DIABETES - ARE YOU AT RISK?
Diabetes cases have more than doubled in most western countries over the last two decades and it is already posing a significant health challenge in healthcare systems the world over.
The biggest risk factor for diabetes is obesity. The presence of excess fat around your abdomen seriously increases your risk of diabetes. However this is not the only risk factor and many people who are in the healthy weight range can still fall victim to this lifestyle disease.
Take heart, though, this condition can be reversed through exercise treatments and dietary changes. Doing moderate intensity exercise such as jogging, a walk in the park or cardio exercises, reduced the risk of getting diabetes by almost 50%. If you’re not sure where to start with an exercise plan, get in touch with us so we can help you with an easy to follow diabetes exercise program.
An estimated 917,000 (5.4%) Australian adults aged 18 years and over had diabetes in 2011–12, based on self reporting & measured data collected by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. One of the unusual facts about diabetes risk factors is that a majority of the new cases can be controlled by making positive lifestyle changes, exercising and watching what you eat. Raising awareness of the signs of diabetes and pre-diabetes, encouraging healthy behaviour and early diagnosis by asking their doctor for a diabetes test can assist people to help fight this scourge.
Outlined below are some of the major risk factors for type 2 diabetes.
The major risk factor of type 2 diabetes is obesity; with millions of people around the world being diagnosed as obese, the numbers of diabetics may increase in the coming decade. Obesity is a condition described as having a Body Mass Index of over 30 and recent studies suggest that it accounts for 80-85% of the risk of developing diabetes mellitus.
Obesity was a condition that was previously associated with older people, but nowadays it also affects children and young adults. Teens can also benefit from teenage exercise treatments for diabetes. Being obese, and especially having excess fat on your abdomen, increases the chances being diagnosed of diabetes. Obesity is a big risk factor, but thin people also get diabetes because of visceral fat.
LACK OF EXERCISE
People who live a sedentary life whereby they don’t engage in physical activity increase their chances of becoming overweight and obese. Physical activities help a person to be more active which leads to the body insulin being more efficient and reduces the risks of acquiring diabetes.
The older we become the higher the risk of getting type 2 diabetes because as some studies have shown, the pancreas produces insulin less efficiently. Also, as we age, the body increases resistance to insulin generated by the pancreas. A high correlation has been found between countries with an older population and soaring rates of diabetes.
HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
High blood pressure escalates the risk of diabetes and many other chronic illnesses. Also, high blood pressure is one of the pre-diabetic symptoms. High cholesterol levels have been linked to the development of type 2 diabetes, which can be blamed on your diet. There are strong correlations between cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and chronic kidney disease with many of the same risk factors being present across all three diseases.
We will end with diet as this is the easiest one to fix! A major risk factor for diabetes is eating heavily processed foods such as snacks, processed sugars, frozen dinner and pasta sauce. This heavily processed food stuff usually contains additives such as nitrate and nitrites, fats which increase your caloric level which may lead to diseases such as type 2 diabetes, obesity, weight gain and cardiovascular complications.
Also processed food contains added sugar, which comes in different names such as fructose, lactose or dextrose. Eating healthy is the first step in combating obesity and diabetes, so ensure that you know what healthy foods to grab when you’re next at the supermarket and what you should avoid.
Ready to make changes in your current lifestyle? Contact Full Circle Wellness for a consultation today on 07 5456 1599 and reverse the risk of contracting diabetes. Our dietitian, who specialises in diabetes education, and our accredited exercise physiologists help change bad habits into good.
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Sunshine and Cooloola Coasts
Sunshine and Cooloola Coasts
Wian van Heerden