A question that many people ask themselves as it is a common 20th Century metabolic disease with over 280 million suffers worldwide (2010) and it’s not just the average person that is affected. Paula Deen the famous celebrity chef from the USA recently revealed to the public that she had been diagnosed 3 years ago with Type 2 diabetes which may be due to a high sugar intake.
There are two types of diabetes, Type I and Type II, where Type I diabetes is from drinking cows milk as a baby and causes the body to stop producing insulin. Sufferers of this form of diabetes are insulin dependent. Type II Diabetes is lifestyle related where there is enough insulin but is no longer effective at transporting glucose from the blood to the cells. This normally occurs in middle aged adults over 45 and the elderly but it has now becoming prevalent in the younger generation. Interestingly, a few hundred years ago diabetes was extremely rare.
Diabetes is a serious medical and sometimes life threatening condition and if left untreated can cause blindness, heart attacks, renal (kidney) failure, lower limb amputation, loss of sensation, poor circulation and blurred vision! The types of people who suffer from diabetes varies as the cause can be hereditary or down to lifestyle factors such as obesity, hypertension and lack of exercise.
Some of the Signs & Symptoms to watch out for if you are asking yourself the question “Do I have Diabetes?”…
1. Frequent urination (polyuria) which is caused by too much sugar in the blood. The kidneys struggle to filter water into the blood if insulin levels are too low thus causing a backlog of water in the kidneys and bladder.
2. Dry and itchy skin especially around the extremities (feet, elbows etc).
3. Sores, cuts and infections usually take longer to heal due to an impaired blood and nerve supply.
4. Foot problems can occur with loss of sensation (neuralgia) and the development of sores around pressure points of the foot such as the lateral borders, heel/achilles tendon, planter aspect of the hallux valgus and the top of the toes.
5. A feeling of tiredness and lethargy can develop for no reason and be sustained for long periods.
6. Blurred vision is also a recognised symptom due to glucose absorption around the retina causing a change in the structure of the eyeball.
If Signs and symptoms are positive then a check up by the Doctor is necessary in order to determine if you do indeed have diabetes. This is a very simple procedure where the sugar level in the blood is checked after a meal and during fasting.
Do I Have Diabetes?
Some Interesting Facts!
- Diabetes speeds up coronary artery disease.
- Diabetes can reduce your potential to deal with infections.
- Diabetes and HBP (high blood pressure) are the main reasons for failure of the renal system
- Diabetes I and II is easy to diagnose with blood sugar tests.
- Diabetes can threaten anybody from early childhood to the elderly.
- Diabetes mellitus is basically the Greek/ Roman word for “to flow, honey” .
- Diabetes can impact women and men alike and all age groups.
Do I have diabetes is an important question to ask if suffering from any of the symptoms above. Fortunately diabetes can be reversed with proper diet, medical care and check ups as well as adequate exercise.