Diabetes – what is it exactly?
Diabetes, otherwise referred to as diabetes mellitus, is a long term condition describing a group of metabolic diseases which causes high blood glucose.
This occurs because of inadequate insulin production. It may also happen because the body’s cells do not respond properly to insulin, or a combination of both.
In 2011 the United States National Diabetes Fact Sheet revealed the following:
- Almost 11.8% of men are diabetic – a total of 13 million people.
- 10.8% of women are diabetic – a total of 12.6 million people.
- 215,000 people younger than 20 years are diabetic.
- Approximately 1 in every 400 kids and teenagers are diabetic.
So what is diabetes exactly?
Diabetes Is A Metabolic Disorder
It classified as a metabolic disorder.
Metabolism refers to the way our bodies digest food and how it is used for energy and growth.
Most of what we eat is broken down into glucose, a form of sugar in the blood.
Once our food is digested, glucose makes its way into our bloodstream.
However, this cannot happen without insulin being present.
Insulin is a hormone that is produced by the pancreas.
After eating, our pancreas will automatically release enough insulin to move the glucose from our blood into our cells.
As soon as glucose enters the cells, blood glucose levels drop.
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 patients usually develop in childhood and adolescence years.
Type 1 is nowhere near as common as type 2.
Approximately 10% of all diagnoses are type 1.
As a Type 1 diabetic, you should follow a healthy eating plan, adequate exercise, and take insulin to lead a fairly normal life.
This form of diabetes may be present with severe symptoms such as coma or ketoacidosis.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 usually develops in adulthood.
This type occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin for proper function.
Approximately 90% of all cases are type 2.
Type 2 patients need to eat healthily, be physically active, and test their blood glucose often in order to stay healthy.
Unfortunately, type 2 diabetics may also need to take oral medication, and/or insulin in order to control their blood glucose levels.
Keep in mind that by being overweight, inactive and eating the wrong foods, your risk of developing type 2 is much higher.
As is the case in Type 1 sufferers, patients are at a higher risk of microvascular and macrovascular complications.
Please read Natural Treatments For Type 1 & 2 Diabetes if you would like more information.
Gestational Diabetes (GDM)
GDM affects women during pregnancy.
The diagnosis of gestational diabetes is made during pregnancy.
If left undiagnosed or uncontrolled, it may raise the risk of complications during childbirth.
The Most Common Symptoms of Diabetes
The most common symptoms of the condition include:
- Frequent urination
- Weight gain or unusual weight loss
- Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
- Intense thirst and hunger
There are two main types of diabetes. Are you be a diabetic?
While there are many who live successfully with type 1 and 2, there are complications linked to bad control of the disease.
- Skin complications
- Hearing loss
- Gum disease
- Eye complications
- Foot complications
- Erectile dysfunction
- Slow wound healing and amputation
Complications are divided into microvascular (damage to small blood vessels) and macrovascular (damage to larger blood vessels).
Diabetes can be effectively controlled if you know how.
Please read Breakthrough Diabetic Pain Treatment Unveiled for more information on treatment.