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7 Interesting (and Sometimes Scary) Facts About Diabetes From Your Diabetic Supply Company

We know that diabetes isn’t easy to live with, and no one deliberately chooses to get it. But as difficult as it is, our diabetic supply company tries to make living with it as easy as possible by offering you easy-to-use glucose test meters, fresh glucometer test strips, and comfortable lancets.

Once you get going with our mail-order diabetic supplies, treating the disease is going to get a lot easier. Another way to make sure things go your way is to listen to your doctor and read everything they send home with you so that you can make the right lifestyle choices. And after you read all of that, you’ll probably turn to the internet for advice. BE CAREFUL! There’s lots of misinformation out there, as we detailed here regarding myths about diabetes.

Today we’re going to look at some facts about diabetes that certainly doesn’t count as medical advice. Yes, we know that it might be a bit insensitive to call diabetes “interesting” when it negatively affects so many lives, but every disease is interesting if you start to understand it. And the more you know about diabetes, the more power you have over it. Let’s get started.

Men Develop Type 2 Diabetes More Easily

Don’t jump ahead to the end of this paragraph to find out why, because scientists still aren’t sure why men seem to develop diabetes more easily than a woman of the same age. Theories suggest that men are less sensitive to insulin, or that they store their fat around their organs (while women tend to store more fat under the skin).

While they don’t know why it’s happening, what scientists have found is that men will develop diabetes at a much lower body mass index (BMI) than women do. That means that men who aren’t terribly overweight are just as likely to develop type 2 diabetes as a woman who is overweight and has a high BMI.

The Ratio of Type 1 to Type 2 Varies By Country

Why is it that about 10-percent of people in the United Kingdom get type 1 diabetes but only 5-percent of people in the United States do? Is it that they’re genetically more prone to do so?

The real reason is actually much more unfortunate for Americans. It’s not that people from the UK are more likely to develop type 1 diabetes, but that they’re less likely to develop type 2. Because they have fewer people who are developing type 2 because of lifestyle factors, the percentage of people in the UK with type 2 is simply lower, which makes the percentage of people with type 1 diabetes a larger part of their total diagnoses.

Think of it this way: in a country in which everyone eats perfectly and exercises regularly, their chances of having a 0-percent type 2 is possible. But that would mean that 100-percent of their diabetes diagnoses would be type 1.

“You’re Losing Sugar”

Looking at ancient medical treatments from a modern, Western medicine perspective can be surprising to say the least. Many people were killed by practices such as bloodletting when they would have survived by just being left alone. But some old practices actually made logical sense, even if they were wrong. If a person had diarrhea, they’d often be told to stop drinking liquids. After all, the body is obviously trying to get rid of water; why put more in?

Something similar happened in France in the middle of the 18th century. Doctors knew that a diabetic’s urine smells sweet, so there was obviously a lot of sugar in the urine. Ergo, the body is getting rid of sugar at an alarming rate and that sugar needs to be replenished. Therefore, a person with diabetes should eat a lot of sugar.

While we know today that that’s not the way diabetes should be treated, in a weird way it kind of made sense considering the science at the time.

Blood Glucose Machines Are a LOT Smaller

Every time you use your glucometer from now on, you’re going to be pretty happy with its size and weight! The first portable diabetes glucose monitor was the Ames Reflectance Meter, which came out in 1970. It was only for use in hospitals and clinics, and the amount of information it delivered was minimal. About the size of a box of Triscuits, the monitor weighed about three pounds.

If you had to carry one of these around with you all day, it would be a pain but you could probably manage it. The real problem? The machine cost $650 in the early 1970s, which means it would cost about $4,300 dollars today!

Blood Glucose Machines Are Better Than the Alternative

Before blood glucose machines were invented, all tests had to be done by urinalysis. And while we have urinalysis strips that test for ketone or blood in urine in our shop, the process of the past wasn’t nearly so simple. A medical technician would combine the urine and water with a special blue tablet, and the color of the urine would determine how much sugar was in it. The big problem is that this mixture got very hot and could actually burn a person!

So, in addition to being smaller, lighter and easier to carry, glucose test meters also give you a more accurate reading and won’t burn your skin. Plus they’re a lot easier to use when you sit down to dinner!

The Pancreas’ Role is Identified

It wasn’t until 1889 that the role of the pancreas was linked to diabetes. While everyone knew diabetes had something to do with sugar, it wasn’t until then that the pancreas’ insulin-producing ability was identified.

They Were Considered The Same

Considering that 95% of Americans with diabetes have type 2, it’s no surprise that that’s the kind that most people think of when the word diabetes is used. But a century ago, people would mostly identify it as something that hit young people (type 1 was originally called juvenile diabetes) and was almost always a death sentence.

Interestingly, before 1936 there was no distinction between type 1 and type 2, because the difference between “the body attacking its own pancreas” and “the pancreas not producing enough insulin to keep up with blood sugars” was not yet understood.

Grab The Best Diabetic Medical Supplies

We hope you’ve enjoyed a little bit of trivia about diabetes from NYC Diabetes Supplies. While it’s certainly not pleasant to deal with, it’s certainly manageable when you find a reliable mail-order diabetic supply company so that you always have the proper diabetic medical supplies, such as blood glucose lancets, at your fingertips. Yes, that was a pun. We hope you enjoyed that too.