It is now possible to identify the presence of diabetes in the body even before the first manifestation of symptoms. Researchers at the University of Geneva (UNIGE) in Switzerland have identified a molecule whose reduced levels signaled a problem in the cells responsible for producing insulin.
Thanks to the fact, a simple blood test can identify the development of a picture of diabetes. This can prevent the appearance of sequelae in the body and improve the prognosis of the disease.
According to the latest edition of the Ministry of Health’s Vigitel Survey, Brazil has about 15 million adults living with diabetes, almost 10% of the population over 18 years of age. The disease is characterized by an increase in blood sugar due to the malfunction of insulin, a hormone responsible for removing glucose from the bloodstream.
The most common type, associated with 90% of cases, is 2. It is caused by external factors, especially habits considered bad for health, such as a sedentary lifestyle and poor diet, which lead the body to become insulin resistant.
There is a stage prior to diagnosis called pre-diabetes. In it, the body begins to manifest high concentrations of glucose in the blood and loss of beta cells (cells responsible for secreting insulin). This loss, however, is still not as drastic as in diabetes. When pre-diabetes is detected early, it is possible to reverse the stage and prevent the development of the disease.
“But identifying the transition from pre-diabetes to diabetes is complex. Therefore, we opted for an alternative strategy: finding a molecule whose levels in the blood would be associated with the functional mass of these beta cells to indirectly detect their change in the pre-diabetes phase, before the appearance of any symptoms”, says the statement from Pierre Maechler, professor in the Department of Physiology and Cellular Metabolism and the Diabetes Center of the Faculty of Medicine of UNIGE, responsible for leading the work.
Scientists point out that the discovery opens new avenues for early diagnosis and prevention of diabetes, especially in people with risk factors for the disease. They also highlight the benefits of blood testing, a simple procedure that does not involve additional costs.
Sedentary lifestyle caused the increase in cases of the disease
Another study, this time carried out by the Universidade Estadual Paulista (Unesp), showed that the decrease in physical activity during the pandemic may be related to the annual increase of over 11.1 million new cases of type 2 diabetes. this increase could result in an additional 1.7 million deaths.
Knowing that type 2 diabetes is directly associated with external factors, such as a sedentary lifestyle, it is essential to find ways to adopt a healthier lifestyle. So here are some tips to get you moving more:
1) Move around at your workstation: for those who work seated, it is recommended to get up every half hour to perform some light activity, such as walking or going up and down stairs.
2) Control the power: for those who have a busy routine, the tip is to dedicate one day of the weekend to cooking healthy dishes for the weekdays. Another option is to order fresh, balanced meals.
3) Wear graduated compression stockings: Graduated compression promotes comfort and well-being. In addition, it assists in the correct direction of venous and lymphatic flow back to the heart. This prevents blood from pooling in the lower legs, allowing for a clear improvement in circulation. It also reduces the feeling of heaviness in the legs, swelling and other symptoms.
4) Practice exercises: Physical exercise is one of the most efficient ways to fight type 2 diabetes. So if you don’t have a lot of free time, online training is a great option. It is also a differential to seek guidance from a specialized professional.