What you need to know on World Diabetes Day

Educate yourself about Diabetes. Photo: Pixabay

World Diabetes Day is on 14 November with the theme being Women and Diabetes.

According to the International Diabetes Federation, it’s important for women to have access to diabetes medicine, technologies, education and information to ensure the prevention of type 2 diabetes.

Socioeconomic conditions for women with diabetes experience barriers in accessing cost-effective diabetes prevention, early detection and treatment, specifically in developing countries. Economic factors also expose women to the main risk factors for diabetes, including poor diet and nutrition.

Diabetes South Africa is a non-profit organisation founded in 1969, to be a support and advocate for all people with diabetes in South Africa. It’s primarily a volunteer organisation and has seven branches around the country.

The organisation aims to inform, educate and support all people who have diabetes and their families, acting as an advocate for people with diabetes, lobbying for better facilities, cheaper medication and better services. It also promotes prevention through public awareness of diabetes, its symptoms and risks.

According to the organisation, some of the common symptoms of diabetes include unusual thirst, blurred vision, extreme fatigue or lack of energy, frequent urination, and cuts and bruises that are slow to heal.

Here are interesting facts about diabetes according to Diabetes South Africa:

  • Smoking and diabetes each increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and people with diabetes who smoke have a greatly increased risk of heart disease and circulatory problems
  • Type 1 diabetes occurs when the pancreas stops producing insulin. It usually starts in young people under the age of 30
  • There are currently 199 million women globally with diabetes, causing 2,1 million deaths each year
  • Two out of every five women with diabetes are of reproductive age, accounting for more than 60 million women worldwide
  • Type 2 diabetes has several causes: genetics and lifestyle are the most important ones. A combination of these factors can cause insulin resistance when your body doesn’t use insulin as well as it should
  • About 85 to 90 percent of all people with diabetes are type 2 and many people who have this condition are undiagnosed.

ALSO READ: #WorldDiabetesDay: Is your itchy skin a sign of diabetes?

  AUTHOR
Naledi Mokoena

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