Diabetes is a growing concern across much of the world. Everyone has heard about diabetes, but unless you have it, or a loved one has been affected by it, there’s a good chance you might not actually know what it is.
In a nutshell, diabetes happens when a person’s body can’t use glucose properly. This can happen when there is an insulin deficiency, or because the insulin that is there isn’t doing its job properly.
Diabetes has been a known condition for almost 4000 years and there are more than two million people in the UK with the condition, with anything up to another million people believed to have it without knowing it.
Roughly 75% of people have what’s known as ‘type 2 diabetes mellitus’, which was previously known as non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM). The remaining quarter of diabetes sufferers have ‘type 1 diabetes mellitus, which was known as insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.
So what’s the difference between type 1 and type 2? Well, in type 1 the body is unable to produce its own insulin and usually affects people from childhood or young adulthood. Treatment normally consists of a combination of insulin injections and diet control. Type 2 is where not enough insulin is produced and usually affects people when they get older.
Research is one of the key tools in combating diabetes. Scotland is at the very heart of diabetes research, with many Scottish universities leading the way on discovering more about the mechanisms of the disease, with a view to finding a cure.
The Scottish Government formed the Scottish Diabetes Framework in 2002, which was a ten-year programme designed to address the diabetes epidemic. Around four per cent of Scotland suffers from diabetes and the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimate there will be 366 million diabetes sufferers worldwide by 2030.
It’s for this reason that Scotland has taken a proactive approach to diabetes research. Several Scottish universities are currently working on groundbreaking studies into the nature of diabetes and the working of insulin and sugar transmission through the body. They are also researching the effects of obesity on type 2 diabetes, which is a known contributing factor.
Dundee University, Aberdeen University, Glasgow Caledonian University, Strathclyde University and Edinburgh University are all in the vanguard of diabetes research. Their collective dedication to a shared cause will hopefully, one day, see a breakthrough in the fight to find a cure.
Adam Singleton writes for a digital marketing agency. This article has been commissioned by a client of said agency. This article is not designed to promote, but should be considered professional content.
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