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 when it’s not able to use the insulin it does produce effectively.
The good news is that it is treatable and avoided or delayed with diet, exercise and medication. It’s also important to be aware of symptoms to determine what’s wrong and seek treatment.
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic health condition (long-lasting) that alters the way your body converts food into energy. It happens when your pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin or isn’t able to use it as well as it should.
Insulin is a hormone that helps cells absorb and utilize sugar, also known as glucose. People with type 2 diabetes don’t produce enough insulin, or their bodies can’t utilize it correctly.
In both forms of diabetes, the blood sugar levels can become too high in time. This can cause problems with the eyes, feet and kidneys. It may also damage your brain and heart arteries.
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition which means that your body’s immune system attacks and destroys insulin-producing cells within the pancreas. This destruction can occur over months or even for years until it leads to an absence of insulin.
Insulin is a requirement for people with type 1 diabetes all day. They must also keep an eye on their blood sugar levels and adjust their insulin, food and activity levels to keep their blood sugar levels within a healthy range.
Type 2 diabetes
If you have type 2, your body is not functioning as insulin should. Insulin is a hormone which helps your cells remove blood sugar (glucose) out of your blood and into your cells where it can be used for energy.
Type 2 diabetics have to exercise and follow a healthy diet. They may also need to take medicine to control their blood sugar levels.
The signs of diabetes in women
It is a chronic illness that affects people of all races, ethnicities and genders. However women are at a higher risk than males.
Women with diabetes are more likely to suffer from complications, including heart disease (the most common complication associated with diabetes) and loss of vision.
Polydipsia can be a warning sign for women with diabetes. This is because diabetes causes excessive sugar to accumulate in the blood and the kidneys aren’t able eliminate it correctly.
The signs of diabetes in men
In diabetes, cells are unable to use blood sugar (glucose) for energy. This is typically because the pancreas does not produce enough insulin.
This can result in high blood glucose levels. Your body then tries to reduce these levels by flushing the excess glucose from your bloodstream through urine.
People suffering from diabetes frequently are thirsty and have to drink large amounts of fluids. It can be as much as 4 liters a day.
Men can also lose weight as their bodies make use of muscles for energy instead of fat. This is because blood sugar levels stay high for extended periods.
A healthy diet for diabetes is a crucial aspect of managing the condition. It can help you control blood sugar levels, control your weight, and reduce risk factors for heart disease.
You should include whole food items in your diet, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Also, low-fat dairy products as well as legumes, beans and beans are a good choice. It should be low in added sugars and saturated fats (unhealthy).
You might also need to limit the amount of sweetened drinks with sugar you consume. These drinks are often high in sugar, which can cause blood sugar levels to rise.
Your doctor may prescribe diabetes medication to keep your blood sugar (glucose) levels within a normal range. These medicines are usually combined with lifestyle changes such as exercising and diet to manage your diabetes.
If your blood sugar is not being adequately controlled with one medicine, you may need to take a different medication. Your doctor will assist you to determine the most appropriate medication for your requirements and preferences.
Newer medications like glucagon-like receptor antagonists for peptide-1 and sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors lower blood sugar levels, have kidney and cardiovascular benefits and lower the risk of complications. They are also useful for weight loss and come in both tablets and injections.