Diabetes is a sweet silent killer. Most of the time one in four people are unware that they are suffering from diabetes. Diabetes is a disease that occurs when blood sugar levels are very high. Over a period, such high blood glucose levels lead to health problems like heart disease, vision problems, kidney disease, nerve damage or neuropathy. You may read in a newspaper or on internet about alternative medicines like Ayurveda or Homeopathy that claims to cure diabetes. However, that fact remains the same that diabetes cannot be cured but managed.
Diabetes facts and myths: Diabetes in India is gaining the status of a potential epidemic. Here are few diabetes facts and myths: Presently there are more than 62 million Indian’s who are diagnosed with diabetes. In the year 2000 India became the world capital of diabetes mellitus with 31.7 million Indian’s suffering from diabetes mellitus. By 2030 the number of Indian’s suffering from diabetes will increase to 79.4 million. The national urban survey conducted by the government of India in metro cities revealed prevalence of diabetes in these cities. In Kolkata diabetes prevalence rate is 11.7%, in Delhi it is 11.4 %, in Mumbai it is 9.3% while in Chennai it is 13.5%. Other than these facts there are myths like diabetes is not a serious disease but the fact is that more people die due to diabetes compared to breast cancer & AIDS combined. Other myth is that diabetes is communicable disease while the fact is that it not contagious.
Diabetes risk factors: Obesity is the major risk factor for diabetes. However, in India there is less obesity compared to European countries. Still India leads the race in diabetes compared to western countries. This proves that although Indian’s are lean with lower BMI (body mass index) they are more prone to diabetes. Moreover, Indian’s are vulnerable to heart disease due to dyslipidaemia & low levels of HDL (high density lipoproteins). Due to these complications due to diabetes occurs are at an early age with Indian’s. This is the reason why it is recommended that diabetes should be screened early irrespective of the patient’s age.
Diabetes causes: There are 2 types of diabetes viz., Type 1 which is also known as Insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) & Type 2 which is also known as Non-Insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM). Type 1 diabetes happens when the beta cells of pancreas are destructed & they produce less or no insulin. As a matter of fact Type 1 is an autoimmune disease in which body’s own immune system destroys the beta cells of pancreas. Type 2 diabetes is caused by insulin resistance, a condition in which insulin in not utilized effectively. Genes also play an important role in Type 2 diabetes. Certain genes increase the chance of developing Type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes symptoms: Common symptoms of diabetes are as follows:
– Frequent urination especially at night
– Excessive thirst
– Excessive fatigue
– Unintentional weight loss
– Blurred vision
– Wound healing prolonged for even minor cuts & wounds
Diabetes diet:For a diabetic person diet plays an important role in managing glycemic control. For an Indian the diabetic diet should include carbohydrates, fats & proteins in the ratio of 60:20:20. With this ratio the total calorie intake should be between 1500 to 1800 calories a day. Two servings of milk in a day is a healthier option as milk contains both carbohydrates & proteins. High fibre vegetables should be a part of one’s diet. Fruits high in fibre should be consumed. Whole grains, oats & high fibre foods needs to be taken in meals. The key to good health is to have a balanced & planned diet in diabetes.
Diabetes prevention:Type 1 diabetes being autoimmune it cannot be prevented. However, Type 2 diabetes can be prevented by making few lifestyle changes like below:
– Maintain healthy body weight
– Eat whole grain products
– Avoid sugary beverages
– Limit intake of red meat
– Quit smoking if you are a smoker
Diabetes checkup:Diabetes is a serious disease that needs to be monitored at regular intervals. Also, we know now that diabetes can harm vital organs if the body including heart, kidney, eyes & nerves. Thus, an annual diabetes checkup is very important to live a healthy life. Following is the checklist:
– Blood pressure & Pulse rate
– Total cholesterol
– HDL cholesterol
– LDL cholesterol
– Micro albuminuria
– Eyes examination
– Foot check & sensation
So now you know that even if you don’t have diabetes it is better get tested. If you are a diabetic, then the annual health checkup is a must to live a healthy life. So why wait, book your health check-up package today for a healthier tomorrow.