Toilet Phobia Kills Teenager

July 7, 2015 by

polls_overflowing_toilet_2415_766131_poll_xlargeIn strange but true health news, a British teenager suffered a heart attack after going without a bowel movement for eight weeks, reports the Independent.

Family members are claiming that the sixteen year old suffered from toilet phobia.

What is ‘toilet phobia’?

Toilet Phobia is rarely just one condition. It is a term used to describe a number of overlapping conditions including panic, agoraphobia, ocd and social phobia.  The fears around the toilet include: not being able to urinate/defecate, fear of being too far from a toilet fear of using public toilets, fear that others may be watching or listening

Authorities say her chronic constipation resulted in distended organs and a compressed chest cavity, factors that contributed to her cardiac arrest. An autopsy revealed a “massive extension of the large bowel,” says the pathologist who examined Emily Titterington.

It was “like nothing I have seen before—it was dramatic.” The teen was mildly autistic and had a lifelong history of what Medical Daily calls “stool withholding,” a behavior that usually passes after early childhood.

Emily’s mother said she had been pleading with her daughter before her death to have a thorough medical exam, but the teen refused. The family doctor had prescribed laxatives but acknowledges that he didn’t examine the girl’s abdomen.

A paramedic who responded to Emily’s home the night of her death—it was actually the second call by her parents that night—found the teen’s abdomen “grossly extended.” One doctor not involved with the case tells People that “there’s more than meets the eye here.” The teen “probably had some electrolyte abnormality, or a cardiac arrhythmia from something else.”

Due to the nature of toilet phobia, people are often reluctant to admit to the condition or to seek help. Those who do seek help can usually overcome or improve their ability to cope with the problem, even after many years of difficulty. Seeking help is the first step to finding real improvements.

Reprinted from FOX NEWS 

LISTEN NOW: June’s Diabetes Late Nite podcast inspired by Mark Ronson

Favorite Podcasts: Diabetes Roundtable live from ADA Expo

July 6, 2015 by


July marks the fifth year anniversary of podcasting diva-style. To celebrate the occasion we’re taking a look back at some of our favorite podcasts. One of Mr. Divabetic’s favorite moments was working was hosting a live remote broadcast in the Divabetic Pavilion of the ADA EXPO in Pittsburgh, PA.

“This is hands down one of my favorite podcasts,” says Max ‘Mr. Divabetic’ Szadek. “We never had done a live remote before so the results are hysterical. There we were running around the EXPO floor, interviewing participants, describing the atmosphere and sharing key diabetes self-care strategies. It was a blast!”

The EXPO is FREE and includes health screenings, cooking demonstrations, product and service exhibitors, as well as leading experts talking about diabetes management, research and prevention. Get the latest information on preventing and managing diabetes and its deadly complications to help keep you and your family healthy.

Visit the American Diabetes Association EXPO Pittsburgh and Join the Millions® in the fight to Stop Diabetes®. Learn how to live healthy, be active and change the future of diabetes for you and your family.


Divabetic broadcasts live from the American Diabetes Association Expo, in Pittsburgh, PA. Mr. Divabetic takes you on the floor and behind the scenes of one of the largest events for people living with, at risk of and affected by diabetes.

LISTEN NOW: Diabetes Roundtable live from Pittsburgh ADA Expo

Favorite Podcasts: Studio d -The Golden Rules Of Diabetes

July 5, 2015 by


July marks the fifth year anniversary of podcasting diva-style. To celebrate the occasion we’re taking a look back at some of our favorite podcasts. One of Mr. Divabetic’s favorite moments was working with Jessica Issler RD, CDE to make learning about diabetes fun.

“I met Jessica backstage at dLife and form an instant connection,” says Max ‘Mr. Divabetic’ Szadek. “We share the same enthusiasm for taking diabetes out of the clinical setting and presenting it in a colorful, more engaging manner. We’re both big Golden Girls fans so it was only a matter of time before we incorporated the TV show into our approach to teaching about diabetes self-care.”

The happy healthcare host Max “Mr. Divabetic” Szadek shares the studio with Jessica Issler, RD, CDE, a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator,  to offer the golden rules of diabetes care with a focus on food. Using the original Golden Girls – Blanche, Sophia, Rose and Dorothy – as inspiration, they review healthy food options for a variety of palates.

The Golden Girls is an American sitcom, created by Susan Harris, that originally aired on NBC from September 14, 1985, to May 9, 1992. Starring Beatrice Arthur, Betty White, Rue McClanahan, and Estelle Getty, the show centers on four older women sharing a home in Miami, Florida.

