It could simply begin with unquenchable thirst. Frequent urinating, heavy limbs, chronic tiredness and blur vision. It has been dubbed the "silent killer" and called a "disorder of the very engine of life." Diabetes disrupt the body's ability to utilize certain nutrients, primarily a blood sugar called glucose. Millions of people have the disease but do not yet know it. Hence treatments for diabetes is made more difficult because a person can have the disease a long time before it is diagnosed. And because the early symptoms are relatively mild diabetes often goes unrecognized.
Diabetes is becoming a disease of young people. Although sometimes genetic predisposition may be involved, weight and environment may also play a role. Other factors include over reliance on foods consumed outside the home, increased rate of skipping breakfast, increased consumption of soft drinks and fast foods.
There are two main types of diabetes:
Type 1 diabetes
Your body does not make insulin. This is a problem because you need insulin to take the sugar (glucose) from the foods you eat and turn it into energy for your body. You need to take insulin every day to live.
Type 2 diabetes
Your body does not make or use insulin well. You may need to take pills or insulin to help control your diabetes. Type 2 is the most common type of diabetes.
"People don't really die from diabetes, they die from complications." This is more reason you should take diabetes more seriously. When you heard people say they have "a touch of diabetes" or that their "sugar is a little high", these words may suggest that diabetes is not a serious disease. That is not correct. Diabetes is serious, so you should learn to manage it properly. Diabetes cannot be reversed. People with diabetes need to make healthy food choices, stay at a healthy weight, move more every day, and take their medicine even when they feel good. This doesn't come easier but it's worth it!
The more those with diabetes learn about the disease, the better equipped they will be to managed it and increase their prospects of living a longer, healthier life. When you take care of your diabetes, you will also have less chance of having health problems caused by it such as:
- Heart attack or stroke
- Eye problems that can lead to difficulty seeing
- Pain, tingling, or numbness in your hands and feet, also called nerve damage
- Kidney problems that can cause your kidneys to stop working
- Teeth and gum problems
Apart from regular medication and periodical check-ups and tests, to manage diabetes you should;
1. Learn ways to lower your stress as it can raise your blood sugar. The following activities can help you relieve stress.
- Deep breathing
- Taking a walk
- Working on your hobby, or listening to your favorite music
2. Eat well
- Get a diet plan for diabetic with help from your healthcare provider.
- Choose foods that are lower in calories, saturated fat, trans fat, sugar, and salt.
- Eat foods with more fiber, such as whole grain cereals, breads and crackers.
- Choose foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, bread and cereals, and low-fat or skim milk and cheese.
- Drink water instead of juice or regular soda.
3. Be active
- Twice a week, work to increase your muscle strength.
Warning: Exercise by people with diabetes should be professionally supervised. One reason is that diabetes can damage the vascular system and nerves, thus affecting blood circulation and feeling. Hence a simple scratch on the foot may not be noticed, get infected, and turn into an ulcer. If this should happen, it could lead to amputation if not treated immediately.