November 14th is World Diabetes Day and a campaign to raise awareness about a very common and serious health problem, the diabetes.

 In recent decades, there is a significant increase in the incidence of diabetes mellitus. Because of that, it is necessary people to be informed about the disease while also about ways to prevent and even treat diabetes. However, there are several misconceptions. So what do you already know about diabetes?

Increased weight and obesity are risk factors for the development of type 2 diabetes

Truth. Excessive weight and obesity are among the most important risk factors of type 2 diabetes. Extra weight and abdominal body fat adversely affects the biological effects of insulin, creating a condition called insulin resistance. Adopting a healthy body weight or even a small weight loss helps significantly reduce serum glucose levels, blood pressure and serum lipids.

Eating too much sugar causes diabetes

Myth. Diabetes is characterized by elevated serum glucose levels, but sugar is not responsible for the onset of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is a genetic disease caused by unknown factors. In contrast, type 2 diabetes is a highly inherited disorder that is due to genetic factors and lifestyle. Even though after the onset of diabetes, sugar and foods with high concentration in carbs, containing it are key to regulating diabetes, instead of eating sugar is not responsible for the onset of the disease.

There is a special diet for diabetics

Truth. Diabetics should have a healthy diet that is characterized by low intake of saturated and trans fatty acids, low sugar and salt consumption, while meals should contain lean sources of protein, non starchy vegetables, wholegrain cereals and fruits. Diabetic foods usually do not offer any extra benefit. Diet based on the Mediterranean pattern appears to have a positive effect on postprandial glucose levels.

People with diabetes can’t eat sweets or chocolate

Myth. Although sweets contain large amounts of sugar and saturated fatty acids, they are not forbidden from the diet of a diabetic person. As part of a balanced diet, where there is exercise, sweets can be consumed in a small amount and frequency.

Diabetes can be prevented

Truth. All types of diabetes can not be prevented. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that can not be prevented or cured. Regarding type 2 diabetes, many epidemiological studies have shown that almost the 60% of cases can be prevented. In diabetes type 2 there are many causative and risk factors and not just one. By changing modifiable risk factors of diabetes such as lifestyle, diet and exercise someone can minimize the risk.

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