Diabetes is a long-term condition that affects your body’s capability to produce or use insulin. Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas for regulating blood glucose as part of metabolism. During digestion, when food is turned into energy, insulin helps to transport this energy to the body cells. So if the body makes little or no insulin, too much glucose remains in the blood.
Diabetes is chronic and often incapacitating if not detected and treated early. It can strike anyone regardless of race. Close to 400 million people is affected with statistics stating that the numbers might double up shortly. Diabetes takes more people than HIV-AIDS and Breast Cancer Combined. It’s a leading cause of amputations, stroke, heart failure, kidney failure, and blindness.
Common symptoms include numbness/tingling of hands and feet, frequent urination, extreme hunger and thirst, weight gain or loss, cuts and bruises that fail to heal male sexual dysfunction and intense fatigue amongst others.
Types of diabetes
Type 1 Diabetes
In this category, the body doesn’t produce Insulin. It mostly affects children and teenagers, though it can develop at any other age. This type accounts for 5 to 10% cases of people living with diabetes. With Type 1 Diabetes, the immune system mistakenly attacks parts of it pancreas. The attack is referred as the ��auto immune disease’. Scientifically it has never been proved why it happens.Causes of Type 1 Diabetes are unclear. It’s thought to be a combined case of genetics and environmental factors.
Type 2 Diabetes
This is commonly known as ��Adult-onset Diabetes’ as its diagnosed later in life. It occurs when the body doesn’t produce enough Insulin or when the body cells are unable to use insulin properly. This is referred as Insulin resistance. 90 to 95% of people living with diabetes have this type.
Here, the cells become resistant to the action of insulin. The pancreas thus fails to make enough insulin to overcome the resistance and instead of moving to the cells where its needed, its build’s up in the blood system.
This type affects pregnant women and usually goes away after the pregnancy. Nearly 18% of pregnant women get it. Chances of getting it in future pregnancies are high if it occurred in the first. Cases of this women developing Type 2 diabetes later in life is also common. This is because Gestational diabetes and Type 2 diabetes both involve Insulin resistance.
In this type, the hormones produced during pregnancy makes the body cells resistant to insulin. Sometime, the pancreas may not cope up with this resistance and it fails to produce enough insulin. When this happens excess glucose piles up in the blood system.
The exact causes of diabetes are not scientifically proven, but genetics, poor diet, obesity and lack of exercise greatly play a role. Risks of getting Type 2 diabetes gets higher with age as we tend to put on weight and become less active. Men with low testosterone levels have a higher risk of getting diabetes.
All in all, cases are diabetes manageable. Type 1 may last a lifetime, but most people have managed to keep off symptoms without medication through a right combination of diet and exercises.Type 1 can be easily treated with regular insulin injections while type 2 can be controlled with regular insulin tablets. Gestational diabetes patients are mostly advised on the best diet to combat the issue…