Diabetes mellitus is a group of metabolic disorders that affect our body’s ability to effectively utilize and manage blood glucose levels. Understanding diabetes is a keystone of diabetes management and treatment. Therefore we must be well acquainted with the types, symptoms, and prevention strategies of this chronic disease.
In our mid-30’s, we would usually be perplexed to figure out if we are a diabetic or just hypochondriac. So people, let us not be bewildered by this! To enlighten our minds with some information on diabetic care, I am presenting you with a simple guide to understanding this health condition.
TYPES OF DIABETES: Though studies have proposed various types of diabetes, diabetes can be broadly classified into 3 major types.
- Type 1 diabetes: It is an autoimmune condition where the beta cells in our pancreas cannot produce insulin (Insulin is responsible for controlling blood glucose levels)
- Type 2 diabetes: In this type, Insulin resistance occurs where our body cannot use insulin efficiently. This eventually leads to high blood glucose levels.
- Gestational diabetes: This type of diabetes occurs during pregnancy where certain insulin-blocking hormones are produced.
EARLY SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF DIABETES: The symptoms of type-1 diabetes occur quickly after its onset but type-2 diabetes showcases characteristic symptoms only at the later stage and so it is imperative to identify the mild warning signs it shows earlier. If we are diabetic, we would possess the following early signs and symptoms.
- We would lose or gain weight unexpectedly.
- We would feel abnormally thirsty, hungry and urinate often.
- We would feel dryness in the mouth and skin.
- We would attain Nausea.
- We would witness numbness in the feet and fingers.
- We would encounter dark skin patches on the neck, armpits and other regions.
FOOD AND LIFESTYLE CHANGES FOR DIABETES PREVENTION: Anxious about developing diabetes mellitus? Do not worry. We can successfully prevent it if we adopt these lifestyle changes.
- Steadily cut down sugar and carbs in the food.
- Eat a healthy, balanced carbohydrate-controlled diet.
- A high-fibr diet is highly recommended.
- Do not eat processed foods.
- Avoid consuming sugar-sweetened beverages.
- Work out/exercise regularly.
- Drink plenty of water.
- If obese or overweight, lose weight.
- Avoid sedentary activities.
- Quit smoking and drinking.
- Undertake regular health check-ups.
Embrace healthier food, embrace a healthier lifestyle, embrace a healthier you!
“Trying to manage diabetes is hard because if you don’t. there are consequences you’ll have to deal with later in life”- Bryan Adams