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Parish Nursing Bulletin



Series on some major health problems: Part 1

Type 2 Diabetes

Over the next few weeks, we will look at some major health problems and lifestyle changes that help to prevent and/or manage them.

Looming Epidemic: Type 2 Diabetes!
Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in Canada. Approximately 2.25 million Canadians have been diagnosed with diabetes; 90% have Type II (formerly known as "adult onset") diabetes. The incidence worldwide is expected to double within 25 years, and it is becoming increasingly frequent among young adults and even children. Worse yet, many people who have the disease aren't aware of it!

Diabetes results when the body can't produce enough insulin (Type I) or can't effectively use the insulin it does produce (Type II) to metabolize sugars (glucose) and fats.

Risk factors include:
· Increasing age
· Family history of diabetes
· Overweight/obesity
· Inactive lifestyle
· High-risk ethnicity (East Asian, Caribbean, First Nations, Hispanic)
· High blood sugar/blood fats
· High blood pressure/heart disease
· Gestational diabetes/newborns bigger than 9 lbs

Signs & symptoms include:
· Excessive thirst
· Frequent urination
· Unexplained weight loss
· Fatigue
· Blurred vision
· Recurring infections
· Slow healing of cuts/bruises
· Numbness/tingling in fingers/toes

Complications include:
· Cardiovascular disease
· Kidney failure
· Blindness
· Nerve damage
· Lower limb amputation

The good news is, there are ways to prevent or manage the disease such as:
· Reach/maintain a healthy weight
· Keep active/exercise daily
· Report symptoms to your doctor
· Take medications as prescribed for controlling blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol & triglycerides.


© 2009 Parish Nursing Ministry