Canada’s $15.2 billion dollar totally preventable chronic disease

By 2030 it is predicted that 370 million people worldwide will have Type II Diabetes.  What’s interesting is that in 1985 the worldwide T2D population was only 30 million.

How?  Why?

When we eat, our blood sugar levels rise and in order to bring the levels back down insulin is required.  Insulin is a hormone and it helps our cells absorb glucose, which is basically the form of energy we get once our food is broken down.  Type II Diabetes is the result of insulin becoming less effective in lowering blood sugar levels and the impact of this on the body is devastating which leads me to the “bad” of diabetes.

In the case of people with T2D, the pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin OR the body starts to respond well to insulin.  This results in weight loss, fatigue, weakness, nerve damage, blurred vision, dry skin, and infections.  It significantly increases risk of cardiovascular disease, amputation, eye diseases, and kidney disease.

Here are some staggering statistics:

80% of people with Type II Diabetes will die from cardiovascular disease.

The leading cause of non-trauma related amputations is a result of T2D.

50 – 70% of men with T2D suffer from erectile dysfunction.

The current cost of Type II diabetes to the Canadian health care system is 15.2 billion dollars.

Wow right?  Here is the good news.

95% of Type II Diabetes is caused by eating too much food and not exercising enough.  As obesity rates rise, so too does the incidences of T2D.  When we eat too  much the calories that our body doesn’t need are stored as fat and when all the fat cells are full our liver, muscles, and pancreas become a storage locker – specifically with the pancreas this is what screws up our ability to utilize insulin correctly.

So if your BMI is over 25 (check online here to find out what your BMI is:  http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/bminojs.htm) you need to shed some pounds or chances are you’ll develop T2D.

How?

Excerise more and eat less.

30 minutes a day of walking is enough to get you started and check here for some ideas on eating balanced meals:

https://thehealthjunction.wordpress.com/2012/01/04/healthy-eating-plate-snapshot/

Here are some other guidelines for you to follow:

– limit saturated fats (animal fat) and use mono or polyunsaturated fats instead (plant-based fats like olive oil).

– eat more fiber.  25 grams a day is a good start.

– drink maximum of two drinks a day

– talk to your doctor on seeing a dietitian or nutritionist to help you find some healthy eating solutions.

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