What is Type 2 Diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes which was once known as adult-onset diabetes happens due to too high levels of blood glucose. It usually happens to people above the age of 40. This condition is associated with lack of activity, obesity, ethnicity and family history. Urinating frequently, feeling thirsty, and difficulty in healing from cuts or breaks in the skin are the more common symptoms. Health problems that may result from type 2 diabetes are blindness, heart disease, and possibly death.
Type 2 diabetes is certainly a serious disease as it can eventually cause a number of dangerous health complications. It happens due to the high level of blood glucose in the bloodstream. Fortunately, it is possible to control this high level of glucose in the bloodstream with medications to prevent or slow down future complications.
Knowing Insulin and Its Effect On Glucose.
The body changes carbohydrates and sugars into glucose. Glucose enters the bloodstream and travels to the cells to provide them with energy. For the glucose to enter the cells and be converted to energy there must be insulin. Diabetic are people whose bodies are not able to produce insulin or are not able to use it. As a result, the glucose level in their blood is too high. Due to this, they are tired, thirsty, hungry, become thinner, urinate a lot, and has blurred vision. High blood sugar levels can harm the eyes, nerves and kidneys as well as cause strokes, heart disease, and amputation of a hand or a leg.
Causes of Type II Diabetes
Apparently, type II diabetes can be inherited. However, there are other causes of diabetes. Being obese and inactive can bring about diabetes among those who have inherited diabetes genes. Much study has been carried out to determine what causes diabetes and management (see Diabetes Management) of the condition. Fortunately, we already know that blood pressure, blood glucose, and cholesterol management can delay, if not prevent, type II diabetes and the diabetes complications that usually follow.
What is Type II Diabetes -Video Guide
The Two Main Types of Diabetes
Most people are aware of the 2 main types of diabetes. Type I diabetes, sometimes called Juvenile-onset diabetes or Insulin- dependent diabetes, is a condition in which diabetics have to inject insulin into their bloodstream daily. Type I diabetes is usually diagnosed in teenagers, children, or young adults, those below the age of 30.
Type II diabetes, called Adult-onset diabetes or Non-insulin-dependent diabetes, occurs when the pancreas does produce insulin but there is resistance to the insulin. It usually occurs among older adults, those above the age of 40, who contributing factors such as
- Lack of activity
- Inheritance of diabetes genes and ethnicity.
For reasons yet unknown, American Indians, Hispanic/ Latino Americans, African Americans, and a group of Pacific Islanders as well as Asian Americans are more susceptible to type II diabetes.
When glucose level is slightly higher than usual but not serious enough for the person to be considered a diabetic, this stage is known as pre-diabetes. Still, though not yet a diabetic, the person must be conscious of the fact that he faces such risks as
- Heart disease.
- Type II diabetes.
To prevent the pre-diabetes stage from progressing to type II diabetes, a person must increase physical activity and reduce weight.
Type 2 Diabetes Symptoms
Many type 2 diabetics do not even realize their condition because there is hardly any symptom noticed. For some, the only Type 2 diabetes symptoms is a feeling of tiredness which is hardly a warning sign. However, there are type 2 diabetics who
- Urinate often.
- Feel thirsty.
- Skin infections.
- Blurred vision.
- Lose weight.
- And found cuts and wounds difficult to heal.
So, it is advisable to inform your doctor immediately if you encounter any of the above mentioned symptoms of Type II diabetes.
How Diabetes is Diagnosed.
If you ever experience diabetes symptoms, confirmation of type 2 diabetes can be made through medical tests. A doctor would first go through your symptoms before testing your blood glucose level.
A test, known as a fasting plasma glucose test, is used to examine your blood sugar level after fasting for a minimum of eight hours, preferably overnight. Another test, known as the oral glucose tolerance test, is used to see your blood glucose level an hour, two hours and three hours after drinking a sweet beverage and compare them with the blood sugar level tested before taking the drink. The doctor will make a second similar tests on another day to confirm his diabetes diagnosis.
Health Problems Related to Type II Diabetes
Excessively high or low blood sugar levels can result in medical complications, some of which require immediate attention. Besides those complications already mentioned earlier, type 2 diabetics can drop into a coma if their blood sugar is too high. If hypoglycemia, low blood sugar, occurs, it can lead to problems too if not attended to. For mild hypoglycemia, treatment can be the drinking or eating of food with high carbohydrate content such as
If hypoglycemia is not treated immediately, the diabetic can lapse into a coma. Fortunately, treatment is easily done with the consumption of food, even though this condition can happen all of a sudden in diabetics.
New researches have revealed that type 2 diabetics are more susceptible towards Alzheimer’s disease. Scientists are studying the connection to find out if bloodstream glucose control can ward off the disease.
Type II Diabetes: Who are Affected?
Type 2 diabetes happens more often among older adults, more so for those who are obese among the
- Hispanic Americans.
- American Indians.
- African Americans.
- Asian Americans.
- Native Hawaiians.
- Pacific Islander Americans.
According to statistics, darker skinned Americans are more susceptible to type 2 diabetics than the whites. The darker skinned Americans such as the non-Hispanic African Americans, Hispanic Americans, American Indians and Alaska Natives are more likely to get diabetes than non-Hispanic whites of the same age group. American Indians are the most susceptible to diabetes in the world.
Although very little data is available on the occurrences of type 2 diabetes in Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, groups living in Hawaii like the Natives, Japanese, and Filipinos are twice as susceptible to diabetes as the whites of the same age group in Hawaii.