Tobacco smoke and diabetes are happy companions

Tobacco and DiabetesI’m Deborah Susan, a dietician and personal trainer specializing in nutrition and physical fitness for diabetics. I’ve written over three dozen blogs covering various aspects of diabetes including symptoms, monitoring, explaining glycaemic index, carbohydrate counting, and correlation between body weight, lifestyle and diabetes and so on.

The other day one of my clients walked into my clinic with a half smoked cigarette in his hand. He put it out as he walked in but I used the opportunity to talk to him about the effect of cigarette smoke on his family members. He said he smokes inside the house only during winter. During other times of year he smokes a single cigarette after dinner while relaxing in the porch. “What about other family members?” I asked. “Well, we all sit in the porch and discuss something or the other” he admitted sheepishly.

The problem with cigarette smoke is that it induces type 2 diabetes for the smoker as well as those around him. More the smoke greater the risk and this not mere hearsay; research carried out by various government and non-government agencies is quite conclusive, has been well established and has not been disputed even by the cigarette manufacturers. Obviously, due the volume of cigarette smoke entering the lungs, the cigarette smokers are first to get diabetes type II and people inhaling secondhand smoke are next in line.

In the case of women, cigarette smoke presents an even bigger problem. Not only can the smoke induce diabetes, it (diabetes) can also be passed on to any unborn or future child.

For those who quit smoking cigarettes, the probability of getting diabetes is only slightly reduced. The only real solution is to not smoke at all and to avoid second hand smoke effects to whatever extent possible. If you have just started smoking then quit now before your internal organs are permanently impaired. This is not to say that people who have been smoking for many years should not quit. The earlier you quit the less damage your internal organs suffer.

Those who smoke, especially if you smoke in excess of 2 packs of cigarettes a day, and have been doing so for more than a few years, the chances are you will be insulin resistant. Research has also proved conclusively that the risk of diabetes increases with every year you spend smoking or inhaling 2nd hand smoke. And here’s the final nail in the coffin for cigarette smoke inhalers: you have an increased risk of diabetic retinopathy and nephropathy.

Patients suffering from Diabetes Type II who are or were heavy smokers, usually also suffer from macrovascular complications, peripheral vascular disease, coronary heart disease, and stroke. Also, achieving glycemic control in smokers or ex-smokers suffering from diabetes is always a challenge and requires consultation of senior doctors.

At the end of my short lecture, he said “if I’m certain to get diabetes, what does it matter if I smoke or not?”

Unfortunately it does matter – smoking continues to degrade your internal organs and in the process creates further unnecessary complications. Imagine tobacco and diabetes in combination with lung or throat cancer – do you really want that kind of complication?

Check it out also for Glucose levels chart and Blood sugar levels chart

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