Diabetes: The Challenge


Diabetes is called the epidemic of the 21st century (International Diabetes Foundation). About 90% of all diabetics suffer from type-2-diabetes (T2D), characterised by insulin resistance and impaired insulin secretion.

It is estimated that about another 212 mn diabetics go undiagnosed in 2016. Diabetes is a worldwide human burden that can be found in many countries. And, as a progressing disease, its diagnosis is highly alarming for any individual patient.

In particular recently developing countries see a rapid rise in the number of diabetics. South-East and East-Asia amount to more than 50%, while Europe and the US amount for about 33%.

Diabetes is also a heavy burden on health-care budgets. Direct and indirect expenditure caused by diabetes is the single biggest cost-item in global health-care.

What is type-2-diabetes?

Converting glucose into energy is one of the most vital abilities a healthy metabolism possesses.

Insulin can be thought of as the ‘key’ that fits into an ‘insulin receptor’ that opens a ‘door’ in the cell for glucose to enter. This door is referred to, below, as the glucose channel.

Source: Curtin University, Health Sciences

Diabetes is an epidemic metabolic disease in which the cells are no longer able to make use of the blood glucose. T2D is a long-term progressive metabolic disorder that is characterised by high blood glucose, insulin resistance, and relative lack of insulin.

To learn more about the basics of Diabetes, please watch the Diabetes UK video: