What is Diabetes?
Everyone has probably heard of diabetes before in their lives and even seen the painful pictures of amputations occurring because of diabetes. But what exactly is diabetes and how does one actually contract it? To put it simply, diabetes is a metabolic disorder where the amount of blood sugar in your body is extremely high over a prolonged period of time. Some of the symptoms of high blood sugar in the body consist of frequent urination, increased hunger pangs and even increase in thirst. But don’t get all excited and panicky as these symptoms are often felt by many people. If you had always had a huge appetite or drink lots of water on a daily basis, then these symptoms most likely do not reflect the case of diabetes.
The first form of diabetes is type 1 diabetes. This means the pancreas fails to produce enough insulin in your body and thus the metabolic disorder occurs. The other form is known as type 2 diabetes and is slowly developed over time. It starts with your body developing a resistance to insulin, after which the cells began to fail to respond and a lack of insulin develops.
How does one develop Diabetes?
The cause of the development of type 1 diabetes occurs because of the sudden loss of insulin-producing cells in the pancreas and the root problem of this remains unknown. It is often called children diabetes because kids tend to develop it. The scary thing about type 1 diabetes is that it can occur in people that are otherwise healthy and sensitivity and responsiveness to insulin remain normal. This makes it difficult to detect and can escalate to later stages. The thing about type 1 diabetes is that it only occurs in about 0.24% of the population and so there is no need to worry too much about it.
The more important one is type 2 diabetes which is from insulin resistance and can be developed in adults because of lifestyle and genetic factors. People who are obese or lead a sedentary lifestyle with a poor diet and high stress tend to be the ones at higher risk of developing diabetes. If you constantly consume sugar-sweetened drinks in excess along with a lack of physical activity, your risk of getting type 2 diabetes increases significantly.
How To Prevent Diabetes?
Seeing that type 1 diabetes can’t be controlled, the only thing we can do is to reduce the chances of getting type 2 diabetes. The first thing you can start to do is reduce your sugar and refined carbs intake in your diet. For Singaporeans, one of the largest oversight is the consumption of white rice. Not only is white rice a simple carb, but it is highly refined making it high in sugar. Try instead to switch to brown rice for your staple meals.
The second tip is to increase the amount of exercise you perform on a daily basis. Try to incorporate both weight and cardiovascular training in your schedule as exercise increases insulin sensitivity of your cells. A combination of low intensity and high-intensity exercise is best to keep you in the pink of health.