Diabetes is a common disease that can affect men and women as well as children. There are many complications of diabetes so it is important to know the factors that can increase the risk of diabetes.
There are many factors that increase the risk of diabetes in an individual. This article is going to focus those factors in brief –
Genetic factors – Many separate genetic mechanisms increase the risk of diabetes and its various manifestations and these differ in type 1 and 2 diabetes.
Sugar intake – A high intake of sugar is certainly associated with a high prevalence of obesity. It is unlikely that sucrose has a specific diabetogenic effects.
Dietary restrictions – Restrictions on the food supply of a community affect diabetes. Rationing is beneficial to individuals susceptible to diabetes.
Certain diseases – A minority of cases of diabetes occur as a result of diseases which destroy the pancreas and lead to impaired secretion of insulin, e.g., pancreatitis, haemo-chromatosis, carcinoma of the pancreas and pancreatectomy.
Obesity – Although most type 2 diabetics are obese, only a minority of obese patients develop diabetes. Whether or not an obese patient develops diabetes properly depends on genetic factors. In obesity there is impaired insulin uptake by receptors in target tissues.
Dietary fiber – In many African countries the fiber content of the diet is high and prevalence of diabetes low. In prosperous communities this relationship tends to be reversed.
Acute stress – The normal glucose homeostasis in the body is achieved by a delicate interplay of various hormones. The body releases adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol hormones that raise blood glucose levels to provide a quick source of energy for coping with stress. In acute cases of stress blood glucose levels may rise quite profoundly and in extreme cases diabetic ketosis and coma also may result particularly in those with a genetic predisposition.
Malnutrition – Prolonged malnutrition can also lead to diabetes mellitus.
Infections – There is increasing evidence that type 1 diabetes, especially in the younger patients, follows a coxsackie or other virus infection. There is sometimes a long interval between the infection and the onset of symptoms. The virus may trigger an autoimmune reaction in the pancreatic islets and this impairs insulin secretion and ultimately destroys the ² cells.
Disclaimer: This article is not meant to provide health advice and is for general information only. Always seek the insights of a qualified health professional before embarking on any health program.