WHAT IS DIABETES?

WHAT IS DIABETES?

This month is National Diabetes Month and we are aiming to help spread awareness in our community.

WHAT IS DIABETES?

Diabetes is when your body doesn’t make enough insulin or it cannot use the insulin that it makes.1

Insulin is a hormone, produced by your pancreas, which helps unlock the cell so glucose (sugar) can be used for energy. Glucose can only be used when it is broken down at the cellular level. When glucose builds up in the blood stream, this can lead to long term damage to organs, nerves, and blood vessels, thus making insulin essential for our body to use. 2


Before kicking off the coming weeks, its important to know the difference between the different types.


THERE ARE 3 TYPES OF DIABETES:

Type 1: Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. The body’s immune system destroys the cells in the pancreas that make insulin. This means your body makes little or no insulin. People with type 1 diabetes must take insulin every day to live. About 1 in 20 people with diabetes have type 1.3

Type 2: Similar to type 1 diabetes, type 2 is when your body can’t make enough insulin I can alos mean the body can’t use it correctly. Type 2 may be controlled with diet, exercise, and weight loss. It can also be controlled with medicine taken by mouth or with insulin injections. About 9 in 10 to 19 in 20 people with diabetes have type 2. 3

Prediabetes: Prediabetes occurs when your blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed as type 2. Approximately 1 in 3 American adults have prediabetes and 84% of them, don’t know they have it.  Prediabetes puts you at increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. With lifestyle changes such as, getting regular physical activity and losing a small amount of weight, Type 2 Diabetes can be delay or even prevented. 4

Gestational diabetes: Gestational diabetes happens during pregnancy and is when the body can’t use the insulin that it makes.  This type affects women who did not have diabetes before they got pregnant and usually goes away after the baby is born. If it doesn’t, it was more likely type 1 or type 2 diabetes that began during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes may be controlled with diet and exercise, and by watching weight gain. Women with this type may need to take medicine to control blood sugar. They may be at higher risk for type 2 later in life. 3

Sources:

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/diabetes
  2. https://www.healthline.com/health/blood-sugar-spike#_no HeaderPrefixedContent
  3. https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?contenttypeid=85&contentid=P00335
  4. https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/basics/prediabetes.html