Type 2 Diabetes

Blood sugar, or glucose, is the main sugar found in your blood and comes from the food you eat, and it is your body’s main source of energy. Your blood carries glucose to your body’s cells, where it gets converted into energy. Type 2 diabetes is a disease in which your blood sugar levels are too high.

What happens?

This happens because of two problems that involve a hormone in your body called insulin. First, your body isn’t producing enough insulin. This is harmful because insulin regulates the movement of blood sugar into your cells. Second, your cells are responding poorly to insulin and are not absorbing sugar the way it should. This is also known as “insulin resistance.” As a result of these two things, too much sugar is circulating in your bloodstream. Over time, it builds up and your blood sugar levels become too high.

Once your levels rise beyond a certain threshold (which can be shown by a blood test), you are classified as having Type 2 diabetes.

Some symptoms include:

  • Increased thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased hunger
  • Fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Slow-healing sores
  • Frequent infections
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands or feet

Type 2 diabetes is often linked to being high in body weight or inactive. But for diabetics, losing weight can be extra challenging. You feel hungry and fatigued, so you want to eat more and exercise less. For many people, the only answer is to get on prescription medications that help to keep blood sugar levels under control.

Prevention list:

  1. Maintain a healthy weight, as excess weight, especially around the abdomen, increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Losing even a small amount of weight can have significant benefits. Aim for a body mass index (BMI) within the normal range (18.5-24.9).
  2. Focus on a balanced diet that is rich in whole grains, lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats. Avoid or limit sugary foods, processed snacks, and beverages high in added sugars. Control portion sizes and choose foods with a low glycaemic index (GI).
  3. Regular exercise can help improve insulin sensitivity and maintain a healthy weight. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, brisk walking, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity, running, per week. You can also do strength training exercises at least twice a week.
  4. Monitor your blood sugar levels, especially If you have prediabetes or a family history of diabetes, to catch any changes early. This can help you make necessary adjustments to your lifestyle.
  5. High blood pressure and abnormal cholesterol levels increase the risk of type 2 diabetes. Regularly monitor these levels and follow your healthcare provider’s advice.
  6. Get enough quality sleep as poor sleep patterns, can disrupt your metabolism and increase the risk of developing diabetes. Aim for 7-8 hours of quality sleep per night.
  7. Manage stress levels because chronic stress can contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes. Find healthy ways to manage stress, practice relaxation techniques, have hobbies, or seeking support from friends, family, or professionals.
  8. Limit alcohol consumption because excessive alcohol intake can increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.
  9. Smoking increases the risk of various health problems, including type 2 diabetes. If you smoke, seek assistance from healthcare professionals to quit.

In conclusion

Remember, while these steps can significantly lower your risk, they do not guarantee that you will not develop type 2 diabetes. Regular check-ups with your healthcare provider are essential for early detection and management of any symptoms listed above.

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Other Types of Diabetes

In addition to Type 2 diabetes, there are several other types of diabetes, each with its own distinct characteristics and causes. The main types of diabetes include:

Type 1 Diabetes

Often referred to as juvenile diabetes, typically develops in childhood or adolescence, although it can occur at any age. It is an autoimmune condition in which your body’s immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys the insulin-producing beta cells in your pancreas. People with Type 1 diabetes require lifelong insulin therapy to manage their blood sugar levels.

Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy when a woman’s body cannot produce enough insulin to meet the increased demands. It usually resolves after childbirth, but women who have had gestational diabetes are at a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life.

Monogenic Diabetes

Monogenic diabetes is a rare form of diabetes caused by mutations in a single gene. This type of diabetes is typically diagnosed in childhood or early adulthood and can sometimes be mistaken for Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. Treatment may involve oral medications or insulin.

Secondary Diabetes

Secondary diabetes is the result of an underlying medical condition or factor, such as certain medications (e.g., corticosteroids), hormonal disorders (e.g., Cushing’s syndrome), or diseases that affect the pancreas (e.g., pancreatitis). Management involves addressing the underlying cause.

Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults (LADA):

LADA is sometimes referred to as “Type 1.5 diabetes.” It shares some characteristics with Type 1 diabetes but typically develops in adults. People with LADA often have a slower progression of autoimmune destruction of pancreatic beta cells and may not require insulin therapy immediately after diagnosis.

Neonatal Diabetes

Neonatal diabetes is a rare form of diabetes that is diagnosed in the first six months of life. It is caused by genetic mutations affecting insulin production. Some cases of neonatal diabetes are transient and resolve with age, while others require ongoing treatment.

Maturity-Onset Diabetes of the Young (MODY):

MODY is a group of genetic diabetes disorders that typically present in childhood or young adulthood. It is caused by specific gene mutations that affect insulin production. MODY often runs in families and can be mistaken for Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.

Type 3c Diabetes (Pancreatogenic Diabetes):

This type of diabetes results from damage to the pancreas due to conditions like chronic pancreatitis, pancreatic cancer, or pancreatic surgery. The pancreas is unable to produce sufficient insulin, leading to diabetes.

Chemical-Induced Diabetes:

Some chemicals and toxins, such as certain drugs or chemicals used in industrial settings, can cause diabetes. The development of diabetes in these cases is usually associated with exposure to specific substances.

It’s important to note that each type of diabetes requires different approaches to management and treatment. Accurate diagnosis by a healthcare provider is crucial to ensure that individuals receive the appropriate care and support for their specific type of diabetes.

By Ingrid

I started Empower yourself at a time in my life where circumstances were dictating my life and I was just a passenger. I decided to change the direction of my life drastically before it was too late! It starts with your health and once you have that, anything is possible!

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