One-on-one with Margarita Kullick, M.D.
Recently, Natural Awakenings had the opportunity interview Margarita Kullick, M.D., a local functional medical physician, board certified in internal medicine and concerned about the alarming increase in diabetes. She provided valuable insight into some of the possible causes and a fresh look on holistic ways to reduce the chances of getting diabetes.
NA: Type-2 diabetes seems to be on the rise now plus it has been reported that many people are living without a diagnosis. Why are we seeing a rise in this disease? And how does someone find out if they have it? Are there symptoms (or conditions) that point to a likely diagnosis?
MK: In the past type-2 diabetes mellitus was rarely seen in young people, but not anymore. More and more, we are seeing younger people sitting in the dialysis units suffering from kidney failure, which is one of the effects of diabetes and a general increase in the incidence of diabetes. Type-2 diabetes rose 4.8 percent per year and type 1 rose 1.8 percent per year.
The worrisome increase in both type I and type-2 has the research community speculating that environmental triggers may play a role. Besides the lack of proper nutrients in the diet, we are exposed to an array of environmental insults to our health on a daily basis, from toxic pesticides, plastics products, heavy metals and now, of paramount importance- exposure, to electromagnetic field radiation (EMFs). This includes exposure from cell towers, cellphone use, microwaves, wireless routers and other wireless devices and smart meters.
NA: It seems that many people assume that they have or will get type-2 diabetes because it runs in the family. Their parents and siblings have it so there is nothing that the individual can do to stop from getting the disease. What is the role of genetics in getting type-2 diabetes?
MK: This is where the word epigenetics becomes a life-saver. Having the gene may increase risk for the disease but does not guarantee a diagnosis. How is it expressed? A gene may not manifest if we take all precautions, such as healthy living, appropriate diet, exercise, minimizing toxic exposure, detoxifying the body as much as we can and protecting our mitochondrial function.
NA: If someone already has been diagnosed with type-2 diabetes, what do you recommend that the person do? What lifestyle changes are suggested?
MK: In 35 years of practice, I have had many diabetic patients and only two needed dialysis due to not following the plan of action. With the rest of my patients, none suffered the well-known long-term effects of diabetes. I create an individual plan for them which includes changes, plus supplements to address inflammatory and microvascular changes at the cellular level.
NA: What is the benefit of a holistic and functional medicine approach to treating type-2 diabetes?
MK: A holistic, functional medicine approach to diabetes will address root causes and implement necessary remedies. Diabetes is a serious disease and requires a life-long plan of diet and exercise, detoxification, antioxidant and mitochondrial function optimization, to name a few. It takes a commitment from the patient, but patients can improve with a plan, and I like to monitor the plan so I know the patient feels better and sees improvement.
NA: What is the biggest challenge for a person facing a potential diagnosis/or a person who has already been diagnosed?
MK: Consistency and commitment to the plan, but once followed, the reward is good energy, a long, healthier quality of life and, above all, avoiding the dreaded consequences of diabetes such as kidney failure, blindness, amputations and higher risk of cancer.
They say it takes a village to raise a child, never truer than now; we must protect our youth from developing the diseases such as diabetes, mental illness, cancer and infertility. We need to become teachers, and leaders for good and healthy living. Is EMF radiation exposure the drop that spills the glass? Do we have to wait another 10 years for the statistics of studies to tell us what we should have been doing to protect our children our youth ourselves? Or do we take a proactive stand and reverse the trend.
Margarita Kullick, M.D, is a functional medical physician, board certified in Internal Medicine and works at National Integrated Health Associates (NIHA). For more information, visit NihaDC.com/Health-Programs/Diabetes-Integrative-Medicine.html.