What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is “a disease in which the body’s ability to produce or respond to the hormone insulin is impaired, resulting in abnormal metabolism of carbohydrates and elevated levels of glucose in the blood and urine.” Not only that, but diabetes consists of three types: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes. Knowing each can help one to have a deeper understanding of diabetes as a whole – as well as his/her health – so that he/she can better regulate it.

First and foremost is type 1 diabetes “also known as juvenile diabetes, this type occurs when the body fails to produce insulin.” Second is type 2 diabetes; “while the body still makes insulin, unlike in type 1, the cells in the body do not respond to it as effectively as they once did.” And third is gestational diabetes which “occurs in women during pregnancy when the body can become less sensitive to insulin.” Fortunately, this form of diabetes “does not occur in all women and usually resolves after giving birth.”

Some of the symptoms of type 2 diabetes – or adult-onset diabetes – are “increased thirst, frequent urination, hunger, fatigue, and blurred vision. In some cases, there may be no symptoms.” Weight gain and weight loss are also common, but since many of these symptoms could be easily dismissed, it’s important that the person gets tested if he/she feels as though he/she is at risk because it’s possible for him/her to take preventative measures if he/she has prediabetes.

Although there are three types, prediabetes is where one’s “blood sugar is high, but not high enough to be type 2 diabetes.” Fortunately, if one takes action – while he/she is still in the prediabetes stage – then there is a chance that he/she can reduce his/her risk for actually developing it. Prediabetes is reversible when one makes the necessary changes to his/her health in order to revert it. To do this, however, one must be willing to implement whatever changes are necessary, whether it be a change in diet, exercise, or something similar.

But for those who already have diabetes, treatment is available through “physical exercise, weight loss, dietary fiber, nutrition counseling, a diabetic diet, anti-diabetic medication, anticoagulant, statin, insulin,” and so on. Adding these forms of treatment can help one to “reach and hold normal blood sugar levels” without medication. This, then, allows those who have the condition to live a much healthier and happier lifestyle.

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