Diabetes – What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a serious condition that affects millions of people each year. It occurs because the body doesn’t make enough insulin or utilize the insulin it produces effectively.
The good news is that it is treatable and can be prevented or delayed with diet, exercise and medications. It’s important to be aware of the symptoms to be able to tell whether something is wrong and get treatment.
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic health problem (long-lasting) that alters how your body converts food into energy. It occurs when the pancreas stops making enough insulin or doesn’t utilize it as effectively as it should.
Insulin is the hormone that aids your body absorb and use glucose, also referred to as sugar. Type 2 diabetics do not produce enough insulin or are unable to use it properly.
The blood sugar levels increase with time in both forms of diabetes. This can cause problems with the eyes, feet and kidneys. It may also damage the heart and brain arteries as well as your brain.
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is a disease caused by an autoimmune reaction which means that your immune system attacks pancreatic insulin-producing cells and destroys them. This process can take months or years and eventually lead to a total lack of insulin.
Insulin is required by people who suffer from type 1 diabetes each day. They must also keep an eye on their blood sugar levels and adjust their insulin, food and activities to keep their blood sugar within the normal range.
Type 2 diabetes
If you have type 2 diabetes your body doesn’t utilize insulin in the way it should. Insulin is a hormonal substance that assists your cells in moving glucose (blood sugar) from your blood into your cells, which is then utilized to generate energy.
Type 2 diabetics have to exercise and follow a healthy diet. They may also have to take medications to control their blood sugar levels.
Women with diabetes are more likely to experience symptoms
Diabetes is a chronic illness that affects people from all races, ethnicities, ages and genders. However women are at greater risk than men.
Women with diabetes are at a greater risk chance of developing complications compared to men, including heart disease (the most frequent complication of diabetes) and vision loss.
One of the early warning signs of diabetes in women is a higher thirst and increased urine, a condition known as polydipsia. This is because diabetes can cause excess sugar to accumulate in your bloodstream and kidneys are unable to remove it.
Men with symptoms of diabetes
In diabetes the cells are unable use blood sugar (glucose) for energy. This is typically due to the fact that the pancreas is producing too little insulin.
This results in high blood sugar levels. Your body will then try to lower the level by flushing the excess glucose in your bloodstream via urine.
Patients with diabetes typically have a thirsty feeling and must drink large amounts of fluids, up to 4 liters a day.
Men can also experience weight loss as their bodies break down muscle to make energy, instead of fat. This is because blood sugar levels remain high for extended periods.
Making a balanced diabetes diet is a vital aspect of managing your condition. It can help you control blood sugar levels, manage your weight and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.
Include whole foods in your diet, such as fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Also, dairy products that are low in fat products and legumes are good choices. It should be low in added sugars and saturated fats (unhealthy).
You might also want to limit the amount of sugar-sweetened drinks you consume. These drinks are typically packed with sugar and can cause blood sugar levels in the body to increase.
Your doctor might prescribe diabetes medications to keep your blood sugar (glucose) levels within the normal range. These medications are typically used with lifestyle changes like diet and exercise to manage your diabetes.
If your blood sugar levels aren’t being well controlled on one medicine it is possible that a different medicine will be added. Your doctor will work with you to pick the best medication for your specific needs and preferences.
The latest medications, including sodium-glucose-cotransporter-2 inhibitors as well as glucagon antagonists of the peptide-1 receptors, lower blood sugar levels and are beneficial for the kidneys and cardiovascular system, while reducing the risk of developing complications. They are also useful for weight loss, and come in both tablets and injections.