Diabetes is a disease that causes uncontrolled high blood sugar. Food such as rice, ugali and bread are naturally broken down by the body to form blood glucose aka blood sugar. Blood sugar is used to provide your body with strength and energy. The levels of this blood sugar are normalized by a hormone called insulin, which is produced by the pancreas. However, in diabetes, the pancreas doesn’t produce adequate amounts of insulin or in certain cases, it doesn’t respond to the insulin it produces.
There are 2 main types of diabetes:
- Diabetes type 1- This is where the body does not produce adequate amounts of insulin. It is usually caused by an autoimmune response against the pancreas i.e. the body produces antibodies against its own pancreas. Ultimately, the pancreas is destroyed and thus cannot produce adequate insulin to support control of blood sugar. This type commonly occurs in childhood.
- Diabetes type 2- This is where the body does not respond properly to the insulin it produces. It most commonly occurs in adulthood. It is also frequently associated with obesity and a family history of diabetes.
HOW TO DETECT:
Diabetes is detected by having a random blood sugar test. This test is available at Imara Mediplus Hospital and other Hospitals. The test measures the level of blood sugar, levels above normal may be a sign of diabetes and the doctor may request for other tests to confirm the diagnosis.
WHO SHOULD GET TESTED?
The following people are more likely to develop diabetes:
- Pregnant women
- Family history of diabetes
- High blood pressure
14th November is world diabetes day. The mission is to promote knowledge on diabetes, promote care, prevention and cure of diabetes in the world.