(High Blood Sugar)
Etiology: Diabetes is a general term for diseases characterized by excessive urination but usually refers to diabetes mellitus. Two types of diabetes should be briefly acknowledged. Diabetes insipidus is a rare metabolic disorder caused by a deficiency of the pituitary hormone, which is usually the result of damage to the pituitary gland. It is characterized by enormous amounts of urine produced by the body regardless of how much liquid is consumed.
Diabetes is a chronic, incurable disease but symptoms can be ameliorated and life prolonged by proper therapy.
(Note: blood sugar and glucose are considered to be the same thing)
CAUSES: Diabetes mellitus results from insufficient production of insulin in the pancreas. Without insulin the body cannot utilize glucose, thus creating a high level of glucose in the blood and a low level of glucose absorption by the tissues. Generally divided into two categories, type I, called insulin-dependent or juvenile diabetes, and type II, in which the onset of diabetes occurs during adulthood.
SYMPTOMS: The type I diabetic symptoms include: irritability, frequent urination, abnormal thirst, nausea or vomiting, weakness, fatigue, and unusual hunger. Occurs mostly in children or young adults, but may have an insulin reaction in an instant; seeming perfectly normal one second and becoming unconscious the next. Early warning signs of type I diabetes are hunger, dizziness, sweating, confusion, palpitation, and numbness or tingling of the lips. If untreated, the patient may experience double vision, trembling, and disorientation; may perform strange actions, and may eventually lose consciousness. During any of these symptoms, consumption of a piece of candy, a drink of soda pop, or any food containing sugar will bring blood sugar levels back up to normal.
The type II diabetic (maturity-onset diabetes), often have family history of diabetes and is characterized by blurred vision, itching, unusual thirst, inordinate appetite, dry red tongue, dyspepsia , mental depression, progressive weakness, drowsiness, obesity, fatigue, skin infections, slow healing, and tingling or numbness in the feet. Onset is usually later in life.
Type II diabetics are not able to perceive sweet tastes. This abnormality is important in how patients perceive food; resulting in difficulty to lose weight while on diet therapy.
Diabetes is the third leading cause of death in the United States.
Other symptoms: lingering flu-like symptoms, loss of hair on legs, increased facial hair, small yellow bumps anywhere on the body (known as xanthomas-cholesterol), and inflammation of the penile skin. Diabetes is associated with arteriosclerosis .
TREATMENT: Diagnosis and treatment must be under a doctors supervision.
Overweight people are at greatest risk of developing diabetes.
The following test can detect any impaired ability to taste
1. Do not consume stimulants (coffee, tea, soda) or sweets for one hour before the test.
2. Label and fill with the correct amounts seven identical glasses of water as having: no sugar, 1/4 tsp. sugar, 1/2 tsp. sugar, 1 tsp. sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. sugar, 2 tsp. sugar, or 3 tsp. sugar. Have someone switch the order of the glasses and hide the labels.
3. Take a straw and sip from each glass, marking which amount you think it is. Between each test rinse your mouth with water.
Usually people without the diabetic condition perceive a sweet taste with only one tsp. or less of sugar in eight oz. of water. Those with adult-onset diabetes will not perceive sweetness until they have tasted the equivalent of 1 1/2 to 2 tsp. of the sugar water.
Normal amounts of vitamin B are fine, but excessive amounts may inactivate insulin.
Type II should avoid large amounts of niacin, but niacinamide for type I diabetics slows down destruction of beta cells in the pancreas and enhances their regeneration, extending the remission time.
Because of the severe complications that commonly occur in diabetics, it is extremely important that the disease be kept under proper control. See the doctor! These complications include: an increased incidence of coronary artery disease and strokes, gangrene and infection in the feet due to poor circulation, cataracts, kidney disease and high blood pressure, various neurological diseases, poor digestion, and various skin diseases.
SOURCES FOR MORE INFORMATION:
American Diabetes Association
1660 Duke Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
International Diabetes Center
5000 W. 39th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55416
Joslin Diabetes Foundation
One Joslin Place
Boston, MA 02215
Juvenile Diabetes Foundation
60 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10010--1550
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