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Diabetes - a life changing diagnosis

14th Nov is World Diabetes Day. 

In Singapore, 1 out of 9 people aged 18 to 69 has Diabetes. Yet 50% of those with Type 2 diabetes do not even know that they have this condition. 

Pre-diabetes, the stage before Type 2 diabetes, has no symptoms that excess sugar is slowly being stored in your bloodstream or that your pancreas is not producing enough insulin. 

Diabetes is a leading cause of cardiovascular disease, heart attacks, strokes, and kidney damage. You will also be more prone to having infections, blindness and nerve damage. It also puts you at higher risk of developing musculoskeletal pain such as Frozen Shoulder, Trigger Finger, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Osteoarthritis.

Screening for diabetes is recommended to be done once every 3 years for those who are aged 40 and above through a fasting blood glucose test. 

Risk factors of diabetes are:

  • Overweight or obsese (BMI>30)

  • Certain ethnic group (Malay or Indians) 

  • Family history of diabetes

  • History of Cardiovascular diseases

  • Hypertension

  • Gestational diabetes (Females)

  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) (Females)

  • Age > 40

Symptoms of late stage diabetes:

  • Excessive thirst

  • Frequent urination

  • Blurred vision

  • Hand and feet numbness

  • Slow healing wounds

The good news is, 80% of Type 2 diabetes is preventable. Pre-diabetes and Type 2 diabetes can be reversible through weight loss or reduction in waistlines! Exercise will also help to re-sensitise the body to absorb sugar from the blood. However, having weight loss is not a guaranteed reversal of pre-diabetes, and is more likely to be reversed in those who were overweight or obsese. 

Exercise recommendation: 

  • Aerobic exercises (Run, Swim, Cycle or Brisk walking etc) to be done 30 mins a day, 5 times a week

Diet recommendation:

  • Swap out flavoured rice for plain rice (Reduces calorie intake Want to add a caption to this image? Click the Settings icon. by 120 calories)

  • Reduce intake of sauces and soups as they are usually filled with oil, salt and sugar

  • 1 serving of carbohydrates, 1 serving of meat, fish or tofu, 2 servings of fruits and vegetables

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