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Women and Diabetes

Posted in Medshield Wellness   |   March 4th, 2019

Diabetes is the ninth leading cause of death in women globally, causing 2.1 million deaths each year.

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a condition in which there is too much glucose, a type of sugar, in the blood. Glucose levels are usually maintained by a hormone called insulin. Glucose is a by-product of the food that we eat, and the job of insulin is to move glucose from the bloodstream to the cells, where it is used to provide the body with energy. In Diabetes this process is disrupted because of a lack of insulin. This results in a build-up of glucose in the bloodstream, producing symptoms such as tiredness, frequent urination and feeling thirsty

Diabetes is a chronic condition, which means that once diagnosed it will be present for life. Over time a number of serious complications can occur because of the effects of raised glucose levels on blood vessels. These include heart disease and stroke, as well as damage to the eyes, kidneys and feet.

Types of Diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes is usually diagnosed during childhood and is a condition where the patient’s pancreas does not produce enough insulin. Symptoms appear quickly and daily insulin injections are required to control the illness.

Type 2 Diabetes

In Type 2 Diabetes, the problem is insulin resistance rather than a lack of insulin. As a result, the insulin producing cells in the pancreas increase and this leads to pancreatic cell Insulin resistance occurs when the body does not respond to insulin as it should and resists taking glucose into the cells.

The harmful effects of Diabetes can be reduced by taking steps to maintain a normal level of glucose in the bloodstream. You may have to change your diet, lose weight, exercise more frequently or use medications.

As with all illnesses, early detection is crucial and Medshield assist members with early diagnosis through our Wellness Benefit. Once diagnosed with Diabetes members need to enrol on the Disease Management Programme and will then receive one-on-one contact and support from a dedicated Case Manager who will advise you on the correct management of your condition in terms of medication and lifestyle adjustments e.g. diet.

View more information on our website www.medshield.co.za or contact Medshield at 086 000 2121 with your queries or to register

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