The modern era of fast food generation and take away lifestyle makes our body more prone to nutritional imbalances. These misbalances come in the form of metabolic diseases, which require immediate attention. Precautionary methods should be adopted to avoid contraction of complex diseases in the future.
Metabolic diseases are more common in the 21st century due to our lifestyle choices. One of the dangerous and serious disease associated with this is diabetes mellitus. Diabetes mellitus is caused due to a metabolic disorder of the carbohydrate metabolism. Carbohydrate metabolism is dependent on the pancreatic hormone insulin, which converts sugar and starch into energy needed for our day-to-day activities.
Generally, the diabetes mellitus is divided into two types - Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes mellitus. Type 1 diabetes mellitus is more common among children and young adults. It was also popularly known as juvenile diabetes as majority of cases reported were children. Incase of Type 1 diabetes, the pancreas are unable to produce enough insulin and therefore requires appropriate medication to maintain insulin level in the body. Hence, this type of diabetes is also known as insulin dependent diabetes.
The main signs and symptom associated with diabetes mellitus are increased thirst, polyuria, extreme hunger, unintended weight loss, fatigue, general weakness and fungal infections of the yeast.
The Type 1 diabetes mellitus is caused mainly by the loss of insulin producing beta cells of the islets of Langerhans especially by the environmental factors such as viral infection. Also, genetics play an important role in maintaining insulin production.
The 3D medical animation illustrates how insulin helps in the absorption of glucose to help the body produce energy.
3D Medical Animation - Why is insulin so important for glucose absorption
Even though the type 1 diabetes mellitus is caused by some of the important factors mentioned above. There are still however, other important risk factors that may increase the chances of developing Type 1 diabetes.The risk factors are
- Family history - parents or siblings with Type 1 diabetes mellitus.
- Genetics - presence of certain genes that make a person more genetically susceptible.
- Geographical location - Research shows that the chance of acquiring Diabetes mellitus Type 1 increases as you move away from the equator.
- Vitamin D deficiency – Inadequate amount of vitamin D during childhood
- Weather – Type 1 diabetes in more common in cold weather and places with cold climate
Generally, Type 1 diabetes can occur at any stage. However two peaks where it’s more susceptible is 4-7 years or first peak and 10-14 years or 2nd peak.Treatment
Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus is a chronic disease that can only be controlled but not completely eradicated. The disease is controlled by lifestyle changes (exercise and meal intake) as well as medical treatment that involve insulin therapy.
If untreated, Type 1 diabetes mellitus can lead to life threating and very serious complications like
- Diabetic Retinopathy which can even lead to blindness
- Kidney damage or Nephropathy that in later stages can cause heart diseases or kidney failure.
- Damage to the nerves and poor blood circulation in the feet increases the risk of injury coupled with decrease in ability to heal thereby increasing the risk of amputation.
As the disease has no permanent cure and a number of adverse consequences, it becomes even more imperative to control it by following a strict routine of medical checkups along with lifestyle changes.