What are people's thoughts on the ADA?

By Melode Latest Reply 2012-06-18 07:41:33 -0500
Started 2012-05-22 17:18:18 -0500

I have heard many negative reactions to things that the ADA has done such as suziesgirl criticism of them today. However, this is not my first time.
Why is there such negative reactions towards the ADA? I was unaware that people had these type of feelings towards an institution that is supposed to help educate the public.

56 replies

Type1Lou 2012-06-11 12:41:17 -0500 Report

For years I was a member of the ADA and received Diabetes Forecast, their magazine. It was a way for me to learn more about my condition. However, I have come to the realization for me that the ADA is way too lenient in its approach to consumption of carbohydrates. Dr Richard Bernstein's book, "Diabetes Solution" opened my eyes to the role carbohydrates play in blood sugar levels. I purchased an ADA crockpot cookbook and will not even consider making over half of the recipes because they are too high carb for me. I find that many so-called "diabetic-friendly" recipes just are inappropriate for me.

GabbyPA 2012-06-13 08:58:46 -0500 Report

Maybe that is why they are called diabetic friendly and not diabetic helpful? LOL
I agree, I cannot use most diabetic cookbooks. So I just adjust what I want to cook for me from my old books and don't bother with new stuff.

MHoskins2179 2012-05-23 13:07:11 -0500 Report

I've never much cared for the ADA, being diagnosed with type 1 when I was so young. But have tried to give them a chance in more recent years. Still seems like, on many levels, they don't care and want you to be a textbook example of care despite what's going on between you and your doctor/Endo. Yes, I also think the information is also outdated and really too often it focuses on the scare tactics to get someone "under control." I wish the ADA would work more closely with the rest of the diabetes community and bridge gaps for the PWD, not just focus on the organization itself. My personal 2 cents, anyhow…

suziesgirl 2012-06-09 20:52:23 -0500 Report

Don't given them an inch they'll take body limbs with no guilt at all. Try reading Diabetes without drugs and get some great information, yes for type 1's also

Type1Lou 2012-06-11 12:35:47 -0500 Report

Having read Suzy Cohen's "Diabetes Without Drugs" she takes until Chapter 16 to state that her recommendations won't work for Type 1's who need daily insulin since our bodies no longer produce it. Much of her platform faults the over-processing of foods in our society and our unhealthful eating habits. She offers some interesting and valid observations and is worth the read but, for us Type 1's, we will never be diabetics without drugs until science is able to replace our insulin producing cells.

suziesgirl 2012-06-11 20:11:03 -0500 Report

This is true, however if this way of eating reduces the amount of bad carbs and sugars, would that not lower the amount of insulin needed by a type 1? Seems as if the better the diet the healthier the body. There are many reaserchers working on type 1 diabetes. I have hope, that someday the causes and cures will be found. You are right though this book is quite a gathering of very useful and healthy information.

Caroltoo 2012-06-11 20:26:46 -0500 Report

What I've seen would imply that many Type 1's who don't follow the diets that reduce insulin resistance sooner or later also develop Type 2. That's a really good reason to watch the type and quantity of carb.

Type1Lou 2012-06-12 07:50:26 -0500 Report

So true Carol! Just because there are drugs (insulin and/or oral meds) to treat our condition does not give ANY of us PWD license to eat anything we want in whatever quantities we want if we truly want to manage and control the D-beast.

suziesgirl 2012-06-11 21:37:11 -0500 Report

Yes I have heard this is true, however I have some news for everyone, I am reading a book called Bombshell by Suzzane Summers, WOW. You guys have to read this book. It makes mention of diabetes, but much, much, more. I am amazed at the info in this book. Loaded it on my laptop Nook apps, but I am going to buy the hard copy. Cancer, autoimmune diseases, and oh so much more. We are truely in the dark when it comes to what has really happened in this country with our food and Pharma. My God, I wish everyone could read this book and have an open mind about how we can use what God has given us naturally to heal our bodies now and in the future. I cannot tell you what an impact this book can make on all of us.
What an interesting read and loaded with reasearch data.

