World Diabetes Day is a global campaign which was established to raise the awareness of this metabolic disorder. It is observed every year on November 14th.
The number of people diagnosed with diabetes mellitus increases every year. Thus the main goal of marking this day is to inform the general public of the main causes of diabetes and ways to prevent it.
There are several types of diabetes, but the two most common are:
- Type 1
- Type 2
The cause of Type 1 diabetes is still not known and happens due to the pancreas’s inability to produce enough insulin. It is not preventable, and people who have a family history of the disorder have a higher chance of getting it.
On the other hand, Type 2 diabetes is preventable. The main risk factors are obesity and lack of exercise. This type is more common, with hundreds of millions of cases in 2015.
Today we will look at:
- History of World Diabetes Day
- Facts about diabetes
- What to do on World Diabetes Day
History of World Diabetes Day
The campaign was launched by the International Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization in 1991. The campaign lasts throughout the entire year, while the main activities are held on November 14th.
November 14th was chosen since a Nobel Prize laureate Frederick Banting, who was a part of the team that discovered insulin, was born on this day.
Since the establishment, over 160 countries have participated in the activities related to World Diabetes Day. The campaign encompasses activities such as TV campaigns, sports activities, screening programs, etc.
World Diabetes Day campaigns have a different theme every year. In 2015, the campaign was focused on Healthy Eating, a year later on Eyes on Diabetes, while Women and Diabetes were 2017’s theme. The 2018 theme is The Family and Diabetes.
Facts About Diabetes
The data about diabetes can be rather inaccurate. Various sources state the different figures. However, for the purpose of this article, we used the WHO data.
According to the WHO, there were 350 million people diagnosed with diabetes in 2015. The number of people having diabetes is expected to pass half a billion by 2030.
Around 75% of people with diabetes live in middle-income and third-world countries. However, the US has a rapid increase, as well. Half of those diagnosed don’t even have access to diabetes education programs.
Type 2 diabetes is more common and accounts for 90% of all diabetes cases. Scientists believe that 80% of the cases could’ve been prevented by adopting a healthy lifestyle.
Diabetes is one of the main causes of blindness, cardiovascular disease, and stroke. It can also lead to leg amputation and kidney failure.
What to Do on World Diabetes Day
Let this day be a reminder for you to adopt a healthy lifestyle and to learn more about the disorder. Think about the food you eat and how often you exercise. If you are overweight, consider paying a visit to a doctor. Obesity is a leading factor for getting diabetes. Start taking care of your health before it is too late.
If you want to learn more and hear the experiences of others, find a documentary to watch. Some of the most popular are: Reversing Diabetes in 30 days, What the Health, Diabetes: The Hidden Killer, and Fed Up.
Take time to learn how diabetes develops and make changes in your diet. Start exercising and go to check your cholesterol level and blood pressure.
Think about your health before you get diabetes. It is not difficult. It is just a matter of will. Read more on how diet and exercise can help you if you have diabetes and what foods to avoid.