Today is world Diabetes day. Diabetes (DM) has slowly become a killer disease and possibly the 21st century’s greatest menace.
You probably didn’t know this, but your body doesn’t know the difference between ‘sugar’/sweetened foods and carbohydrate/lipids (energy-giving foods). To your body, anything that gives it energy = sugar. This is why you should read this entry.
Everyday we eat food to survive; our food contains energy, held in chains or what we call “bonds”.
The cooking and chewing of food releases/frees this energy from its bonds, and the food eaten is converted to glucose—Sugar—by your body’s food processor; the liver.
The energy is now used up by the body—the brain and muscles, almost immediately and the remnant is stored up in the liver (food processor) for fasting periods.
However for this sugar to enter the cells, a certain hormone (chemical substance) produced by your body must be present. The hormone is called Insulin.
Insulin is a hormone produced by some cells (paid employees) in the Pancreas (an organ /factory in the body). For most people though, with age or other factors, problems may arise with their insulin production or utilization. So a disease condition occurs called Diabetes. Precisely, Diabetes Melitus.
There are two types of diabetes melitus :
Type 1 DM: These people cannot produce insulin again because their insulin producing cells (factory workers in the Pancreas factory) have been destroyed by their body, for no just cause. Thus, they become insulin dependent.
Type 2 DM: is caused by insulin insufficiency. Here, insulin, whose job is to allow the cells open their gates and receive energy – sugar (glucose), is produced but the vehicles to carry it to supply to small houses in your body that need it (other cells in your body) is spoilt / faulty. It can also be because very little and insufficient insulin is being produced and thus glucose uptake is ineffective.
2. Genetics (if someone in your family has had diabetes, you’re at risk of having it too).
Signs and symptoms
1. Weight loss.
3. Excessive intake of fluid/increased thirst.
4. Excessive urination.
5. Excessive eating without gaining weight.
6. Numbness on feet or hands.
7. Blurred vision.
8. Tingling sensation.
If you notice any of these symptoms over a period of four weeks, it’s advisable to visit your family physician or the diabetic clinic for checkup.
If you live in Calabar, Nigeria, diabetic clinic days are Wednesdays and Fridays and the building is just before the Accident and Emergency ward in UCTH, Calabar.
Why is this important?
Some complications can arise from untreated diabetes such as:
- Kidney diseases (diabetic nephropathy).
- Heart diseases (coronary artery disease, peripheral artery disease, myocardial infarction).
- Foot or hand ulcers (wounds that refuse to heal for 6 weeks or more).
- Several other life-threatening complications.
Diabetes, as we know it today, has no cure except one created by the anointing.
But it can be prevented and effectively managed.
1. Cut down on your intake of carbonated drinks.
2. Try to eat your last meal before 6pm.
3. Take more fruits and vegetables.
4. Drink lots of water.
5. Exercise often. At least a brisk walk every morning.
6. Rest when necessary.
7. Stop worrying.
Why wait to be admitted to start correcting Diabetes?
Get yourself tested today.
Know your blood sugar (blood plasma glucose) levels today.
And if you know anyone with Diabetes, today’s a good day to lay hands on them and speak life. They may not get well instantly, but they’ll definitely feel loved.
Emem ye ifure (May peace and serenity stay with you).