GabbyPA 2012-06-17 08:58:31 -0500 Report

I have to agree. I like face to face better, but sometimes a book can get you into a good face to face conversation.

old biker
old biker 2012-06-13 15:27:48 -0500 Report

That did it you peaked my interest..I am allways interested in finding new options..I will check the book out

old biker
old biker 2012-06-18 06:43:37 -0500 Report

Oh yeah..Riding is the only thing that allows me to keep what's little left of my sanity..LOL..How about you?

jayabee52 2012-05-23 04:40:01 -0500 Report

Yes melode the ADA is supposed to help educate the public, but if the information they give out is outdated or just plain wrong they are failing in that mission.

If I followed the ADA guidelines on carbohydrate consumption, I suspect I would still be stabbing my stomach with insulin injections and wondering why my Blood Glucose (BG) levels would be out of whack. My diabetes mellitus (DM) undoubtedly have progressed by now and I suspect that I would now be on hemodialysis again.

The criticism is IMHO well deserved.

GabbyPA 2012-05-22 20:30:03 -0500 Report

The ADA got my feet wet, and that was mostly because it was what we had around the house because of my family history of diabetes.

If you want an organization that will do great things for you, check out TCOYD. http://www.tcoyd.com/ Those guys are much more up to date and they are who taught my diabetes education. AWESOME.

The ADA is like the FDA and the USDA, et all...old, bloated and out of touch with what it really going on. I do still recommend them as a source, because something can often be better than nothing. However, their carb guidelines are way out of whack. I don't use their cookbooks either. But their exchange book (that they don't make anymore) was very helpful in the beginning of what I was doing after diagnosis.

Nick1962 2012-05-22 20:02:18 -0500 Report

Ditto everything Irish said, but adding: They base their food recommendations on an outdated food pyramid, and a glycemic index that does not even take into consideration today's food trends. Recommending X amount of fresh vegetables, proteins, and (way too many) grains is all well and fine if the general public knows enough to differentiate between them. Most people today have very limited knowledge on how to cook because our society has become dependant on pre-packaged and fast foods. Just where does a Hot Pocket fall on the glycemic index or in the food pyramid?
It's not just the ADA, but the National Councils as well. Some high schools and colleges actually had McDonald's and Pizza Hut kiosks set up in their cafeterias, yet the average McDonalds meal is considered to be close to 3 times what is considered to be a healthy portion.
We live in a world where smoking is regulated, alcohol is regulated, but the very organizations that are set up for healthy diet and lifestyles do nothing to regulate food given to our children even in the midst of a global pandemic which is responsible for the majority of poor health and long term medical care. It's only been recently that things like beer, PopTarts, and snack foods were not allowed to be purchased with food stamps. Of course, you'd be fined or even arrested if your 6-year-old showed up to day care hung over, but weighing 150 lbs, no problem.
If all these agencies did what was their intent, there'd be no DiabeticConnect.
OK rant over for now (you did ask).
Cute profile pic by the way!

suziesgirl 2012-06-08 20:01:19 -0500 Report

Love, love, love this reply Nick

Nick1962 2012-06-09 15:47:09 -0500 Report

Sometimes i get depressed and wonder how we got so screwed up. But then i realize we never see the stuff coming. When the first guy added lead to paint he thought he was doing a good thing to make it last. He never had the notion some kid in project housing would be munching on it because he was hungry 50 years later. Just like thast first pharmacist added syrup to soda water, he had no way of knowing we'd devote whole aisles to the stuff in supermarkets and kids would drink it by the gallon in front of the television playing games. Its a shame we have to catch up to our own stupidity sometimes

GabbyPA 2012-06-13 09:03:24 -0500 Report

Unintended consequences. Our world is made up of them. Testing things for 100's of years is not very productive, so we press on. Smoking was once encouraged by doctors...We have stopped listening to the voices in our heads. Some of those are good. They warn us about things, give us gut feelings. We are just so out of touch with that, it is killing us; literally.

suziesgirl 2012-06-09 20:42:49 -0500 Report

True that!, but sometimes I feel like a hamster on a wheel. I want those numbers in the eighties everyday, not just for a week or two. I'll take under a hundred everyday, but get depressed sometimes and sick of this whole thing. Not sick enough to throw in the towel yet! I think we all need to go to an island for diabetics where someone is dong the cooking and thinking and measuring and cleaning it up too. I don't want to aske questions or try to answer them, especially to people who think you've slipped over the edge. Okay, Okay, pitty party over, tomorrow is another day and has challenges of its own, isn't that how we all get by??
Goodnight Nick

Nick1962 2012-06-09 21:14:59 -0500 Report

I've often thought about that, a fully D freindly place/restaurant without marketing it as such, where we could go without worry.
I think we may be on to a million dollar idea here.
Good dreams!

