Diabetes mellitus is a medical condition when the amount of glucose in the blood becomes too high. Glucose is moved from the blood to the body’s cells via a hormone known as insulin. Should the insulin level become too low, the blood glucose levels may rise resulting in diabetes.
By eating a balanced diet and taking regular exercise whilst maintaining a healthy body weight, one can assist with the prevention and delay of type 2 diabetes. Those who have developed diabetes should maintain a weight that is considered healthy and ensure that their diet is low in saturated fat and salt. They should, however ensure that their diet contains at least five portions of fruit and vegetables along with carbohydrates that are starching such as pasta, rice and whole-grain bread.
Untreated diabetes may cause increased thirst, the need to urinate more, weight loss, itching of the genital organs, blurred vision and tiredness.
Type 1 diabetes is also referred to as insulin dependant diabetes. The body’s immune system turns against itself and as result the cells that produce insulin are destroyed and the pancreas is unable to produce enough insulin. This type of diabetes usually develops in people under the age of 40 and in childhood.
Type 2 diabetes is when the body does not produce enough insulin or the insulin does not properly work. This type usually occurs in middle ages people. This type of diabetes is rapidly growing in the US due to people becoming fatter due to their poor diet and nutrition.
Treatment can include diet modification and physical activity for type 2 diabetes to help patients control their blood glucose level and help those patients who are overweight lose weight. It is usually possible to control this type of diabetes by diet and insulin. People with type 2 diabetes are advised to adhere to a healthy well balanced nutritious diet and will be give their individual dietary guidance by a health professional.
Likewise, a healthy nutritious diet and physical exercise can assist with the prevention of type 2 diabetes. Researchers have linked the regular consumption of whole grain foods to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, cancer and heart disease. Foods that are whole grain provide a person with many nutrients such as fibre, minerals, vitamins and resistant starch. They contain compounds such as antioxidants and phytoestrogens which can assist with disease prevention. Nutrients such as these may become lost in the refining process.
People with diabetes are advised to eat healthy – the same way that is recommended for the whole population. Their diet should contain plenty of fruit and vegetables, starchy foods and foods that are low in sugar, salt and fat. Bear in mind that cakes that are designed for the diabetic may not be beneficial as they can contain a lot of fat.