What is Diabetes (Diabetes)? Types, Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

What is diabetes (diabetes)? Why does it happen? What are the symptoms? How is it diagnosed? How is the treatment? How should nutrition be in diabetes? You can find the answers to all these questions and much more below.

What is diabetes (diabetes)?

Diabetes mellitus (diabetes) is a group of metabolic disorders that affect the body’s ability to process and use sugar (glucose) for energy. Normally, the pancreas produces the hormone insulin while eating. Insulin carries glucose from the bloodstream to cells, which use it for energy and growth. In diabetes, the pancreas produces little or no insulin, or the body cells do not respond properly to insulin.

Diabetes (diabetes) deprives the body’s cells of nutrition. It also leads to abnormally high glucose levels in the blood, a condition known as hyperglycemia. Over time, this can damage blood vessels and organs and even cause premature death. Following the treatment your doctor deems appropriate for you can reduce the risk of serious complications.

Symptoms of diabetes (diabetes) can sometimes indicate a dangerous, potentially life-threatening change in blood sugar levels, which can come on suddenly and quickly. These symptoms include increased thirst, frequent urination, vomiting, shortness of breath, abdominal pain , confusion, sweating, tremors, feeling faint, extreme irritability or aggressive behavior.

What are the types of diabetes (diabetes)?

There are three main types of diabetes, they are type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes.

type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is a form of diabetes that usually occurs in children and teenagers, in which your immune system destroys the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. Many factors can contribute to type 1 diabetes, including genetics and some viruses. There is no treatment to completely eliminate type 1 diabetes. But current treatment of type 1 diabetes will bring blood sugar levels back to normal. Also, things like healthy eating habits and exercise are contributing factors to treatment.

type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes, accounting for about 90% of diabetes cases. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas makes insulin, but the insulin produced is insufficient or the body cells become resistant to the effects of insulin. The reason why this happens is not entirely clear. But there seems to be a link between obesity, poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle, and type 2 diabetes. This means that in many cases type 2 diabetes is preventable.

gestational diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a form of diabetes that occurs during pregnancy. In gestational diabetes, the pancreas produces insulin, but pregnancy hormones prevent cells from using insulin properly. Being overweight before getting pregnant increases the risk of developing gestational diabetes. Having gestational diabetes can cause health problems for both mother and baby. This includes an increased risk of type 2 diabetes later in life for both.

What are the symptoms of diabetes (diabetes)?

Symptoms of diabetes (diabetes) may vary from person to person and depending on the type of diabetes. But with both, common symptoms include excessive thirst and urination.

Type 1 diabetes usually develops quickly. Symptoms can be severe and come on suddenly. In contrast, type 2 diabetes often develops gradually from a condition called latent diabetes (prediabetes) . If you have latent diabetes, symptoms may not appear or go unnoticed for years.

Gestational diabetes associated with pregnancy is usually asymptomatic, and the symptoms can mimic pregnancy symptoms. These symptoms are increased thirst, frequent urination, fatigue and nausea.

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Type 1 diabetes symptoms

Type 1 diabetes symptoms include:

  • feeling extremely hungry
  • feeling extremely thirsty
  • flu-like symptoms
  • the need to urinate frequently
  • irritability and mood changes
  • severe fatigue
  • Vomiting
  • weight loss

Type 2 diabetes symptoms

Type 2 diabetes symptoms include:

  • feeling extremely hungry
  • feeling extremely thirsty
  • flu-like symptoms
  • the need to urinate frequently
  • irritability and mood changes
  • Vomiting
  • weight loss
  • vision problems such as blurred vision
  • Erectile dysfunction (impotence)
  • get frequent infections
  • Slow-healing sores or bruises
  • Tingling or other unusual sensations in the hands or feet
  • feeling tired and exhausted

serious symptoms of diabetes

Symptoms of diabetes can come on suddenly and quickly, which can indicate a dangerous change in your blood sugar level or a life-threatening complication such as diabetic ketoacidosis .

Symptoms of high blood sugar and diabetic ketoacidosis include:

  • Stomach ache
  • Confusion, confusion
  • dry mouth
  • skin dryness
  • frequent urination
  • severe thirst
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fruity scent on the breath
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness

Symptoms of low blood sugar or hypoglycemia include:

  • aggressive behavior
  • Confusion, confusion
  • extreme irritability
  • feeling unconscious
  • Headache
  • Hunger
  • heart palpitations
  • Sweating or moist skin
  • Shake

Untreated very high or low blood sugar levels can lead to:

  • unconsciousness and coma
  • seizures
  • Death

If you have any of the above serious symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention without delay.

What are the causes of diabetes (diabetes)?

The causes of diabetes (diabetes) vary according to the type of diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes causes

The exact cause of type 1 diabetes is unknown. Experts believe that genetic and environmental factors may contribute. Type 1 diabetes is likely an autoimmune disease. In this case, the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. The hormone insulin is responsible for transporting glucose into the body’s cells to provide energy. When glucose cannot enter cells, it builds up in the blood and causes high blood sugar.

