World Diabetes Day: Here Is What You Need To Know About This Condition

First Posted: Nov 15, 2016 05:30 AM EST

With the rates of diabetes cases increasing drastically across the globe, it is just right to pay extra attention on this chronic condition on World Diabetes Day. Though this disease has been present for years, many people are still unaware of the magnitude of the problem. Here is everything they need to know about diabetes.

The World Health Organization (WHO) reports that the number of people suffering from diabetes has increased from 108 million in 1980 to a staggering 422 million in 2014. In fact, it has become the leading cause of kidney failure, blindness, stroke, heart attack and lower limb amputation across the globe. The condition has led to about 1.5 million deaths and 2.2 million deaths were linked to high blood sugar.

What Is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a chronic condition wherein the body does not produce the proper amount of insulin or it does not secrete this essential enzyme at all. However, it is vital to understand the role of insulin in the body. When people eat, the body will turn food into sugars or glucose. One organ in the body, dubbed as pancreas, needs to release insulin, the key in opening the cells for glucose to enter.

However, in diabetes, the system simply does not work, leading to the accumulation of glucose in the blood. This complex condition affects the body in many ways and it could lead to serious conditions if it is left untreated.

What Are The Types Of Diabetes?

There are three main types of diabetes: Type 1, Type 2 and gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy. It happens usually around the 24th week onward. It, however, does not mean that women have diabetes before and after pregnancy. It is important to follow the doctor's advice on the ways to control blood sugar or glucose.

Type 1 diabetes, on the other hand, is also dubbed as insulin-dependent diabetes. This means that the body suffers from an autoimmune attack, damaging the pancreas and preventing it from releasing insulin. This occurs from childhood to adulthood.

Type 2 diabetes, meanwhile, happens during adulthood as a result of obesity, having a sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy food choices.

Signs And Symptoms Of Diabetes

According to Medical News Today, the common signs and symptoms of this condition include excessive thirst, hunger and urination. Other signs and symptoms are feeling tired, itching or skin infections, blurred vision, unexplained weight loss, mood swings and headaches.

Diabetes is a serious condition that may lead to complication if it is not treated accordingly. This World Diabetes Day, it is important to get tested and consult a health care professional on this disease and how it can be prevented. As the niche goes, prevention is better than cure.

"Significant investment in diabetes care and prevention by UK and national governments and the NHS, begins to recognise the scale of the challenge. This needs to be sustained to provide enough effective care for everyone living with diabetes and tackling the rapid rise of type 2," Diabetes U.K.'s chief executive Chris Askew told WebMD, pertaining to how important life saving courses are for diabetics.

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