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Types of Diabetes

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Diabetes is a disease in which the body is unable to properly use and store glucose (a form of sugar).
Glucose backs up in the bloodstream – causing one’s blood glucose (blood sugar) to rise too high. There are two major types of diabetes:
Type 1 Diabetes (formerly called juvenile-onset or insulin-dependent): the body completely stops producing any insulin, a hormone that enables the body
to use glucose found in foods for energy.
People with type 1 diabetes must take daily insulin injections to survive. This form of diabetes usually develops in children or young adults, but can occur at any age.

Type 2 Diabetes (formerly called adult-onset or non insulin-dependent): results, when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin and/or, is unable to use insulin properly (insulin resistance). This form of diabetes usually occurs in people who are over 40, overweight,
and have a family history of diabetes.

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  • Being very thirsty
  • Frequent urination
  • Weight loss
  • Increased hunger
  • Blurry vision
  • Irritability
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands or feet
  • Frequent skin, bladder or gum infections
  • Wounds that don’t heal
  • Extreme unexplained fatigue
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  • People with a Family History of Diabetes (siblings or parents)
  • Overweight people
  • Persons with high cholesterol
  • Persons with high blood pressure
  • Physical inactive people
  • Persons who had a stroke or heart attack
  • Women with a history of gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy) are more likely to develop full-blown diabetes later in life
  • Women who had a new-born weighing more than 4kg at birth
  • Women with a history of Polycystic Ovarian Disease

The risk of developing diabetes also increases as people grow older. People who are over 40 and overweight are more prone to develop type 2 diabetes

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  • Heart attacks
  • Strokes
  • Blindness
  • Kidney failure
  • Blood vessel disease that may require an amputation (circulation problems) / gangrene
  • Nerve damage – neurogenic bladder, etc.
  • Impotence in men
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  • Eating healthy and having a balanced diet is important in managing your diabetes.
  • Ask your doctor for a referral to a dietician to help you with a dietary plan.
    They will help you with managing a well-balanced meal, portion sizes, to coordinate meals with medications and to avoid sugar-sweetened beverages.[1]
  • Educate yourself on diabetes, the type of diabetes you have, warning signs, etc.
  • Regular exercise: for about 30 minutes and for at least five times a week. The exercise should make you sweat and breathe harder and always hydrate. [2]
  • Avoid alcohol: alcohol lowers your blood sugar levels because as it is getting metabolized by the liver, the liver is unable to regulate the blood sugar levels properly. [1]
  • Ask the doctor about methods to manage stress as stress can lead to high blood sugar levels. [1]
  • Stop smoking as it can increase the risk of nerve and blood vessel damage which can put you at risk of cardiovascular disease. [1]
  • Go for regular check-ups and take your medications as directed by your doctor. [2]
  • If you take insulin, make sure you store it as directed by the doctor. [2]
  • Wear closed shoes when outside, keep your feet clean and dry and always look out for sores or cuts and attend to them immediately

Medical References

  1. WebMD [Internet]. 6 lifestyle changes to control your diabetes. America: WebMD LLC; [updated 2019 May
    25; cited 2019 Aug 12]. Available from:https://www.webmd.com/diabetes/diabeteslifestyle-tips.
    2. Mayo Clinic Staff [Internet]. Diabetes management: How lifestyle, daily routine affects blood sugar.
    America: Mayo foundation for Medical Education and Research; [updated 2017 May 06; cited 2019 Aug 12].
    Available from:https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseasesconditions/diabetes/in-depth/diabetesmanagement/art-20047963.
    3. NPS Medicinewise [Internet]. Type 2 diabetes: a patient-centred approach. Australia: NPS Medicinewise; [updated 2017 Nov 23; cited 2019 Aug 12]. Available from: https://www.nps.org.au/assets/_1080x600_crop_center-center_75_none/86f16d81e6ce0f9daaaacdcb35bf-317469_ppr_diabetes20170407-76353-1qehzye.jpg.
    4. ABS Contributor [Internet]. Food for life: Control diabetes with natural remedies. America: Atlanta
    Black Star; [updated 2013 Sep 03; cited 2019 Aug 12]. Available from: http://atlantablackstar.com/wpcontent/uploads/2013/09/diabetes.png.
    5. GMR [Internet]. How to control diabetes. Dubai: Clickmadhu; [updated 2018 Sep 22; cited 2019 Aug
    12]. Available from: https://www.clickmadhu.com/wpcontent/uploads/2018/09/diabetic-contolfoods.jpg.
    6. Shutterstock [Internet]. Diabetes images. America: Shutterstock; [updated 2019; cited 2019 Aug 12].
    Available from: https://image.shutterstock.com/imagephoto/concept-healthy-diabetic-diabetes-sports260nw-1156968376.jpg.
    7. HUSKY Health. Diabetes control. America: Community Health Network of Connecticut;
    [updated 2019; cited 2019 Aug 12]. Available from: https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?
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