Role of alkaline water in the management of diabetes
For a very long time the notion that diabetes is caused by too much sugar in the body, which eventually wears off the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas has held sway. In the last one or two decades, researchers have discovered that with this notion are other schools of thought. As we may already know, there are two types of diabetes: Insulin-Dependent Diabetes otherwise known as Juvenile Onset Diabetes. This starts in childhood and can only be treated by daily injections of insulin. In this group the pancreas no longer produces insulin. The second type of diabetes is the Insulin-Independent Diabetes where the pancreas is still capable of secreting insulin. The pancreas is an organ located between the stomach and the beginning of the duodenum.
Physiologically speaking, insulin is produced by the beta cells of the Islets of Langarhans in the pancreas. The well-known function of insulin is to drive glucose from the circulatory system into the cells for storage. In other words, insulin regulates the blood glucose level. In diabetes it is thought that this function of insulin fails for one reason or the other, which we would not be treating here. There is therefore a buildup of excessive glucose in the blood. In this type of diabetes the cells of the pancreas are still capable of production of insulin when stimulated by certain chemical drugs. Be that as it may, I would like to state that diabetes, like the rest of the chronic degenerative diseases is a disease caused by lack of water in the body. Apart from the production and secretion of insulin by the pancreas in response to increase in the level of glucose in the blood stream after a meal, there is another very important function of the pancreas.
The pancreas is the seat of production of a copious bicarbonate buffer solution. This solution released into the upper part of the duodenum to neutralize the acidic contents of the stomach as they are released when the stomach gate is open [Pyloric sphincter]. This function of the pancreas is regulated by the amount of water in the body. In a state of dehydration, the amount of the bicarbonate solution is reduced and this can get to a critical level that there is not enough of it to neutralize the stomach content.
If this is the situation, the opening of the Pyloric sphincter will not be effected and there will therefore be a ‘backing up’ of the stomach contents as happens in stomach dyspepsia, ulcer and eventually Hiatus hernia. Histamine is the main water regulatory neurotransmitter in a state of dehydration. There are some other subordinate hormones that are released by the action of histamine. Amongst these are the Prostaglandins. Among them is Prostaglandin E (Pg E) whixh has two functions: It redirects water to the pancreas in times of dehydration to ensure that the buffer solution is being produced and secreted so that neutralizing of the stomach contents and digestion of food continue to take place. Secondly Pg E inhibits the secretion of insulin.
What is the reason for this? Simply put, when insulin is secreted, it not only drives glucose into the cells, but along with it are potassium, amino acids and water. The water that goes into the cells at such times when there is dehydration will further deplete the amount of free water for purposes such as the manufacture of the bicarbonate solution needed for neutralizing the stomach contents and for digestion. As the secretion of insulin gets blocked by Pg E, glucose accumulates in the blood stream and eventually appears in the urine which is the finding in diabetes. The cells of the body other than those of the brain depend on insulin for glucose, amino acids, salts and water for their functions. This is why these cells become severely affected in chronic unintended dehydration.
SALT AND DIABETES
Let us now look at the role of salt in diabetes. Under normal circumstances, the osmotic forces that maintain the extracellular fluid volume are primarily from its salt, sugar and occasionally, its uric acid content. More often than not, in states of dehydration there is depletion of the level of salt.
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