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Diabetes-Related Health Complications
Focus on Diabetic Retinopathy

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What is Diabetic Retinopahty?

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This is part two of a five-part article on diabetes and fasting. In part one, the question was is it safe for a diabetic to fast?. Please read part one for a better understanding of the health risks you may be facing if you fast with this health challenge.

Symptoms of Diabetic Retinopathy?
When this health challenge develops, it causes damage to the vital blood vessels in the retina and can result in blindness if left untreated. Millions of people have vision problems due to this condition and the numbers keep growing. The simple explanation for what causes diabetic neuropathy is too much sugar in the blood. Research has also recently uncovered a link between sorbitol and diabetes-related complications. Diabetic Retinopahty Symptoms may include:

* Blurred vision
* Floaters
* Problems trying to read
* Eye pain or pressure
* Trouble with color perception

You may want to do a search on the Mayo Clinic website on diabetic retinopathy

Please note that in the early stages of developing diabetic retinopathy, there may be no symptoms which is why it's so important to get vision tests on a regular basis if you feel you are at risk or have been told by your doctor that you are at risk.

If you are diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy ...
For those diagnosed with this condition, it is considered generally helpful to eat at least two servings of fruit per day. However, blood sugar levels must be considered so it's important to ask your doctor. Moderate exercise is also suggested after approval from doctor. Of course, it's even more important than usual for anyone with diabetic-retinopathy to keep both their blood sugar and blood pressure levels stable.

Avoiding eye strain, such as can happen with prolonged computer work or trying to read without proper light, is important as well. I would expect that vision exercises intended to strengthen the muscles of the eye could be helpful, such as the Bates Method.

Helpful Health Supplements:
There are certain herbal and nutritional supplements that are considered helpful for vision as well. These include zeaxanthin, ginko biloba, lutein, omega-3's, bilberry and cinnamon. Please rule out allergies and drug interactions to any of these ingredients and check with doctor before taking. If on blood thinners, do not take ginko biloba without approval from your cardiologist.

Antioxidants like Vitamin C and Vitamin E are also important for vision health. Rooibus, or red bush, tea is another excellent antioxidant.

Preventative measures if you are at risk for diabetic-retinopathy could include all the above, some combination of the above and a tonic formula. Tonic formulas are those designed to be taken long term, to strengthen and support healthy function. I recommend this natural eye tonic for vision support.

Health Care Disclaimer: Regular eye exams can catch this condition before it progresses so be sure to keep those exam appointments. The wholistic health information on this page is for informational purposes only and not intended to replace any needed medical evaluation, treatment or medication.