(LittleThingsDoMatter) I have learned over the last couple of years there are many diseases such as diabetes that appear in the young as well as the older generation and impact health. Some of them can be tied to genetics; however, many can be tied to nutrition and lifestyle and do not have to be ‘life threatening’. Until recently, I didn’t know there were two types of diabetes – I & II.
Diabetes is a disease in which the body has a shortage of insulin or a decreased ability to use insulin, a hormone that allows glucose (sugar) to enter cells and be converted to energy. When diabetes is not controlled, glucose and fats remain in the blood and, over time, damage vital organs.
- Type 1 diabetes usually strikes children and young adults, although the disease can appear at any age. Type 1 may be autoimmune, genetic, and/or environmental. There is no known way to prevent this type of diabetes.
- Type 2 diabetes, which is linked to obesity and physical inactivity, accounts for 90%–95% of diabetes cases and most often appears in people older than 40. Type 2 is associated with older age, obesity, family history of diabetes, history of gestational diabetes, impaired glucose metabolism, physical inactivity, race, and ethnicity. Type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents, although still rare, is being diagnosed more frequently among American Indians, African Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans, and Asian/Pacific Islanders.
- 23.6 million people in the United States (7.8% of the total population) have diabetes. Of these, 5.7 million are undiagnosed.
- In 2007, about 1.6 million new cases of diabetes were diagnosed in people aged 20 years or older.
- African American, Hispanic, American Indian, and Alaska Native adults are twice as likely as white adults to have diabetes.
- If current trends continue, 1 in 3 Americans will develop diabetes sometime in their lifetime, and those with diabetes will lose, on average, 10–15 years of life.
- Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults (aged 20–74 years), kidney failure, and nontraumatic lower-extremity amputations.
- Diabetes was the seventh leading cause of death on U.S. death certificates in 2006. Overall, the risk of death among people with diabetes is about twice that of people without diabetes of similar age.
- In 1999–2000, 7.0% of U.S. adolescents aged 12–19 years had impaired fasting glucose.
This is such a serious subject, let’s loosen up a bit with Footloose
P.S. Obesity opens the door for other diseases such as cancer, and taking control of your weight through simple diet changes can definitely help to beat the odds.