By Caribbean Women's Health Association, Inc.

December 9, 2015, 11:15 am

 

Nurse about to give small girl an injection. Shot in studio over white with the Canon 2D.

Nurse about to give small girl an injection. Shot in studio over white with the Canon 2D.

By Renée D. Roberts, MPH, Caribbean Women’s Health Association, Inc. (CWHA)

Recently, Usher Raymond IV, the multi-talented entertainer, openly spoke about his son, Usher Raymond V, affectionately called “Cinco” diagnosis with Type 1 diabetes, also known as Juvenile Diabetes last year at age 6.  However, what is more moving than his speech at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s Promise Ball (2015), is Cinco’s younger brother, Naviyd’s aspiration of becoming a scientist in order to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes, which represents only 5% of people with diabetes, and is usually diagnosed in children and young adults.

The condition is described as when the immune system destroys beta cells located in the pancreatic islets of the pancreas that are responsible for producing insulin (see picture below), which is the hormone that is needed to get glucose (a simple sugar that is produced once the body breaks down starches and sugar) from the bloodstream into the cells of the body. However, due to the lack of insulin to regulate the glucose, the blood glucose level rises (hyperglycemia).

Anatomy of Pancreas

When the blood glucose levels remain high for an extended period, dehydration and more serious complications can develop, such as weight loss, increased appetite, and lack of energy. On the other hand, if juvenile diabetes is not controlled, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) can occur. In both instances of low or high glucose levels, a person also risks going into a diabetic coma.  In cases where juvenile diabetes goes undiagnosed or untreated for several years, multiple tissue damages can occur in the brain, kidney, and arteries.

Other problems associated with juvenile diabetes are skin conditions, including bacterial infections, fungal infection, itching and poor circulation. Interestingly, girls with juvenile diabetes are more likely to have genital yeast infections, while babies tend to get candidiasis, a severe form of diaper rash, which can easily spread to the stomach and thighs from the diaper area.

Some symptoms of juvenile diabetes are, but not limited to: dry mouth, feeling unusually thirsty, fruity breath, frequent urination, numbness or tingling in the feet and blurred vision.

Management of Type 1 Diabetes

In general, diabetes management for children with Type 1 diabetes includes: checking glucose levels several times a day and taking insulin as prescribed; a healthy, balanced diet, which pays special to carbohydrates intake; and regular physical activity.

Since insulin is the only medicine (via an insulin pump or injection with a needle) that can keep blood sugar levels within a healthy range, and is taken after meals or between meals, nutrition plays a central role in managing juvenile diabetes. As a result, for kids, it can become challenging, because, unlike their peers without juvenile diabetes, children with juvenile diabetes do not get to indulge in “junk” food, but have to adhere to a more restrictive diet. The American Diabetes Association has these tips to offer:

  • Instead of fried foods, opt for grilled or broiled, lean meats such as turkey or chicken breast.
  • Order burgers without cheese,
  • Use mustard instead of mayonnaise, ketchup, or rich sauces, which is healthier.
  • Choose thin crust and veggie toppings pizzas.

In addition to medication and nutrition, regular physical activity is also an important part of juvenile diabetes management in order to maintain a healthy body weight, to keep blood lipids and blood pressure under control, and to maintain the health of internal organs, such as the heart, lungs, as well as to keep blood vessels functioning at their optimal level.

Unlike, having a limited diet, KidsHealth states, “all exercise is great – from walking the dog or riding a bike to playing team sports.” However, to help kids with juvenile diabetes avoid problems during exercise, it is recommended that their blood glucose level is checked before, during, or after an exercise, that they have an extra snack prior to the activity and carry water, as well as informing their coaches, supervising adult, or even close friends about their condition. Another great tip is to have children with juvenile diabetes wear a Type 1 diabetes medical identification bracelet.

Type 1 diabetes (Juvenile Diabetes) is a condition that affects the whole family; therefore, in the spirit of the holiday seasons, the following are some tasty diabetic-friendly meals, drinks, and dessert recipes, as well as snacks that both kids and adults can enjoy:

For more juvenile diabetes recipes, you can visit Diabetic Living, KidsHealth, and Children With Diabetes.

Additionally, since kids with juvenile diabetes are just as likely to gain some weight from eating a little more than usual during the holiday festivities, families can incorporate physically active holiday traditions that are budget and weather friendly, such as a family walk or biking.


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About The Author

Caribbean Women’s Health Association, Inc. (CWHA) is a non-profit organization that provides quality services in health education, health care/access, immigration and social support and counseling. We also provide free HIV testing, free programs available for the community.

Caribbean Women’s Health Association, Inc. (CWHA) is a non-profit organization that provides quality services in health education, health care/access, immigration and social support and counseling. We also provide free HIV testing, free programs available for the community.

4 Responses

  1. Carole Schneider

    This article is really nice, I’ll make sure to bookmark it and return to learn more of your useful info, thanks to author for the excellent article ^^

    I don’t usually comment on articles . but i’ve gained valuable knowledge i’d want to share that’ll most likely help other folks in the same boat as myself. i know this professional review site from Yahoo, in their site, you’ll get authoritative information on how to reverse diabetes fast and healthily!

    Check out Their Review Site: http://DiabetesReview.Firstgq.Com

    Their reviews are impartial, honest and straight to the point, they show an interesting videos as well on the home page. their systems says that it is able to completely control diabetes in less than 30 days, i still consider that diabetes is a chronic disease and can’t be quickly reversed but can greatly enhance quality of life by following the natural methods and this remedy truly does work good for me!

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  2. Tony

    I find it very difficult to maintain a healthy diet, and can imagine that it would be even harder getting kids to do so. Something that did help me however was the Diabetes Escape Plan . It’s a guide for diabetics on how to live a healthy life, even when they don’t feel they are strong enough to do so.

    I found this review quite helpful – http://zappohealth.com/diabetes-escape-plan/

    Reply

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