Newsletter #87 - October 2008
-- A study to assess the effectiveness of Tai Chi for Diabetes, October 2008
Recently I co-authored the book “Tai Chi for Diabetes” with Dr Pat Phillips. Dr Phillips is the chief editor of “Conquest”, the official magazine of Diabetes Australia. The book is published by Rockpool Publishing.
In this newsletter
• “Conquest”, the official magazine of Diabetes Australia, writes how Tai Chi can help manage Diabetes
• Dahlis Roy gives a glowing review of the book “Tai Chi for Diabetes: Living Well with Diabetes”.
• Angela Valdez, a diabetes educator, shares with us her Tai Chi for Diabetes teaching experience with the Native Alaskan population.
Tai Chi for Diabetes – Instructional DVD
Tai Chi for Diabetes – The book
Buy both of the TCD DVD and TCD book and you will receive a free TCD wall chart, worth USD $6.50 or AUD $8.95.
Therapeutic Tai Chi Instructors’ Training workshop
Tai Chi for Back Pain, Instructors Training
Paul Lam, M.D.
Published in the Australian Family Physician, Vol 37, Number 10, October 2008 p884-887
Authors: Lam, P., Dennis, S., Diamond, T., & Zwar, N.
A study to assess the effectiveness of Tai Chi for Diabetes
This community based, randomised control trial assessed the effects of a modified Tai Chi program for people with poorly controlled type II diabetes. It found improvements in HbA1c (an important indicator of blood glucose level); six-meter walk test and total cholesterol in both the control and Tai Chi group. Improvements in physical and social functioning were found in the Tai Chi group.
Fifty-three people who fulfilled the study criteria were randomly divided into a Tai Chi (28) and control group (25). The Tai Chi group were taught the specially designed Tai Chi for Diabetes program twice per week for six months. The control group were given ten weeks of free lessons after the study. At six months, improvements in HbA1c, six-meter walk test and total cholesterol were not statistically significant between the groups. However, improvements were observed in physical and social functioning in the Tai Chi group from baseline to follow up. Many people joined Tai Chi classes after the study.
The researchers believe that Tai Chi with its relatively low cost, easy accessibility and high adherence rate may be a useful part of the treatment of type II diabetes in the community. Tai Chi for Diabetes may be a useful introduction to greater physical activity. However, longer duration or increased number of Tai Chi sessions per week may be required to demonstrate statistically significant reductions in metabolic or cardiovascular parameters.
Dahlis Roy, Stevensville, MI, USA
“Well organized, convincing and inspirational book for people with diabetes. Easy to follow full colour photos show Dr. Lam demonstrating warm up exercises and Tai Chi for Diabetes form. Extensive resource section completes the picture.
Angela R Valdez, MS, RD, CDE, Diabetes Educator, Barrow, Alaska, USA
Tony Garcia, Senior Trainer, Miami, Fl. USA
2. Take one step at a time placing entire foot down
3. Feel the floor with bottom of foot before taking the next step.
4. While pushing down on your feet and lifting the opposite heel, use the grips to help with your balance and leg stability. As that heel is lifted further, pressure on the opposite knee decreases.
5. Safely bend the knees slightly with every step.
6. Use your vision to scan the steps and the people walking up or down the stairs.
7. If necessary, take breaks by placing feet together after the step and wait until you are ready for the next step.
8. If you feel there is an urgent problem with your health, sit down on stairs and call for assistance.
To climb down:
1. Stay close to the side and place one hand on the rail
2. Look down and assure there are no obstructions
3. Begin stepping with your front instep and slowly bring the heel down
4. Repeat steps 6 – 9 as indicated above
by Dr. Bob McBrien
Finding a bit of humour and having a good laugh seems to be impossible during times of high stress. Dr. Paul McGhee has researched the psychology of humour throughout his career. Recognized worldwide as trainer and speaker, his mission is to teach us how to develop our own humour skills. Find him on the web at www.laughterremedy.com for more information.
Among the many quotes he offers in his book Health, Healing and the Amuse System, he offered this Chinese proverb that may be familiar to readers.
“You cannot stop the birds of sorrow from flying around your head, but, you can prevent them from building a nest in your hair”
I am sorry that I haven’t written, but let me explain. Are you sitting down?
I have recovered from the concussion I received when I jumped from my window when we had a fire in the dorm last month. I can see normally now thanks to the gentle care from Roger, the dorm janitor, who saved me. I have been living with him since the fire. We are planning to marry before my pregnancy shows. Although he is a high school drop out I know you will love him as I do and accept him into the family.
Warning: Dr. Lam does not necessarily endorse the opinion of other authors. Before practicing any program featured in this newsletter, please check with your physician or therapist. The authors and anyone involved in the production of this newsletter will not be held responsible in any way whatsoever for any injury which may arise as a result of following the instructions given in this newsletter.