The Golden Girls received critical acclaim throughout most of its run and won several awards, including the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series twice. It also won three Golden Globe Awards for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy. Each of the four stars received an Emmy Award (from multiple nominations during the series’ run), making it one of only three sitcoms in the award’s history to achieve this. The series also ranked among the top ten highest-rated programs for six out of its seven seasons.

In 2014, theWriters Guild Of America placed the sitcom at No. 69 in their list of the “101 Best Written TV Series Of All Time”.

LISTEN NOW: Studio d – the Golden Rules of Diabetes Diet

Favorite Podcasts: 20 Feet From Stardom

July 4, 2015 by


July marks the fifth year anniversary of podcasting diva-style. To celebrate the occasion we’re taking a look back at some of our favorite podcasts. One of Mr. Divabetic’s favorite moments was interviewing one of the most successful and prolific background singers, Lisa Fischer from the film, 20 Feet from Stardom.

“I met Lisa Fischer on my very first Luther tour,” says Max ‘Mr. Divabetic’ Szadek. “It was fun and exciting to have her on the show to celebrate the success of the documentary.”

20 Feet from Stardom focuses on the untold true story of the backup singers behind some of the greatest musical legends of the 21st century including Bruce Springsteen, The Rolling Stone, Bette Midler and Luther Vandross. Triumphant and heartbreaking in equal measure, the film is both a tribute to the unsung voices who brought shape and style to popular music and a reflection on the conflicts, sacrifices and rewards of a career spent harmonizing with others.
The happy healthcare, Mr. Divabetic aims to encourage everyone with diabetes to back up their daily self-care management with a team of professionals. Strive to create a team aka ‘entourage’ to help you perform at your best in the same way your favorite famous ‘diva’ has done. Managing blood sugars can be challenging and overwhelming at times. It’s important to find answers to your questions, connect with others and get the support you need during difficult times.

Special guests include: 20 Feet From Stardom star, Lisa Fischer, Actor, Screenwriter and Author of ‘Good Like This’ Peter Arpesella, Authors Ginger Vieira and Riva Greenberg, Poet Lorraine Brooks, Mama Rose Marie, Patricia Addie-Gentle, RN, CDE, Pam Butler MS, CDE, Janice Harris RN, CDE and Asha Brown, the founder of the We Are Diabetes organization ( and is living with type 1 diabetes.

LISTEN NOW: Diabetes Roundtable inspired by 20 Feet From Stardom

Living with Diabetes Made Me … ? (Choose 3 Words)

July 2, 2015 by


This month Mr. Divabetic and the Diabetes Late Nite team celebrate the fifth year anniversary of Divabetic podcasting. If you’ve tuned into a Divabetic podcast then you know there’s a pervasive attitude about living with diabetes is upbeat and uplifting on each and every episode.

Over the years we’ve shared stories filled with strength, hope and determination from men and women living with diabetes across the country. Their life experiences, struggles and successes have helped us push the shame and blame associated with diabetes aside in order to make room for a sassy, smooth attitude of living with diabetes. We understand that a life with diabetes requires diligence, discipline and support but in no way does that mean diabetes has to dim your dazzle!

Are we on the same page?

Join us in celebrating a ‘new attitude’ about living with diabetes.  Help us inspire others by finishing this sentence using three words: “Living with Diabetes made me …”

What would you say?

Share your thoughts and feelings with us on Divabetic Facebook pages and help us change the way people live well with diabetes. Thank you for listening.

LISTEN NOW: June’s Diabetes Late Nite inspired by Mark Ronson

Luther Vandross Taught Me to Believe in The Power Of Love

July 1, 2015 by


“When I say goodbye it is never for long
‘Cause I know our love still lives on
It will be again exactly like it was
‘Cause I believe in the power of love”

10 years after Luther Vandross‘ passing in 2005  the lyrics to one of his biggest hits, “Power of Love/Love Power” still motivate me to show people that diabetes doesn’t have to dim their dazzle!

For the past decade Divabetic has been an incredible source of joy for me but it’s still somewhat bittersweet to look back at our success when I know that Luther’s stroke, which could have been prevented, was the catalyst for it’s creation.

What started out as reaction to a terrible loss has grown into something that I could have never imagined.

Thanks to Divabetic and our amazing supporters I’ve had the opportunity to present diabetes outreach in over 20 major US cities. Highlights include headlining the main stage at the ADA Expo for the past eight years in Pittsburgh and hosting our Divabetic Club meetings at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia.  I’ve partnered with major medical centers and amazing organizations including the American Diabetes Association, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, All About Women, dLife and Taking Control of Your Diabetes across the country.

