An Introduction to Diabetes: Risk Factors, Care & Prevention
Diabetes is a chronic condition that occurs when there is too much sugar (glucose) in the blood. The body either doesn’t produce enough insulin (a hormone that helps the body use sugar for energy) or can’t use the insulin it produces effectively. When this happens, sugar builds up in the blood and causes problems with a person’s health.
What Are the Symptoms of Diabetes?
There are several different symptoms of diabetes, and they can vary depending on the type of diabetes you have. However, some of the more common symptoms include the following:
- Feeling very thirsty
- Feeling very tired
- Urinating more often than usual
- Losing weight without trying
- Having sores that heal slowly
- Having dry, itchy skin
- Losing the feeling in your feet or having tingling in your feet
- Having blurry vision
What Are the Types of Diabetes?
There are three main types of diabetes: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes.
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys the beta cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is needed to control the amount of sugar in the blood.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a condition in which the body does not produce enough insulin or does not use insulin properly. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body to control blood sugar levels.
Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that develops during pregnancy. It can occur in any pregnancy but is more common in women who are overweight or obese, have a family history of diabetes or have had gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy. Gestational diabetes happens when a pregnancy hormone interferes with the body’s ability to use insulin, causing insulin resistance.
How Can You Prevent Diabetes?
Preventing diabetes doesn’t have to be complicated. There are several things you can do to lower your risk of developing the disease.
- Get Active and Stay Active
Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do to prevent diabetes. It helps to control your weight, uses up sugar in your blood, and makes your cells more sensitive to insulin. Just 30 minutes of moderate activity most days of the week can make a big difference.
- Eat Healthily
A healthy diet is an important part of preventing diabetes. Eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and limiting saturated and trans fats, sugar, and salt can help you manage your weight and blood sugar levels.
- Maintain a Healthy Weight
Being overweight or obese is a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes. Losing just 5 to 10 percent of your body weight can help lower your risk.
- Get Regular Screenings
Having regular checkups is important, even if you feel healthy. That’s because diabetes can develop without any symptoms. Your doctor can test your blood sugar levels to check for diabetes. If you have diabetes, early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent serious complications.
Diabetes is a chronic disease that occurs when sugar imbalance is in the blood. Several factors, including genetics, lifestyle, and weight, can cause it. Diabetes can lead to serious health complications, including heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and blindness. It’s important to have a doctor who can help you manage your diabetes with medications and lifestyle changes. For some people with Type 2 Diabetes, the condition is reversible.
If you are seeking primary care doctors in Tulsa, you can visit us at Craft Concierge. We offer direct and personalized care at an affordable monthly rate, to ensure that you get the medical steps taken for you. Get in touch with us at Craft Concierge to learn more.