All you need to know about Diabetes

Did you know that India is the Diabetes capital of the world?

Diabetes – An insight

Diabetes is a chronic (long-lasting) health condition that affects how your body turns food into energy.

Most of the food you eat is broken down into sugar (also called glucose) and released into your bloodstream. When your blood sugar goes up, it signals your pancreas to release insulin. Insulin acts like a key to let the blood sugar into your body’s cells for use as energy. Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disorder recognized by high blood sugar. It occurs either because of lack of insulin or because of the presence of factors that oppose the action of insulin.

Types of Diabetes

Type I diabetes: A disorder in which the body makes little or no insulin at all because of Beta cell destruction. It is thought to be caused by an autoimmune reaction (the body attacks itself by mistake). Symptoms of type 1 diabetes often develop quickly. It’s usually diagnosed in children, teens, and young adults. Insulin shots are needed daily for the treatment of Type 1 diabetes.

Type II diabetes: This is the most prevalent form of diabetes comprising 90 - 95% of all diabetics. The body makes less insulin or the cells are unresponsive to insulin. The body may have enough insulin and still the insulin response is ineffective because of the blockage of insulin receptors, also termed as insulin resistance. Overproduction of insulin initially exhausts the Beta cells production of insulin, consequently leading to less insulin production thereby causing diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed with healthy lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, eating healthy food, and being active.

Gestational diabetes develops in pregnant women who have never had diabetes.It is important to diagnose and treat gestational diabetes because it severely affects the foetus. Gestational diabetes signals that a person has a higher chance of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life, particularly if the individual is overweight / obese.

Your baby is more likely to have obesity as a child or teen, and more likely to develop type 2 diabetes later in life too.

 In Prediabetes blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough yet to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes. Prediabetes raises the risk  for type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. 

Prevention studies have proven that with intensive lifestyle interventions (ILS), there is a 58% risk reduction of being diabetic. ILS involved changes in diet and physical activity aimed at reducing weight. For every 1 kg decrease in weight, the risk of developing diabetes in future was reduced by 16%. 

Recognize the symptoms of diabetes

  • Tiredness
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased appetite
  • Unexplained weight loss and weight gain ( especially around the belly )
  • Numbness or tingling of feet
  • Blurred vision
  • Wounds that don’t heal


While many patients with Type II diabetes present with increased urination & thirst, many others have a slow onset of hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) & do not exhibit symptoms initially. This is particularly true in obese patients, whose diabetes may be detected only after sugar is detected in urine or as high blood sugar. 

Occasionally patients may present with evidence of neurological or cardiovascular complications because of disease present for some time, most common being pain, numbness & weakness in extremities (more in legs), angina & strokes. Chronic skin infections are also common. 

Diabetes should always be suspected in those who have delivered large babies (more than 4 kg), presence of pre-eclampsia during pregnancy or unexplained fetal losses. Eye & kidney problems arise frequently & should be dealt aggressively.

Know the risk factors for diabetes?

Following conditions make you more susceptible to Diabetes:

  • Being overweight (If a person has body weight classified as overweight and if the
    waist to hip ratio is more than 0.9 in men and more than 0.8 in women,
    he/she is classified as centrally obese)
  • Being pre-diabetic
  • Family history of diabetes 
  • Women having PCOS ( Polycystic ovarian syndrome )
  • Have had high sugar during pregnancy (Gestational Diabetes Mellitus)
  • Have delivered a baby weighing over 4 kgs
  • Have a history of chronic pancreatitis, fatty liver and high triglycerides
  • If you are > 30 years of age
  • Leading a sedentary life style
  • Have been an alcoholic

 Some alarming facts…

  • At least 50% of all people with prediabetes are unaware of their condition. In some
    countries this figure is as high as 84%
  • Even an increase in BMI by 1 can drastically increase your chances of getting diabetes 
  • Upto 80% of Type II diabetes is preventable by adopting a healthy diet and increasing physical activity


>Obesity can lead to gestational diabetes in pregnancy. This increases the risk for a
primary caesarian and pre term birth in all women. Losing weight saves all the above risk.

>Obesity and Insulin resistance are reversible, but unchecked weight gain will lead to Type II Diabetes mellitus which is irreversible

>There is a linear relationship between weight loss and HbA1c reduction, with an estimated mean HbA1c reduction of 0.1 percentage points for each 1 kg of reduced body weight

Normal range of blood glucose control-

  • Fasting Sugar: 70 - 100 mg/ dl 
  • Post Prandial (PP) sugar: 100 -140 mg/ dl 

Awareness about Complications of diabetes-

Hyperglycemia: High blood glucose, known as hyperglycemia, is one of the characteristic feature of diabetes. It can lead to an acute life threatening condition like diabetic ketoacidosis (commonly known as DKA) in which the blood glucose level rises and ketones in the urine are positive resulting in coma. 

