How Well Do You Know About Diabetes?

What is diabetes? 

Diabetes is a disease that occurs when our blood sugar is too high and our body unable to digest it to convert into energy. There are few types of diabetes, but most common happen in Malaysia is Type 2 diabetes. It is mainly caused by poor lifestyle and eventually get worse if there are co-existing with overweight. People with Type 2 diabetes do not respond to insulin as well as they should.

Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition which caused by factors including genetic and virus, whereby the body immune system self-attack and destroy body cells in pancreas. People with Type 1 diabetes do not or produce very little insulin.  

Gestational diabetes is a condition which happened during pregnancy whereby the placenta produce insulin blocking hormones, causing the high level of blood sugar enters into baby and lead to abnormal weight gain to baby.

How diabetes happened? 

When we eat food such as carbohydrates, our pancreas will produce a hormone known as insulin to break down the food into glucose. However, if insulin is not well functioning or too little in amount, glucose then stays in your blood.

What happened if leave diabetes untreated? 

High concentration of sugar in blood will caused inflammation of arteries and injured the walls of the tiny blood vessels especially in our eyes, kidney and legs. 

Eye damage: internal bleeding of blood vessels can caused a person to become blind. 

Kidney damage: Diabetes can damage our kidney which containing millions of tiny blood vessels that filter waste from our blood and eventually lead to kidney failure. 

Nerve damage: High blood sugar can damage our blood capillaries in the legs which usually begins from the toes and fingers that leads to numbness, tingling and pain, this might end up losing all the sense in our legs.

How to manage diabetes?

People with diabetes can still enjoy most of the foods, but there are few tips for them: 
  • Eat smaller portion in a meal
  • Choose healthy carbs instead of processed carbs; fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains provide healthy carbs and grains while white breads, white rice and baked good are consider processed carbs
  • Choose your protein wisely; eat more beans, tofu, fish and avoid red meats
  • Some supplements can help to reduce pancreas inflammation such as curcumin (turmeric), omega-3 fatty acids, green tea, moringa leaves and etc
  • Regular physical activity for at least 30 minutes daily
  • Get enough sleep

14 Apr 2023