Diabetes: Introduction
Diabetes Mellitus or how it is known to a majority of people: Diabetes, comes in various shapes and sizes, however there are two main forms of Diabetes: type one and type two diabetes.

Diabetes: Discovery
Diabetes was discovered long before its current name was attributed to it. The most original knowledge of diabetes has been found to be by Indian physician Susharta (400 B.C.E.) who noted the sweet taste of urine in diagnosing this illness, he knew
this because of the observation that flies and ants were attracted greatly to the urine of one suffering diabetes.

The actual start of discovering diabetes in modern terms was by two German doctors Joseph von Meringand and Oskar Minkowski (1889) discovered that the pancreas and diabetes were related. To research this they removed the pancreas of a dog which suffered diabetes and analysed it, finding that it did not contain any insulin.

Above: Co-discoverer of Diabetes- Joseph Von Meringand

Above: Co-discoverer of Diabetes Oskar Minkowski

The Causes of Diabetes: Insulin, Glucose and Glycogen
Your blood contains glucose, which is the simplest form of a sugar, its glucose level must be controlled however, or else the consequences could possibly be fatal. Your body’s way of controlling the glucose level in the blood stream is the pancreas. A small organ just below the stomach, it contains special cells that can detect when your blood has too much glucose in it. So it sends out a hormone into the blood stream called insulin.

Above: A syringe being filled with Insulin

Insulin regulates the amount of glucose in the blood stream, which carries the excess glucose to the liver which converts the glucose to another chemical called glycogen which is deposited around the body, mainly in the liver and muscle tissue as a store of carbohydrates.
Diabetes occurs either when the body fails to produce any insulin, this results in the need for insulin to be injected in the patient suffering from the disease, or when the liver cannot successfully convert the glucose to glycogen, therefore leaving too much glucose in the blood stream.
The former of these is called type one diabetes, and the latter being type two diabetes.

Diabetes: Common Symptoms
The most common symptoms for Diabetes are:
  • Polyuria: Frequent urge to urinate
  • Polydipsia: Increased thirst
  • Polyphagia: Increased hunger
  • Rapid weight loss
  • Increased fatigue
  • Blurry vision

Diabetes: A Cure or Treatment

There is no way to cure type one diabetes at the present, however there are numerous treatments that are available for diabetic patients. For type one diabetes, which is when the body does not produce any insulin, one treatment that is being utilized is the patient receiving an injection of insulin.
For type two diabetes, which is the most common form of the disease, it is actually possible to be fully cured from it. A few treatments that can actually cure it are healthy eating and regular physical exercise.

Above: A broccoli, a good example of what a type two diabetic should include in their diet.

Diabetes: Interesting Facts
  • Diabetes is mainly a genetic disease, which means that it is passed down from parents to child and is usually universal in a family which has a known history of diabetes.
  • Every twenty-one seconds somebody is diagnosed with diabetes.
  • Diabetes affects over 16 million people in America alone!
  • Diabetes Mellitus is called Mellitus because it means honey in Latin, this describing the smell of a diabetic’s urine.
  • The amount of people in the world living with diabetes has more than doubled since the 1980’s from 153 million people to 347 million people in the present day.
  • There are actually many more forms of diabetes, however uncommon they are, the two main forms however are type one and type two diabetes, as coverered in this article.

Diabetes: Bibliography
All references were viewed on Sunday the 26th of June, 2011 -
No listed author-
Interesting Facts about Diabetes. -
Author: Summarised from the National Institution of Health, The Genetic Landscape of Diabetes-
Timeline of the history of Diabetes.,0,7790769.story
Author: Thomas H. Moore II, Los Angeles Times-
Article about British medical researchers discoveries on a cure for type two diabetes. -
Author: Various Wikipedia Users-
Wikipedia page on Diabetes.

Book: Science Quest 2: Year 7, page 136 –
Explaining the pancreas, glycogen, glucose and insulin. -
Author: Unknown- I only got the images from there-
Images of the two discoverers of Diabetes. -
Author: Kamilah Qasimi-
Image of a syringe being filled with insulin. -
Author: Unknown- I only used the image on this page-
Image of a broccoli. -
Author: Unknown-
List of some symptoms of Diabetes

TV: SBS News-
Piece about Diabetes

Thank You for reading :)
By Deylan Kilic-Aidani

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