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Diabetes care in China: meeting the challenge

In both human and economic terms, diabetes is becoming one of the most serious and costly health conditions worldwide. Economic development, bringing changes from a traditional to a modernized lifestyle, is driving a huge increase in the number of people with obesity-related type 2 diabetes in China. The extraordinary size of the problem is worrying; if current trends continue, diabetes will become a massive health burden in China. In this article, Changyu Pan looks at the status of diabetes care in China and highlights the need for regional and national initiatives to

Blood fats: a toxic meal-time tide

Eating is a pleasant necessity for most of us. We eat our food, the gastro-intestinal tract (gut) directs nutrients to the blood stream, and excess energy is stored for later use. Much of what is known about the mechanisms that regulate these processes has been learned from diabetes research. Because diabetes has always been regarded as a disease of glucose metabolism, the research has been focussed on the intake and processing of glucose. Jacqueline Dekker looks at the role of fats (lipids) in the processes that give rise to diabetes-related risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Blood glucose levels after meals: all important?

While it is known that people with diabetes have an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), the factors which contribute to this state are not fully understood. In this article, Antonio Ceriello examines the importance of the post-meal functioning of the body in the development of heart disease.

How does smoking affect insulin sensitivity?

It is well known that tobacco smoke is harmful to health and is of particular danger to people with diabetes. All of the chronic complications of diabetes – such as cardiovascular disease, foot problems, kidney disease, and eye damage – are exacerbated by breathing in tobacco smoke. Recently, it was suggested that smoking may increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Although the exact mechanisms are not yet fully understood, it has been suggested that impaired sensitivity to the action of insulin in people who smoke tobacco could be linked to

Cause as well as effect: smoking and diabetes

People who smoke tobacco are at increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Tobacco use contributes to the risk of all the major types of cardiovascular disease, particularly heart attack, stroke and the blockage of blood vessels in the lower limbs. People with diabetes, especially type 2 diabetes, are also at high risk for

Enhancing diabetes education and awareness using limited resources

In his Nobel Prize lecture, the writer VS Naipaul described from the point of view of a boy of Indian origin born in Trinidad in the 1930’s the ethnic and cultural diversity of this small southern Caribbean island state. In this culturally rich but challenging setting, with few available resources, diabetes educators have made significant advances in facilitating diabetes education in Trinidad and Tobago and in raising awareness of the condition countrywide. Zobida Ragbirsingh reports.

Improving psycho-social care: the Indian experience

The number of people with diabetes in the Indian subcontinent has been increasing dramatically: approximately 30-33 million people have diabetes in India and this number could double by 2025. Compared to other ethnic groups, Indians have a high risk of developing diabetes. However, the impact of psycho-social factors related to diabetes care has also contributed to the growing pandemic.

Essential diabetes care: the prevention of fracture risk

Assessing the health of people’s bones should be a standard component of diabetes care. People with diabetes are at an increased risk for fractures; this risk increases with the development of diabetes complications. Bone fractures impose a major impact on a person’s quality of life and on healthcare budgets. Inge Van Pottelbergh explains bone loss in people with diabetes and looks at the current treatment options.

The year of the diabetic foot

The human and economic consequences of the diabetic foot are extreme. Due to various complications of diabetes, a person’s foot can become vulnerable. Nerve

Foods and their effects on blood sugar

Until the discovery of insulin in the 1920’s, dietary modification offered the only means of reducing raised blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Now a wide variety of sophisticated insulin regimes are available; and for people with Type 2 diabetes, there is a range of oral medication. However, there is increasing appreciation that appropriate food selection remains a cornerstone of diabetes management. While it is important to remember that the way in which

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