The Diabetes Epidemic: What Light Are You Eating?

by Paul Shepherd
| May 15, 2022
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Is The Story Sugar-Coated?

I truly wonder, how many people have been told their Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) is only about “genetics” and it’s all about the sugars you are eating to make your insulin go out of whack? Is it really 100% about these two factors as the primary drivers? Isn’t it both overly simplistic and reductionistic to think in this way: to think that our biology is not designed in systems and synergies?

What if I told I used to weigh 290 pounds in the 1990s, had pre-Diabetes, my mother, grandmother, mother’s uncle and grandfather also had T2D (each expressing in their mito-heteroplasmic 30s). How did I reverse my T2D? My chronobiology behaviors of the past played a much larger role. So when I read these two scientific papers below, I sighed knowing the bigger players were my continual blue-light toxicity at the wrong hours of the day and nnEMF, in synergy.

First, let’s take a look at the nnEMF side of my pre-diabetes:

The findings of this study show that the students who were exposed to high RF-EMF had significantly higher HbA1c than the students who were exposed to low RF-EMF. Moreover, students who were exposed to high RF-EMFR generated by MPBS had a significantly higher proportion of diabetes mellitus relative to the students who were exposed to low RF-EMFR.

HbA1c is well recognized among clinicians as a marker of chronic hyperglycemia, increased HbA1c has also been regarded as an independent marker for diabetes mellitus [17]. HBA1c has numerous advantages compared to the Fasting Plasma Glucose (FPG), including greater expediency, fasting is not mandatory, better pre-analytical stability and less day-to-day worries during a period of stress and illness. HbA1c has recently been endorsed as a diagnostic test for diabetes by the World Health Organization, the International Diabetes Federation, as well as the American Diabetes Association [12,14,17,18].

And for the blue-light side of this equation, it is important to consider when life expects light frequencies into the eyes and skin. The larger question I consider about the vast eons of time humans have spent on earth: “What does the sunshine for frequencies at various times of the day: morning, mid-day and in the evening for specific frequency outputs?” Is it possible that in our modern, indoor environments we absorb the wrong type of lighting at the wrong time of day? Luckily I figured this out decades ago, or wouldn’t be able to write the blog at all. Perceptively and instinctively, many of us know staying up late and watching a show into the late evening might offer us up some problems. In my personal past, it playing video games past midnight on a continual basis.

Misalignment of circadian rhythmicity is observed in numerous conditions, including aging, and is thought to be involved in the development of age-related disorders, such as depression, diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and cancer.

Absorbing the wrong frequencies at the wrong time of day is analogous to eating the wrong foods at the wrong time of day, is it not? A perfect example would be the consumption of coffee or a chocolate bar. What happens to most people when consuming too much caffeine past dusk? Many people that are listening to their bodies have come to learn it’s not a very good idea doing it over longer periods of time.

The reduction in endogenous melatonin is also a large problem with both blue-light and nnEMF sources. Using caution with nnEMF around sleeping spaces is warranted when looking at the scientific literature; here is one example:

Melatonin is a natural hormone produced by pineal gland activity in the brain that regulates the body’s sleep-wake cycle. How man-made EMFs may influence the pineal gland is still unsolved. The pineal gland is likely to sense EMFs as light but, as a consequence, may decrease the melatonin production.

I believe making melatonin internally in the body vs. having an outside source is a wise strategy. For instance, this study shows the gravity of melatonin on many processes in the body.

The underlying mechanisms include several molecular pathways, which are associated with antioxidant activity, modulation of melatonin receptors MT1 and MT2, regulation of apoptosis, pro-survival signaling and tumor metabolism, inhibition of angiogenesis, invasion and metastasis, and induction of epigenetic alteration.

Not only is sleep deprivation an issue, but also the lack of overall sunlight to control calcium and balance many processes in the body.

Researchers have long known that routine sleep deprivation can cause weight gain and increase other health risks, including diabetes.

This Northwestern study concludes that people exposed to earlier day sunlight, based on the duration, intensity and timing, gains benefits to shed pounds.

Light is the most potent agent to synchronize your internal body clock that regulates circadian rhythms, which in turn also regulate energy balance. The message is that you should get more bright light between 8 a.m. and noon.” About 20 to 30 minutes of morning light is enough to affect BMI.

Inflammation is a quality of diabetes, as certain cells may be in a state with extra oxidative stresses. There are several strategies within the scientific literature that point to benefits from grounding or earthing by touching the earth to help relieve inflammation.

