View Full Version : The Killer Disease 23.6 Million Have and 5.4 Million Do Not Know They Have It!

1st September 2012, 02:12 PM
So, what is diabetes? A little explanation of cellular physiology is in order here. The cells in our bodies use carbohydrate for energy. This carbohydrate is usually provided to the cells in the form of glucose. When we consume a meal, it is broken down in our digestive system. The nutrients, including glucose, are absorbed and carried in the bloodstream throughout the body to feed each cell. But our individual cells are locked up tight and do not freely allow molecules to pass in and out of them. Their cellular environments must be tightly controlled or they would die. Therefore we need something to act as a key to open the door to our cells so that they can eat the glucose that has been delivered to them. That’s where insulin comes in. Insulin is a hormone made in specialized cells of the pancreas called the beta cells of the Islets of Langerhans. Insulin acts like a key, or a gatekeeper opening the locks to the cells, and assists glucose to enter the cells so that our cells can eat. Diabetes is a lack or absence of insulin or it is an inability to use the insulin that is produced. For various reasons, the body either stops producing insulin, or our cells no longer recognize the insulin and the insulin key no longer fits the locks of the cells. In either case, we find that the level of glucose builds up to very high levels in the blood, a condition referred to as hyperglycemia, while at the same time our cells are literally starving.
If you can, paint a picture in your mind of a person sitting at a dinner table surrounded by food. Imagine that there is a gourmet meal prepared before this person. There is a wonderful salad, fresh whole-grain dinner rolls, stuffed pheasant hens, asparagus with a light cream sauce, and a decadent dessert of choice waiting for this person. However, for some reason, the person can not eat. The food is right there before them, but they can not open their mouths and eat it. Hunger consumes the person but there is nothing that they can do about it. This is what diabetes is like. There is plenty of food in the blood, however, the person can not utilize the nourishment provided for them.


In order to properly discuss diabetes, we must differentiate the types of diabetes. There are actually four types of diabetes. A brief explanation of each is given below:
1. Juvenile or Insulin-Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM). Generally patients who suffer this disorder are diagnosed as children. The cells which produce insulin in the pancreas, the beta cells in the Islets of Langerhans, are somehow destroyed. Theories on the cause of this destruction
vary, but include an autoimmune (where the immune system of the body actually attacks the pancreas believing that the pancreas itself is an infection) reaction to an insult such as viral infection, chemical injury or unknown toxin. This is the most serious form of the disease, and complications can rapidly threaten one’s life.
2. Adult or Non-Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (NIDDM). This is by far the most common form of DM, and is characterized by an impairment in the secretion of insulin. Eventually the amount of insulin secreted by the pancreas is insufficient to meet the needs of the body, and levels of blood sugar elevate. Other factors include a resistance to insulin at the cellular level. Insulin attaches to specific receptors (key holes) in cells. When resistance develops there can be a decrease in the absolute number of insulin receptors. In this event the actual amount of insulin in
the blood stream is higher than normal, however, it is ineffective and the patient still becomes hyperglycemic.
3. Gestational Diabetes. This is a hyperglycemic state which sometimes occurs during pregnancy. Very little is known about the cause of this form of diabetes, however, 50% of women who suffer from this disorder eventually develop Non-Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus later in life. Because of this close association with the later development of NIDDM, causes and treatments in this work will consider Gestational Diabetes and NIDDM as the same problem. Complications from this disorder are different from other diabetes. The unborn child becomes the primary focus
of attention of physicians and unfortunately, the disease. Children born of diabetic mothers have a grossly increased frequency of birth defects. Their mothers suffer more often from toxemia of pregnancy, or very high blood pressure which can compromise the circulation to the unborn child (a cause for immediate delivery of the child). Children born of diabetic mothers are generally much larger than children born of mothers with normal blood sugar. This increase in size creates numerous problems upon delivery. Often the child is just too large to pass through the birth canal and emergency cesarean section is necessary.
4. Diabetes secondary to other causes. This can be caused by disorders such as tumors of the pancreas, infections of the pancreas and can occur as a reaction to some drugs. In these cases, the diabetic state is usually of a less concern than the problem that caused it.

As well, physicians look for what is referred to as the classic triad of symptoms of diabetes which include: polyuria, which is frequent urination; polydipsia, or frequent thirst; and polyphagia, or increased hunger (generally only associated with Type I DM).
Once again, it will be important to differentiate Insulin and Non-Insulin Dependant Diabetes Mellitus. Research on the causes of IDDM is seriously lacking, however, there is some evidence which points to some nutritional and environmental factors. As was mentioned, IDDM is characterized by destruction of the beta cells of the Islet of Langerhans in the pancreas. But what causes this destruction? There has also been shown to be a correlation between the consumption of whole cow’s milk and IDDM. Perhaps the strongest theories surround a viral origin of the beta cell destruction. A brief explanation of virology is necessary here. Viruses can not live outside of a “host” cell, while bacteria can live on the kitchen counter for several hours, and many can even flourish. Viruses depend on a host cell for all its needs. A virus will enter a host cell and live on the host cell’s food sources. The virus will use the host cells different organisms to reproduce itself over and over again until the host cell becomes so full of the virus that the cell wall blows up, thus killing the host cell and releasing millions of other viruses who now need to find a host cell of their own. We have all suffered from the common cold. This is a virus which likes to live in the respiratory tract. It will not live in the stomach, it will not live in the liver, it will not live in the pancreas. Research has suggested that there is a viral element to IDDM, which can destroy the beta cells.

source - Dr Ted