Diabetes is a chronic medical condition in which blood sugar, or glucose, levels rise up in your bloodstream. The Pancreatic hormone insulin helps move the glucose from your blood into your cells, where it’s used for energy.
In type 2 diabetes, your body’s cells are unable to respond to insulin normally. In later stages of the disease, your body may not produce required insulin.
Uncontrolled type 2 diabetes can cause to chronically very high blood glucose levels, causing many symptoms and some serious complications.
In type 2 diabetes, your body isn’t able to effectively use insulin to bring glucose into the cells. This causes your body to depend on alternate energy sources in your tissues, muscles, and organs. This is a chain reaction that can cause a large range of symptoms.
Type 2 diabetes can develop slowly. The symptoms may be mild and easier to overcome at first. The early symptoms may include:
- Feelings of numbness and tingling sensations in your extremities, or neuropathy.
If you have two or more of these symptoms, you should consult your doctor. Without treatment, diabetes can become very dangerous. Discover other symptoms of type 2 diabetes.
Insulin is a naturally occurring peptide hormone secreted by . your pancreas when you eat. Insulin helps to transport glucose from bloodstream to cells throughout your body, where it’s used for energy.
If you are suffering from type 2 diabetes, your body becomes resistant to insulin. Your body is unable to use the hormone efficiently. This forces your pancreas to work harder to make more insulin.
Over time, this can damage cells in your pancreas.Ultimately your pancreas may not be able to produce any insulin.
If you don’t produce enough insulin or if your body doesn’t use it efficiently, glucose rises up in your bloodstream. This leads to body cells starvation for energy. Doctors don’t know actual cause that triggers this series of events.
It may have to do with cell dysfunction in the pancreas or with cell signaling and regulation. In some people, the liver produces large amount of glucose. There may be a genetic predisposition to developing type 2 diabetes.
Most likely, it’s a combination of factors that inhances the risk of type 2 diabetes. Find out more about the causes of diabetes.
You can effectively control type 2 diabetes. Your doctor will suggest you how often you should check your blood glucose levels. The goal is to stay within a specific range.
- Include foods rich in fiber and healthy carbohydrates in your diet. Eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains will help keep your blood glucose levels normal.
- Get about half an hour of aerobic activity daily to help keep your heart healthy. Exercise helps to control blood glucose, too.
Your doctor will suggest how to recognize the early symptoms of blood sugar that’s too high or too low and what to do in each situation. They’ll also help you choose healthy diet to control type 2 diabetes.
Not every type 2 diabetic person needs to use insulin. If you do, it’s because your pancreas isn’t making required insulin. It’s important that you take insulin as directed. There are other medications that may help as well.
In some cases, lifestyle changes are sufficient to keep type 2 diabetes controlled. If not, there are several medications that may help. Some of these medications are:
- metformin, which can decrease your blood glucose levels and improve how your body’s response to insulin — it’s the preferred treatment for most of the type 2 diabetic people.
- sulfonylureas, which are oral medications that help your pancreas to make more insulin.
- sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors, help to prevent the kidneys from reabsorbing glucose into the blood and excreting out in your urine
All of these medications can cause some side effects. It may take some time to find the best medication or combination of medications to treat your diabetes.
If your body is unable to produce sufficient insulin, you may need insulin therapy. You may only need a long-acting injection you can take at night, or you may need to take insulin many times in a day. Learn about other medications that can help you manage diabetes.
Diet is an important tool to keep your heart healthy and blood glucose levels within a safe and healthy range.
The diet recommended for people with type 2 diabetes is the same diet just about everyone should follow.
- Eat meals and snacks on schedule.
- Choose a variety of foods that are rich in nutrients and low in empty calories.
- Read food labels carefully.
Foods and beverages to avoid
There are certain foods and beverages that you should limit or avoid completely. These include:
Although these options for healthy fats are good for you, they’re also high in calories. Choosing low-fat dairy products will also keep your fat intake in limit. Discover more diabetes-friendly foods, from cinnamon to shirataki noodles.
We may not understand the actual causes of type 2 diabetes, but we do know that some factors which can increase the risk.
Certain factors are beyond your control:
- You are at higher risk if you have a brother, sister, or parent who has type 2 diabetes.
- You can develop type 2 diabetes at any age, but your risk increases as you get older. Your risk is particularly high once you reach 45 years of age.
- Women who have a condition called polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) are at high risk.
You may be able to change or control these factors:
- Being overweight means that you have more fatty tissues, which makes your cells more insulin resistant. Extra fat in the abdomen increases your risk more than extra fat in the hips and thighs.
- Your risk increases if you have a sedentary lifestyle. Regular exercise depletes glucose and helps your cells to respond better to insulin.
- Eating a lot of junk foods or eating in bulk increases glucose level tremendously.
You’re also at high risk if you’ve had gestational diabetes or prediabetes, two conditions caused increased glucose levels. Learn more about the factors that can increase your risk for diabetes.
