On this page:
- Understanding diabetes
- Symptoms of diabetes
- Causes of diabetes
- Treatments for diabetes
- Dietary supplement that helps treat diabetes
Diabetes mellitus is a condition in which the amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood is too high because the body cannot use it properly. Glucose comes from the digestion of starchy foods such as bread, rice, potatoes, chapattis, yams and plantain, from sugar and other sweet foods, and from the liver which makes glucose.
Insulin is vital for life. It is a hormone produced by the pancreas, that helps the glucose to enter the cells where it is used as fuel by the body. The main symptoms of untreated diabetes are increased thirst, going to the loo all the time – especially at night, extreme tiredness, weight loss, genital itching or regular episodes of thrush, and blurred vision.
There are two main types of diabetes. These are:
- Type 1 diabetes
- Type 2 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes develops if the body is unable to produce any insulin. This type of diabetes usually appears before the age of 40. It is treated by insulin injections and diet and regular exercise is recommended.
Type 2 diabetes develops when the body can still make some insulin, but not enough, or when the insulin that is produced does not work properly (known as insulin resistance). In most cases this is linked with being overweight. This type of diabetes usually appears in people over the age of 40, though in South Asian and African-Caribbean people often appear after the age of 25. However, recently, more children are being diagnosed with the condition, some as young as seven. Type 2 diabetes is treated with lifestyle changes such as a healthier diet, weight loss and increased physical activity. Tablets and/or insulin may also be required to achieve normal blood glucose levels.
The main aim of treatment of both types of diabetes is to achieve blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels as near to normal as possible. This, together with a healthy lifestyle, will help to improve wellbeing and protect against long-term damage to the eyes, kidneys, nerves, heart and major arteries.
The main symptoms of diabetes are:
- increased thirst
- increased urination– especially at night
- extreme tiredness
- weight loss
- genital itching or regular episodes of thrush
- blurred vision.
What causes diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes develops when the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas have been destroyed. Nobody knows for sure why these cells have been damaged but the most likely cause is an abnormal reaction of the body to the cells. This may be triggered by a viral or other infection. This type of diabetes generally affects younger people. Both sexes are affected equally.
Type 2 diabetes
Type 2 develops when the body can still make some insulin, but not enough, or when the insulin that is produced does not work properly (known as insulin resistance). In most cases this is linked with being overweight. This type of diabetes usually appears in people over the age of 40, though in South Asian and African-Caribbean people it often appears after the age of 25.
However, recently, more children are being diagnosed with the condition, some as young as seven. Type 2 diabetes is treated with lifestyle changes such as a healthier diet, weight loss and increased physical activity. Tablets and/or insulin may also be required to achieve normal blood glucose levels
Treatments for diabetes
Treatments for Type 1 diabetes
People with Type 1 diabetes need injections of insulin for the rest of their lives and also need to eat a healthy diet that contains the right balance of foods. Insulin cannot be taken by mouth because it is destroyed by the digestive juices in the stomach. People with this type of diabetes commonly take either two or four injections of insulin each day.
If you or someone close to you needs insulin injections, your doctor or diabetes nurse will talk to you, show you how to do them and give you support and help. They will also show you how you can do a simple blood or urine test at home to measure your glucose levels. This will enable you to adjust your insulin and diet according to your daily routine. Your doctor or diabetes nurse will advise you what to do if your glucose level is too low.
If you have Type 1 diabetes, your insulin injections are vital to keep you alive and you must have them every day.
Treatments for Type 2 diabetes
People with Type 2 diabetes need to eat a healthy diet that contains the right balance of foods. If your doctor or diabetes nurse finds that this alone is not enough to keep your blood glucose levels normal, you may also need to take tablets.
There are several kinds of tablets for people with Type 2 diabetes. Some kinds help your pancreas to produce more insulin. Other kinds help your body to make better use of the insulin that your pancreas does produce. Another type of tablet slows down the speed at which the body absorbs glucose from the intestine.
Your doctor will decide which kinds of tablet are going to work best for you and may prescribe more than one kind. Your doctor or diabetes nurse will tell you all about the tablets, when to take them, and how to monitor your blood or urine glucose levels.
Dietary supplements that help treat diabetes
nzpurehealth Propolis is a natural immune-supporting substance gathered by honey bees from trees and used to protect the hive against infections.
Propolis can reduce the symptoms of diabetes, by helping the pancreas to produce insulin. Propolis can work particularly well with Royal Jelly. However, please note that diabetes is a chronic condition, with no known cure. Our aim when advising people on taking Propolis and Royal Jelly, is to provide them with the nutrients to reduce their symptoms, and hence their frequency of insulin injections or tablet usage.
nzpurehealth Royal Jelly is produced solely for feeding the queen bee. Royal Jelly contains all the B-complex vitamins, including a high concentration of Pantothenic acid (B5). It is a natural source of acetylcholine which plays a role in memory, learning and sexual function.
Some of the health improvements normally experienced when taking Royal Jelly are increased vitality and energy, stronger nails and hair and a more radiant complexion. Other commonly claimed benefits are stress relief, better digestion, improved liver function, insomnia alleviated, fatigue alleviated.