World Diabetes Day
What is World Diabetes Day?
World Diabetes Day takes place on 14th November, and it’s a chance for us all to raise awareness of one of the most common chronic diseases in the UK. According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), 90% of all adults currently diagnosed have Type 2 Diabetes, with around 1 million as yet undiagnosed- and the numbers are rising. In fact, NICE predict that
there will be more than 5 million people diagnosed with diabetes by the year 2025.
It’s clear to see that Diabetes is an issue that we all need to be aware of- and as the theme of this year’s World Diabetes Day is ‘Education to Protect Tomorrow’, we thought we’d do our bit to spread the word.
Read on to find out why we celebrate World Diabetes Day, and what you can do to make some changes to your own lifestyle.
Why do we celebrate World Diabetes Day?
We’re in a bit of a health crisis. Today, the supermarket shelves are filled with fast foods, chemically engineered to make us want more and more. But these foods only deliver on taste, and not nutrition- and this is only the tip of the iceberg. We sit more. We move less. We eat more. As a society, we’re failing to protect our tomorrow, literally one sugar lump at a time.
Here at Hilltop, we want to help raise awareness of Diabetes. We know the benefits of eating a natural diet, and we know how vital this is in the fight against the disease; we want to be part of the global movement to strengthen prevention and make some real, positive changes.
What you need to know about Diabetes
Not sure what Diabetes is, and the affects it can have? Now’s the time to learn.
According to the NHS, diabetes is a "life-long condition that causes a person’s blood sugar to become too high.”- and there are two different types.
Type 1 diabetes occurs when the immune system attacks and destroys the cells that produce the hormone, insulin. Insulin is responsible for controlling blood glucose levels, and without it, the levels spiral too high, resulting in hyperglycaemia.
Type 2 Diabetes occurs when the body struggles to produce enough insulin to control blood glucose levels. It can also occur due to cells failing to react to insulin too, and is often linked to being overweight or inactive.
Seeking medical care
Both types of diabetes require medical care, so being able to recognise the signs is vital- another reason why World Diabetes Day is so important. The NHS has some great advice on spotting the signs and understanding the symptoms of diabetes here.
Diabetes also puts patients at a higher risk of developing other illnesses- so prevention is crucial. Making lifestyle changes can positively impact Type 2 Diabetes and there are plenty of resources that your GP can point you towards for more information.
Supporting Diabetes charity
You can help in other ways too, such as supporting Diabetes UK, a charity working to educate more people on Type 2 Diabetes, helping them to understand their own risk. You can help to raise money for research, and to help educate younger generations on the best ways to prevent the disease too.
For more information, head to their Get Involved page.
Sugar Awareness Week
Over-consumption of sugar is one of the leading causes of weight gain, which puts you at a much bigger risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes. And while it’s not a direct cause of the disease, doctors do agree that reducing sugar in the diet can be massively beneficial.
Sugar Awareness Week aims to help more people understand the role that sugar plays in our diet, and suggests healthy alternatives that we can use instead. Can you challenge yourself to cut down on sugar for your health? It’s not as difficult as it might sound!
We shared some great tips in our post on the campaign at the start of the year- check them out and see what you think.
Honey: the perfect sugar alternative
Swapping sugar for honey can actually have the added bonus of providing the body with many nutrients- plus it comes with a whole host of other amazing health benefits, not to mention it tastes amazing! What are you waiting for?!
How can honey help reduce sugar intake?
One spoonful of honey can provide the perfect amount of sweetness to your breakfast, smoothie, or hot cup of tea. And because it tastes sweeter than sugar, you can actually use less and still reap the amazing health benefits too.
Honey is a natural source of energy that the body processes differently, thanks to the enzymes our clever bees add during production. Honey also has a lower Glycaemic Index (GI) than sugar, so won’t raise blood sugar levels as quickly, making it an ideal way to reduce overall sugar consumption in your diet.
There are so many amazing food combinations to try with honey! Pair it with cheese or oats, or use it to sweeten up your baking instead of sugar. There are so many different ways that you can use both honey and maple syrup to replace sugar- we’ve got loads of recipes on our website too. Pumpkin and Almond Loaf, anyone?
Natural, nothing added
It goes without saying, but our honey here at Hilltop is 100% natural, with nothing added. So, when you use it to sweeten your food, you’re not coupling it with a load of nasty preservatives or synthetic flavourings too. These are the additives that have been designed to make you want to keep on eating and eating- and while we can’t deny that our delicious honey will definitely hit the spot, it’s not designed to mess with your natural hunger signals.
Simply fuel your body when it needs it, with what it needs.