In medical science diabetes referred to by doctors as diabetes mellitus. It is a group of metabolic diseases. It occurs in human body when blood glucose (sugar) gets high. There are two primary reasons that cause high blood sugar.
(1) Inadequate production of insulin hormone and
(2) Mal-utilization of insulin by body’s cells
Either or both the reasons lead to high blood sugar in human body. A patient with diabetes may experience polyuria (frequent urination), thirsty (polydipsia) and hungry (polyphagia).
All sorts of carbohydrate foods are broken down into glucose in body. Insulin transports glucose into body cells. Long-term diabetes patients may experience the failure of various organs and tissues.
There are mainly three types of diabetes:
It is usually caused by auto-immune reaction where the body’s defence system attacks the cells that produce insulin. People with Type 1 diabetes produce very little or no insulin. Most patients with Type 1 developed the condition before the age of 40. Approximately 15% of all people have Type 1. It’s also known as juvenile or childhood diabetes. People with Type 1 need injections of insulin every day in order to control the levels of glucose in their blood. If people with Type 1 do not have access to insulin, they will die.
The aim of a person with Type 1 diabetes is maintaining blood glucose or sugar. So, he/she must follow the foods he/she eats. Foods that are low in fat, salt and have no or very little added sugar are ideal.
According to Mayo Clinic persons with Type 1 can consume plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Foods that are highly nutritious, low in fat and low in calories must be in his/her food plan.
In this case, the body does not produce enough insulin or the cells in the body resist the effects of insulin. 90% of all diabetes cases worldwide are Type 2, as reported by the World Health Organization. Generally, Type 2 diabetes is controllable by losing weight, following a healthy diet, doing plenty of exercises and monitoring blood glucose levels at regular intervals. But, Type 2 diabetes is also a progressive disease that worsens as time passes by and the patient has to take insulin, in a tablet form. Overweight and obese individuals have a much higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes than others. Being overweight, leading a sedentary lifestyle and eating the wrong foods, contribute to the risks of developing Type 2 diabetes. Also, the risk of getting diabetes multiplies as we get older as also men with lower testosterone levels develop a risk of Type 2 diabetes.
Pregnant females are at a risk of being affected by gestational diabetes. Some women have very high levels of glucose in their blood and their bodies are unable to produce enough insulin to counteract the negative effects of glucose. The majority of gestational diabetics can control their diabetes with proper exercise and diet. Undiagnosed and uncontrolled diabetes can raise the risks of complications during childbirth. Women whose diets are rich in animal fats and cholesterol before pregnancy are at a higher risk of developing gestational diabetes during their pregnancy.