Type 2 diabetes causes

Type 2 diabetes is a result of insulin resistance. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or the body cells do not respond normally to insulin and become resistant to its effects. People who are overweight or have a sedentary lifestyle are at risk of developing insulin resistance.

Causes of gestational diabetes

Gestational diabetes only occurs during pregnancy. It is caused by pregnancy hormones, which can make body cells more resistant to the effects of insulin.

What are the risk factors for diabetes?

A number of factors are thought to increase the risk of developing diabetes mellitus . Risk factors vary according to the type of diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes risk factors

Risk factors for type 1 diabetes include:

  • born with jaundice
  • Being exposed to certain viruses, such as mumps or the Epstein-Barr virus
  • Having a family member with type 1 diabetes
  • living in a northern climate
  • being born with a respiratory infection
  • Specific at-risk genes found through genetic testing
  • Mother’s pregnancy poisoning (preeclampsia) during pregnancy

Type 2 diabetes risk factors

Risk factors for type 2 diabetes include:

  • be of African-American, Hispanic-American, or Native American descent
  • be over 45 years old
  • Having a family member with type 2 diabetes
  • having high blood pressure
  • having high cholesterol
  • having gestational diabetes while pregnant
  • have insulin resistance
  • being overweight
  • sedentary lifestyle

Gestational diabetes risk factors

Risk factors for gestational diabetes include:

  • Being overweight at previous birth
  • Delivering a stillborn baby at a previous birth
  • be of African American, Latino, South or East Asian, Pacific Islander, or Native American descent
  • Someone in the family has diabetes
  • being overweight
  • having previous gestational diabetes

How is diabetes (diabetes) diagnosed?

Type 1 diabetes often causes immediate symptoms that will prompt your doctor to test blood sugar levels. However, type 2 diabetes tends to start more slowly. People can have problems with their blood sugar levels for a long time without realizing it. For this reason, guidelines recommend that doctors screen for diabetes (diabetes) in people who:

  • over 45 years old
  • Those with a body mass index greater than 25
  • Those with hidden sugar (prediabetes)
  • Those who develop gestational diabetes

Tests to diagnose diabetes include:

  • HbA1c (glycated hemoglobin):
    Reflects blood sugar control over the last 2 to 3 months. You do not need to be hungry for this test. A normal result is 5.7% or less.
  • Fasting glucose:
    Measures blood sugar after an overnight fast. A normal result is less than 100 mg/dL.
  • Random glucose:
    Measures blood sugar regardless of whether you are full or not. A normal result depends on the particular lab and when you eat it. A normal value is usually below 200 mg/dL.
  • Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT):
    It includes fasting glucose measurement. A sugary beverage is then consumed and your glucose is measured periodically over the next 2 to 3 hours. A normal result is less than 140 mg/dL.
  • Blood test:
    A blood test can be done to check for autoantibodies that can help diagnose type 1 diabetes.
  • Urine testing:
    A urine test can be done to measure ketones, which can help diagnose type 1 diabetes.
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For gestational diabetes, you should have a urine sugar test at every prenatal visit. Screening and tests for gestational diabetes include:

  • Glucose test:
    It involves consuming a sugary beverage and measuring your blood sugar one hour later, a normal result is less than 140 mg/dL)
  • Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT):
    It includes fasting glucose measurement. A sugary beverage is then consumed and your glucose is measured periodically over the next 2 to 3 hours. A normal result is less than 140 mg/dL.

Your doctor may also ask questions about your symptoms, including:

  • What symptoms are you experiencing?
  • When did your symptoms start?
  • Are your symptoms constant or do they come and go?
  • How severe are your symptoms?
  • Is there anything that makes the symptoms good or bad?
  • Is there a history of diabetes in your family?
  • Which drugs are you using?
  • What other medical conditions do you have?
  • What are your eating habits like?
  • How often do you exercise?

How is diabetes (diabetes) treated?

It is possible to manage diabetes by following your regular medical care and treatment. By following the treatment plan your doctor deems appropriate for you, you can manage it in a way that minimizes the risk of serious complications such as diabetic retinopathy , cardiovascular disease, and stroke.

Diabetes (diabetes treatment) depends on the type of diabetes you have. Managing any type of diabetes includes regularly monitoring your blood sugar levels. However, whatever your treatment is, eating healthy and exercising are two important things that will help your diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is usually treated with oral antidiabetic drugs such as glipizide, glyburide, and metformin. Gestational diabetes can be treated with glyburide.

Type 1 diabetes is always treated with injected insulin, and some people with type 2 diabetes or gestational diabetes may also need insulin injections. A new treatment that may be an option for some people with type 1 diabetes is pancreatic islet transplantation. This experimental surgery transplants insulin-producing beta cells from a donor into the pancreas of a person with type 1 diabetes.