Caroltoo 2012-06-09 21:26:09 -0500 Report

Interesting. I told Wayne recently that I would like to open a restaurant where people could get GOOD, healthy, gluten-free, diabetes-friendly meals.

Nick1962 2012-06-10 18:11:55 -0500 Report

It really wouldn't take much with a talented chef. I'd like to see this as one of the challenges on one of those cooking shows like Hell's Kitchen or Kitchen Impossible. i think it'd be both funny and sad to see what folks come up with and just how little they know about our diets.

Caroltoo 2012-06-10 18:16:04 -0500 Report

It's not only how little they know about our diets, it's also how different our diets can be from each other because of our many different approaches to self care.

Nick1962 2012-06-10 18:19:39 -0500 Report

True. i think it would be a "teachable moment" as a show though. Have a panel of diabetic judges, and critique each dish as to why they could or couldn't eat it as well as taste and presentation.

GabbyPA 2012-06-13 09:06:35 -0500 Report

I agree! That would be a great show. "Why I CAN'T Eat This"....every week it could feature a different type of dietary need. Gluten free, diabetic, crones, and so on. There are so many things. Then it could end with a meal that is "Why I CAN Eat This"

Controlled 2012-06-09 21:18:43 -0500 Report

Wouldn't that be any "health food" restaurant? By and large, a diabetic friendly diet, if I'm not mistaken, is healthy food emphasizing low carbohydrates. If it's not "advertised" as "D" friendly, it would just be a vegetarian/vegan restaurant…right?

Nick1962 2012-06-10 18:09:16 -0500 Report

Not really, as Carol points out, it's a bit more complicated. We have a few diabetic vegans here, and sometimes they eat way too many carbs. We have a local chain reataurant called Zoe's Kitchen, which is really good on a diabetic diet, trouble is it's not a "dining" establishment, it's still pretty much fast food.
The words "health food" tend to turn people off (at least the general population) and it conjures up tofu and smoothies. I'd just like a place with a dialed-in menu that brings normal foods within a diabetic's diet, as well as cater to the general public. For example, I make killer ribs, but since I have to limit sugar (BBQ sauce) I use a dry rub, which once it mixes with meat juices, it forms it's own sauce. Of course you could still order the full sauced version.

Caroltoo 2012-06-09 21:36:25 -0500 Report

Controlled: not all vegetarian/vegan is low carb and protein is really important. I have several vegetarian cookbooks since I figured if they only eat veggies they must know how to do them well, but then add in lean protein (beef, chicken, pork, seafood, fish) because I don't do well with legumes or rice which are typical vegetarian protein source Carol

Controlled 2012-06-10 20:57:47 -0500 Report

Is there a general "rule of thumb" regarding how much protein someone should have each day? I'm exercising more. Just went to the golf driving range for an hour and I'm beat. Makes no sense…so all this talk of protein and I'm wondering that even though my BG is "controlled", maybe I need to look at protein more closely.

Caroltoo 2012-06-09 19:04:26 -0500 Report

The challenge though is to be able to accept the mess for a mess and then do what we can to clean it up instead of becoming intrenched in the status quo and beginning to defend it.

Nick1962 2012-06-09 19:14:23 -0500 Report

You are quite right, and on so many levels! Why did i spend most of my life overweight justifying and defending it? Things don't have to be the way they are.
Just read an article that gave statistics on senior citizens. It seems that many seniors now are healthier (and more health concious) than their counterparts 20 years ago. If we're not careful, many parents will soon outlive their children.
I refuse to accept nothing can be done.

