What is Diabetes?

Diabetes mellitus , also commonly called diabetes, are a group of metabolic diseases in which there are high blood sugar (Glucose) levels over a prolonged period.

Glucose is an important source of energy for the cells of the body. It comes from two major sources your food and your liver.

It is a chronic disease if untreated can lead to many complications including cardiovascular disease, chest pain (angina), stroke, nerve damage, kidney failure, foot ulcers and damage to the eyes.

There are different types of diabetes:

Type 1 is also commonly called juvenile diabetes. It has no identifiable cause, but could be linked to genetics and environmental factors.

Type 2 diabetes is also commonly called adult-onset diabetes. The causes include excessive body weight and lack of physical activity.

Gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy, the pregnant women had no earlier history of diabetes.

The placenta that produces hormones to sustain pregnancy, but these hormones might make her cells more resistant to insulin. The pancreas might be unable to produce enough insulin to counteract the effect and this can lead to diabetes.

There are various ways to prevent diabetes especially type 2 diabetes and these include:

Maintaining a healthy diet, physical exercise, smoking cessation, maintaining a healthy body weight and stress management.

Signs and symptoms

There are various signs related to the disease and these include:

  • Increased thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Extreme hunger
  • Increased thirst
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Blurred vision
  • Slow-healing sores
  • Frequent infections, such as gums or skin infections and vaginal infections

Causes of diabetes

Diabetes occurs when the pancreas not producing enough insulin or the cells of the body not responding properly to the insulin produced.

Insulin is a hormone that comes from a gland situated behind and below the stomach (pancreas).

The pancreas secretes insulin into the bloodstream; the insulin circulates, enabling sugar to enter your cells.

The insulin works by lowering the amount of sugar in your bloodstream, but as your blood sugar level drops, the insulin level also reduces.

Treatment

If you suspect you have diabetes go to a certified professional medical Doctor to get diagnosed and tested.

If  confirmed that you have diabetes you would be advised on the right course of treatment.

Treatments include medications, insulin injections and lifestyle changes.

 

Photo by pat138241. Published on 15 November 2012
Stock photo – Image ID: 100113152