According to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), men are more likely to get type 2 diabetes than women. “One reason is that men store more fat in their bellies—a known risk factor. And more men than women have diabetes that’s undiagnosed.”
Type 2 diabetes is an impairment in the way the body regulates and uses sugar (glucose) as a fuel, which can eventually lead to disorders of the circulatory, nervous and immune systems. “Diabetes puts both men and women at greater risk for heart disease, stroke, vision loss, kidney failure, even amputation of a toe, foot, or leg.”
The Philippine Statistics Authority reported in March 2022 that deaths due to diabetes mellitus recorded 2,882 cases or 6.6% share, making it the fourth leading cause of death in the country. Globally, dependence on electronic gadgets and sedentary lifestyle contribute significantly to diabetes.
Here are some problems that can hit men, specifically their sexual health.
ED is the inability to get or keep an erection firm enough for sex. It can stem from damage to nerves and blood vessels caused by poor long-term blood sugar control. The condition is common in middle-aged and older men, and three times more likely to occur in diabetics, according to the CDC. ED also leads to problems with ejaculation.
This occurs when semen enters the bladder instead of emerging through the penis during orgasm. Also called a “dry orgasm,” men might ejaculate very little or without semen. Retrograde ejaculation isn't harmful, but it can cause male infertility.
Leaking urine is not uncommon. Men sometimes have post-void drips, but it may be a form of incontinence and a symptom of a more serious problem like diabetes if the leakage is uncomfortable, shows through your clothes or causes skin irritation.
An infection in any part of the urinary system and affecting both men and women, UTI has symptoms that include a strong urge to urinate that doesn't go away, urinating often, a burning feeling when urinating and strong-smelling urine. If the kidneys are affected, UTI can cause back or side pain, high fever, shaking and chills, and nausea.
What you can do to prevent diabetes
Mayo Clinic says people can reduce their risk of developing diabetes by almost 60% after losing approximately 7% of their body weight with changes in exercise and diet. “The American Diabetes Association recommends that people with prediabetes lose at least 7% to 10% of their body weight to prevent disease progression. More weight loss will translate into even greater benefits.”
Exercise can help you lower blood sugar when insulin sensitivity is increased, so your muscle cells are better able to use any available insulin to take up glucose during and after the activity.
A healthy meal rich in fiber can help promote weight loss and lower the risk of diabetes. Eat a variety of healthy, fiber-rich foods including non-starchy veggies such as leafy greens, whole grains like whole-grain rice and bread, oats and quinoa. Fiber-rich foods can slow the absorption of sugars and lower blood sugar levels.
Unsaturated fats or “good fats” promote healthy blood cholesterol levels and good heart and vascular health. Chose olive, sunflower, safflower, cottonseed and canola oils; nuts and seeds like almonds, peanuts, flaxseed and pumpkin seeds; and fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, sardines, tuna and cod.
Diabetes can take a toll on your finances as management of the disease may include lifelong meds. On average, people with diabetes spend approximately 2.3 times higher in medical expenditures than people without it.
Follow your doctor’s orders in managing your diabetes and get insured today. It’s as easy as choosing from our online shop what plan suits you. For instance, BIG 3 Critical Illness Insurance can help protect you against the expenses of a heart attack or stroke which may rise from diabetes complications. To help you with your financial strategy for your family’s future, consult an FWD financial advisor by clicking here.