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Sept. 3, 2016

dave

In issue 162, published in June 2004, we had an item from the BMJ touting a polypill that could reduce heart attack and strokes in 80% of all people over 55 who had some sort of vascular problem. This pill had 6 drugs, including: a cholesterol-lowering statin; three blood-pressure medications; folic acid; and aspirin. Then, in May of 2007, we shared information from the Archimedes Model, from researchers at Kaiser Permanente, that showed that the combination of  an ACE, aspirin, metformin and a statin could dramatically reduce the number of diabetes-related complications and deaths.

In June of 2011, we had yet another article concerning the idea of medicating prediabetes patients to prevent complications later.

Twelve years have gone by since that first article, and we still have no polypill. That may be because of the comments from clinicians like Dr. Steve Nissen of the Cleveland Clinic, who touts that “medical practice requires that we apply the right therapies for the right patients in the optimal dosages.”

It may be true that a polypill is not the answer, but this week’s first item looks at using metformin in prediabetes, and why you should give considerable thought to trying it.

These prediabetes patients may also benefit from a lower carb diet to try and reduce the workload on the pancreas. However, oftentimes when they are diagnosed and especially when they are on insulin, carb counting becomes a way of life. This often means they are trying every trick to save on carb consumption only to be frustrated when glucose levels don’t seem to go where they want them to. To help sort this out and make sense of why “1 carb plus 1 carb does not always equal 2 carbs” we turned to our resident guru and type 1 patient Dr. Sheri Colberg to explain why she Count(s) Calories, Not Just Carbs.”

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We can make a difference!

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Dave Joffe, Editor-in-chief