Risk factor diabetes

"The urine of diabetics is wonderfully sweet as if imbued with honey or sugar." Thomas Willis (1621-1675), physician to King Charles II, England

Diabetes is a risk factor for coronary heart disease and stroke, and is the most common cause of amputation that is not the result of an accident.

Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas and used by the body to regulate glucose (sugar). Diabetes occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin, or cannot use it properly, leading to too much sugar in the blood. Symptoms include thirst, excessive urination, tiredness, and unexplained weight loss.

There are two main types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes, in which the pancreas stops making insulin, accounts for 10% to 15% of cases. The majority of people with diabetes have type 2 disease, in which insulin is produced in smaller amounts than needed, or is not properly effective. This form is preventable, because it is related to physical inactivity, excess calorie intake and obesity. People with type 1 diabetes need insulin injections to lower blood sugar, but many people with type 2 do not.

At least half of all people with diabetes are unaware of their condition. Diabetes is more prevalent in developed countries, but modernization and lifestyle changes are likely to result in a future epidemic of diabetes in developing countries.

Lifestyle changes can be more effective than dr in preventing type 2

Lifestyle changes can be more effective than dr in preventing type 2

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GUATEMALA HONDURAS EL SALVADOR

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Diabetes prevalence and trends

Percentage of people aged 20 and above with diabetes

2000 and 2030 projected

2000 2030

world

2000 2030

developed countries

MYANMAR LAO

2000 2030

developing countries

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"Wealth is both an enemy and a friend."

Nepalese proverb

In developing countries, coronary heart disease has historically been more common in the more educated and higher socioeconomic groups, but this is beginning to change. In industrial countries, such as Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States, there is a widening social class difference in the opposite direction.

Studies in developed countries suggest that low income is associated with a higher incidence of coronary heart disease, and with higher mortality after a heart attack. The prevalence of risk factors for heart disease, such as high blood pressure, smoking and diabetes, is also higher. The use of medications is lower, especially of lipid-lowering agents and ACE inhibitors, as well as other treatments, such as cardiac catheterization.

The pathways by which socioeconomic status might affect cardiovascular disease include: Lifestyle and behaviour patterns; ease of access to health care; and chronic stress.

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