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Type 2 Diabetes: Myths and Facts

The word diabetes used nowadays is like a trend. Currently, more can a billion people worldwide are suffering from diabetes. According to a recent report in India about 11.4% of people are suffering from diabetes.

Maybe the pathophysiology of diabetes occurrence is renowned by most people, but there are still many myths about diabetes which are required to be clear over time so that people shouldn't be afraid of it.

Some of the myths are as follows:

Myth 1: Diabetes IS NOT a serious problem.

FACT: Diabetes is a serious disease as it is correlated with other medical problems such as obesity, cardiovascular diseases, heart stroke, etc. Type-2 diabetes is a chronic disease which develops over a period. Just because we cannot feel the problem physically like fever, blood pressure, etc. does not mean this is not a serious problem. A person should take care of his/her blood glucose level with regular checkups and bring changes in their lifestyle accordingly.

Myth 2: People suffering from diabetes cannot have sweets.

FACT: Well, there is no such food in the world which cannot be eaten by a diabetic patient!

A diabetic patient can also have sweets and chocolates. But the thing he/she should remember while satisfying his craving is the portion control of the food.

"Too much greed is not a good sign”. It applies even to foods having low glycaemic index. If a diabetic person wants to have sweets, he may, but the condition is to have them in a controlled quantity.

Myth 3: Exercising being a diabetic patient may lead to low blood sugar levels

FACT: A person who is a diabetic patient should always exercise as exercise will help in uptaking glucose and it will be utilized by the blood cells. If blood cells will be using blood glucose, the glucose level of the blood will drop leading to a decrease in blood sugar level, hence helping with the diabetic condition.

Myth 4: Injecting insulin will harm you

FACT: Actually, insulin is a hormone which is required by our body cells for accepting glucose from our blood by ourselves to have energy. When the body is unable/not sufficiently able to produce insulin by itself, the glucose level in the blood increase to cause the diabetic condition. Insulin injections/ shots are given to a diabetic person (not to everyone) if the body is not able to produce the insulin hormone which is required for the absorption of food energy. That is why insulin never harms us but helps us in receiving energy from food and has become a life changer.

Myth 5: Diabetes requires giving yourself shots

FACT: If a person is diagnosed with diabetes, it does not mean that person must live his whole life by giving himself insulin shots. There are many other treatments also available such as insulin pens, therapeutic diet plans, etc. In most cases where the patient is taking proper care of his health by taking medications in a timely manner and having control on his diet, he can fight the diabetes condition and is able to reverse the condition.

Myth 6: A person who is on insulin medication does not need to make any lifestyle changes

FACT: Insulin is prescribed to diabetic patients when lifestyle and dietary changes are not enough to treat their diabetic condition. But it does not mean that a person who is on insulin can't have their normal lifestyle without having any insulin shot or injection. The total dosage of insulin prescribed may get reduced or even the level may come to zero if a person will be maintaining his dietary and lifestyle conditions properly.

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Myth 7: A person can detect whether his sugar levels are high or low

FACT: The truth is a person can never judge whether the sugar level in his blood is high or low. Sometimes a person is not overweight but he is either pre-diabetic or maybe diabetic. The symptoms of diabetes are polyuria, polyphagia, excessive sweating, etc. Such symptoms are hardly noticeable to a person in their busy life. Hence, a person can never know whether he is having diabetes or not. That is why it's recommended to have their body checked up at regular intervals of time (after every 2-3 months).

Myth 8: If you're overweight, you will have diabetes

FACT: If a person is overweight, it does not mean that a person will get diabetes as a diabetic condition depends upon other factors also such as family history, genetics, choice of food, etc.

Diabetes conditions occur when the blood glucose levels are high as compared to normal ones and those high blood levels of glucose mainly depend upon the choices of food and the lifestyle of a person. Physiological conditions also take place as there may be insensitivity to insulin taking place inside a person. There are many cases where a person is not overweight but is diabetic. Being a diabetic mainly depends upon the acceptance of insulin by body cells and not upon the weight of the body.

Myth 9: Type 2 diabetes is NOT a genetic disorder

FACT: Actually, there is a very important role of genetics also for a person being diabetic. If either a parent or a child is diabetic, there is a high chance of a child having low insulin sensitivity and hence, being diabetic in his future life as compared to a child whose none of the parents is diabetic.

Myth 10: Eating sugar in high amounts leads to diabetes

FACT: Although there is a strong correlation between sweets and diabetes, does not mean eating sweets only leads to diabetes. Type 2 diabetes condition of course due to many other factors such as genetics, poor lifestyle, sedentary activity, improper eating pattern, etc.

Myth 11: Being pre-diabetic means you will obviously be diabetic soon

FACT: This myth is totally false as the pre-diabetic stage is a stage before diabetes. This stage let the person know that he is soon going to be a diabetic patient and alerts the person to improve his lifestyle and eating patterns in order to prevent him from being in a diabetic stage. If a person tests positive for a pre-diabetic stage, he should take it as a red alert for altering his lifestyle.

Myth 12: All types of diabetes are the same.

FACT: Most common types of diabetes are type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes. All these types of diabetes are not the same and their occurrence is differences. Type 1 diabetes depends upon the secretion of insulin hormone by the pancreas which totally depends upon genetics and even a 6-month-old baby may have it. Type 2 diabetes occurs due to poor lifestyle and eating habits and it is diagnosed majorly during adult stages. Gestational diabetes occurs during the pregnancy of a woman, leading to high chances of a child being diabetic in their future life.

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