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The numbers don’t lie and diabetes isn’t slowing down! There are currently about 600 million diabetics in the world, and it is estimated that by 2045 their number will increase to 783 million. 240 million people live with undiagnosed diabetes.

What is worth knowing about this disease? Where does it come from, how to know if it may also affect you and what is the treatment like? Let’s look at some basic facts about diabetes.

Diabetes: a disease of civilization

Regardless of the type, diabetes (Latin:diabetes mellitus) is a disease that has one thing in common: too much glucose in the blood. This happens due to insufficient insulin production, ineffective use of insulin or when the pancreas does not produce it at all.

Polish Diabetes Association defines the diagnostic criteria for diabetes. There are 3 diagnosis scenarios. Diabetes is diagnosed when:


  1. you have symptoms andthe random blood glucose level is ≥ 200 mg/dl (≥ 11.1 mmol/l)< /b>.
  2. no or present symptoms but random blood glucose is < 200 mg/dl (< 11.1 mmol/l) – then diabetes is indicated byfasting glucose level in each of two measurements ≥ 126 mg/dl (≥ 7.0 mmol/l) or glycated hemoglobin level (HbA1c) ≥ 6.5% (≥ 48 mmol/ mol).
  3. glycemia level in oral glucose tolerance test at 120 minutes OGTT ≥ 200 mg/dl (≥ 11.1 mmol/l). This test is performed when, despite the level of glycemia and glycated hemoglobin (described in points 1 and 2) not indicating diabetes, there is a reasonable suspicion that the patient has it.


To really understand why insulin is so important for people with diabetes, let’s go to the cellular level.

Every cell in the body needs energy. Energy comes from glucose, which is produced by breaking down the food or drink you eat.

Glucose circulates in the bloodstream and enters the body’s cells, where it can then be used as fuel – but only when regulated by an essential hormone, insulin.

When blood sugar levels rise, insulin is released, which helps glucose enter cells. Unfortunately, if you suffer from diabetes, this process does not work properly.

In diabetes, either there is not enough insulin or the body has difficulty using the amounts that exist, leading to high levels of glucose remaining in the bloodstream for a long time (hyperglycemia).

This, in turn, can lead to serious health problems over time, including: heart disease or kidney failure.

Yes, diabetes is a civilization disease in the full sense of the word.

Lifestyle diseases are diseases that are becoming more and more common due to the progress of civilization and changes in our lifestyle.

Depending on the type of diabetes, factors such as lifestyle, diet, overweight, and lack of physical activity may influence its appearance and course. It is therefore directly related to the development of civilization, hence it is referred to as a civilization disease.

Diabetes in statistics

Let’s take a look data from the Ministry of Health.

In Poland, 3 million people struggle with diabetes. 90% of them suffer from type 2 diabetes.

The incidence of diabetes in Poland is currently approximately 9.1%, and by 2035, according to estimates, the number of patients will increase to 592 million.

Can you prevent the development of diabetes?

For type 2 diabetes, there are many lifestyle modifications that can help prevent or delay its onset. It is often preceded by the so-called pre-diabetes.

This condition occurs when blood sugar levels remain higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Unfortunately, prediabetes increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

There is also good news: if someone has symptoms of prediabetes, they can take proactive steps to reverse their condition through lifestyle changes that promote healthy habits, better nutrition, regular exercises etc.

Types and symptoms of diabetes

Diabetes comes in many varieties. The most common forms include:

Rarer types include:

  • neonatal diabetes,
  • secondary diabetes,
  • steroid-induced diabetes,
  • MODS (EnglishMaturity-Onset Diabetes of the Young),
  • latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA) Latent Autoimmune Diabetes of Adults).

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. The body mistakenly attacks the healthy beta cells of the pancreas, whose job is to produce insulin.

This form of the disease affects approximately 5-10% of people with diabetes. It can be diagnosed at any age, manifests quickly and requires daily doses of insulin. Unfortunately, there is currently no known way to prevent its occurrence.

Main symptoms:

  • greater thirst and hunger,
  • unexplained weight loss,
  • dry mouth
  • fatigue, weakness,
  • urination more frequently
  • visual disturbances,
  • heavy breathing,
  • acetone can be felt on the breath,
  • fainting may also occur.

People with type 2 diabetes have difficulty using insulin or have too little of it. Most people with diabetes (90-95%) have this form . It develops over time, usually in adults, but recently it has also been seen more often in children, teenagers and young adults.

Type 2 diabetes may be characterized by symptoms similar to those listed above, but they are often absent or develop gradually.

Other possible symptoms include:

  • urinary tract infections,
  • hard-to-heal wounds
  • weight gain,
  • erectile dysfunction,
  • itching, especially around the groin and vagina,
  • tingling or numbness in the feet and hands.

Pregnant women who have never had diabetes may experience gestational diabetes. It affects approximately 3-12% women. It usually goes away after delivery, but remember that it increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes later.

Gestational diabetes may not cause any visible symptoms, but those that may appear include:

  • greater thirst and hunger,
  • frequent urination
  • blurred vision.


Neonatal diabetes develops in the first 6 months of life. MODS (Maturity-Onset Diabetes of the Young) usually appears before the age of 25. due to gene mutation. In turn,Latent Autoimmune Diabetes of Adults (LADA) is a form of type 1 diabetes, but its course is slower and it occurs in adulthood.

Secondary diabetes is the result of taking medications and the presence of other diseases, such as pancreatitis or cystic fibrosis. The steroid-induced form of the disease is associated with the use of steroids.

What does the treatment look like?

Monitoring your diabetes is the most important thing to do. Maintaining blood sugar levels at optimal levels is a priority if you have diabetes.

The traditional method of monitoring diabetes is capillary blood measurements using a glucometer. The test involves pricking your finger and placing a drop of blood on the glucometer strip.

There are also alternative ways to monitor your diabetes. We are working on one of them at Advanced Medical Equipment with the team. We have developed Diabetomat – a device that non-invasively measures the concentration of diabetes biomarkers in exhaled air. Without stress, pain and blood.

Illness management also includes, but is not limited to:

  • balanced meal plan,
  • regular physical activity
  • taking insulin,
  • controlling blood pressure
  • maintaining triglycerides and cholesterol levels at healthy levels.

Diabetology is a field that is constantly developing thanks to new research and technologies. The innovations that my team is also working on could make daily monitoring and management of the disease easier and less challenging.

Diabetes is a global problem. However, by understanding this disease, you are able to manage it. The articles you will find on this blog have one goal – to make this task easier for you by providing only verified and reliable information.

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