Diabetes is one of the most common conditions worldwide. But did you know it is largely preventable? Learn more about it now.

It’s been around for ages

The disease dates back to around 1500 BC. However, the symptoms of the condition were recognised for over 1 200 years before it was named.

Diabetes means “a flowing through”

This is because the major symptoms of the disease are excessive urination and weight loss. In addition, other symptoms include increased thirst, headaches and fatigue.

Women are susceptible

According to the International Diabetes Federation over 199 million women worldwide are living with diabetes. In fact, this total is predicted to increase to 313 million by 2040.

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The oldest blood sugar test

In ancient times, doctors would test for blood sugar by tasting urine to see if it was sweet. People who tasted urine were called “water tasters.” Other diagnostic measures included checking to see if urine attracted ants.

The link to the pancreas

In 1922, the pancreas was discovered to have a role in diabetes. Researchers studying digestion removed the pancreas from dogs in a lab and noticed a large number of ants attracted to the dog’s urine. The urine was tested and was found to have an extremely high level of sugar.

There are two types

Type 1 and type 2 diabetes were officially differentiated in 1936. However, the difference had been noted in the 1700s when a physician noted some people suffered from a more serious condition than others.

Diabetics often have more than one chronic condition

Diabetic often have other chronic conditions (co-morbidities) as well – such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease and depression. According to Bonitas Medical Fund over 80% of their diabetic members have associated chronic conditions.

While All4Women endeavours to ensure health articles are based on scientific research, health articles should not be considered as a replacement for professional medical advice. Should you have concerns related to this content, it is advised that you discuss them with your personal healthcare provider.