Diabetes, a chronic disease that causes the blood sugar level of a person to be inordinately high, does not choose in whom to occur, and at what time. This means that anyone, regardless of their age, can have it at any time.
Normally, there are two types of diabetes namely Type 1, and Type 2. On one hand, the bodies of people with Type 1 diabetes do not produce insulin at all. Insulin is a hormone produced by pancreas and it lowers the blood glucose, thus ensuring that blood vessels, kidney and other body tissues are not damaged. In some cases, Type 1 diabetes maybe innate and it accounts for approximately 10 per cent of all diabetic cases.
On the other hand, Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body produces insufficient insulin for the body’s needs. It is the most common form of diabetes worldwide, accounting for approximately 90 per cent of all cases.
Symptoms of diabetic people include intense hunger and thirst, frequent urination, unusual weight loss, fatigue, bruises and cuts that do not heal, and male sexual dysfunction. However, some people may not display the symptoms at all and can even live for a long time – months or even years – oblivious that they have diabetes.
That notwithstanding, diabetes is surrounded by numerous myths and misconceptions which if not debunked may keep the facts at bay, thus making its diagnosis and control difficult.
The Myths include:
1. Diabetes is caused by consuming too much sugar
This is untrue because the disease is brought about by a combination of both lifestyle factors and genetics. Prolonged eating of diets which are high in calories may result in you being overweight, which can in turn increase the risk for developing Type 2 diabetes.
It is recommended that diabetic people eat healthily and exercise regularly.
2. Diabetes is not serious disease
Diabetes is indeed a serious disease that kills more people each year than breast cancer and AIDs combined. However, proper management of diabetes can either prevent or delay complications.
3. Diabetes is contagious
Although it is true that development of diabetes can be triggered by unknown factors, it cannot be transmitted from one person to another like a flu or cold. That notwithstanding, it is important to note that obesity and a sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of having diabetes.
4. Having diabetes means you will have to be giving yourself needle shots of insulin
The only people who deal with needles are those on injectable medication. There are many ways of controlling diabetes without needles, for example insulin pens.
5. Eating a low-carbohydrate diet prevents diabetes
Although consuming fewer carbohydrates is beneficial to some extent, eating a very low-carbohydrate diet will deprive the body requisite energy for normal functioning. However, research has revealed that high consumption of sugary drinks is connected with diabetes.