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What Causes Type 2 Diabetes?

What Causes Type 2 Diabetes?

What Causes Type 2 Diabetes?

Insulin resistance and high levels of insulin and lipids all precede the development of metabolic dysfunction. Which metabolic factor is to blame?
Type 2 diabetes is a multifactorial metabolic disease.1 Obesity, elevated levels of lipids and insulin in the blood, and insulin resistance all accompany the elevated blood glucose that defines diabetes. (Diabetes is defined as fasting blood glucose concentrations above 7 millimolar (mM), or above 11 mM two hours after ingestion of 75 grams of glucose.) But while researchers have made much progress in understanding these components of the metabolic dysfunction, one major question remains: What serves as the primary driver of disease?
Lifestyle choices characterized by inactivity have been postulated as one possible cause. Researchers have also pointed the finger at nutrition, postulating that poor food choices can contribute to metabolic disease. However, there is thus far weak support for these hypotheses. Changing to a healthy diet typically does not result in significant weight loss or the resolution of metabolic dysfunction, and it is rare to reverse obesity or diabetes through increased exercise. Furthermore, there does not appear to be a strong relationship between body-mass index (BMI) and activity level, though exercise clearly has many other health benefits.
With such macroscale factors unable to explain most cases of obesity and diabetes, scientists have looked to molecular mechanisms for answers. There are at least 40 genetic mutations known to be associated with type 2 diabetes. These genes tend to be involved in the Continue reading

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3.8 million people in England now have diabetes

3.8 million people in England now have diabetes

The new Diabetes Prevalence Model, produced by the Public Health England (PHE) National Cardiovascular Intelligence Network (NCVIN) and launched today at the PHE Conference at Warwick University, estimates the total number of adults with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes in England.
Whilst 3.8 million people are estimated to have both types of diabetes, approximately 90% of diabetes cases are Type 2; this is largely preventable or manageable by lifestyle changes and also provides additional benefits for health and wellbeing. The likelihood of developing Type 2 diabetes is increased by being overweight (although family history, ethnicity and age can also increase risk).
The figures reiterate that diabetes is an increasing burden of ill health, underlining the need for urgent action to lessen the impact on individuals, as well as the health and social care system supporting them.
The model suggests that 1 in 4 people with diabetes, an estimated 940,000, are unaware of their condition. The disease can lead to serious complications including foot amputation and kidney disease, and is associated with an increased risk of stroke and heart attack.
John Newton, Chief Knowledge Officer at PHE, said:
The number of people with diabetes has been steadily increasing and tackling it is fundamental to the sustainable future of the NHS. Diabetes can be an extremely serious disease for those that have it and treating it and its complications costs the NHS almost £10 billion a year. Developing Type 2 diabetes is not an inevitable part of aging, we have an opportunity through public health to Continue reading

How Serious Is Prediabetes?

How Serious Is Prediabetes?

According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), over 84 million Americans had prediabetes in 2015. But how big a problem is prediabetes?
Is prediabetes a real disease? Or are they just trying to scare people, sell medicines, and get more money for diabetes services? Let’s see.
What is prediabetes?
According to the Centers for Disease Control, prediabetes means blood sugars that are higher than normal, but not high enough to qualify as diabetes. It’s what used to sometimes be called “borderline diabetes.”
Prediabetes is a numbers game. There are no symptoms that define it. The term “prediabetes” classes people with only slightly high sugars as having an illness.
Some experts strongly dislike the term, because it sounds like a stage on the way to diabetes. It can be, but many people never get there. It depends on your life and how you live it.
A person can be classed with prediabetes in three ways:
• Impaired fasting glucose (IFG): A fasting blood glucose between 100–125 mg/dl (5.6–7.0 mmol/l).
• Impaired glucose tolerance (IGT): An oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) result from 140–199 mg/dl. The person is given a sweet drink and his glucose is tested one and/or two hours later.
An OGTT was the first test used to diagnose prediabetes, but it’s used much less now because of the time, difficulty, and expense involved.
• Hemoglobin A1C: An HbA1c level of 5.7% to 6.4%. HbA1c is a rough measure of a person’s average glucose over the last 2–3 months.
Some of the increased number of people with prediabetes is from the newer tests. More people are Continue reading

Diabetes now affects more than 4 million people in UK, charity says

Diabetes now affects more than 4 million people in UK, charity says

The number of people living with diabetes in the UK has topped 4 million for the first time, a charity says.
Based on 2014-15 GP patient data, Diabetes UK says there are 4.05 million people with the condition, including 3.5 million adults who have been diagnosed, an increase of 65% over the past decade and around 120,000 more than the previous year. There are thought to be 549,000 with undiagnosed type 2 diabetes.
Melanie Davies, professor of diabetes medicine at the University of Leicester and University Hospitals of Leicester NHS trust, who was made a CBE in the New Year’s honours list, said that numbers with the condition were growing across the world, often outstripping estimates.
As such, she said, the 4 million figure is “not surprising but quite alarming. There are also lots of people at very high risk of developing diabetes over the next five to 10 years. The large driver is the increase in the number of people with type 2 diabetes, associated with obesity in the population.
“We know that we have an ageing population so of course there are lots of ageing people with diabetes, but we’re seeing in the [Leicester] clinic, teenagers and even children with type 2 diabetes and we wouldn’t have seen that 10 years ago. Even under the age of 30 there are many more people developing it than before and having it for a longer time, so there are more complications.”
The National Audit Office recently criticised the poor standard of diabetes care, and Diabetes UK says that unless this is remedied more people will end up experiencing potentially preventable diabetes-re Continue reading

Signs of Diabetes in Children

Signs of Diabetes in Children

What to look for: Symptoms of type 1 diabetes in children
One of the early signs of diabetes in children is increased urination and thirst. When blood-sugar is high it triggers a reaction in the body that pulls fluid from tissues. This will leave your son or daughter constantly thirsty, resulting in a need for more bathroom breaks throughout the day. Below are some other warning signs that you should be aware of.
Fatigue: If your child is constantly tired it may be a sign that his or her body is having trouble turning sugar in the bloodstream into energy.
Changes in vision: High blood sugar levels can lead to blurred vision or other eyesight problems.
Fruity smelling breath: If your kid’s breath smells fruity, it could be a result of excess sugar in the blood.
Extreme hunger and unexplained weight loss: When your son or daughter’s muscles and organs aren’t receiving enough energy, it can trigger extreme hunger. And sudden weight loss—especially if he or she is eating more—should not be ignored.
Unusual behavior: If your child seems more moody or restless than normal—and it’s in conjunction with the symptoms above—it could be cause for concern.
Other symptoms of diabetes in children
Be on the lookout if your child is lethargic, shows heavy breathing, or experiences nausea and vomiting. When it goes untreated, type 1 diabetes can be life-threatening. If you’re concerned that your son or daughter is showing signs of childhood diabetes it’s important that you schedule a doctor’s appointment as soon as possible.
So what are the low blood sugar symptoms you Continue reading

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