Diabetes – What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a serious condition that affects millions of people every year. It happens when your body isn’t producing enough insulin or it’s unable to utilize the insulin it does have effectively.
The good news is that it can be treated and avoided or delayed with diet, exercise and medications. It is important to understand the symptoms to determine if there is a problem and seek treatment.
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is an ongoing (long-lasting) health issue that affects how your body converts food into energy. It occurs when your pancreas stops making enough insulin or isn’t able to use it as efficiently as it should.
Insulin is the hormone that helps your body absorb and use glucose, also known as sugar. Type 2 diabetics do not produce enough insulin or their bodies cannot use it in a proper way.
In both forms of diabetes, the blood sugar levels can become too high in time. This can lead to issues in the kidneys, eyes and feet. It may also damage your heart arteries and brain.
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition and means that the body’s immune system attacks and destroys insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. This process can last for months or even for years until it leads to a complete lack of insulin.
Type 1 diabetics need to take insulin every day. They must also monitor their blood sugar levels and adjust their insulin, food, and levels of activity to keep their blood sugar within the normal range.
Type 2 diabetes
If you have type 2, your body is not producing insulin as it should. Insulin is a hormone which helps your cells get blood sugar (glucose) out of your blood and into your cells where it can be used to create energy.
Type 2 diabetics must exercise and eat a healthy diet. They may also need to take medication to manage their blood sugar levels.
Women with diabetes are more likely to experience symptoms
Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects people from all races, ethnicities and genders. However, women are at a greater risk than men.
Women who suffer from diabetes are more likely to experience complications, like heart disease (the most common diabetes-related complication) and loss of vision.
One of the early warning signs of women suffering from diabetes is a higher thirst and increased urination, called polydipsia. This is because diabetes causes excessive sugar to accumulate in the bloodstream and the kidneys aren’t able filter it out in a proper manner.
Symptoms of diabetes in men
Diabetes is a condition in which cells are unable to utilize glucose (blood sugar) as energy. This is typically because the pancreas ceases to produce enough insulin.
This results in high blood sugar levels. Your body will then try to lower the level by flushing the excess glucose from your bloodstream through urine.
People with diabetes frequently have a thirsty feeling and must drink large quantities of fluids. This can be up to 4 liters a day.
The men may also shed weight as their bodies make use of muscles to generate energy, not fat. This is because blood sugar levels are high for extended periods.
A healthy diabetes diet is a crucial aspect of managing the condition. It can help you manage your blood sugar, manage your weight, and lower the risk of heart disease by reducing risk factors.
Your diet should comprise plenty of whole foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans and low-fat dairy. It should also be low in saturated (unhealthy) fats and added sugars.
You might be advised to limit your consumption of drinks sweetened with sugar. These drinks usually contain plenty of sugar and can cause high blood sugar levels.
Your doctor might recommend diabetes medication to keep your blood glucose (blood sugar) levels in normal levels. These medications are often combined with changes in lifestyle, like physical activity and diet, to manage diabetes.
If your blood sugar is not being adequately controlled with one medication, you may need to take a different medication. Your doctor will help you select the right medicine for your preferences and needs.
Newer medications like glucagon-like receptor agonists, peptide-1, and sodium-glucose COtransporter-2 inhibitors decrease blood sugar, have kidney and cardiovascular benefits and reduce the risk of complications. They are also useful for weight loss, and they come in both tablets and injections.