It is such a beautiful day the members of the coffee club are having a hard time settling down for a serious discussion. But we know we need to because it will fluster Uncle Bud if he is not able to share what he learned about Type 2 Diabetes. We have discussed this topic before but there is so much to learn and Uncle Bud is passionate about helping us take care of our health. As we expected he gives us a five minutes limit to finish our chit chat.
To begin he asked us to look up the term Diabetes Mellitus Type 2. Sam is the first to find it and reads the following from Wikipedia: Diabetes mellitus type 2 (formerly noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) or adult-onset diabetes) is a metabolic disorder that is characterized by hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) in the context of insulin resistance and relative lack of insulin. This is in contrast to diabetes mellitus type 1, in which there is an absolute lack of insulin due to breakdown of islet cells in the pancreas. The classic symptoms are excess thirst, frequent urination, and constant hunger. Type 2 diabetes makes up about 90% of cases of diabetes, with the other 10% due primarily to diabetes mellitus type 1 and gestational diabetes. Obesity is thought to be the primary cause of type 2 diabetes in people who are genetically predisposed to the disease (although this is not the case in people of East-Asian ancestry). Type 2 Diabetes is initially managed by increasing exercise and dietary changes. If blood sugar levels are not adequately lowered by these measures, medications such as metformin or insulin may be needed. In those on insulin, there is typically the requirement to routinely check blood sugar levels.
Rates of type 2 diabetes have increased markedly since 1960 in parallel with obesity. As of 2010 there were approximately 285 million people diagnosed with the disease compared to around 30 million in 1985. Type 2 diabetes is typically a chronic disease associated with a ten-year-shorter life expectancy. Long-term complications from high blood sugar can include heart disease, strokes, diabetic retinopathy where eyesight is affected, kidney failure which may require dialysis, and poor blood flow in the limbs leading to amputations. The acute complication of ketoacidosis, a feature of type 1 diabetes, is uncommon, however hyperosmolar hyperglycemic state may occur.
Wow, that is a lot of information. But as expected Uncle Bud has more to add. He tells us that Type 2 Diabetes accounts for 95% of diabetes cases in adults and that 26 million American adults have been diagnosed with the disease. Type 2 Diabetes was once called adult-onset diabetes. However now that there are so many overweight children and teenagers who are developing Type 2 Diabetes it is often referred to as non-insulin-dependent diabetes. People who are obese are at high risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. (Another reason we all need to watch our weight)
While there is no cure for diabetes, Type 2 Diabetes can be controlled with weight management, diet, and exercise. If it progresses medication may be needed.
We are expecting to get a lecture now about weight control and the importance of exercise but there is just not time. Uncle Bud is disappointed but says he can save that for another time. He does remind us that Weigh to Wellness is an excellent place to go to receive professional help in managing diabetes.
As we leave he tells us that next week we will learn about Gestational Diabetes.