Another reason to avoid diabetes

Navigating life with diabetes is like trying to tiptoe through a minefield: Everywhere you turn, there's another problem waiting to be added to the list of diabetes risk factors.

Heart disease, stroke, neuropathy and sores that can lead to amputations lurk around every corner.

And always hiding in the shadows is cancer.

New research of diabetes risk factors confirms what we've seen before: Diabetics have a higher risk of cancer and a higher risk of dying from the disease.

Diabetics getting regular insulin shots are four times more likely to die within a year of a cancer diagnosis and five times more likely to die within five years than non-diabetics.

For diabetics not getting insulin, the risk is 10 percent higher within a year and 50 percent higher within five years, according to the study in Diabetologia.

Many cancers feed off sugar -- and when you have excess sugar in the blood, as happens with diabetics who need insulin (that's why they need it in the first place), you could be giving the cancer just what it needs to grow.

Along with out-of-control blood sugar, many of the other conditions that accompany diabetes -- as well as the poor diet that often causes the disease in the first place -- can also increase the risk of cancer.

As a result, other studies have shown that diabetics are especially prone to cancers of the liver, pancreas, breast, colon and more.

That's the bad news.

The good news today is that it's not too late to take action to lower your diabetes risk factors.

If you don't have diabetes, lifestyle changes such as weight loss and old-fashioned good nutrition can ensure you never get it -- and that's true even if you have pre-diabetes.

And if you already have diabetes, it's still not too late.

Dietary changes and a few key supplements can do more for your body than drugs ever will. And in some cases, these changes can slow and even reverse the disease.

Some people can even be cured.

I recommend working closely with a holistic medical doctor.

And if you're in Southern California, I can help.

Contact my office to make an appointment to see me at my clinic outside San Diego. And if you can't make it to sunny Southern California, I'm also available for phone consultations. Call 855-DOC-MARK to learn more or schedule yours.