All studies discussed revealed significant physiological or clinical outcomes as a result of grounding. This body of research has demonstrated the potential of grounding to be a simple, natural, and accessible clinical strategy against the global epidemic of noncommunicable, degenerative, inflammatory-related diseases.

Also, some compounds may also be helpful in dealing with the inflammation more effectively, such as curcumin (a main component in turmeric).

My Metabolic Mitochondrial Voyage

I first had to take you on this journey above into blue-light toxicity, nnEMF exposures, the benefits of sunlight and grounding to the earth before getting any deeper into my personal experiences. The modern-day conventional wisdom points people down a path of biochemistry: thinking about insulin and sugar as the primary factors, rather than the synergies of the puzzle pieces I have outlines above. In some individuals, this may be a huge problem to consume several hundred grams of sugar daily.

However, energetic and mitochondrial thinking gets some of these people understanding why exercise, ketotic diet, cycling an intermittent fasting regime, a OMAD (One Meal A Day) regime or other approach (to help reduce carbohydrates) can help make use of more fatty-acid oxidation via Complex II in the mitochondria, and, help with mitochondrial biogenesis. The initial benefits I found was to use Cytochrome Complex II to breakdown fats into carbon dioxide and lower deuterium water. Previously throughout my life, I sustained my diet on the more “free-radical leaky” Cytochrome Complex I to use carbohydrates and sugars to generate my ATP.

When I was 32 years old, the marathon I ran in Portland, Oregon was a very telling milestone to me about my mitochondrial function, in contrast to my lifestyle at the age of 45 in 2015. But in 2002, I trained 9 months before the marathon and shed about 50 pounds overall before the day of the marathon. At typically 50 miles of running each week running in the morning sun around the Pasadena Rosebowl, I was shocked about how much weight I was able to lose. At the time, I believed it was mostly about calories-in, calories-out, but reread again that I did all my training outdoors, rather than at a gym or later into the evening. I would wake up at 6am each morning and be running around the Rosebowl for several hours (often 4 to 5 times around for a 12 to 15 mile run) with morning sunlight being shirtless most days also. However, my diet at that time consisted of heavy-loaded carbohydrates. I was refueling with pastas and sugars at that time to keep running longer distances: also known as the “carb-loading” technique. Fast-forward a month after the marathon, I stopped running in the mornings altogether. I proceeded to do my workouts after work at a fluorescent-it gym typically between 8 to 10pm in the evening. What happened to my metabolism turning into a gym-rat? Six months later, I found myself having regained 40 pounds, feeling like I couldn’t sleep as well as I had been during my marathon training and felt more worn out and exhausted all of the time.

Repeating Past Benefits and Finding New Answers

So I did what any sensible person would do: I went back to running again in the mornings, and within a few weeks, felt alive again. Of course, I needed to recover after my longer runs, but I knew there was something more to just the running alone. It was something about running in the morning outdoors, and it took many years later to discover the magic was not just in exercise, but the types of environments we place our bodies at what time of day we do it.

In 2008 after starting Intermittent Fasting (IF) coupled with a lower-carbohydrate diet, my obesity, lethargy and pre-diabetes basically vanished altogether as long as I continued to get enough time outside in the mornings. But things changed in 2011 when I learned about the Ketogenic Diet (Keto) and implemented it as well with my IF routines of typically getting in a fast 16 to 18 hours each day. Over the next year, my ketosis and IF tools worked powerfully to shed my body weight down another 60 pounds…down to a slim 178 pounds for a six-foot man.

However in my personal work-life at the time living in Seattle, Washington, I saw larger up and down shifts with my metabolism seasonally. In the winters, I could easily gain back 20 to 30 pounds and lose it all again the next spring and summer. The winter of 2014, I implemented a strict ketosis and also made it a point to get outside into snow, rain or anytime in the mornings. That winter, I didn’t regain any weight, and then later that spring in 2015, I proceeded to implement Cold Thermogenesis into my life, or also known in many communities as CT. Combining IF, CT, OMAD (1 Meal a Day). I would take an ice-bath about 3 times per week…typically for 15 to 25 minutes at a time. At that time, my son thought it was hilarious to help me out and throw ice cubes from the freezer into my tub to maintain a temperature below 60 degrees Fahrenheit. It was that summer (also sunbathing several times a week in Seattle) that I dropped down to 158 pounds and shocked my friends and family how small I had gotten.

