Friday, September 22, 2017

Elderly with Type-2 diabetes at high risk of fractures

·         Poor lifestyle habits can exacerbate this disease
·         A healthy diet is key in managing the symptoms in those with Type-2 diabetes
New Delhi, 21st September 2017: A study conducted recently has indicated that older adults with Type-2 diabetes have deficits in their cortical bone, which can increase their susceptibility to fractures. Cortical bone is the dense outer surface of bone that forms a protective layer around the internal cavity. Type-2 diabetes can alter the micro-architecture of this bone in the elderly and increase the risk of fracture. The IMA added that Type-2 diabetes is a serious public health problem. With the population of the elderly on an upward trend, this is only likely to increase further.

Diabetes is a life-long disease that affects the way the body handles glucose in the blood. Most people with diabetes have Type-2 diabetes. People with Type-2 diabetes make insulin, but the cells are unable to use it as well as they should. This is known as insulin resistance.

Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal, National President Indian Medical Association (IMA) and President Heart Care Foundation of India (HCFI) and Dr RN Tandon – Honorary Secretary General IMA in a joint statement, said, “Type 2 diabetes is typically brought on by poor eating habits, too much body weight and too little exercise. As the body cannot effectively use insulin to bring glucose into cells, it relies on alternative energy sources in the tissues, muscles, and organs. This is a chain reaction that follows up with many symptoms. Type-2 diabetes tends to develop slowly over time and the symptoms are very mild in the beginning. Apart from lifestyle issues, there are other factors that can contribute to the development of this disorder. In some people, the liver produces too much glucose. Some people may also have a genetic predisposition to Type-2 diabetes. Obesity is a major factorin increasing the risk of insulin resistance.”

While the early symptoms of Type-2 diabetes include constant hunger, a lack of energy, fatigue, weight loss, excessive thirst, frequent urination, dry mouth, itchy skin, and blurry vision; an increase in the sugar levels eventually can lead to yeast infections, slow-healing cuts, dark patches on the skin, foot pain, and feeling of numbness in the extremities.

Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, said, “A healthy diet containing leafy vegetables, fresh fruit, whole grains, lean meat, fish, and nuts can help reduce a person’s risk of Type 2 diabetes and avoid complications. However, a healthy diet is more expensive than an unhealthy one. The wide availability of cheap, energy-dense, low-nutrient food is contributing to the global epidemic of Type-2 diabetes. Foods that reduce the risk of this disease such as vegetables, fresh fruit, whole grains, and unsaturated fats need to be made more affordable and more widely available.”

Diabetes will be one of the many key topics of discussion at the upcoming Perfect Health Mela being organized by HCFI, to be held from 4th to 8th October 2017 at the Talkatora Stadium in New Delhi. IMA is the knowledge partner for the event. It is a must visit for those interested in learning more about preventive health and well-being. It will also have free health camps for checking blood sugar levels and other health parameters.

The following tips can help in managing Type-2 diabetes.

  • Include foods rich in fibre and healthy carbohydrates in your diet. Eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains will help keep the blood glucose levels steady.
  • Eat at regular intervals and eat only until you are full.
  • Control your weight and keep your heart healthy. This means keeping refined carbohydrates, sweets, and animal fats to a minimum.
  • Get about half an hour of aerobic activity daily to help keep your heart healthy. Exercise helps in controlling blood glucose as well.

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