Diabetes is a medical condition that degrades the body’s ability to process blood glucose, also known as blood sugar.
Under normal circumstances, the pancreas produces a hormone called insulin that moves the sugar from the blood into our cells. It is then stored and used by our bodies later on to generate energy. On the other hand, a diabetic patient's pancreas either doesn't produce enough insulin or their body becomes incapable of effectively using the produced insulin; thus, resulting in high blood sugar levels.
Diabetes is an extremely serious condition and, if left undiagnosed or untreated, can cause serious damage to a person's kidney, eyes, and other vital organs. A high blood sugar level can increase the risk of severe health complications like a heart stroke, or kidney failure.
It is unfortunate that, even today, we don't have a permanent cure for diabetes and that the patients have to manage their condition by strictly following proper diet plans, medication, and a healthy lifestyle.
History of Diabetes/ How it all began!
Diabetes is an ancient disease. Humans have been struggling with it for thousands of years now.
Almost 3,000 years ago, Egyptians discovered a condition featuring excessive urination, abnormal weight loss, and excessive thirst. This was somewhere around 1500 B.C. Experts believe that the said condition was Type 1 Diabetes and this specific discovery is regarded as one of the earliest cases of diabetes on record.
In ancient India, around 500-600 B.C., people discovered a unique technique for testing diabetes. They presented urine to ants and, if they came to it, that became an indication of the presence of high blood sugar. An Indian doctor of that time, Sushruta, used the term 'madhumeha' (meaning, the sweetness of urine) to describe the condition.
However, the credit for coining the term 'diabetes' goes to the ancient Greek doctor
Apollonius of Memphis.
During those times, there was no treatment available for diabetes. Patients usually died within a few months of developing the condition.
Types of Diabetes
Generally, three major kinds of diabetes can develop in the human body. The symptoms, treatment, and management of the disease greatly depend on its type.
In this type of diabetes, the pancreas becomes incapable of producing insulin, making the patient permanently insulin-dependent.Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition which means the immune system of an individual's body attacks the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas.
Type 2 diabetes is the most widespread kind of diabetes. In this condition, the pancreas produces insulin but either it is not enough or the body becomes unable to use it as it is supposed to use.Genetic factors are often responsible for causing type 2 diabetes. The disease runs in families and people whose parents or siblings have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes are more at risk than those who don’t.Even though experts believe it to be milder than type 1 diabetes, it can still cause severe health complications, if not managed well.
Gestational diabetes is a condition that is often found in pregnant women as their bodies become insulin-resistant due to hormonal changes during pregnancy. This is not a permanent condition and is often cured after childbirth.
Symptoms of Diabetes
Different types of diabetes have different symptoms. However, all of them are caused by increased blood sugar levels.
Symptoms of Type 1 Diabetes
- Increased hunger;
- Extreme thirst;
- Abnormal weight loss;
- Fatigue and exhaustion; and
- Frequent need for urination.
Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes
- Increased hunger and thirst;
- Increased urination; and
- Recurring infections.
Symptoms of Gestational Diabetes
Most women having gestational diabetes experience little to no symptoms. The condition is usually diagnosed during routine blood sugar tests.
How to Cure or Reverse Type 2 Diabetes?
Medical Science still doesn't have a permanent remedy for type 2 diabetes but, with proper medication, a healthy diet, and care; it is possible to reverse type 2 diabetes.
Our food choices greatly affect our overall health and well-being. Changing our food choices often helps in effectively dealing with various diseases and ailments.As people with type 2 diabetes do not have enough insulin in their bodies, it becomes crucial for them to reduce their blood sugar levels. This can be done by managing their diets.The American Diabetes Association has affirmed that reducing the intake of carbohydrates is one of the most effective ways of controlling blood sugar levels.Also, including whole grains, vegetables, and fruits in one’s diet is highly recommended.
Physical workouts and regular exercises help a lot in managing the insulin sensitivity of a person's body. It also helps in reducing extra body fat, resulting in better sugar metabolism.Doing simple exercises every day keeps the body fit, reduces the chances of health complications, and even helps in reversing type 2 diabetes to a great extent.
Have a Well-Balanced Diet
It is very important to take proper medications prescribed by a specialist. There are many medications available that help in the treatment of type 2 diabetes.
Insulin shots are often used as a last resort to control blood sugar levels.
With proper treatment and lifestyle changes, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes are often reversible.
Adaptive Clothing For people with diabetes
People with diabetes need to carry their medications, injections, and insulin pumps almost all the time. Taking them everywhere often becomes a chore and with a busy lifestyle, many people, especially the elderly, have the habit of forgetting their medicines at home, in their vehicles, or at other odd places.Moreover, type 2 diabetes often causes nerve damages to the feet and legs, which makes walking in normal shoes a little tough and uncomfortable.Keeping these requirements of people with diabetes in mind, many brands have come up with the innovation of adaptive clothing for diabetes.For people with type 1 diabetes, there are adaptive clothes with extra hidden spaces and deeper pockets that allow them to carry their injections and insulin pumps at all times without looking any less fashionable than the people around them.Clothes for people with type 2 diabetes are often designed keeping in mind the nerve damage that this disease causes. Their clothes are created to be stretchy, soft, and loose so that the blood flow doesn't get restricted. There are non-binding socks and loose shoes available for them which help in decreasing the pressure on their feet; thus, making it comfortable for them to walk.Today, the innovation of adaptive clothing has made the life of people with diabetes somewhat easier. It has enabled them to carry all their essentials while looking presentable and feeling comfortable at the same time.After all, dealing with a medical condition doesn't mean a person cannot wear comfortable and fashionable clothes!
Surely, diabetes is a condition that requires a lot of care, treatment, and tremendous lifestyle changes. But, with conscious efforts, proper medical guidance, and a healthy lifestyle, diabetes is manageable and, at times, even reversible.All an individual needs to do is take care of their diet, manage their stress, check their blood sugar levels regularly, exercise daily, and most importantly, stay positive and happy as it makes all the difference in the world!