The disease I wish to discuss is type- 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). This illness affects many, and the development of new cases continue to grow at an alarming rate. Along with the 26 million estimated to be living with T2DM, an astounding 79 million currently live with prediabetes (Moses, Mawby & Philips, 2003). These numbers alone serve as indication as to why I wish to address this illness as incredibly important.
Without diving too deep into the havoc this disease brings upon those suffering from it, these numbers alone show why prevention of this disease is paramount. Among the list of preventative measures, the two easiest and most achievable for those wishing to prevent the onset of such disease are diet and exercise. While many other factors contribute to the onset of this disease, these two are the biggest and also most correctable factors influencing one’s susceptibility to the onset of T2DM.
Exercise is the first topic I wish to address. It has be proven time after time that exercise is in fact an important part of preventing the onset of T2DM. One study concludes that with moderate exercise, instances of T2DM was reduced by 58% (Funnell, 2003). And so, the first preventive measure I wish to implement is simple, moderate physical activity. While it is true that little is known about this disease, and for the meantime anyway, not curable, most every study concludes with similar results; moderate physical activity dramatically reduces your risk of developing this disease.
Second in the prevention of the onset of T2DM are changes to diet. One study indicates a 31% decrease in the development of the disease when following healthier eating guidelines (Deed et al., 2015). Much more can be found on this topic concluding similar results. As with the previous intervention I had mentioned, beyond what has been drawn from these studies, very little is known about the causes of this disease. It is however worth noting, that while reaching epidemic levels of development, small changes in lifestyle such as healthy eating habits go incredibly far in preventing a disease with such awful consequences.
Following suit, I now wish to describe how the two can be used in conjunction with one another to achieve even greater results. The same aforementioned study has found that with a combination of exercise and amendments to diet a 42% reduction in the development of T2DM was achieved. Also found was a 46% reduction in that same group who focused on exercise alone. This indicates that diet and exercise both play an integral role in preventative measures towards preventing T2DM, however suggests that an emphasis be put on exercise directed at weight loss. This same study then goes on to suggest that weight loss of 5kg in all people who are overweight would see a nationwide drop in the prevalence of T2DM nationwide.
In conclusion this paper merely sought to reiterate a rather well known fact about a disease which even today, leaves us with many unanswered questions. While a cure has not been found for those already suffering with the disease, it is widely understood and continues to be supported, that diet and exercise play a large part in the prevention of this disease. It serves to acknowledge that while there are many dangers to our health we might encounter, despite being a disease described as reaching epidemic proportions, eating healthy and exercising regularly prove to be successful in lowering the risk of developing this disease dramatically.
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