I did what any citizen scientist would do later that year. I wanted to verify if my metabolism was benefitting from all of these techniques, I purposely removed my ketogenic lifestyle and CT altogether, but kept doing my Intermittent Fasting several times per week. But in the winter of 2015 having more carbs and less outdoor time, my weight crept back up to about 180 pounds. I wanted to see if the summer of 2016 would work to get tons of sunlight, but remove the keto, IF and CT as tools, but just do exercise with sun. Although it worked to a point, I wasn’t able to trim back down below 175 pounds.

Mitochondrial Dynamics

Part of this next puzzle piece has an age-dependent answer within the processes that can drive up mitochondrial heteroplasmy, or the ratio of good to the mitochondrial mutants in a cells, or simply, the ability for mitochondria to efficiently generate energy. This concept is explained well in the mitochondrial video at MitoHQ.com. I realized as a 45 year-old why was I needing to activate more tools in the toolbox to heal my mitochondria heteroplasmy. I asked myself the question a few years ago, “What if I were 25 years old and only used exercise in the sun?” I knew the answer: it would be a lot easier and most people in their later 30s or 40s can often feel the energy diminishing.

I think that summer in 2016 may have gotten me slim again. A radical thing happened to me in 1987 when I was playing varsity soccer starting out weighing 200 pounds as the main defensive player on the team. But they had me working out for an hour each morning and another hour in the evening. At the age of 17, I shed all of my fat and went back from 200 pounds down to 160 pounds that year, only to gain it all back plus more by the next year in college turning my life into the normal bookworm.

When looking deeper into the mitochondria and how energy generation can get revitalized or diminished, it quickly becomes intriguing to any biologist or researcher how light frequencies are interacting with our mitochondrial engines. Biochemists typically focus on specific mechanisms without considering how the very things they are researching are influenced by the electromagnetic forces within the biology, what water structure and components of the water are in these mitochondrial spaces, and how it is all being signaled dynamically and systematically.

When Sherlock Holmes Works on a Puzzle

As you may see, there is a large number of pieces to the metabolic puzzle. Over many years of my life, I discovered at the root of my problems was the way I was living: my normal 9 to 7 workday put me indoors. But once I got home and finished up chores, I would typically need to unwind. Typically, that looked like couch-potato’ing in-front of artificially-lit screen in nnEMF-filled environments for many hours exactly at the wrong times of day.

Although I would get outside some days, I would rarely expose enough skin. Also in the mornings, I would block out the sun on the way to work behind sunglasses. Could missing morning sunlight be as important as the flip-side of the day in the evening? Do biological processes from morning sunlight help with generating more melatonin, endogenous pineal-gland production? How are all of these systems interlinked? These are all deeper questions that may unlock the larger keys to life.

Mother Nature Always Wins

Our modern behaviors and how we live typically do not align well with Mother Nature anymore. But She can put things right again. Of late, Mother Nature has been asking humans: “Do we actually feel healthy embracing the mutated, modified, synthetic, virtual, altered and artificial things produced by humans?”

The choices are quite simple:

  • Artificial Intelligence or True Intelligence?
  • Artificial Lighting or Natural Lighting?
  • Artificial Sweeteners or Actual Sweeteners?
  • Artificial EMFs or Native EMFs?
  • Artificial Dyes or Nature-produced Colors?
  • Artificial Drugs or Food Grown Under the Sun?
  • Artificial Sex Toys or Real Lovers?
  • Artificial Turf or Living Grass?
  • Artificial/Virtual/Augmented Reality or Genuine Reality?
  • Artificial Life or a Fully Lived Life?

Why isn’t there any form of Artificial Wisdom in our world at this time? Because wisdom itself is created through actual observations grounded in reality via our experiences here in this tangible world. “Smart” was somewhat hijacked a decade ago by technologists because they knew they’d be patting their own backs and making the public feel smart by buying their creations. For this reason, anything “smart” is not wise, is it? To link this full-circle, embracing things “smart” is by definition living an Artificial Life. Embracing Nature is by definition living the more experienced, purpose-driven and Fulfilled Life.

Many of us are facing Personal Escapism with “things artificial” because of the Modern World we have created: do we check-out of this world, let the world tell us how to live, let other humans control us, escape within an addictive opioid, keg of alcohol or endless screen-time, have groups and governments decide our fates?

Or instead, do we invoke our willpower, our creativity, our individual freedom, our imagination, our spirit, our drive, our own way to experience the life we see fit and add our individual, unique, specialized viewpoint to the universe? Each and every person can make a difference. It starts with personal awareness to awaken the rest of the sleeping world. Knowledge is utterly useless unless it is directed through the lens of wisdom: a wisdom derived from our experiences with Mother Nature. Our mitochondria are listening for the queues, but are we?

By Scott J. Compton