What is Diabetes?
Diabetes can target anyone of any age. In the last decade the number of diabetes cases have increased to more than 50 percent. When you consume food, it turns into sugar or glucose and your pancreas (stomach) is supposed to release insulin. The insulin acts as a key to open your cells to allow glucose to enter and use the glucose for energy. If you have diabetes, this does not happen.
Although there are many types, there are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2.
Signs & symptoms
Some of the common signs and symptoms of diabetes are:
- Higher than normal levels of glucose.
- Hunger and fatigue.
- Frequent urination and thirsty.
- Dry mouth and itchy skin.
- Blurred vision.
Other symptoms can be depending on what type of diabetes you have.
- If you have type 2 diabetes, you may experience yeast infections, slow healing sores or cuts, pain or numbness in your feet or legs.
- If you have type 1 diabetes, you may experience unplanned weight loss or nausea and vomiting
What causes it?
The cause of diabetes varies depending on your genetic makeup, family history, ethnicity, health and environmental factors.
Type 1 diabetes is caused by the immune system destroys the cells in the pancreas which makes insulin. This causes diabetes by leaving the body without enough insulin to function normally. This is the body attacking itself.
These are the triggers that may be involved:
- Viral or bacterial infections.
- Chemical toxins within food.
- Unidentified component causing autoimmune reactions (the body to attack itself).
Type 2 diabetes is multi-factorial. The major factor is family history of type 2.The variety of risk factors include:
- Lack of physical activity
- Increasing age
- Bad diet
- Pregnancy or illness
When to call a doctor?
If you are at the age of 45 or older with other risks for diabetes, it is crucial that you get tested. If spotted early you are able to prevent nerve damage, heart trouble, and other complications.
Call your doctor if you;
- Feel sick, weak and very thirsty.
- Are peeing a lot.
- Have a bad belly ache.
- Breathing deeply and faster than normal.
- Have sweet breath that smells like nail polish remover (this means high ketones).
Every individual is unique which means every diabetes case is unique as well. To be treated properly, it is important to be educated about the latest medical therapies and approaches, healthy lifestyle choices and have good communication with a team of experts who can help you feel in control of the changes.
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