Every November 14, World Diabetes Day is celebrated with the aim of increasing global awareness about this chronic disease that affects millions of people worldwide. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), diabetes is one of the leading causes of death and disability.
Studies indicate that this disease affects more than half a billion people in the world, including men, women, and children of all ages, and it is likely that in the next 30 years, the number of affected people will rise to 1.3 billion.
The global prevalence of this disease has been growing rapidly since 1980, mainly due to the increase in obesity and sedentary lifestyles. In addition, it is estimated that by 2030, diabetes could become the seventh leading cause of death in the world.
But what is diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs when the pancreas does not secrete enough insulin or the body does not use it effectively. Insulin is a hormone that regulates blood sugar. A person with diabetes has high levels of sugar in their blood (hyperglycemia).
Diabetes has a significant impact on the quality of life of those who suffer from it and on healthcare systems, with high healthcare costs. Prevention and early detection are key to stopping its growing impact.
Symptoms of diabetes
Below are some of the most common symptoms of diabetes:
– Increased thirst
– Frequent urination
– Increased appetite and hunger
– Blurred vision
– Numbness or tingling in hands and feet
– Wounds or cuts that take a long time to heal
– Unexplained weight loss
In many cases, type 2 diabetes can develop gradually without obvious symptoms for years. Detecting it early requires regular testing.
Types of diabetes and treatments
There are mainly three types of diabetes:
– Type 1 diabetes: occurs because the pancreas does not produce insulin. It appears more frequently in childhood or adolescence and requires daily insulin injections and constant medical monitoring.
– Type 2 diabetes: the body does not effectively use the insulin it produces. It represents around 90% of global cases and is mostly due to overweight and sedentary lifestyles. It is controlled with diet, exercise, oral medication, or insulin injections.
– Gestational diabetes: appears during pregnancy and usually disappears after delivery. Women with gestational diabetes have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes later on.
The treatment of diabetes involves keeping glucose levels within healthy ranges. A balanced diet, regular physical activity, medication, and frequent medical monitoring are essential to controlling the disease. It is also important to remember that good disease control prevents or delays the onset of complications.
You may also be interested in: Adjusting to Life with Diabetes
Tips for Preventing Diabetes
Adopting a healthy lifestyle is the most effective way to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes. Pay attention to the following tips and put them into practice:
– Maintain a healthy weight through balanced nutrition and regular physical activity.
– Limit the consumption of simple sugars such as candies, desserts, and sugary drinks.
– Incorporate more vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds into your diet.
– Choose lean meats such as poultry and fish.
– Avoid fast food and processed foods high in fats, salt, and sugars.
– Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.
– Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep daily to regulate blood sugar levels.
– Have regular medical check-ups.
In the case of diabetes, as with most diseases, self-care is a key factor in preventing major complications. Having a greater awareness of the importance of adopting a healthy lifestyle and regularly consulting with a doctor is essential in preventing this disease. Don’t wait any longer and consult the specialists at Centro Médico Formé. Call 914-723-4900 or schedule an appointment.
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