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60 Second Factfile: Diabetes

Symptoms

Feeling very thirsty, frequent urination, tiredness, weight loss, blurred vision.

Living with diabetes

There are two types of diabetes; type one is an autoimmune disorder, while type two is often caused by lifestyle. Without treatment, somebody with diabetes is likely to suffer from mood swings, extreme tiredness and irritability; if ignored, this can escalate to vomiting, dehydration and possibly death.

Treatment

Diabetes cannot be cured, but it can be managed by controlling the body's insulin levels, as this needs to be stable for the body to process sugar. Levels are monitored by testing a drop of blood, usually from the patient's finger, and a dose of insulin is injected or taken in pill form. Most diabetics are able to do this safely from home.

Mythbuster

Eating lots of sugar won't cause you to develop diabetes - but it may increase your weight, which in turn can increase the risk. Also contrary to popular belief, diabetics can eat sweets and chocolates - jut in moderation, and with careful blood monitoring.

Sources

http://www.diabetes.org.uk/

http://www.nhs.uk/conditions/diabetes/pages/diabetes.aspx

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