Diabetes and Prediabetes

Diabetes, it is all around on the TV, in the news and the social media, and everyone is talking about how to deal ad live with it, but as the old rule says: prevention is better than cure, and in Diabetes, our bodies are form in a magnificent way to give the heads up before the worse happens.

Pre-Diabetes or border line Diabetes is an early red flag to indicate that Diabetes is on its way, which is luckily preventable, so let us go deeper and know more about this early indication.

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes mellitus – which is widely known as diabetes and literally translate from the Greek origin “sweet pass-through” – is a chronic (meaning on-going or long lasting) disease that occurs either when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin (A type of hormones) or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone that regulates Glucose (blood sugar).

Sounds complicated right? Then let’s break it down

Whenever we consume food, it is broken up to its basic components (Glucose, fat, protein, etc), then glucose leaves the digestive system and goes to the blood stream, Ideally, this amount of glucose should reach to our various cells in the body as it is considered as an energy source, this is done by the help of Insulin, which acts a facilitator for glucose to enter our cells.

That was the normal cycle, but in diabetes, glucose doesn’t reach the cells, instead it stays in the blood, and this can be caused due to two reasons, either the pancreas (the organ that produces Insulin along with other hormones) doesn’t produce enough insulin, (Type 1 Diabetes) or the body has enough insulin, however the cells don’t respond to it as it should be (Type 2 diabetes)

So that is the story in its simplest forms


What are the effects of high blood sugar (Glucose)?

High glucose levels has effects on several functions of the body, for example:


Increased risk of cardiovascular diseases:

Over time, high blood glucose from diabetes can damage your blood vessels and the nerves that control your heart and blood vessels, so the more diabetes is around, the higher the risk


Nerve damage (Neuropathy)

Excess sugar can injure the walls of the tiny blood vessels (capillaries) that nourish your nerves, especially in your legs, which directly affects your nerves and creates a sense of tingling, numbness, burning or pain, which if left untreated can lead to serious dysfunctions and amputation.


Kidney damage (Nephropathy)

A different result due to the same concept above, the kidneys, of course, contain millions of tiny blood vessel clusters (glomeruli) that filter waste from your blood. Diabetes can damage this delicate filtering system leading to severe damage which in turns puts the patient in high risk of kidney failure or irreversible end-stage kidney disease.


Eye damage (Retinopathy):

the same effect for glucose here on the blood vessels of the retina (diabetic retinopathy), potentially leading to blindness, increasing the risk of cataracts and glaucoma


Skin conditions  

Diabetes may leave you more susceptible to skin problems, including bacterial and fungal infections



So what can I do to keep Diabetes away from me?


Enjoy a balanced diet:

It is a simple matter, access sugar and carbohydrates around the cells turn into fat, and this fat makes the body cells less susceptible to Insulin, therefore, pushing further glucose on the bloodstream.


Maintain a regular level of physical activity:

The more you move around, not only you will consume more energy which is taken from Glucose and other sources in the body, but also you will grow your muscle mass which interns consumes more energy sources from your blood stream so the more you exercise the less Glucose swims in your blood stream.


Lose those extra kilos!

Yes, you need to lose those extra kilos not only to look slim but also to stay away from Diabetes as it has been proven in clinical studies that obesity is linked to insulin resistance, meaning that more sugar will stay in the bloodstream where the cells will be deprived of their energy source.



So what is Prediabetes?

Prediabetes basically means a condition where the blood sugar or glucose levels are consistently higher than the normal values but still lower than the diabetic levels.

Research shows that most people with pre-diabetes will develop Type 2 diabetes within 10 years, but luckily, if it is discovered early and faced with the right diet and exercise plan, diabetes can be delayed and even prevented from developing!

Prediabetes can be reversed




How to test my blood sugar level?

Blood sugar tests should be done once a year if you have a family history, have low physical activity levels and suffer from obesity or if you are prediabetic, otherwise, a test should be done once in three years. There are three types of blood sugar test and they are as of the following:


Note: There is another type of tests which is called Random (or Casual) Plasma Glucose Test, this test is a blood check at any time of the day when you have severe diabetes symptoms, if the score is more than or equal to 200 mg/dl then you are considered diabetic.

Article’s Bonus

Feeling like you want to take an action and check up on yourself? Go ahead and use the link below to see how likely you are to develop diabetes, just make sure you fill in the right information J

http://www.diabetes.org/are-you-at-risk/diabetes-risk-test/?loc=atrisk-slabnav



Stay Positive, Stay healthy, Stay grateful!

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References:

https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/overview/preventing-problems/heart-disease-stroke

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/diabetes/symptoms-causes/syc-20371444

https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/sites/default/files/styles/16x9_crop/public/2017-12/internal_structures_1_0.jpg?itok=BNFPxPUV&h=6c8b8c3d

http://www.bbsedona.net/vision/16-Year-Old-Invents-3D-Printed-Eye-Test-For-Preventing.jpg

https://fm.cnbc.com/applications/cnbc.com/resources/img/editorial/2017/03/30/104374765-GettyImages-505068470.530×298.jpg?v=1490894818

https://www.healthline.com/hlcmsresource/images/topic_centers/BeautyandSkinCare/766x415_Dry_Elbow.jpg

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4259868/

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/11645-diabetes-prevention/management-and-treatment

https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/how-often-should-you-get-your-blood-sugar-checked-

http://www.diabetes.org/are-you-at-risk/prediabetes/?loc=atrisk-slabnav

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