New Delhi, November 19- You must be aware of Diabetes and how it is increasingly affecting adults in the country. But if you are told that not only the adults, even the children today are in its crosshairs, that would definitely be a news for you, but for thousands of teenagers affected by diabetes across the nation it’s a tireless, life-long struggle involving daily insulin doses and an almost impossible and demanding lifestyle.
After we eat our food, it breaks into into glucose or commonly known as sugar. which our body uses for energy. To help glucose penetrate into the cells of the body, the pancreas make a harmone called ‘insulin’. Sometimes, the body fails to make enough insulin which leads to glucose being stuck in the blood. When this happens over and over again, it causes diabetes.
Diabetes type 2 occurs as a result of the body’s inability to produce enough or sufficient insulin. It is the most prevalent form of diabetes which accounts for around 90% of all diabetes worldwide. The World Health Organization (WHO) has described the situation as ‘exploding nightmare.’
“The number girls and boys with obesity between the ages of 5 and 19 have soared since the mid-1970s, rising by between 10- and 12-fold globally,” a report in Business Standard said while quoting a study by UNICEF.
‘Diabesity’: A New Term Coined by Health Experts
Serious problems like obesity have been long considered as a problem of the rich but due to the availability of cheap fatty and sugary foods, now even the poor kids are being affected by diabetes.
The relation between diabetes and obesity is so deep that health experts have now coined the term ‘Diabesity’ to highlight the dangers of both.
Diabetes in Children: Facts & Figures
The number of teenagers estimated to develop diabetes annually worldwide is an alarming 80,000.
According to the research published in Indian J Endocrinol Metab, 2015, the number of children living in India with diabetes mellitus (T1DM) is a whopping 97,700.
The figure of children being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes has risen rapidly.
According to Pan-India Survey 2015, the percentage of Indian children having ‘abnormal sugar levels’ in their body is 66.11. The lack of regular exercise in urban children is peaked at 68%.
However, there are also some genetic reasons behind cases of diabetes occuring in children.
Speaking to Healthwire, Dr. Kafeel Khan, Paediatrician, BRD Medical College, Gorakhpur said, “It’s genetic in children. Beta cells which form insulin in a normal functioning body, are not able to produce insulin in a child affected with diabetes. That is the difference between diabetes in young children and adults.”
Talking more about the lack of insulin in children he said, “Since in children, beta cells are hardly able to form insulin, they are given insulin shots through injection four times a day i.e. pre-breakfast, pre-lunch, pre-evening snacks, pre-dinner. This becomes almost a life-long routine and they can’t skip heir insulin doses. Besides that, they are advised to indulge physical exercise, eat healthy and not to miss on their insulin doses.”