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Diabetes Mellitus (DM), commonly referred to as Diabetes, is a group of metabolic diseases in which the affected individual has high blood sugar levels over an extended time period. With this disease either the pancreas is not producing enough Insulin or the cells of the body are not responding properly to the Insulin being produced by the body. There are three main types of Diabetes; Type 1, Type 2 and Gestational Diabetes. A few rare kinds of Diabetes can result from specific conditions. For example, diseases of the pancreas, certain surgeries and medications, or infections can cause Diabetes. These types of Diabetes account for only 1% to 5% of all cases of Diabetes. General symptoms of Diabetes include excessive urination, increased thirst, dry mouth, increased hunger and fatigue.

Type 1 Diabetes

– is a result of the pancreas failing to produce enough Insulin for the body. The causes behind this is still undetermined but it is thought that genetic and environmental factors could play a role or that it could even be a virus-triggered auto-immune response. According to our sources there is no way to prevent it and the treatment includes Insulin therapy, de-stressing practices, and a healthy diet of foods which does not cause the blood sugar to rise excessively.

Type 2 Diabetes

– is caused by the body’s cells refusal to respond to Insulin, called Insulin resistance. So, the pancreas works fine and produces Insulin but the body won’t accept it. Since Insulin regulates the metabolism of carbohydrates and inhibits the production of glucose in the liver while it promotes the absorption of glucose to the skeletal muscles and fat tissues, the lack of response to Insulin causes the blood sugar levels to rise and become unbalanced. Obesity, poor diet, and lack of exercise is thought to be the primary causes of Type 2 Diabetes.

The disease can be managed by increasing exercise and making dietary changes. If blood sugar levels are not adequately lowered by these measures, medications such as Glucophage or Insulin can also be prescribed. If Diabetes is not properly managed it can develop serious complications such as an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, it also increases the possibility of lower limb amputations. People with Diabetes usually battle with poor blood circulation. They are prompted to visit a Podiatrist on a regular basis. They must take care of their feet!

Gestational Diabetes 

– occurs when pregnant women who have no prior history of Diabetes develop high blood sugar levels. It is caused when Insulin receptors stop functioning properly, likely caused by pregnancy-related factors. This type of Diabetes has few symptoms and is usually diagnosed by screening during pregnancy and it can be managed by modifying the diet and introducing moderate exercise to the daily routine. However some cases may require anti-diabetic drugs, including Insulin. There is no cure for Diabetes Type 1 or Type 2, it never goes away. The good news is that if Insulin, medication, weight loss, physical activity and changes in eating result in normal blood glucose, that means their Diabetes is well controlled and their risk of developing Diabetes complications is much lower. But it doesn’t mean that their Diabetes has gone away. Women with a history of Gestational Diabetes should be tested for Diabetes 6 to 12 weeks after their baby is born. In many cases, their blood glucose levels return to normal after delivery. Although they no longer have Gestational Diabetes, they are at high risk for developing Diabetes in the future, and should continue with healthy eating habits and exercise.

All forms of Diabetes are very serious, although it is a chronic disease that can be effectively managed, it still causes more deaths every year than breast cancer and AIDS combined. Two out of three people with Diabetes die from heart disease or stroke. So it is crucial that you go for regular blood sugar screenings at your local pharmacy and ensure you stay well within safety limits by following a healthy diet and living an active lifestyle.

Prevention is better than cure!