The other "ED" (endothelial dysfunction) is nothing to be shy about.
What It Is
Healthy blood vessels flex and assist the heart in moving blood through the body. This remarkable ability comes from a thin layer of cells, called endothelial cells, which line the inner walls of your arteries and veins.
When blood vessels lose their ability to flex, they stiffen. Doctors call this problem endothelial dysfunction (pronounced en-doe-THEE-lee-uhl dis-FUNK-shin).
The term may be a mouthful, and you may have never heard of it, but the danger is real: Endothelial dysfunction (ED, which is also the acronym for erectile dysfunction) is a major risk factor for high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease, one of the prime consequences of type 2 diabetes.
Unfortunately, most doctors don't test endothelial function. It's a complicated process, usually done in university research environments. Doctors can, however, order a blood test that measures tissue plasminogen activator (t-pa), which is an indirect measure of blood vessel tone. And if your blood vessel tone needs improving, it seems that choosing the right foods can make a big difference.
Spinach-Ricotta Bake Low-Fat Vegetable Curry Cream Cheese and Sun-Dried Tomato Wraps Ocean Spray® Berry Refreshing Green Tea Granita Cheesy Spinach Squares Irish Cappuccino Banana-Pineapple Breakfast Shake Teriyaki Beef and Broccoli Vinegar Biscuits Homemade Pizza Egg Rolls
When last we left this saga, my doctor had me staying out from work for an additional week, but with the head swelling down, I was bound to be back on the bicycle as soon as possible (you know what they say about getting back on the horse that threw you...). I had planned to take my sister on a short (under a mile) ride — both for the company and to get us both on the bicycle. She turned chicken and I ended up going the "flat" route to the greengrocer — a little...