Whether or not you have prediabetes, you should consult your doctor right away if you have diabetic symptoms. Your doctor can get a lot of information from your blood samples. Diagnostic testing may include the following:
- Hemoglobin A1C test. This test measures average blood glucose levels for the previous two or three months. No fasting is needed for this test, and your doctor can diagnose you based on the results. It’s also called a glycosylated hemoglobin test.
- Fasting plasma glucose test. This test measures level of glucose is in your plasma. You may need to fast for eight hours before having it.
- Oral glucose tolerance test. During this test, your blood sample is taken three times: before, one hour after, and two hours after you drink a dose of glucose. The test results tell how well your body deals with glucose before and after the drink.
If you have diabetes, your doctor will provide you with information about how to manage the disease, including:
You may need to consult an endocrinologist who has specialization in the treatment of diabetes. You’ll probably need to visit your doctor quite often at first to make sure your treatment plan is working.
If you don’t have an endocrinologist, the Healthline FindCare tool can help you find a physician in your area.
You can’t always protect yourself from type 2 diabetes. There’s nothing you can do about your genetics, ethnicity, or age.
However, a few lifestyle habits can delay or even prevent the arrival of type 2 diabetes, whether or not you have diabetic risk factors such as prediabetes.
Your diet should have less amount of sugar and refined carbohydrates should be replaced with t with low glycemic whole grains, carbohydrates, and fiber. Lean meat, poultry, or fish provide protein. You also need heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids from certain kinds of fish, monounsaturated fats, and polyunsaturated fats. Dairy products should also be low in fat.
It’s not only what you eat, but also amount of your meal that matters. You should be careful about portion sizes and try to eat meals at about the similar time every day.
Type 2 diabetes is related with inactivity. Doing 30 minutes of aerobic exercise every day can improve your overall health. Try to add in extra movement throughout the day, too.
You’re more potent to develop type 2 diabetes if you’re overweight. Eating a healthy, balanced diet and daily exercise should help you keep your weight under control. If those changes aren’t working, your doctor can make some recommendations for losing weight safely.
The bottom line
These changes in diet, exercise, and weigh tcontrol work together to help keep your blood glucose levels within the normal range whole day.
For many people, type 2 diabetes can be effectively managed. If not properly managed, it can affect virtually all of your organs and cause serious problems, including:
- skin problems, such as bacterial or fungal infections
- nerve cell damage, or neuropathy, which can cause a loss of sensation or numbness and tingling in your extremities as well as digestive issues, such as vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation
- poor circulation to the feet, which makes it difficult for your feet to heal when you have any cut,wound or infection and can also cause gangrene and loss of the foot or leg
Hypoglycemia can occur when your blood sugar is lower than normal range. The symptoms such as shakiness, dizziness, and difficulty in speaking can be seen. You can usually cure this by having a “quick-fix” food or drinks, such as fruit juice, a soft drink, or a hard candy.
Hyperglycemia can occur when blood sugar is high. Usually it is characterized by frequent urination(polyurea) and increased thirst(polydipsia) and also frequent eating (polyphagia). ,Exercising can help in lowering your blood glucose level.
Complications during and after pregnancy
If you have diabetes during your pregnancy, you’ll need to check your condition very carefully. Diabetes that’s poorly controlled can cause:
It can also increase your baby’s risk of having diabetes during their lifetime.
The bottom line
Diabetes is associated with a range of complications.
Women with diabetes are twice as likely to have second heart attack after the first one. Their risk of heart failure is four times that of women don’t having diabetes. Men with diabetes are 3.5 times as likely to develop erectile dysfunction (ED).
Type 2 diabetes in children is a major growing problem. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), around 193,000 Americans under 20 years of age have type 1 or type 2 diabetes. One study found that the incidence of type 2 diabetes in youth has increased to approximately 5,000 new cases per year. Another study suggested a significant increase, particularly in minority races and ethnic groups.
The symptoms of type 2 diabetes in children are the same as those in adults.
See your child’s doctor immediately if they have these symptoms.
In 2018, the ADA recommended that all children who are overweight and have additional diabetes risk factors they tested for prediabetes or type 2. Untreated diabetes can lead to very serious and even life-threatening complications.
A random blood glucose test may show high glucose levels. A hemoglobin A1C test can give more information about average blood glucose levels over a few months. Your child may also need a fasting blood glucose test.
If your child is diagnosed with diabetes, then their doctor will need to determine if it’s type 1 or type 2 before prescribing a specific treatment.
Managing type 2 diabetes requires teamwork. You’ll need to follow all the advices of your doctor, and lots of the results depend on your actions.
Your doctor may want to do some periodic blood tests to check your blood glucose levels. This will help determine how well you’re managing the disease. If you take medication, these tests will help gauge how well it’s working.
Because diabetes increases your risk of cardiovascular disease, your doctor will also check your blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels.
If you have symptoms of heart disease, you may need some additional tests like electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) or a cardiac stress test.
Follow these tips to keep your diabetes under control:
- Use a home monitoring system to measure your own blood glucose levels between visits to your doctor. Your doctor will suggest you how often you should check that and what should be your target range.
It may also be helpful to bring your family into the loop. Educate them about the warning signs abnormal blood glucose levels so that they can help in any kind of emergency.