Love is not the only reason for sugary hearts. High blood sugars or diabetes could also be the reason for the same. Unlike candy hearts of love diabetes always means catastrophic consequences.
High blood sugar or diabetes is a complex problem and is usually due to the inability of the body to utilize sugar or glucose. As a result, blood sugar levels increase. The utilization of blood sugar for metabolic purposes is mediated by insulin; a hormone produced by the pancreas and diabetes is due to the relative or complete deficiency of insulin.
The global prevalence of Diabetes is estimated to increase, from 4% in 1995 to 5.4% by the year 2025.
India, China, and US are the countries with the largest number of diabetic subjects and will retain this crown of thorns. So, India will enjoy the dubious distinction of being first again after becoming the most populous nation. In fact in 1997, the diabetic population in India was 11.6%, which rose to 14.7% in 2000 and 17.4% in 2005. Adding insult to injury, diabetes occurs at a much younger age in India than in the developed countries.
There are two main types of diabetes. Type 1 occurs primarily in children and is often the result of an autoimmune insult. The body begins to attack the insulin producing cells of the pancreas. As a result, the insulin production is decreased.
Type 2 diabetes results in the decreased insulin sensitivity of cells in the body and the subsequent inability of the cells to respond to insulin properly. Type 2 diabetes is most common in adults over the age of 40 years but the prevalence is increasing among younger adults and adolescents.
Type 1 diabetes represents 5-10% of all cases of diabetes, while type 2 diabetes represents 90-95% of all diabetes cases.
Diabetes is a long-standing, incurable disease that affects nearly every part of the body. Complications of diabetes include eye problems and blindness, heart disease, stroke, neurological problems and amputation. Diabetes contributes to other serious diseases and can be life threatening. It must be managed under the care of a physician throughout a patient’s life.
Diabetes and heart disease are two completely different conditions with more in common than people realize. There are some similarities. Both are epidemic and are going to become a major health problem in the coming years, both are dangerous if left untreated. Both are preventable. Smart nutrition and smart lifestyle can help both. If a diabetic gets a heart attack it is usually more severe, more extensive with a poorer outcome than a non-diabetic patient
Diabetics are three to five times more likely to develop heart disease than a non-diabetic; they are more likely to die from it. Heart disease is responsible for approximately 75% of deaths in type 2 diabetes. Women with diabetes are just as likely as men to have a heart attack or stroke. Obesity, high blood pressure and abnormal cholesterol levels — which often accompany diabetes — only aggravate heart disease trouble
HOW DOES DIABETES AFFECT THE HEART?
In two ways First, high blood glucose levels damage blood vessels. They make the walls thicker and less elastic so blood has a harder time passing through.
Second, people with diabetes tend to have higher levels of fat in their blood. Higher blood glucose can cause this. These fats or lipids clog and narrow the blood vessels. Sometimes they clog them completely. This is called arteriosclerosis and can lead to a heart attack, angina (heart pain), stroke, or painful legs.
WHAT DO THE DOCTORS EQUATE DIABETES WITH?
For a doctor, diabetes is equal to coronary artery disease. Put in mathematical format:
Diabetes with no heart attack till date = Non diabetic with one previous heart attack
Simply put, a diabetic patient with no previous history of heart attack has to be given the same level of secondary care as that of a non-diabetic who had one in the past. The implications of this statement are immense. Every patient of diabetes in fact has heart disease and should be respected in the same manner.
NOW FOR THE GOOD NEWS
Now, for the silver lining! There are things to feel good about. It has been proved that if the blood sugars of a diabetic patient are kept normal or near normal then the increased risk of almost all complications is reduced to near normal. Another scientific axiom that has emerged is the acceptance of the fact that the known traditional risk factors should be treated with more than usual aggression and respect.
THE ABC’S OF DIABETES CARE
B Blood Pressure
As the prevalence of diabetes escalates at an alarming rate, key leaders in the prevention and treatment of diabetes have developed a new campaign for diabetes education and management. The ABC’s of diabetes care refer to a patient’s
A is for A1c
This term refers to the blood test that reveals what a person’s blood sugar has been for the past three months. It is a very helpful test because it includes the average blood sugar for all times of the day, instead of just the blood sugar taken before breakfast. People with diabetes should get this test done once or twice a year. If they are on an insulin pump, they need to check it three or four times per year. Diabetes management focuses on maintaining a Haemoglobin A1c within normal limits or less than 7%.
B is for Blood Pressure
Keeping blood pressure under good control is extremely important to good overall health in diabetics and should be less than or equal to130/80 mm Hg.
C is for Cholesterol
Bad Cholesterol levels for LDL need to be less than 100 mg/dl.
People with diabetes need to know their ABC numbers. Health care providers need to help diabetic patients maintain their ABC numbers. Adherence to the A, B, Cs of diabetes care may help reduce the adverse outcomes of diabetes. There is some evidence to suggest that people with diabetes benefit from treatment with aspirin, cholesterol-lowering drugs and blood pressure-lowering agents.
MANTRA OF THE DAY
Diabetes and heart disease walk hand in hand, waiting to pounce as partners-in-crime. Smart nutrition and smart lifestyle can help in preventing the undesirable complications of both.