Our focus for today is Diabetes which as we know can have a number of effects on the human body.  Men who are predisposed to diabetes can practice proper nutrition and lifestyles changes which can assist in improving their overall health and lowering their risk of developing and avoid complications of the disease.

Most people suffer from type 2 Diabetes which develops in the body over time due to decreased insulin sensitivity of muscle and fat cells and the liver, or a decrease in the body’s ability to produce insulin that causes the blood glucose to become too high. Men who suffer from type 2 diabetes can be affected by additional effects which include Urologic issues caused by diabetic nerve damage. The effects of urologic issues are an overactive bladder, leaking urine or the inability to control urination and trouble urinating at times, and frequent Urinary Tract Infections.

Diabetes in men can also result in Retrograde ejaculation which causes the release of semen into the bladder rather than the urethra. Symptoms may include noticeably less or the absence of semen released during ejaculation. Some males may also experience Erectile dysfunction which is the inability to achieve or maintain an erection. This is caused by diabetes-induced damage to the autonomic nervous system which controls the widening or constricting of the blood vessels, this can cause damage to the blood vessels and nerves in the penis. Erectile dysfunction can also be caused by other diseases and problems in the body such as high blood pressure or hypertension, kidney disease, circulatory conditions, and obesity or being overweight.

A person is at risk of diabetes if they have family members who have type 2 diabetes, have high cholesterol, high triglycerides, low HDL or “good” cholesterol and high LDL or “bad” cholesterol, have high blood pressure, do not exercise enough and eat a diet that is filled with refined and processed sugars and refined carbohydrates and is of African descent.

If you are pre-diabetic or predisposed to diabetes, you can manage your blood sugar levels by eating a wide range of foods in moderation, including fruits, vegetables, and some starchy foods like whole grains and whole wheat pasta, rice, root crops like sweet potatoes, tannia, yam, dasheen and green bananas, plantains, and minimize consumption of added sugar and foods that contain added sugars, fat, and salt. Avoid missing meals, especially if you take medicines for your condition. Speak to a nutritionist or dietitian for advice on ways you can manage your condition through diet and exercise.

You can follow GFNC’s Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram for more tips on how you can stay healthy through eating well.

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