Diabetes Mellitus

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Diabetes Mellitus Diabetes is one of the commonest long term disorders and is a chronic disease that has no cure. Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the USA as it contributed to more than 187 thousand deaths in 1995. Diabetes affects approximately five percent of the United States population, about 10-12 million people, of those half remain undiagnosed. It is also noted that different races tend to have different rates of diabetes, as from the table below you can see that cases of diabetes are high in Puerto Ricans. [IMAGE] Diabetes is considered a group of disorders with multiple causes, rather than a single disorder. However, when people talk about diabetes they are usually referring to diabetes mellitus, meaning sweet fountain. Diabetes Mellitus should not be confused with Diabetes Insipidus, meaning dilute fountain. Which is a much rarer and quite different condition. Diabetes, or diabetes mellitus, is a disorder in which there is too much sugar in the blood stream. Normally the food that we eat is broken down by a series of enzymes and acids in our intestines. If the food is rich in carbohydrate then the breakdown products will include sugar, which eventually will end up in our bloodstream. Sugar provides us with energy and we all have a certain amount of it circulating at any one time. The sugar that we do not need for instant energy is stored in the liver. If too much sugar is already stored there and fresh supplies are continuing to pour in, the excess will be stored as fat deposits. The amount of sugar allowed into the bloodstream at any one time is regulated by a hormone called insulin which is... ... middle of paper ... ... & Wagnall's Corporation. Ann Fullick, Advanced Biology, Oxford, Heinemann Educational publishers, 1994. Dr Vernon Coleman, Everything you need to know about diabetes, London, Severn House, 1985. Dr R.D.G. Leslie, Family Doctor Guides (Diabetes), England, Equation publishers,1989. The New Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15 edition, volume 3, Helen Hemingway Benton, London, 1974. Magazine reference: Living with diabetes: balance a lifestyle, Jan/Feb. 1998, Issue no 161, Editor Maggie Gibbons. Living with diabetes: balance a lifestyle, May/June 1998, Issue no 163, Editor John Isitt Internet Addresses: http://www.diabetes.org/ada/c20f.html http://www.endocrinologist.com/insulin.htm http://www.endocrinologist.com/herbs.html http://www.joslin.org/education/library/exercise_health.html

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