Diabetes – What’s This?

In this report I will tell you what is diabetes 2, what causes it, how to prevent it and last but not least how to control it.

What Is Diabetes 2?

This is a condition where your body is either not making enough of the hormone insulin or the insulin that you are producing is not being used effectively.

Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas. It allows the glucose in our blood stream to enter the cells and muscles to be used for energy. You can think of it like a key that unlocks the cells to allow the glucose to enter. In people who don’t have diabetes insulin controls the glucose to within ideal levels.

Insulin is needed to help our bodies to use the glucose in our blood for energy in our muscles and tissues. Glucose gets into our blood from the digestion of the carbohydrates in our food.

Did You Know There Are Two Types Of Diabetes?

Yes. There are two types of Diabetes.

  1. Type 1 Diabetes. This occurs when the cells in the pancreas which produce insulin have been destroyed, resulting in a severe lack of insulin. This is common in people under 40 years of age, often in childhood and treated with insulin injections, diet and exercise.
  2. Type 2 Diabetes. This occurs either when some insulin is still produced but not enough for the body’s needs or where the body’s cells are resistant to the action of insulin – this is when the cells are overweight. Usually occurs in people over the age of 40, and is controlled through lifestyle changes, for example weight loss, diet and exercise.

How To Prevent Diabetes 2

You can reduce the chance of contracting Diabetes 2 by doing the following:

  1. Check your risk of Diabetes. Take the Life! risk assessment test and learn more of your risk of contracting Diabetes 2. A 12+ score indicates that you are at high risk and may be eligible for the Life! Program – a free Victorian lifestyle modification program that helps you reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
  2. Manage your weight. Excess body fat, particularly if stored around the abdomen, can increase the body’s resistance to the hormone insulin. This can lead to type 2 diabetes.
  3. Exercise regularly. Moderate physical exercises on most days of the week helps manage weight, reduce blood glucose levels and may also improve blood pressure and cholesterol.
  4. Eat a balanced healthy diet. Reduce the amount of fat in your diet, especially saturated and trans fat. Eat more fruit, vegetables and high fiber foods. Cut back on salt.
  5. Limit takeaways and processed foods. “Convenience Meals” are usually high in salt, fat and kilo joules. It’s best to cook for yourself using fresh ingredients whenever possible.
  6. Limit your alcohol intake. Too much alcohol can lead to weight gain and may increase your blood pressure and triglyceride levels. Men should have no more that two standard drinks a day and women should have no more that one.
  7. Quit smoking. Smokers are twice as likely to develop diabetes as non-smokers.
  8. Control your blood pressure. Most people can do this with regular exercise, a balanced diet and keeping a healthy weight. In some cases you might need medication prescribed by your doctor.
  9. Reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. Diabetes and cardiovascular disease have many risk factors in common, including obesity and physical inactivity.
  10. As you get older, it’s a good idea to regularly check your blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

How To ControlDiabetes 2

In order to ensure that your diabetes is well controlled and isn’t having any adverse effects on your overall health, you will have regular tests and checks with your GP and others. This will happen at least once a year – Annual Review – although when you are first diagnosed it will happen more frequently. It is always a good idea to know what your results are so you are always aware of how you are doing.

You will also be invited to have annual eye screening with the Diabetes Retinal screening service. Diabetes used to be the biggest cause of blindness in people of working age – it no longer is – and the national retinal screening programme is one factor that has contributed to this.

That’s It In A Nutshell

Now you know what type 2 diabetes is, what causes it and how to reduce your chances of developing it. You can help to reduce your risk of catching this disease by understanding your risk and making changes to your lifestyle. Changing the habits of a lifestyle isn’t easy but is worth the effort.

That’s it for now.

More about Type 2 Diabetes in coming reports.

Aubrey Schultz


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