Diabetes is a chronic or long-term disease characterized by elevated blood sugar (glucose) levels to above normal values. There are two main types of diabetes, namely type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes Risk Factors
Risk factors for type 1 diabetes include:
- Family history or hereditary factors, namely when a person will be more at risk of developing type 1 diabetes if there are family members who have the same disease, because it is related to certain genes.
- Geographical factors, people living in areas far from the equator, such as in Finland and Sardinia, are at risk of developing type 1 diabetes. This is due to the lack of vitamin D that can be obtained from sunlight, thus eventually triggering autoimmune diseases.
- Age factor. The disease is most widely detected in children aged 4-7 years, then in children aged 10-14 years.
- Other triggering factors, such as consuming cow’s milk at an too early age, water containing sodium nitrate, cereals and gluten before the age of 4 months or after 7 months, having a mother with a history of preeclampsia, as well as suffering from diseases of the rye at birth.
Risk factors for type 2 diabetes include:
- Overweight or obese.
- High distribution of abdominal fat.
- Lifestyle is inactive and rarely activities or exercise.
- History of type 2 diabetes in the family.
- Blacks, Hispanics, Native Americans, and Asian-Americans, have higher rates than whites.
- Over the age of 45, although it does not close the possibility can occur before the age of 45 years.
- The condition prediabetes, which is when blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes.
- History of diabetes while pregnant.
- Women with polycystic ovary syndrome, which is characterized by irregular menstruation, excessive hair growth, and obesity.
Causes of Diabetes
Diabetes is caused by disorders in the body, so the body is not able to use blood glucose into cells, so glucose accumulates in the blood. In type 1 diabetes, the disorder is caused because the pancreas cannot produce certain hormones. While in type 2 diabetes, this disorder occurs because the body is not effective in using certain hormones or lacks certain hormones relative to blood glucose levels. These high glucose levels can damage small blood vessels in the kidneys, heart, eyes, and nervous system, resulting in a wide range of complications.
Symptoms of Diabetes
Some of the symptoms of type 1 and type 2 diabetes include:
- Often thirsty.
- The frequency of urination increases, especially at night.
- Constant hunger.
- Weight loss for no apparent reason.
- Limp and tired.
- Blurred vision.
- The old wound healed.
- Frequent infections of the skin, urinary tract, gums, or vagina.
The doctor will diagnose diabetes in a person by conducting medical interviews, physical examinations, as well as supporting examinations such as blood and urine examinations.
Both type 1 and 2 diabetes can cause complications such as retinal eye damage, nerve damage, stroke and coronary heart disease, kidney damage, sexual dysfunction, miscarriage, or stillborn babies from mothers with diabetes.
Treatment of type 1 diabetes, among others:
- Certain hormones to control blood glucose. Administration of this hormone by injecting it in the layer under the skin about 3-4 times a day according to the dose recommended by the doctor.
- A healthy diet and regular exercise to help control blood glucose levels.
- Take care of the feet and check the eyes periodically to prevent further complications.
Treatment of type 2 diabetes, among others:
Changes in healthy lifestyle, among others:
- Avoid high glucose or high-fat foods.
- Improves foods high in fiber.
- Exercise regularly, at least 3 hours each week.
- Losing and keeping weight is ideal.
- Avoid or quit smoking.
- Avoid or stop consuming alcoholic beverages.
- Maintain the health of the legs and prevent injured legs.
- Check your eye health regularly.
- Administration of diabetes drugs under the supervision of a doctor.
In type 1 diabetes, among others:
- Undergoing intensive treatment if there are family members who have type 1 diabetes.
- Undergo DNA testing to determine the presence of carrier genes or type 1 diabetes.
In type 2 diabetes, among others:
- Maintain an ideal weight by consuming low-fat foods.
- Eat foods high in fiber such as fruits and vegetables.
- Reduce consumption of sugary foods and beverages.
- Exercise regularly and do a lot of physical activity.
- Reduces sitting still too long, such as when watching television.
- Avoid or quit smoking.
When to see a doctor?
Contact your doctor immediately for the best solution if you experience any of the above symptoms.