Math Problem – John has 32 candies, he eats 28. What does he have now? Diabetes! Bad joke and not based on facts. Eating sweet alone doesn’t make you diabetic. And diabetes is definitely not funny if you know what it is like to wake up at 2 am drenched in sweat and scrambling for some juice to save your life. Or if you know how uncontrolled diabetes could lead to amputations, blindness or even heart attack.
Few facts about diabetes:
- Type-2 diabetes, the most common type(95%) develops mostly after 40 years of age
- Most often diabetics end up taking medicines for the rest of life. If you catch it at an early stage and make the necessary lifestyle changes, Diabetes can be reversed or controlled much better.
- India has more diabetics than any other nation
- 5-7% weight loss (for a 90kg person it would be 5 to 7kg) through moderate diet and physical activity can delay or prevent type-2 diabetes.
- Pre-diabetes is when a person has a blood sugar level higher than normal, but not diabetic yet. Without lifestyle changes to improve their health, 15% to 30% of people with pre-diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within five years.
Diabetes Symptoms to look out for:
Diabetes can be identified by symptoms like – frequent urination, unusual thirst, excessive fatigue, hunger, weight loss & wounds that take longer to heal. Type 2 diabetes, however, may remain unnoticed & may not display any signs for years.
Know your diabetes risk:
You can calculate your risk here. You are at risk if you are aged 45 or older, overweight and either smoke or drink or have a diabetic parent(s).
How do you test for diabetes?
It’s simple, you just have to ask for HbA1C test, fasting blood glucose test or an Oral glucose tolerance test. This test will reveal whether you have normal blood glucose, diabetes or pre-diabetes. If you are told you have pre-diabetes, take steps to prevent type 2 diabetes.
Science-backed steps to reduce your risk of type-2 diabetes:
- Be physically active every day
- Make wise food choices most of the time
- Maintain healthy body weight and waistline
- Reduce your sodium and alcohol intake
- Track your goals and activity on a food and activity tracker
- Get 7-8 hours of daily sleep. Night shift workers who have problems with sleep may also be at increased risk for obesity and type 2 diabetes.
Let diabetes not ruin the taste of life. Stay healthy. Beat it before it gets to you!
Credits: Maps of India, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Economic Times, Well-Being Secrets