In many cases, diabetes is a preventable disease, but most women do not do anything about it until after a diagnosis. Ironically, the things that help to prevent diabetes are often not adopted until after diagnosed. It is important to think about your health and the possibility of getting diabetes if you aren’t eating right and exercising. The World Health Organization estimates over 350 million people all over the world have diabetes. The reason it is an emerging epidemic is attribute to the rapid increase in obesity and decline in physical activity. Both men and women are equally susceptible to diabetes, but we are bringing awareness to women in this case because so often they are the caregivers, taking care of everyone else but themselves.
What is Diabetes?
You might hear about the disease but aren’t sure what it really is. Diabetes is defined by the World Health Organization as, “a chronic disease that occurs either when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone that regulate blood sugar. Hyperglycemia, or raised blood sugar, is a common effect of uncontrolled diabetes and over time leads to serious damage to many of the body’s systems, especially the nerves and blood vessels.” In effect, for people with diabetes, the increased blood sugar acts like a poison to your body.
Types of Diabetes
There are three types of diabetes: Type 1 Diabetes, Type 2 Diabetes, and Gestational Diabetes.
- Type 1 diabetes is characterized by a lack of insulin production.
- Type 2 diabetes is characterized from the body’s ineffective use of insulin.
- Type 3 diabetes occurs during pregnancy and is characterized by hyperglycemia, or raised blood sugar. Women
With gestational diabetes are at an increased risk for type 2 diabetes.
Facts about Diabetes from the World Health Organization:
- Diabetes is predicted to become the 7th leading cause of death worldwide by 2030.
- Total deaths from diabetes are projected to increase more than 50% in the next 10 years.
- Type 2 diabetes accounts for 90% of all diabetes worldwide.
- Reports of Type 2 Diabetes in children have increased worldwide.
- Diabetes has become one of the major causes of premature illness and death in most countries.
- Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness, amputation, and kidney failure.
- The most important fact is that Type 2 Diabetes can be prevented. Maintaining a healthy diet and 30 minutes
Of moderate-intensity physical activity on most days drastically reduces your risk.
Do Not Let Diabetes Go Undiagnosed:
Learning about diabetes and educating yourself about the warning signs and knowing how to prevent it from happening are all very important. A diagnosis of diabetes can be reversed if poor diet and lack of exercise were the cause of diabetes. Another reason why spreading awareness to women is so important is because since they are the caretakers, their decisions for dietary considerations and family exercise can help spread good preventative practices.
Consider these facts from the International Diabetes Federation:
- 3 % of the estimate 387 million people living with diabetes in the world are undiagnosed.
- That is 1 in every 12 people worldwide have diabetes.
- 1 in 2 people do not know they have it.
- Every 7 seconds one person dies from diabetes.
- In 2014, 4.9 million deaths were attributed to diabetes.
- $1 out of every $9 spent on healthcare is spent on diabetes.
- In 2014, diabetes expenditures reached $612 billion.
Warning Signs for Diabetes:
The important lesson is that not only is diabetes usually preventable, but you can also look for the warning signs to catch it early enough to reverse the diagnosis. Early detection is very important and the only way to possibly reverse the diagnosis. Even if the diagnosis cannot be reversed, early detection can help halt progression of the disease and prevent further complications from occurring. Unfortunately, the warning signs are sometimes not alarming and can be common so diagnosis can go undetected.
Here are the symptoms to look for if you are worried about diabetes:
- Urinating often
- Feeling very thirsty
- Dry mouth
- Feeling very hungry – even though you are eating
- Extreme fatigue
- Blurry vision
- Cuts/bruises that are slow to heal
- Unexplained weight loss (type 1)
- Tingling, pain, or numbness in the hands/feet (type 2)
- Frequent yeast infections
Diabetes is something that can be detected during your annual trip to your doctor. A simple blood test can help determine your blood levels and let your doctor and you know if diabetes is a problem for you.
Diabetes Treatment Options:
The treatment for diabetes starts with a healthy diet and exercising before medication or insulin treatment usually in instituted. As we mentioned above, it is ironic that the diet and exercise practices that can prevent diabetes are often not adopted until after a diagnosis occurs. The healthy diet for diabetics or prevention of diabetes includes eating more raw fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, reducing carbohydrate intake, and eating little or no sugars. The key is that low glycemic foods help you maintain a stable blood sugar level. This type of healthy diet combined with 30 minutes of daily exercise can reverse the effects of early onset diabetes.
However, you must consult your doctor because your blood sugar level had to be monitored closely and other medications or insulin therapy might be needed. This is in the cases where diet and exercise cannot help diabetics reach their target blood level.
George Clinical is a Contract Research Organization, or CRO that is headquartered in Sydney yet operates on a global scale, including in places like Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, Korea, and the United States. With clinical trial expertise in diverse fields as diabetes, cardiovascular, respiratory, heart disease, renal, neurology, nephrology, kidney disease, stroke, metabolic, and oncology research, George Clinical is a CRO offering a unique service which combines world leading scientific expertise with global operational capability. You can find us on LinkedIn and Twitter.