A diabetes blood sugar test .
(photo credit: REUTERS)
World Diabetes Day will be marked on Monday, November 14. This day was chosen because it coincides with Frederick Banting’s birthday, the man who, along with Charles Best and John James Rickard Macleod, conceived the idea that led to the discovery of insulin in 1922.
This year, the theme is “Eyes on Diabetes” and will focus on screening for type 2 diabetes and dealing with the complications suffered by those who already have diabetes. The metabolic disease is a huge and growing burden, with 415 million adults living with diabetes around the world last year and an estimated 642 million by 2040.
In Israel, the prevalence of adult-onset diabetes was 21% among Arabs and 12% among Jews. In addition, one in two adults with diabetes is as yet undiagnosed.
Up to 70% of type 2 diabetes cases can be prevented or delayed by adopting healthier lifestyles. But 12% of the current total global health expenditure is spent on adults already diagnosed with diabetes.
World Diabetes Day was launched in 1991 by the Israel Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization in response to the rapid rise of diabetes around the world. Activities include diabetes screening programs, radio and television campaigns, sports events and others.
One of the complications of uncontrolled diabetes is diabetic retinopathy, in which blood vessels in the retina proliferate and can cause vision loss or blindness.
Insulin-dependent diabetes (type 1) is an autoimmune disease with a genetic component that requires injections of insulin several times a day, as the immune system destroys the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas that produce natural insulin.
EYAL, the Israel type 1 diabetes association, will hold a type 1 diabetes campaign this month to stress that the disease “can affect anyone.”
A media campaign is being held to promote awareness of the symptoms, including thirst, tiredness and increased urination.