Amaranth Connection to Diabetes:
What Is Diabetes?

Your body needs energy for everything you do, from running to sleeping. Diabetes affects the way your body turns food into energy. Normally, your body converts carbohydrates and other foods you eat into “fuel.” With diabetes, something goes wrong with this process. It can lead complications such as blindness, heart disease, kidney failure, and nerve damage.

Diabetes is a serious health problem. It affects over 37 million Americans. Of those, 8.5 million don’t even know they have it. But you can live a long and healthy life with diabetes.

In the five minutes it will take you to read these pages, thirteen people in the United States will learn they have diabetes. This is approximately 3,8000 people a day. And, with its complications, diabetes is truly one of the worst diseases of our time.

Diabetes can be classified into the following general categories:

1. Type 1 diabetes (due to autoimmune β-cell destruction, usually leading to absolute insulin deficiency, including latent autoimmune diabetes of adulthood)

2. Type 2 diabetes (due to a non-autoimmune progressive loss of adequate β-cell insulin secretion frequently on the background of insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome)

3. Specific types of diabetes due to other causes, e.g., monogenic diabetes syndromes (such as neonatal diabetes and maturity-onset diabetes of the young), diseases of the exocrine pancreas (such as cystic fibrosis and pancreatitis), and drug- or chemical-induced diabetes (such as with glucocorticoid use, in the treatment of HIV/AIDS, or after organ transplantation)

4. Gestational diabetes (diabetes diagnosed in the second or third trimester of pregnancy that was not clearly overt diabetes prior to gestation)

How the Order of the Amaranth Helps Fight Diabetes?

In 1979, the Amaranth Diabetes Foundation was formally adopted and diabetes became the primary philanthropic project through which the Order of the Amaranth works for the betterment of mankind. The Order of the Amaranth has mobilized the efforts of its membership to prevent and cure diabetes and to help improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. Thanks to the dedicated support of our members worldwide we have raised over $9 million in the fight against diabetes, of which the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has raised over $1 million.

Funds raised by the Order of the Amaranth support diabetes research through the Amaranth Diabetes Foundation. The American Diabetes Association reviews and selects the research scientists to be funded. Through this peer reviewed system, contributors are assured that their gifts support the most important diabetes research and that the research results are shared throughout the scientific community.

In 2005, the Grand Court of Pennsylvania was pleased to learn that a research fellowship was awarded to Jeffrey David Zahn, PhD, Pennsylvania State University, College of Medicine. He received a $138,000 award for his study on microneedle insertion actuators for minimally invasive insulin delivery to diabetic patients. His focus is clinical therapeutics/new technology; insulin delivery systems; glucose monitoring and sensing.

Please visit the American Diabetes Association for more details on current recipients of research grants.