Type 2 diabetes: Doctor explains impacts of the condition
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Type 2 diabetes is a lifelong condition that can affect your everyday life. You may need to change your diet, take medicines and have regular check-ups. Often linked to being overweight or inactive, type 2 is caused by problems with a hormone called insulin.
Many people have type 2 diabetes without realising.
This is because symptoms do not necessarily make you feel unwell.
Symptoms of type 2 diabetes include:
- Peeing more than usual, particularly at night
- Feeling thirsty all the time
- Feeling very tired
- Losing weight without trying to
- Itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
- Cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
- Blurred vision.
According to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, researchers are continually studying diabetes, hoping to gain more understanding about what causes it and how to prevent it.
Recently, new findings have identified a significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes, that could help prevent many people from developing the condition.
Your childhood BMI could predict diabetes.
The research paper, published in the Journal of American College of Cardiology, found that childhood obesity – a high body mass index (BMI) – could be a significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes and early myocardial infarction.
This will, ultimately, lead to overall worse health in young adulthood regardless of BMI.
Researchers used BMI z-scores of 12,300 children between the ages of 11 and 18 with 24 years of follow up self-reported data via the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health.
They found that a higher BMI in adolescence was responsible for a 2.6 percent increase in overall poor health, an 8.8 percent greater risk for type 2 diabetes and 0.8 percent increased risk for early myocardial infarction for adults in their 30s and 40s – regardless of their adult BMI.
Your adolescent BMI is also a risk factor for other health issues including heart attacks.
Jason M. Nagat, lead author of the study said: ”The finding that adolescent BMI is a risk factor for poor health outcomes in adulthood, regardless of adult BMI, has significant implications for our understanding of cardiovascular disease onset.
“Considering these findings, health care providers should consider BMI history when assessing for cardiovascular and chronic disease risk.
“Our study suggests that adolescence is an important time period to optimise health and prevent early heart attacks,” Nagata continued. “Paediatricians should encourage teens to develop healthy behaviours including physical activity and balanced meals.”
Doctor Deena Adimoolam, a Yale-trained endocrinologist who specializes in diabetes also explained that it is vital to know your risk for diabetes and to be screened early if you are concerned over your risk.
A simple blood test can tell you your risk.
Other symptoms of type 2 diabetes could include:
- Excessive thirst
- Often feeling hungry
- Blurry Vision
- Sudden fatigue.
Whilst these symptoms are often passed off as unrelated to type 2 diabetes, it is important to consult your GP to be certain, as, spotting the early signs of type 2 can be crucial going forward.
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