GLOSSARY

 





Diabetes

Diabetes is usually a lifelong (chronic) disease in which there are high levels of sugar in the blood. This happens when the body cannot move sugar into fat, liver, and muscle cells to be stored for energy. This is because either:

•  Their pancreas does not make enough insulin or

•  Their cells do not respond to insulin normally

•  Both of the above


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Potassium

Potassium is an important mineral that is needed for your body to work properly. It is a type of electrolyte. Our body needs potassium to :

•  Build proteins

•  Break down and use carbohydrates

•  Build muscle

•  Maintain normal body growth

•  Control the electrical activity of the heart

•  Control the acid-base balance


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Sodium

Sodium is an element that the body needs to work properly. It is found in salt. The body uses sodium to control blood pressure and blood volume. It is also needed for your muscles and nerves to work properly.
However, too much sodium in our diet may lead to:

•  High blood pressure in some people that leads to another whole set of problems such as heart disease, kidney disease and stroke.

•  A serious build-up of fluid in people with congestive heart failure, cirrhosis, or kidney disease.


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Calcium

We have more calcium in our body than any other mineral. Calcium has many important jobs. 99% of calcium is stored in the bones and teeth to help make and keep them strong. The rest is throughout the body in blood, muscle and the fluid between cells. Our body needs calcium to :

•  Keep bones and teeth strong

•  Help muscles and blood vessels contract and expand

•  Secrete hormones and enzymes

•  Send messages through the nervous system.


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