Additionally, I have been able to outreach to divas and dudes around the world via  our monthly podcasts on blog talk radio. This July marks our fifth year anniversary of podcasting with over 122 programs available on demand for free!

Even with a robust schedule of Divabetic programming to fill my days I still have vivid memories of feeling saddened, helpless and ashamed  because I was not able to  prevent Luther’s stroke from occurring.   Those aren’t easy memories to shake.

I started working for Luther Vandross on the ‘Never Let Me Go’ tour in 1993.  At the time I was working in theater in the Bay Area with dreams of one day moving to Los Angeles or New York City. Two years later Luther moved me to New York City to become his full-time assistant. Several albums, videos, Award shows, national music tours and many years later while on a routine visit to his house I found Luther on the floor  after he suffered a stroke (related to type 2 diabetes.) I rode with him in the ambulance to the hospital and then stayed by his side until his passing on July 1, 2005.

At his funeral I recall sobbing uncontrollably as I looked at him for last time lying peacefully in his gold casket at Frank Campbell funeral home at in Manhattan. He looked like his former self – so elegant and dignified. He was impeccably dressed in a black Versace suit trimmed with black beading which I chose for the occasion. Lying there peacefully he seemed like he was taking a quick nap before he getting ready to perform for a sold-out audience at Radio City Music Hall.

The years of illness, pain, tears and suffering were erased for good.

Life after the stroke was pretty grim. Simple tasks involved in everyday life were a constant struggle for him. His setbacks far outweighed the progress. We lived in the constant quiet pain of knowing our former ‘fabulous’ lives were gone forever.  The fact that Luther was not able to sing ‘Dance With My Father’ on stage after his stroke was unbearable. Diabetes robbed him of one of the biggest pleasures in his life.

I couldn’t keep quiet, sit back and/or go on and let what happened to Luther Vandross happen to others.

It was at Luther’s Memorial at Riverside Church when I vowed to help Luther fans ‘keep their house a home’ by learning how to prevent a diabetes health-related complication like stroke from occurring. Looking back, I honestly don’t know what I was thinking. I had zero knowledge of diabetes and self-care management and absolutely no experience in outreach of any kind. But I’m so glad I threw caution to the wind and set out on this amazing journey called ‘Divabetic.’

Because of Luther’s stroke I was called upon do something much greater with my life. I am and will always be indebted to Luther Vandross for changing the fate of my life twice. It’s an honor, privilege and pleasure to support his legacy. I am eternally grateful to Luther and his fans for making me believe in the ‘Power Of Love.’ Thank you!

LISTEN NOW: Tribute to Luther Vandross podcast

Ariana Grande Speaks Out

June 30, 2015 by

photoSuperstar Ariana Grande shared a message of female empowerment on social media in response to the media’s obsession with her dating life and not her music.

Since her breakup with Big Sean, she’s been constantly referred to as the rapper’s ex so she’s taking a stand against society’s double standards. She wants people to value her and other women by their accomplishments and not by “who they’re dating/married to/attached to, having sex with (or not).”

“I am tired of living in a world where women are mostly referred to as a man’s past, present or future PROPERTY/POSSESION,” writes Ariana Grande.

When a women has sex, “she’s a slut,” explains Grande. But a man is “regaled” if he “talks or RAPS” about “bitches or hoes.”

In the past, she’s felt pressure to have a man by her side, but since her breakup she’s never “felt more present, grounded, or satisfied.” “I’m saying this after literally eight years of feeling like I constantly had to have a boy by my side,” she writes. “After being on my own now for a few months I am realizing that that’s just not the case.”

She ends with a quote from feminist activist Gloria Steinem: “Any woman who chooses to behave like a full human being should be warned that the armies of the status quo will treat her as something of a dirty joke. That’s their natural and first weapon. She will need her sisterhood.”

LISTEN NOW: June’s Diabetes Late Nite podcast with advice on how to get out of a ‘food, fitness and diabetes’ funk

Divabetic Podcast Flashback: Reversing Diabetes

June 26, 2015 by
Diabetes Late Nite

Diabetes Late Nite

July marks the fifth year anniversary of Divabetic podcasting. There are now over 125 free podcasts available on demand (anytime, anywhere) featuring expert advice, real-life stories, diabetes self-care games, today’s top music and fabulous prizes for you to enjoy.

To celebrate Mr. Divabetic is spotlighting his favorite podcasts from the archives including Diabetes Late Nite podcast inspired by Lisa Stansfield.

“I wanted to tackle the concept of ‘reversing diabetes’ in a different way,” says Mr. Divabetic. “We ran the show format  in reverse to make a point – that these types of claims are insane.”

