Insulin is produced by the pancreas. It allows glucose (sugar) to penetrate the cells of the body where it becomes a source of energy. In non-diabetics, insulin does its job well, providing cells with the energy needed to function effectively.
When there is a shortage of insulin or it is unable do properly fulfil its purpose, as is the case with diabetes, the glucose is unable to fuel the cells. It then accumulates in a blood, resulting in an increase in the sugar rate (hyperglyemia).
Over time, a high blood sugar level brings on complications, which can affect the eyes, kidneys, nerves, heart and blood vessels.
In Québec alone, 830,000 persons (more than 10% of the population) live with diabetes, including close to 250,000 persons who are unaware of it.
Diabetes is an economic burden whose direct and indirect costs are estimated to be $3 billion a year.
Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in adults under 65 years of age.
Diabetes accounts for 40% of kidney failure and 50% of non-traumatic amputations.
Source : Diabetes Québec.
To learn more about diabetes, go to the website of Diabetes Québec.