November is American Diabetes Month. This year’s observance is aimed to focus the nation’s attention on the disease and those affected by it. The disease affects more than 29 millions of Americans or nearly 10% of the total US population.
Diabetes refers to a group of metabolic diseases characterized by high blood sugar (glucose). The high blood sugar level may be caused by inadequate insulin production, the body cells do not utilize insulin properly, or both.
Insulin, a hormone that is produced by the pancreas, enables the body to use sugar from the carbohydrates in the food. It keeps the blood sugar level from getting too high (Hyperglycemia) or too low (hypoglycemia).
Type 1 diabetes usually affects children and young adults where the pancreas does not produce insulin. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas is producing insulin but the body cells do not use it properly, a condition that is referred to as insulin resistance. The pancreas will make extra insulin thinking the body needs more of it but over time it makes it hard for the body to keep blood sugar at normal levels.
Causes of Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is believed to be caused by genetic susceptibility and some unknown environmental factors. Type 2 diabetes may be caused by genetics and the person’s lifestyle. While genetics play an important role in getting the disease, in most cases, it is the lifestyle of a person that makes them more susceptible to it.
Prevention is the best line of defense against type 2 diabetes, the most prevalent form of the disease, especially for people who have higher risk of the disease such as those with family history of the disease and overweight. The following may help support minimizing chances diabetes or delay the onset of the disease for those people who are at risk:
- Physical activity – Engaging in regular physical activity can help minimize the chances of diabetes or it can support controlling diabetes for those who are already afflicted with it. Exercising regularly may result in weight loss, lower blood sugar levels, and boosted insulin production to keep blood sugar within normal levels.
- Eat plenty of fiber – Eating foods high in fiber may improve blood sugar levels, lower the risk of heart disease, and promote weight loss.
- Eat whole grains – Whole grains may lower the risk of diabetes and help keep sugar level within a normal range.
- Lose weight – Every pound a person sheds can improve their health and lower the risk of diabetes.
The main complaint of diabetics is that they can no longer eat sweets and other food products with sugar. Wishing U Well can help you stay sugar-free while satisfying your sweet tooth. We offer sugar-free products for the diabetic population such as Vitamins, whey, and other products that will promote the health of diabetics. BioChem 100% Whey Sugar-Free Protein, for example, is a healthier alternative to sodas and other sugar-laden beverages.