What is it like having a melting chocolate piece in front of you and you couldn't have it? This is what people with diabetes go through. However, are we quite sure about the myths and facts surrounding the word 'blood sugar'?
What is Diabetes?
Diabetes mellitus, which is popularly known as diabetes or simply 'sugar', is a medical situation in which you are diagnosed with a high amount of glucose in the blood. This occurs due to the incapacity of the pancreas to produce insulin or inability of the cells to process the same to convert the blood sugar to metabolic energy. Thus, this condition leads to the accumulation of the undue amount of sugar, which may lead to severe physical and neurological malfunctions in the person.
Thus, insulin is the catch here. If the production of insulin is disturbed, prepare yourselves to be doomed!
What happens when insulin production steeps beyond the required level?
- The blood sugar, which is prevented from entering the cell disrupts the metabolic conversion of energy from the glucose.
- So, the cells seek to counterbalance the energy requirements by deriving them from fats and proteins.
- This unnatural conversion of fats results in an increased amount of ketone production, and the high amount of energy used in the conversion of proteins makes the patient dizzy.
- As the blood glucose level soars up high, the kidneys try their best to throw the unwanted away, resulting in frequent urine-call and dehydration.
- This makes the patient crave more food and water. However, he/she never yields what is eaten as they start to lose weight, uncontrollably.
Symptoms that you are diabetic and need an urgent check-up.
If you are feeling more fatigue than usual, frequent and urgent urination, increased thirst and hunger, itchy skin, blurred vision, yeast infection, numbness of hands and feet along with wounds that heal slowly, rush to a doctor and check your blood up. This might be the diabetes symptoms that may harm you if turned a cold shoulder. If you are too lazy to go to a doctor, settle for a one-touch Blood Glucose Self-Monitoring System.
What happens when diabetes is left unnoticed?
Diabetes, if left unnoticed for long, can lead to deadly complications such as diabetic retinopathy (damage to the eyes), diabetic nephropathy(damage to the kidneys) and diabetic neuropathy(damage to the nerves of the body), diabetic foot ulcers and bleeding gums. It can even affect the heart vessels and cause atherosclerosis, leading to a heart attack.
Types of Diabetes
Diabetes mellitus is not something that comes about in black and white. There are many types based on the way it affects the blood sugar level.
Type-1 Diabetes, which was formerly called juvenile-onset diabetes, develops when the immune system destroys pancreatic cells which may result in producing a low amount of insulin to cover up for the blood-sugar level. Type-2 Diabetes, on the other hand, occurs when the body is incapable of responding to insulin.
There are other types of diabetes, such as gestational diabetes, which may occur in pregnant women. Pre-diabetes occurs when the blood sugar level is higher than normal but not high enough to be classified among the former.
Why does diabetes occur?
Diabetes may occur due to several reasons. Genetic make-up and family history of a person accounts the most for his vulnerability to the disease. Correspondingly, ethnic groups like Latin American, Hispanic-American, Afro-American and native-Americans are prone to diabetes more than the others. Obesity and unhealthy eating practices is another big reason while High blood pressure or Cholesterol adds to it.
Is it curable?
Diabetes is not a disease but an immune condition. Though it appears that there is no permanent cure for diabetes, scientists from the department of endocrinology are working on it. However, diabetes can be controlled by exercising regularly and following a healthy dietary plan. The intake of insulin or pills, which stimulates the production of insulin, is also highly recommended. Medications with anti-oxidants, multi-vitamins, Folic acid, Chromium Pico Linate, Gymnema Sylvestre, and Bitter Melon, which best support diabetes, are available.
Prevention is better than cure.
Though diabetes is incurable, prevention of the condition is within reach. Here are some tips:
- Work out regularly.
- Cut saturated and trans fats along with refined carbohydrates out of your diet.
- Drink ample water and have a high-fibre meal.
- Control weight, if you are obese and quit smoking if you are an addict.
- Avoid sedentary behaviours and be active all day.
- Optimize Vitamin D levels.
- Eat a lot of veggies and fruits, whole grains and lean protein supplements.
De-mystifying some popular diabetic myths.
It is often said that diabetes is caused by eating too much sweet food which is an unlikely factor, as it is caused by the incapacity or scarcity of insulin in the blood. Diabetic people are often asked to stick to their 'diabetic food' products. However, these sugar-replacements may prove to be more menacing than the actual sugar as it may contain more artificial and glucose-producing components.
It is a popular myth that patients on insulin have more severe diabetes than those on oral medications. Type 1 diabetes requires insulin injected directly into the blood as the pancreas ceases to produce any. Type-2, on the contrary, can either opt between both or intake both, to optimize their sugar level.
Recent researches prove that dark chocolate could lower your diabetes level by influencing insulin sensitivity and blood sugar levels emphatically. So, if someone asks you to have a rice-meal instead of a piece of chocolate, answer them with two!