Globally the prevalence of diabetes in adults (18 years and older) is 8.5 %. An estimated 1.5 million deaths are directly linked to diabetes each year in addition to 2.2 million deaths attributable to high blood glucose levels. Diabetes is a chronic metabolic disorder characterized by high glucose levels in the blood caused by insulin-related abnormalities within the body.
Insulin is a peptide hormone produced by the beta cells of the pancrease. This hormone facilitates the production of energy from glucose provided by carbohydrates in the food we consume. The hormone is also responsible for keeping the blood sugar level from getting too high (hyperglycemia) or too low (hypoglycemia)
TYPES OF DIABETES
Based on the relationship with insulin diabetes is categorized into two; type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes: this type of diabetes is also known as juvenile diabetes it arises when the body does not make insulin or does not make enough insulin as a result of the destruction of the pancreatic cells responsible for the production of the hormone by the immune system
Type 2 diabetes: in this case the body produces insulin but the cells of the body do not use it as well as they should, As such the pancreases move to produce more insulin to improve uptake of glucose by the cells. This continues until the pancreas weakens and cannot keep up leading to the accumulation of sugar in the blood.
Generally, people use portable blood glucose meters, called glucometers, to check their blood sugar levels. These work by analyzing a small amount of blood, usually from a fingertip. A lancet lightly pricks your skin to obtain the blood. Meters tell you your current blood sugar. However new technologies like the cgm system mobile app have now made it possible for millions around the globe to generate updated glucose readings throughout the day, predictive alerts, and the ability to share vital information with healthcare providers on a real-time basis.
Symptoms of Diabetes
The Symptoms of type 1 and type 2 diabetes include
- Fatigue (excessive tiredness)
- Slow healing of wounds
- Increased urination
- Blurred vision
- Yeast infections
- Urinary tract infections
- Excessive thirst,
- Unexplained Weight loss,
- Skin problems
- Increased huger especially after eating
Causes of Diabetes
Several factors have been linked to the causation of diabetes they include;
Genetics plays a critical role in diabetes. Africans, Latinos, African Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, and Pacific islanders are at higher risk of developing diabetes.
- Excess weight
Excess weight has been linked to diabetes type 2 and cardiovascular diseases in many children, teenagers and adults who are obese develop this condition over time
- Too much carbohydrates
Eating and exclusive carbohydrate diet significantly increase your risk of diabetes
- Carbonate drinks and artificial sweeteners consumption
Artificial sweeteners and carbonated drinks consumption also increases the risk of developing diabetes
Many factors also predisposes an individual to the development of diabetes some of which include: family history of diabetes, race, and ethnic group among others. Nevertheless a recent study has offered a new ray of hope for those with the condition. Scientists at the University of Medical Sciences in Yazd, Iran evaluated the effects of ginger (Zingiber officinale) on plasma glucose level, HbA1c and insulin sensitivity in type 2 diabetic patients the results showed that
- Taking 1 gram of grounded ginger 3 times daily for 8 weeks will reduce your blood glucose level by 10.5%
- Taking 1 gram of grounded ginger 3 times daily for 8 weeks will reduce your HBA1c levels
- Measurements of insulin resistance and insulin sensitivity were significantly better among those taking 1 gram of grounded ginger 3 times daily.
This findings opens an important vista in the management of diabetes as it opens a significant window of hope to the millions that are suffering from the condition especially in low and middle income countries were access to anti-diabetic drugs is limited due to financial constraints. See Health Benefits of Bitter leaf
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