Diabetes Mellitus (DM) is a serious chronic condition that impedes the production and/or proper use of insulin, a hormone vital to normal metabolism. Although there is no cure for diabetes, it can be managed to avoid the development of complications such as: limb amputation, blindness and kidney disease.
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes usually occurs in childhood and accounts for 5–10% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 1 is not preventable. Individuals with type 1 diabetes manage their condition with insulin, diet, exercise and drugs. Individuals living with type 1 diabetes are at greater risk of long-term complications such as limb amputation, blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, stroke and premature death.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes affects individuals usually after the age of 40, but it can occur at an earlier age. It accounts for 90–95% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is preventable. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed by modifying two known risk factors – obesity and physical inactivity. Physical inactivity and unhealthy eating lead to obesity, and play a major role in the onset and progression of type 2 diabetes.
About a third of adults with type 2 diabetes are unaware that they have the condition, which without treatment, puts them at a greater risk of long-term complications such as limb amputation, blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, stroke and premature death.
In 2005, approximately 130,000 Albertans had been diagnosed with diabetes. Every month, almost 1,000 new cases are added to that total.