In the late 80’s and throughout the 90’s, Lisa Stansfield was one of the coolest popstars on the planet. Her seductive, soulful vocals and timeless dance-pop songs took her to the top of the charts on both sides of the Atlantic. Four of her albums were international hits selling more that 15 million copes and spawning over 20 hit singles. We will be playing many of Lisa’s biggest hits on this podcast courtesy of SONY MUSIC.

Lisa Stansfield is inspiring us to ‘throwback’ and talk about the concept of ‘reversing diabetes.’ Many people find the term “reversing diabetes” to be very misleading. How about you? While you may not be able to reverse diabetes you certainly can reverse some things in life like your car, DVD or even this podcast!  We’re flipping the script on this podcast and presenting our regular show format from back to front because we hope to inspire you to look back at past mistakes with a new attitude. Mistakes teach important lessons. Every time you make one, you’re one step closer to your goal: optimum health.There’s no room for shame or blame when you’re able to accept your diagnosis. Let us help empower you to look back at your life with the satisfaction of knowing that diabetes didn’t dim your dazzle!

Diabetes Late Nite guests include Patricia Addie-Gentle RN, CDE, Kathy Gold RN, CDE, Neva White DNP, CRNP, CDE, the Digital Divas, Jessica Issler RD, CDE, Poet Lorraine Brooks, Mama Rose Marie and special guest, Cheri from Long Island, NY.

In tribute to Lisa Stansfield we will be playing many of her biggest hits courtesy of SONY MUSIC.

LISTEN NOW: Diabetes Late Nite inspired by Lisa Stansfield

Celebrating 5 Years of Podcasting with Fifth Harmony

June 25, 2015 by
Diabetes Late Nite

Diabetes Late Nite

July marks the fifth anniversary of Divabetic podcasting. To celebrate this milestone in making diabetes outreach dazzle we’re spotlighting the music from the hottest girl group of 2015, Fifth Harmony.

How hot is Fifth Harmony’s career? Well, the ladies of Fifth Harmony are following in the footsteps of Britney Spears, Destiny’s Child and Kelly Clarkson as the new faces of Candie’s.

“Fifth Harmony is five shades of FABULOUS!,”says Mr. Divabetic.

We’d like to thank SONY Music for providing our monthly musical inspiration. Their partnership with Divabetic has helped us to change the way people learn about diabetes and in turn, change lives.

“The music and artist we spotlight is such and integral part of each and every podcast,” says Mr. Divabetic. “We choose our themes, pick topics and book guests based on the music we are playing.”

TUNE IN: July’s Diabetes Late Nite podcast featuring Fifth Harmony on Tuesday, July 14, 2015, 6-7 PM, EST

Was Dick Van Patten’s Death Related to Diabetes?

June 24, 2015 by


Legendary actor Dick Van Patten’s death at age 86 from diabetes complications underscores the tragic difficulty many older Americans face as they find it harder to manage their disease as they age, as reported by Newsmax.

“As people get older their risk of heart disease and stroke mounts, and this is especially true people with diabetes,” said Dr. Saluja, who practices at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore. “Diabetics have two to four times the risk of heart attack and stroke than people without the disease.”

Dick Van Patten was living with Type 2 diabetes for several years.

Van Patten, best known for his role on hit TV show “Eight Is Enough,” was living with diabetes for many years and said he struggled to keep his blood sugar down.

He was hospitalized in 2006 after having a stroke related to diabetes, but made a full recovery.

“I got what they called a diabetic stroke,” Patten told ET at the time. “Here’s what it is, my left hand and my left leg. You know when your leg falls asleep? It’s like that constantly. It’s not painful, but it’s so annoying. My leg is all tingly and my arm is all tingly.”

Although, Van Patten believed his stroke was due to high blood sugar (hyperglycemia), often low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) is a more difficult problem for senior diabetics, the experts said.

“Younger people can recover from hypoglycemia more easily than older people can,” Dr. Lopez tells Newsmax Health. Hypoglycemia can lead to symptoms that include shakiness, blurred vision, confusion, and coma.

Van Patten began his over 60-year acting career as a child star and a model but made his big Broadway debut when he was just 7 years old in Tapestry in Gray.

The actor and animal activist’s publicist Jeff Ballard told The Wrap, “He was the kindest man you could ever meet in life. A loving family man. They don’t make them like him anymore.”

Portions of this post were reprinted from the article, ‘Dick Van Patten’s Tragic Battle With Diabetes’  by Charlotte Libov on Newsmax. Please visit:

LISTEN NOW: Diabetes Late Nite podcast inspired by Mark Ronson


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