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Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs either when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone that regulates blood sugar. Hyperglycaemia, or raised blood sugar, is a common effect of uncontrolled diabetes and over time leads to serious damage to many of the body's systems, especially the nerves and blood vessels. In 2014, 8.5% of adults aged 18 years and older had diabetes. In 2012 diabetes was the direct cause of 1.5 million deaths and high blood glucose was the cause of another 2.2 million deaths
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Key facts
The number of people with diabetes has risen from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million in 20141.
The global prevalence of diabetes* among adults over 18 years of age has risen from 4.7% in 1980 to 8.5% in 20141.
Diabetes prevalence has been rising more rapidly in middle- and low-income countries1.
Diabetes is a major cause of blindness, kidney failure, heart attacks, stroke and lower limb amputation1.
In 2012, an estimated 1.5 million deaths were directly caused by diabetes and another 2.2 million deaths were attributable to high blood glucose**1.
Almost half of all deaths attributable to high blood glucose occur before the age of 70 years1. WHO projects that diabetes will be the 7th leading cause of death in 2030 2.
Healthy diet, regular physical activity, maintaining a normal body weight and avoiding tobacco use are ways to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes1.
Diabetes can be treated and its consequences avoided or delayed with diet, physical activity, medication and regular screening and treatment for complications.
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SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF DIABETES

Individuals can experience different signs and symptoms of diabetes, and sometimes there may be no signs. Some of the signs commonly experienced include:
Frequent urination
Excessive thirst
Increased hunger
Weight loss
Tiredness
Lack of interest and concentration
A tingling sensation or numbness in the hands or feet
Blurred vision
Frequent infections
Slow-healing wounds
Vomiting and stomach pain (often mistaken as the flu)
The development of type 1 diabetes is usually sudden and dramatic while the symptoms can often be mild or absent in people with type 2 diabetes, making this type of diabetes hard to detect.
If you show these signs and symptoms, consult a health professional.
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Types
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes (previously known as insulin-dependent, juvenile or childhood-onset) is characterized by deficient insulin production and requires daily administration of insulin. The cause of type 1 diabetes is not known and it is not preventable with current knowledge. Symptoms include excessive excretion of urine (polyuria), thirst (polydipsia), constant hunger, weight loss, vision changes and fatigue. These symptoms may occur suddenly.

Type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes (formerly called non-insulin-dependent or adult-onset) results from the body’s ineffective use of insulin. Type 2 diabetes comprises the majority of people with diabetes around the world, and is largely the result of excess body weight and physical inactivity. Symptoms may be similar to those of Type 1 diabetes, but are often less marked. As a result, the disease may be diagnosed several years after onset, once complications have already arisen. Until recently, this type of diabetes was seen only in adults but it is now also occurring increasingly frequently in children.
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