To minimize complications, it’s also important not to smoke and to follow your doctor’s recommendations for prevention, monitoring, and treatment of co-existing medical conditions such as hypertension and high cholesterol.

insulin drug used to treat diabetes

When your body doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t use its own insulin, your treatment plan will likely have insulin that you need to inject into your body.
Some of the diabetes injection medications include:

  • Aspart (fast-acting insulin)
  • Glulisine (rapid-acting insulin)
  • Lantus (long-acting insulin)
  • Lente (intermediate-acting insulin)
  • Levemir (long-acting insulin)
  • Lispro (rapid-acting insulin)
  • NPH (intermediate acting insulin)
  • Regular insulin (short-acting insulin)

Oral antidiabetic drugs used in the treatment of diabetes

Oral antidiabetic drugs work in different ways to control blood sugar, depending on the specific drug. These help the body use insulin better, increase the amount of insulin in the body, prevent the liver from making sugar, or slow down the digestion of sugar. You may need to try several different drugs or combinations of drugs to find the best treatment plan for you, as recommended by your doctor.
Some of the oral medications that can be used in the treatment of diabetes contain the following active ingredients:

  • Akarboz
  • Glimepiride
  • Glipizide
  • Glyburide
  • Miglitol
  • Metformin
  • Sitagliptin fosfat

Other treatments for diabetes

Other than medications, other treatments for diabetes include:

  • Carbohydrate count
  • diet changes
  • adequate fluid intake
  • home glucose monitoring
  • insulin pump
  • Pancreatic islet transplantation
  • do regular exercise
  • quit smoking
  • lose weight when needed
  • Weight loss surgery (bariatric surgery)

What are diet and nutrition tips for diabetes?

Regardless of the type of diabetes, a healthy diet can help stabilize blood sugar levels. A healthy diabetes diet includes the following foods:

  • Beans and legumes
  • Fruits
  • Lean meat, poultry and fish
  • Fat-free or low-fat dairy products
  • Vegetables
  • Whole grain starches
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Eating a variety of foods is the best approach to meeting nutritional needs. This way you also help balance the carbohydrate intake, which will change the blood sugar the most. Starches and fruits have the highest carbohydrate content, while proteins and vegetables are lower.

People with diabetes also need to know when and how much to eat. You can consult a nutritionist or dietitian about this. A dietitian or nutritionist can tell you how much of a food group you can eat. Exercise can also be another way to balance and control your blood sugar, you can make up for the extra carbohydrates you get by exercising.

How do you prevent diabetes?

It is not possible to prevent type 1 diabetes. However, you can take steps to reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes if you are pregnant or might become pregnant.

You can prevent or reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes by:

  • A healthy eating plan low in fat and calories, consisting of lean protein, fiber, whole grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Exercising regularly with moderate activity for 30 minutes a day
  • Losing excess weight and maintaining a healthy body weight

You can prevent or reduce your risk of gestational diabetes by:

  • Eating healthy before and during pregnancy:
    You should n’t use pregnancy as an excuse to overeat or eat high-calorie foods with little nutritional benefit.
  • Exercising regularly before and during pregnancy:
    You can ask your doctor about the types and amount of exercise that is safe for you and your baby.
  • Following your doctor’s recommendations for proper weight during pregnancy: A
    healthy diet and regular activity will help you achieve this goal.
  • Losing extra pounds before trying to get
    pregnant: Don’t diet or try to lose weight on your own while pregnant. If your doctor recommends you lose weight while pregnant, you will need close medical supervision to keep you and your baby healthy.

Either way, you shouldn’t make drastic changes in your lifestyle without first talking to your doctor. Your doctor can help you set realistic and healthy goals for diet, activity, and body weight. Your doctor can also help you find support when these changes to improve your health are challenging.

How does diabetes (diabetes) affect quality of life?

Quality of life generally has four components: physical, cognitive, psychological and social quality of life. At the same time, quality of life is subjective and dynamic – it can change over time.

There are many studies on quality of life in people with diabetes. Overall, all this suggests that diabetes can and does affect quality of life. Some research focuses on the physical aspects of diabetes. Research focusing on the physical aspect shows that once complications develop, the physical quality of life begins to decline. Heart disease seems to have the biggest impact in this regard, followed by other complications such as kidney disease, blindness, sexual problems and neuropathy.

Other research has focused on social and psychological quality of life. Some problems in this regard include not being able to enjoy food, sexual life problems, travel, work life, friendships and worries about the future. Studies show that people who need insulin the most are affected by such problems.

The impact of diabetes on quality of life once again highlights the need for balance in the lives of people with diabetes. Tight control of food and blood sugar levels can prevent complications. However, both tight control and complications can reduce quality of life, and finding the right balance can be difficult. Support groups, counselors, and experienced certified diabetes educators can play a vital role in managing this aspect of the disease.

What are the complications of diabetes (diabetes)?

Untreated or poorly managed diabetes complications can be serious and even life-threatening. By following your treatment plan, you can both manage diabetes and reduce your risk of complications.

Poorly managed blood sugar levels damage the body’s blood vessels and organs and can lead to complications including:

  • birth defects
  • cardiovascular disease
  • Diabetic retinopathy, cataracts and blindness
  • Overgrowth of the fetus during pregnancy
  • Kidney damage and kidney failure
  • Lower extremity amputation
  • Breathing problems in babies
  • Serious infections and gangrene
  • Stroke
  • diabetic ketoacidosis
  • hypoglycemia

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