Incidence Of Preventable Type 2 Diabetes Dramatically Increasing
There are 3 types of diabetes – Type 1 – usually diagnosed in children and adolescents, Type 2 – also called adult onset diabetes; and Gestational diabetes – a temporary condition that can occur during pregnancy.
More than two million Canadians have diabetes. According to the Auditor General of Ontario, it’s estimated that the number of people with diabetes in Ontario alone will reach 1.9-million by 2020, up from the 1.2-million in 2010 and 546,000 in 2000. The number of people with type 2 diabetes is increasing dramatically due to a number of factors:
- The population is aging.
- Obesity rates are rising.
- Canadians lifestyles are increasingly sedentary.
Type 2 diabetes occurs when your body either cannot produce enough insulin or does not use the insulin it makes properly. Insulin gets the sugar from the foods we eat into the cells and gives us the energy to maintain life. But if you have type 2 diabetes, your body can’t do that without help.
Type 2 diabetes is defined as having a fasting blood glucose level of 7.0 mmol/L or higher. The risks associated with rising levels of glucose in the blood are also important, even before they reach 7.0 mmol/L. A simple blood test is a method for finding out how much glucose or sugar is in the blood. This test can show if a person has diabetes, and is usually done in the morning before the person has eaten.
Complications of diabetes
High blood glucose levels over a long period of time can cause blindness, heart disease, kidney problems, amputations, nerve damage and erectile dysfunction. Good diabetes care and management can prevent or delay the onset of these complications.
Causes of diabetes
There is no single cause of type 2 diabetes, but some factors put people at a greater risk, including:
- Being age 40 or over
- Being overweight
- Having a family member who has diabetes
- Having had gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy)
Should my family be tested for diabetes?
People should ask their doctor to be tested for diabetes if they:
- Are age 40 or over
- Are overweight
- Have a family history of diabetes
- Have given birth to a baby that weighed more than 9 lbs
- Are of Aboriginal, Hispanic, Asian, South Asian, or African descent