As the 12th June marks the start of UK Diabetes Week 2017, CS Healthcare offers some of the facts on diabetes and living with the disease.
What is diabetes?
There are two main types of diabetes, and both develop when one’s body doesn’t produce enough or any insulin to help glucose enter cells. Insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, helps cells absorb glucose, which is a key source of energy for us to live.
Of the total amount of people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK, 5-15% of people are diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes; Type 2 diabetes affects the majority of diabetics.
Who does diabetes affect?
Diabetes is a common disease, affecting 3.2 million people in the UK alone, with around 600,000 people undiagnosed. This is a lifelong struggle for many children and adults who must adjust their daily lives to cope with the disease.
Diabetes does not discriminate; the disease affects people of all backgrounds and you can get diabetes at various points in your life. This doesn’t mean, however, that it is difficult to live with the disease.
Balanced diet and healthy lifestyle
There are a lot of myths out there on diabetes, and Diabetes UK have an excellent resource to dispel those myths. Living with diabetes may be difficult to manage at first, but you can lead a relatively normal life depending on your condition.
One of the most important aspects of living with diabetes is to maintain a balanced diet and lead a healthy lifestyle. Make the first change by altering your breakfast habits for the better, and make a plan to eat your meals at the same time every day to stay healthy. Eating nutritious foods and exercising is something that everyone should be doing to keep healthy, not just people with diabetes.
Importance of blood sugar
Sometimes when you have diabetes, your blood sugar may become too high or too low, and this could make you feel a bit unwell. Most of the time, taking the appropriate medicine, exercising regularly and eating right should alleviate the symptoms. However, if symptoms persist you should consult your GP.
In addition to the above, if you have Type 1 diabetes, you will receive regular, mandatory insulin injections for the rest of your life. Take a look at Diabetes UK’s guide to Type 2 diabetes and guide for kids for more helpful information.
The information in these pages is intended as general advice only. If you or your family members require medical advice or have any medical concerns, please contact your GP.
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