Diabetes – What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a serious illness that affects millions each year. It happens when the body is unable to produce enough insulin or cannot make use of the insulin it does have effectively.
The good news is that it can be cured and prevented or delayed by diet, exercise and medications. It’s important to be aware of symptoms to determine whether something is wrong and seek treatment.
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is an ongoing (long-lasting) health condition that affects how your body converts food into energy. It happens when your pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin or doesn’t utilize it as efficiently as it should.
Insulin is a hormone that helps cells absorb and utilize sugar, which is called glucose. People suffering from type 2 diabetes don’t make enough insulin, or their bodies can’t utilize it correctly.
In both types of diabetes, blood sugar levels become excessively high over time. This can cause problems with your eyes, feet and kidneys. It may also damage your heart arteries and brain.
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease, meaning that the body’s immune system attacks and destroys insulin-producing cells within the pancreas. The destruction can happen over months or even years, eventually resulting in a complete lack of insulin.
Insulin is required by people with type 1 diabetes every day. They also have to keep track of their blood sugar levels and adjust their insulin, food and activities to maintain their blood sugar within a healthy range.
Type 2 diabetes
If you suffer from type 2 diabetes, your body is not making the insulin it needs to. Insulin is a hormonal substance that aids in the movement of glucose (blood sugar) from your blood into your cells which is then used as energy.
People with type 2 diabetes need to treat their condition with a healthy diet and exercise. They may also need to take medication to control their blood sugar levels.
Symptoms of diabetes in women
It is a chronic illness that affects people from all races, ethnicities, ages and genders. However women are at a greater risk than men.
Women with diabetes are more prone to suffer from complications, such as heart disease (the most common complication associated with diabetes), and vision loss.
One early warning sign of diabetes in women is increased thirst and the frequency of urination, which is known as polydipsia. This is due to diabetes causing excessive sugar to accumulate in the blood and your kidneys don’t have the capacity to eliminate it properly.
The signs of diabetes in men
In the case of diabetes the cells are unable to make use of blood sugar (glucose) for energy. This is usually because the pancreas stops producing enough insulin.
This can lead to high blood glucose levels. Your body attempts to lower these levels by flushing the excess glucose out of your bloodstream via urine.
People with diabetes frequently are thirsty and have to drink large quantities of fluids. This can be up to four liters daily.
Men may also experience weight loss as their bodies break down muscle to make energy instead of fat. This is because blood sugar levels stay high for long periods.
A healthy diet for diabetes can be an essential part of managing the condition. It can help you control blood sugar levels, manage weight and reduce the risk factors for heart disease.
Your diet should consist of a wide range of whole foods like fruits whole grains, vegetables beans, and low-fat dairy. It should also be low in saturated (unhealthy) fats and added sugars.
You may consider limiting your consumption of drinks that are sweetened with sugar. These drinks usually contain high levels of sugar which can result in high blood sugar levels.
Your doctor might recommend diabetes medications to help keep your blood glucose (blood sugar) levels in normal levels. These medications are often combined with lifestyle changes, like diet and physical activity, to help manage the condition.
If your blood sugar levels aren’t well controlled by one medicine it is possible that a different medicine will be added. Your doctor will assist you determine the most appropriate medicine for your preferences and needs.
Newer medications such as glucagon-like receptor agonists, peptide-1, and sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 inhibitors lower blood sugar levels, provide kidney and cardiovascular benefits, and reduce the risk of complications. They also aid in weight loss and come in both tablet and injection forms.