Diabetes- A Guide

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Diabetes (diabetes mellitus) is one of the oldest known diseases.

Diabetes occurs when the body cannot properly use the energy it gets from the food we eat. Normally, the food we eat is broken down by digestion into glucose. This glucose travels through the bloodstream to give the body cells the energy it needs.

Glucose needs insulin, a hormone produced by pancreas, to get inside the cells, where this glucose is burned for energy.

Symptoms:

The most common symptoms of diabetes are:

  1. Frequent Urination
  2. You are always thirsty
  3. Unusual weight gain or weight loss
  4. Increased fatigue
  5. Blurred vision
  6. Wounds/Bruises don’t heal properly or quickly.

Types of Diabetes:

Diabetes are of two types

  • Type 1
  • Type 2

What is Type 1 diabetes?

This occurs when the pancreas are unable to produce any insulin. Insulin is the hormone that controls blood sugar levels. This type usually appears in childhood or adolescence, but its onset is also possible in adulthood. In this type, the body’s immunity system destroys the insulin cells .

What is Type 2 diabetes?

This is a long term metabolic disorder where the pancreas do not produce enough insulin. This type is irreversible but the symptoms  controlled. When glucose builds in blood instead of being absorbed by cells, the cells do not function properly. This leads to;

  • Dehydration
  • Diabetic coma
  • Body damage

What tests to get if you have Type 2 Diabetes

  1. A1C: This test monitors a person’s average blood glucose level in the last months.
  2. Fasting plasma glucose: Blood is drawn out for testing on an empty stomach. Once results are in the glucose levels are monitored. The normal fasting glucose is between 70-100 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) for non diabetics. A reading above this indicates prediabetes.
  3. Oral Glucose Tolerance Test

This test is usually conducted during pregnancy to check for gestational diabetes.

What is gestational diabetes?

This occurs only during pregnancy. Even if you have this kind of diabetes, you can still deliver a healthy baby by altering certain things in your lifestyle ( as recommended by your doctor). This type of diabetes usually goes away once the baby is born.

Note: Gestational Diabetes can cause Type 2 diabetes at a later stage but this is not necessary.

Should you panic?

With proper care and attention you can keep your diabetes in check.  Monitoring blood sugar, establishing a proper diet and making certain lifestyle changes can help you keep diabetes under control.

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  1. April 19, 2018

    […] Management of diabetes essentially involves maintaining balanced blood sugar levels by making changes in your diet and lifestyle. Constantly having high blood sugar levels leads to numerous unwanted health complications related to heart, kidney and liver functioning. […]

  2. May 24, 2018

    […] Diabetes mellitus can alter carbohydrate, protein, and fat metabolism. This alteration is caused due to the absence of insulin secretion, either due to progressive or marked inability of  the pancreas to produce insulin or because of insulin resistance. […]

  3. May 28, 2018

    […] Diabetes is a chronic condition where the pancreas does not produce enough or produces no insulin thereby causing high blood sugar. People with diabetes are at high risk of complications that affect several parts of the body. Uncontrolled sugar is likely to affect eyes, feet, nerves, kidney, heart and liver. To avoid the risk of health complications one must get a full body checkup annually if you are diabetic or have prediabetes. […]

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