low, which can lead to impaired judgment and potential accidents. By providing your clients with a nourishing snack, it will raise their blood glucose level enough to get home safely where they can enjoy a healthful, wholesome meal.
Click here for previous articles by Elaine Stillerman, LMT.
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