Caroltoo 2012-06-09 19:29:29 -0500 Report

This is one senior who can personally say she is MUCH better off now than she was 20 years ago!!!

GabbyPA 2012-05-22 20:33:03 -0500 Report

I don't want them regulating foods. I don't really like that they regulate the other "sin" products either. People have to choose what they want. Then they have to be responsible for the choices they made. No meddling by government or alphabet agencies. We have to grow up and take charge of our own successes or failures.

jigsaw 2012-06-08 20:33:57 -0500 Report

What about implementing education on diet, nutrition, and exercise where our children could learn??? I remember JFK constantly talking about exercise programs and they were being implemented into many elementary and high schools. Seems like the idea faded, and now we hear about obesity and resulting sickness, sky rocketing medical costs and health insurance. Without the necessary knowledge, how can the necessary changes take place? A very big part of the solution just might be to become informed through education! IGNORANCE is a large part of the problem, and it's like a spreading cancer if it's not stopped. With enough ignorance, a government could end up being a dictatorship!!! More education and less govt. to empower the public.

Nick1962 2012-06-09 11:55:42 -0500 Report

Spot on jigsaw. In fact, isn't it our government that tells us we must complete X amount of years of education? I think that right there could be misconstrued as government control, however it's done to ensure an educated and productive society. It's no coincidence that there's a link between income and obesity, and lower income households are often less educated (with exceptions of course).
Yes, you should have the right to choose, but I think you also have a responsibility to your society to choose correctly. It may be a roundabout way, but better diet education will lead to better choices, meaning less strain on our medical services benefitting us as a whole.

Nick1962 2012-05-22 20:53:53 -0500 Report

Oh I agree that I don't want them knee deep in my life, but for all the money involved, I think some advocacy could be provided. Yes, we are responsible for our decisions, but not everyone has the benefit of the knowledge we here have.

Irish1951 2012-05-22 21:51:51 -0500 Report

I agree on the advocacy. They need to be out representing us with regards to additives in our food and labeling. The amounts of hidden ingredients in restaurant meals is incredible. More salt than can be imagined. And the best friend of a chef - butter. Everything tastes better with butter right! Just how much is added is what should scare people.

Nick1962 2012-05-23 08:58:38 -0500 Report

Without a doubt. I think it's a shame that this website has to be responsible for producing a TV show like "Sugar Babies" when, with all the resources and funding the ADA has they could be doing it. There are so many organizations, churches, family interest groups etc. putting out information and media about teen pregnancy, alcoholism, obesity and on and on…, I just think they could do more.

Irish1951 2012-05-22 18:04:56 -0500 Report

I have long questioned the ADA and the information that they put out. They have lowered their A1c recommendations to between 6 and 6.5. The Endocrinologists have recommended 6 for years. I guess it would have meant that the ADA would have had to throw away to many pamphlets and the cost of reprinting would have been to high. The numbers they now use still would mean that the daily average BS would be between 126 and 140. Good but still can be problematic. As many of us know, the average can mean you had readings where the highs were balanced out by lows. Over 140 has been recognized as causing damage to the body long term.
The ADA is constantly fundraising but how is the money spent. They publish a magazine and fund research. But do they do enough for the newly diagnosed D. We have heard on this site that people are given a Rx and a meter and told to check their BS. Shame on the Dr.s but shame on the ADA also. They should have staff/volunteers to reach out to the newly Dx's to help with the fears and questions that we all had at the beginning. My ADA sponsored education class started 6 weeks after I was diagnosed!
The meal plans they recommend have typically 180 grams of carbs a day as a good plan. I bought into that too. Thank God for this site and the members here. I cut my carbs in half and I have lost 55 lbs and my daily numbers are down an average of 30 points.
The ADA may have been good for the Diabetic community at the beginning and still does legislative support but there is so much more need than that. I live in a large city with many avenues of support and information. That is not true for a large number of our community who live is rural or small towns. They may have to travel hundreds of miles just to take the basic education course.

suziesgirl 2012-06-08 20:05:20 -0500 Report

Perhaps they lowered the numbers because they are losing so many customers. What does it take to wake up this organization?? I know, people who are finding out the ADA is full of itself mostly!