Our local Overgaard Ponderosa Lions Club kicked off their support of Diabetes Awareness with a walk down Highway 260 on November 14th, World Diabetes Awareness Day. Lions Clubs International works with the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Diabetes Foundation (IDF) and the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP) to help promote awareness and education on Diabetes.
Over 360 million people have diabetes and it’s on the rise worldwide. By 2030, the International Diabetes Federation estimates that over 550 million worldwide will have the disease which can be deadly and debilitating; every eight seconds someone dies from the complications of diabetes. Plus, it’s the underlying cause of many serious health conditions including blindness, cardiac and circulatory disease, kidney disease, amputation and nerve damage.
WHAT is diabetes? Diabetes means that your blood glucose (blood sugar) is too high. Glucose comes from the food you eat and cells take the glucose and turn it into energy. There are three main types of diabetes.
Type 1 Generally develops during childhood.
- The body produces littles or none of its own insulin, a hormone that helps glucose get from the blood into the cells
- Need to take insulin every day
- Accounts for 3-5% of all diabetes worldwide
Type 2 Usually develops in adulthood, although it is increasing in children and adolescents in all countries.
- The body does not make or use insulin well
- People with Type 2 often need to take pills or insulin
- It accounts for 90% or more of all diabetes globally
Gestational Diabetes GDM is any glucose intolerance with the onset of pregnancy. It affects an estimated 1 in 25 pregnancies worldwide.
Diabetes is a major global threat to human security and prosperity, impoverishes families and overwhelms health systems. A large proportion of the 4 million people who die each year as a result of diabetes are in their most productive years (40-60) resulting in a high economic cost to society. Children die of Type 1 diabetes in low and middle-income countries because they lack access to life-saving insulin.
Prediabetes One-third of adults are afflicted with Prediabetes, but it’s estimated 90% don’t know it. It’s not a disease and has no obvious symptoms. Prediabetes indicates high blood sugar, just not high enough to be Type 2 – yet! It’s an indication that you’re on the path to diabetes unless you alter your eating and fitness habits. Screening should begin at age 45 or sooner if you have major risk factors such as a sedentary lifestyle, obesity, a large waist size, poor diet, age or family history.
To avoid becoming a statistic of diabetes it’s recommended to:
- Be at a healthy weight
- Eat more fruits, vegetable and whole grain
- Engage in 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise per week.
Source: The Mayo Clinic; The American Diabetes Association