Would you believe it if I told you that being a Nigerian influences how prone you are to diabetes? Sounds rather ridiculous. Right?

Novo Nordisk, a global health care company, carried out a research in Nigeria which revealed that there are currently 3.6 million adults (20-79 years old) and 4,440 children and adolescents (0-19 years old) living with diabetes, with a projected increase of about 134% by 2045. Deborah Tolu-Kolawole wrote in detail about this in her article published in The Punch.

Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the way the body handles sugar. It is a condition that affects the way the body produces or uses insulin, which is a hormone that regulates blood sugar. People with diabetes either don’t produce enough insulin to meet the body’s needs or their cells are resistant to it.

 It is a leading cause of heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-limb amputations.

Diabetes can be classified into type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body does not produce any insulin, while in type 2 diabetes, the body does not produce enough insulin or cannot use it effectively.

Some symptoms of type 2 diabetes may include feeling tired, increased hunger and thirst, losing weight without trying, urinating often, or having trouble with blurred vision.You may also get skin infections or heal slowly from cuts and bruises.

The commonness of diabetes in old age depends on many factors, including family history, obesity level, lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise and ethnicity.(Yes! ethnicity is also a factor). Type 2 diabetes is more common than type 1 and increases in prevalence with age.

The risk of developing type 2 diabetes can be managed easily and effectively by  incorporating exercise into your daily routine, managing your blood sugar levels, maintaining a healthy weight, following a proper diet and being physically active, along with medication if needed.  Being overweight or obese can increase your risk of getting type 2 diabetes by up to 60%.

As is the case with most chronic diseases, early detection is key to managing diabetes. It requires constant monitoring and management which is why it is important to be aware of the risk factors for developing this condition.

 In order to prevent or manage diabetes in old age, it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle as well as regular checkups with your doctor