Wednesday , March 3 2021

Diabetes mellitus is associated with insufficient food security and requires coordinated multidisciplinary intervention

Evidence suggests that the risk of developing adult chronic diseases is not only due to genetic and adult lifestyle factors; early life also plays a very important role. People living in a disadvantaged environment and facing complex socioeconomic situations can begin life with an increased vulnerability to diabetes and many other non-communicable diseases.

In the last decade, the prevalence of diabetes in countries with low and middle income has grown faster than in high-income countries. Worldwide, three quarters of reported diabetes cases are found in low- and middle-income countries that also experience mild or severe food insecurity, which contributes to type 2 diabetes.

The International Sugar Diabetes Federation (IDF) estimates that, by 2030, the number of people living with diabetes in the world is projected to reach 552 million and most are in Africa. In 2015, nearly half of all adults with diabetes in Africa were South Africa (2.3 million), the Democratic Republic of the Congo (1.8 million), Nigeria (1.6 million), and Ethiopia (1.3 million).

In South Africa, 5.4% of the total adult population of 33.7 million is diabetics, but a large proportion of these people are still not diagnosed. This is because, for the first time in humans, seven years are needed to recognize the presence of the disease. Unfortunately, the longer a person lives with undetectable and untreated diabetes, as health benefits are most likely to be present, therefore, it is necessary to have easy access to basic diagnosis of diagnosis in primary health care facilities.

It is therefore important for people to recognize early warning signs, including symptoms such as frequent touch, fvery painful, feeling very hungry, even if you eat, extreme tiredness, blurred vision, as well as incisions or bleeding that are slow to heal.

Evidence suggests that the risk of developing adult chronic diseases is not only due to genetic and adult lifestyle factors; early life also plays a very important role. People living in a disadvantaged environment and facing complex socioeconomic situations can start to live with increased vulnerability to diabetes and many other non-communicable diseases.

This increased risk begins with maternal malnutrition during pregnancy, which affects not only the nutritional status, but also the supply of general nutrients to the growing fetus, resulting in infants born during the low pregnancy.

The following increase in inflammation and flammable fats, not lean mass, in the first years of life are closely linked to an increased risk of increased abdominal fat, obesity, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes in later life.

The link between the incidence of diabetes, its care and food security has a major impact on type 2 diabetes In south africa Although food insecurity does not in itself lead to diabetes, a person living with type 2 diabetes is more likely to suffer from food than people who do not. This is because the loss of productivity due to the delay in diabetes and illness-related disability complications increases the severity of food insecurity.

Diabetes management costs

The direct and indirect costs associated with managing diabetes's life expectancy can be a huge burden for the family unit. Direct costs include total treatment, prescription medications and special dietary needs. Additional indirect costs are due to absenteeism and inability to work due to illness. In addition, the treatment of the disease requires long-term care to control blood sugar levels and its complications through chronic medicines, diabetes monitoring products, diabetic food and other basic needs.

For low-income households that can not provide food safety, it is difficult to manage the disease, for example, their views and limited knowledge of what to eat, the cost of health care monitoring, or the time when the recommended level of physical activity. People who do not have food security, the high costs associated with managing the disease, can lead to poor compliance with treatment plans.

Food-borne diabetes patients often face complex choices, such as choosing between cost-related disease management and purchasing essential household requirements. Patients often overlook this disease because they are not able to cope with the potential costs associated with managing it.

Instead, they choose to feed their family. They are constantly worried about whether they will have enough food to carry it out in the next cost check. This is even worse for patients living in rural areas who may have even more difficult access to healthcare, medication and other monitoring tools. All of these factors increase the likelihood of poor control of diabetes, which often leads to complications such as amputation, blindness, kidney disease and even death.

Recommendations for diabetes care

The quality of treatment, lack of medicines, limited nutritional knowledge and diabetic education in the over-pressed healthcare sector are the main problems in the treatment of the disease. There is an urgent need for greater collaboration between the national healthcare system, various government sectors, non-governmental organizations and community workers to support the implementation of relevant nutrition education interventions.

There is a need for interventions that are affordable, cost-effective, and based on the best available science. They should promote healthy food preparation methods using available local food and physical activity. Public health care services in primary healthcare facilities should provide better access to medicines and supplies, such as blood sugar checkpoints. It is very important for diabetic patients to be provided with clear information through continuous diabetes education with their families.

In view of the increasing challenges, multidisciplinary intervention is required on all stakeholders. Governments, healthcare providers, people with diabetes, civil society, food manufacturers and drug and technology manufacturers and suppliers can be important in reducing all types of diabetes. This can be done using:

  • Determining the Life Alert Approach to treat diabetes, recognizing the life-span effects of developing diabetes and recognizing the possibilities to prevent and control it in key stages of life – from conception, pregnancy, childbirth, childhood and adolescence to adult age.

  • Enhanced early childhood nutrition.

  • Supportive nature and built environment to promote physical activity.

  • Encourage interference that reaches individuals, families and communities.

  • Political action to increase high-fat foods, sugar and salt.

  • Mobilize sustainable media and educational campaigns aimed at increasing the consumption of healthy food (or reducing the consumption of less healthy people) and increasing physical activity. DM

Dr Nokuthula Vilakazi is the future coordinator of the Africa Project for Early Career Research Leadership at Pretoria University. The World Day for diabetes is being celebrated on November 14, after it became the official United Nations Day in 2006. This day is mentioned on Sir Frederick Banting's birthday, which, in 1922, discovered insulin with Charles Burroughs.


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