World Day of Diabetes: Experts from the Uri cantonal hospital provide information

More and more people are affected by diabetes. Patrick Jauch, Nutrition Advisor, and Esther Hunkeler, diabetes consultant, answer some of the frequently asked questions on this topic.

Patrik Jauch-Herger, chief nutrition consultant at the cantonal hospital in Uri, advises the patient. (Picture: PD)

Patrik Jauch-Herger, chief nutrition consultant at the cantonal hospital in Uri, advises the patient. (Picture: PD)

World Diabetes Day was launched in 1991 in light of the rapidly growing number of diabetics worldwide. The date of November 14 commemorates the birthday of Frederick G. Banting, who together with Charles Herbert Best, in 1921, discovered an important hormonal insulin, as reported by the cantonal hospital Uri.

On this day, diabetes, its causes and its impact on the lives of the disabled should be observed in the world. "First of all, it should be clear that diabetes is not a problem for several people, but more and more people around the world have to live with the disease," says the Swiss Society for Diabetes (SDG).

Is it possible to detect diabetes early?

Esther Hunkeler: For Type 2 diabetes, originally called adult diabetes, surely. If someone belongs to a risk group, it is logical that the blood sugar level is regularly checked by a family doctor. High blood sugar can thus be detected in time, and initial measures must be initiated, for example in the context of lifestyle changes through nutritional counseling. There is no early detection of type 1 diabetes, which occurs mainly in childhood and adolescence, and can generally develop at any stage of life. The reason is that the pancreas abruptly stops insulin production and that is unpredictable.

Esther Hunkeler is a diabetes consultant at Cantonal Uri Hospital. (Picture: PD)

Esther Hunkeler is a diabetes consultant at Cantonal Uri Hospital. (Picture: PD)

risk group? So how do you notice that you have a risk of diabetes?

Esther Hunkeler: The person has an increased risk of developing diabetes, for example, if he or she is overweight, suffers from high blood pressure and high cholesterol. These factors get worse if you have close relatives who already have diabetes – such as your father, mother or sibling. People who have normal body weight but have a family can also develop diabetes. In addition, studies have shown that regular physical activity can be an effective way of preventing diabetes.

Cold is also a sweet season. What does it mean for diabetics?

Esther Hunkeler: Food and drink have a direct effect on the level of sugar in the blood. In diabetes counseling, nutrition issues are often encountered, which are then discussed in nutrition counseling. For diabetic counseling, I explain the patient to the clinical picture. They will also learn how to properly measure the level of sugar in the blood. In addition, patients should learn to understand their individual diabetes treatment, whether it be a mode of action or a regimen of insulin. If someone has an insulin injection, they will also train me. The aim of diabetic counseling is that the patient can manage diabetes with the help of a doctor.

Patrik Jauch: Sweet things do not have to be completely eradicated from diet, even with diabetes. It usually makes sense to plan sweets and desserts right after the main meal instead.

Is the cause of diabetes too many sweets?

Patrik Jauch: People often say, but they are not right. The main factor is overweight or especially excessive abdominal fat. This has the greatest impact. And then you have to say that not only white sugar has an effect but rather the total amount of carbohydrates that also affect fructose, starch supplements, malt sugar or milk sugar. Excessive intake may, in addition to weight and abdominal fat, also have an independent effect on when type 2 diabetes "disintegrates". Supply with a measure – including sweets – but it also belongs to a balanced diet.

Generally for nutrition. How does the disease really depend on diet?

Patrik Jauch: A balanced diet is essential to maintain good health. It is not just about consuming vegetables but about the overall balance. Today it is known that various diseases, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and many others, can be avoided for a long time – but not 100 percent. Nutrition or malnutrition is also only a risk factor, such as heredity, the environment, smoking,

Is Diabetes Illness Prosperity?

Esther Hunkeler: Yes, partly thanks to the prosperity of our society. A large proportion of the population is seeking employment. In addition, foods are always and everywhere available, especially foods with high energy value, high calorie foods. These two factors support overweight, which is a risk factor for the onset of diabetes.

Morning after getting up, a cup of coffee, espresso. What do you say as a dietitian?

Patrik Jauch: Breakfast is important. People who eat breakfast are less likely to suffer from diabetes, obesity or its consequences, including recent studies. That's why I will not quit coffee. In particular, coffee is thought to also have positive effects on the cardiovascular system. However, I would like to think in what I think about eating breakfast for breakfast. Most would then set a specific target until the next meeting.

Be healthy, avoid diabetes. Can you tell?

Patrik Jauch: Avoiding is perhaps a bad word, but to stay away from it. So if you get a strong family disposition, if you eat a healthy, so-called type 2 diabetes, called age-sugar, only 90 years instead of 60 years. However, type 1 diabetes has nothing to do with lifestyle. This can be affected at young age and in old age even though lifestyle is healthy.

Does diabetics do more sports?

Esther Hunkeler: Yes, absolutely. Regular physical activity is an important part of the treatment, because exercise can lower blood sugar without insulin. Movement up to 150 minutes a week has a positive effect on sugar metabolism. It does not matter if it's twice a week 60 minutes of swimming and 30 minutes driving at home coaches at home or 30 minutes of fast-running after dinner four times a week. And, of course, it does not matter if someone is moving more than 150 minutes a week.

Are there any special dietary recommendations for diabetes?

Patrik Jauch: The basis today is the recommendation of a normal balanced diet. The "right" diet, however, is the one that suits the appropriate therapy. Whether you only have to take a lifestyle, take pills or give insulin, it is fundamentally different from the recommendations. It is important to know about the options and then decide how much you can or want. They want to get the most out of a lifestyle change, the other wants to realize the most important basic stones in everyday life, which is also fine. We therefore recommend individual consultation instead of very general information.

Can anyone come to your hospital if they have a question about their diet and health?

Patrik Jauch: Yes, in case of a disease like diabetes, everyone is entitled to six to twelve nutritional consultations and nine diabetes counseling per calendar year. These are taken from basic health insurance if you have a prescription. It is therefore worth discussing with a family doctor about the possible assignment. (Pd / ml)

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