Diabetes In India: From Types To Trouble

Diabetes In India

In 2016 approximately 1.6 million died from Diabetes, a disease that seems feeble and is ignored continuously grows over the world the population especially India, subsequently being called the diabetic capital of the world. What we know is that India counts for 49 percent of the world’s diabetic population, which is about 72 million individuals that suffer from some form of diabetes, an estimate that is predicted to double by the year 2025. While we can foresee this problem not going away anytime soon and thrive to make a diabetic living as easy and healthy as it can get. Let’s assess a little deeper the different types of diabetes.

Type 1 Diabetes

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Type 1 diabetes, the type that is common among the younger, under 20 population, affects the immune system wherein the body destroys the insulin-producing cells, islets of Langerhans in the pancreas like it destroys harmful bacteria and viruses. The cause however of the immune system doing so is still unknown. The most common cause of Type 1 diabetes is Genetics or contact with viruses and different environmental factors, such as the population living away from the equator is found to be more susceptible to diabetes. Also known as insulin-dependent diabetes, Type 1 diabetes leads the patient to depend on external sources of insulin, which is taking injections of the hormones regularly. If the same is not conducted the sugar levels in the body of the patient may rise severely causing some life-threatening complications and sometimes even death.

Gestational Diabetes

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Another lesser-known form of diabetes is Gestational Diabetes, which is caused by women during pregnancy when the body is unable to produce enough insulin to cover additional bodily needs. This leads to high blood sugar during the pregnancy but is automatically normalized after giving birth. Gestational Diabetes may cause harm to the mother and the child but can be managed well if diagnosed at the right time.

Type 2 Diabetes

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Most of the Indian population suffers from Type 2 diabetes which is the most common form of diabetes and constitutes a massive proportion of the adult population in the urban areas. Although it is called Type 2, it number one when it comes to the total number of people suffering from the disease. It accounts for nearly 95% of diabetes! Type 2 is a condition when the body resists insulin, a hormone that facilitates the intake of glucose into cells for releasing energy, or when the body is unable to produce enough insulin, adherently causing the blood sugar levels to rise. Causes of Type 2 diabetes range from genetics to an unhealthy lifestyle, research suggests that one can inherit the possibility of Type 2 diabetes but it’s hard to specify the genes that lead to the risk. But genetics doesn’t solidify the susceptibility of Diabetes, one may be at risk of developing diabetes but may never do so if lead a healthy lifestyle.

Pre-Diabetic Population

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A huge part of the Indian population is also pre-diabetic which means their blood sugar levels are high but not high enough to be Diabetes. This section of people may and may not develop diabetes depending on their lifestyle, which is exercise and dietary habits. Precisely, this is the population that needs to be most aware of the dos and don’ts to help them dodge the life-long disease.


Since Type 2 diabetes doesn’t have any clear symptoms, about one-third of the patients don’t realize that they suffer from the disease. Diabetes has also been associated with income, with WHO estimating that 80 percent of diabetic deaths occur in low and middle-income countries. Hereafter, Diabetic is close to becoming an epidemic in India with more than 1 million deaths in India every year. Apart from mortal damages, diabetes is a disease that causes various other problems due to high blood sugar like nerve damage, heart disease, eye damage, foot damage, skin and mouth conditions, and many more, making the lives of people living with the disease a constant struggle. However, people who suffer from the disease or are pre-diabetic can lead healthy lives through regular exercise and proper diet. If we speak of diabetes as a nationwide problem, a crucial point that India needs to work on is awareness regarding the subject, education and healthcare facilities need to see the problem as it is and not in the shadows of sugar-free snacks and beverages but a major health infestation into our everyday lives.

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