Hypoglycemia:  It occurs when the glucose level is low in the blood (50-65mg/dl). It results from excess insulin in the body. The common causes are:

  • Missing and delaying a meal
  • Exercising longer or more strenuously than usual
  • Not adjusting insulin to accommodate changes in blood glucose level

Low blood sugar signs are generally exhibited as follows:

  • Fast heartbeat
  • Sweating
  • Shaking
  • Headache
  • Chills and cold sweat
  • Hunger
  • Vision problems
  • Feeling sick to your stomach
  • Feeling cranky, low or like crying
  • Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
  • Feeling nervous or anxious
  • Feeling weak or tired
  • Tingling or numbness of your lips or tongue


Treating low blood sugar – an essential learning:

  • Check your blood sugar to see if it is below 70 mg/dl
  • If you can’t check, being well versed with the signs of hypoglycemia helps identifying it
  • Eat or drink something with sugar in it i.e. sources that provide 10 to 15 grams of
    simple carbohydrates. This is the amount of carbohydrate needed to help bring
    up the low blood sugar level to normal
  • Wait for about 15 minutes, then check your blood sugar
  • If your blood sugar is still too low (or if you don't feel better), eat another 10-15
    gram serving of carbohydrate and test again after 15 minutes
  • Once your blood sugar begins to return to normal, eat an extra snack. Your snack
    should include a carbohydrate and a protein. 

Some examples of sources with 10 to 15 grams of simple carbohydrates:

  • 2-3 sugar cubes
  • 2-3 glucose tablets
  • 2-3 tsp of sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 1/2 cup of fruit juice
  • 1/2 cup of soda pop with sugar in it

Chronic complications- Knowing them alarms all of us…..Take timely action to prevent / control Diabetes

  • Brain: The blood flow in the vessels that nourishes the brain can be restricted by deposition of fat and cholesterol. This lack of blood flow to the brain can cause a stroke, paralysis etc

An increased risk of Dementia and depression associated with Diabetes has also been found.

  • Eyes: Diabetic patients suffer from loss of vision, cataract and glaucoma more
    often than a nondiabetic person
  • Legs and feet: Damage to blood vessels in the legs and feet can lead to poor
    circulation, pain while walking or running, non-healing ulcer and amputation.
  • Heart: Diabetic patients suffer from angina (chest pain) and heart attacks, more
  • often than non diabetics.
  • Kidney: Diabetes can affect various areas of the kidney, leading to leakage of
    proteins in urine and also altered renal function, with rise in blood urea and serum
  • Nerves: In Diabetes, the nerves are affected leading to a wide range of problems like numbness, hypersensitivity and pain.

Diabetes can also cause nerve damage in the ears leading to hearing loss.

  • Skin: susceptibility to skin problems increases including bacterial and fungal infections.


Key to controlling Diabetes

There are 5 key pillars for optimally controlling blood glucose:

  • Medication
  • Dietary Intervention
  • Regular Exercise
  • Frequent Monitoring
  • Awareness and Education

Let VLCC Luxe experts hand hold you in managing Diabetes ……

VLCC Luxe strongly believes in the education and implementation of well balanced and nutritious diets as part of its Wellness programme.

Lifestyle intervention by means of Diet, physical activity, passive activity and therapies, with the main goal focused towards weight loss and controlling Diabetes, lays down the foundation of our successful “Wellness programme for Diabetics”. Close supervision and education of our clients sets the success bar high in optimizing the blood glucose levels.

All clients who join VLCC Luxe go through an intensive zero (the first) session. Here the clients' detailed medical history, lifestyle, past medical & family history are noted. A detailed medical examination is then performed. Following this a Body Composition Analysis (BCA) is conducted by the latest technology analyzer. Detailed analysis of the body composition assists in customizing the Wellness programme as per individualized requirements.

Medical counseling and aligned line of treatment is implemented and closely supervised by the Medical Doctor.

An individually tailored dietary prescription based upon metabolic, nutritional & lifestyle requirement is made for every client by our expert Dietitians. 

An exercise programme as per individual's lifestyle is charted out by our specialized physiotherapists. It is important to expend energy besides controlling the caloric intake. This is achieved by both passive & active exercise. Exercise increases the effectiveness of insulin & moderate exercise is an excellent means of improving utilization of fat & carbohydrate in diabetic patients.

Further, you may not be overweight but maybe having central obesity ( fat deposition around the abdomen ), which again is a predisposing factor for Diabetes and other Medical conditions. Waist circumference, Visceral Fat Area and Waist–Height ratio are important indices to measure the same. VLCC Luxe’s localized fat reduction programme, executed by trained physiotherapists and therapists, is focused on plummeting that disproportionate band of excess fat on your waist besides improving skin laxity and toning the muscles. 

So don’t hesitate , take a step forward, discuss your Medical issues with our Counselor and Medical Doctor, join the “Wellness Programme” curated just for you and see a positive transformation in your life.

You can even reverse Prediabetes, if you are determine to follow it with full perseverance. 

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