Diabetes mellitus is a condition resulting from the pancreas' inability to produce enough insulin, which is needed by the body to help create energy. A deficiency of or ineffectiveness of insulin leads to high glucose levels in the blood, thus, leading to this illness.
Diabetes has two types. Type 1 Diabetes usually occurs in young people and requires frequent insulin injections, while Type 2 Diabetes is experienced by older people and is not as dependent on insulin. Majority of those who have Type 2 Diabetes have been found to be either obese or overweight.
Diabetes usually runs in the family, so it's best to know early on if you have it. The common symptoms experienced by someone who has diabetes include unusually frequent urination and hunger, constant thirst, rapid weight loss, tiredness, numbness in the feet and hands, recurrent skin infections, itching in private parts and blurred vision. When left unattended, diabetes could escalate to hyperglycemia, which develops from an excess of glucose in the blood, and leave the person temporarily unconscious, or, worse, cause severe infections, poor healing abilities, heart ailments and numbness from nerve damage.
The direct origins of diabetes, besides heredity, remain uncertain. However, several scientists believe that diabetes can also spring from an infection in the pancreas, a disorder in the autoimmune system and even from an unhealthy diet and lifestyle.
When you notice the signs that possibly point to diabetes, consult your doctor immediately. You will be subjected to tests to determine whether your blood sugar is stable and if there is a presence of diabetes. Your doctor will then recommend an appropriate exercise regimen and diet to temper the effects of diabetes, or, if needed, prescribe medication.
People diagnosed with diabetes should avoid sugars and control the intake of fats, carbohydrates and salt. A life long low-fat, high-fiber diet is ideal. Regular aerobic exercise also helps maximize the effect of insulin treatments. Some studies show that weight management and a proper diet are often enough to keep those with Type 2 Diabetes in check and even prevent people who are diabetes-prone from developing the condition. In alternative medicine, herbs like ampalaya and banaba have also been used to help treat diabetes.
For persons with a history of diabetes in the family and are over forty years old, blood should be checked for sugar levels two hours after a hearty meal. This procedure should be done at least twice a year, as several people have been found to have had diabetes for years without experiencing any of the symptoms.
Sadly, diabetes cannot be cured. But it can be controlled with life-long treatment. Therefore, to combat diabetes, regular check-ups, a healthy lifestyle and constant vigilance are in order.
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Charlene J. Nuble 2005. For up to date links and information about diabetes, please go to: http://diabetes.besthealthlink.net/ or for updated links and information on all health related topics, go to: http://www.besthealthlink.net/