With type 2 diabetes, the body’s ability to control and utilise sugar (glucose) as fuel is compromised. Too much sugar circulates in the bloodstream as a result of this long-term (chronic) disease. The cardiovascular, neurological, and immunological systems can eventually get ill as a result of elevated blood sugar levels.
The main contributing factors to type 2 diabetes are two interconnected issues. Insufficient insulin production by your pancreas causes cells to react poorly to insulin and absorb less sugar. Insulin is a hormone that controls the flow of sugar into your cells.
Although type 1 and type 2 diabetes can both start in childhood and maturity, the term “adult-onset diabetes” has lost some of its meaning. Although type 2 diabetes tends to affect older people more frequently, it is now increasingly prevalent in younger people as a result of the rise in childhood obesity.
Type 2 diabetes has no known cure, but you can control the condition by decreasing weight, eating healthfully, and exercising. You may require insulin therapy or diabetic drugs if diet and exercise are insufficient to control your blood sugar.
Type 2 Diabetes Symptoms
Type 2 diabetes symptoms and signs frequently appear gradually. In fact, you may have type 2 diabetes for years without realising it. When present, signs and symptoms may include:
- heightened thirst
- Increased thirst and hunger
- Unwanted loss of weight
- distorted vision
- Slowly heaving wounds
- many infections
- tingling or numbness in the hands or feet
- areas of skin that have browned, typically in the neck and armpits
Whenever to visit a doctor
If you experience any type 2 diabetes symptoms, consult your doctor.
Type 2 Diabetes Causes
Two interconnected issues are the main causes of type 2 diabetes:
Insulin resistance increases in muscle, fat, and liver cells. They don’t take in enough sugar since these cells don’t react with insulin normally.
To control blood sugar levels, the pancreas cannot generate enough insulin.
It is uncertain why this occurs, however being overweight and being sedentary are major risk factors.
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How insulin operates
The gland behind and beneath the stomach produces the hormone insulin (pancreas). In the following ways, insulin controls how the body utilises sugar:
The pancreas secretes insulin in reaction to blood sugar levels.
Sugar can enter your cells because insulin is circulating in the bloodstream.
Your bloodstream’s level of sugar decreases.
Less insulin is produced by the pancreas as a result of this reduction.
The function of glucose
The cells that make up muscles and other tissues primarily receive their energy from the sugar glucose. The following is a list of ways that glucose is used and regulated:
There are two main sources of glucose: food and your liver.
Glucose is taken into the bloodstream and then transported to cells by insulin.
The liver produces and stores glucose.
The liver converts stored glycogen into glucose to keep your blood sugar levels within a normal range when they are low, such as when you haven’t eaten in a while.
This procedure doesn’t function well in type 2 diabetes. Sugar accumulates in your bloodstream instead of entering your cells. The pancreatic beta cells that make insulin release more insulin as blood sugar levels rise. These cells eventually deteriorate and lose their capacity to produce enough insulin to satisfy the body’s needs.
In type 1 diabetes, which is less frequent, the immune system accidentally kills the beta cells, leaving the body with little or no insulin.
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Your risk of type 2 diabetes may be affected by the following factors:
Weight: One major risk is being overweight or obese.
Spread of fat: A higher risk is indicated by storing fat primarily in the abdomen as opposed to the hips and thighs. If you are a male or female with a waist measurement of 40 inches (101.6 cm) or more, you have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes (88.9 centimeters).
Inactivity: Your risk increases with less activity. Exercise controls your weight, burns glucose as fuel, and increases the sensitivity of your cells to insulin.
family history If a parent or sibling has type 2 diabetes, there is a higher chance that you will as well.
Family history: If a parent or sibling has type 2 diabetes, there is a higher chance that you will as well.
both race and ethnicity.
People of specific races and ethnicities: such as Black, Hispanic, Native American and Asian people, as well as Pacific Islanders, are more prone to get type 2 diabetes than white people are, though it is unknown why.
Blood lipid levels: Low levels of the “good” cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL), and high levels of triglycerides are linked to an increased risk.
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Age: As you age, especially beyond the age of 45, your risk of developing type 2 diabetes rises.
Prediabetes: A blood sugar level that is above normal but not high enough to be categorised as diabetes is called prediabetes. If prediabetes is not treated, it frequently develops into type 2 diabetes.
Hazards connected to pregnancy: If you had gestational diabetes while expecting a child or had a baby who was more than 9 pounds at birth, your risk of getting type 2 diabetes is increased (4 kilograms).
Ovarian polycyst syndrome Diabetes risk is increased by polycystic ovarian syndrome, a disorder that is widespread and marked by irregular menstrual cycles, excessive hair growth, and obesity.
Areas of darker skin: Typically in the neck and armpits. This disorder frequently denotes insulin resistance.
Your heart, blood vessels, nerves, eyes, kidneys, and other important organs are all impacted by type 2 diabetes. A risk factor for diabetes is also a risk factor for other severe chronic diseases. Your risk for these consequences or concomitant illnesses can be reduced by managing diabetes and maintaining blood sugar control (comorbidities).
Possible diabetic consequences and concomitant conditions include:
Vascular and Cardiovascular Disease: Diabetes raises the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and blood vessel narrowing (atherosclerosis).
Nerve Disease in the Limbs: Over time, high blood sugar can harm or kill nerves, causing pain, tingling, numbness, burning, or eventually the loss of feeling. These symptoms typically start at the ends of the toes or fingers and gradually move up the body.
Other nerve harm Cardiac rhythm irregularities may be a result of heart nerve damage. Constipation, diarrhoea, vomiting, and nausea are all symptoms of damaged digestive system nerves. Erectile dysfunction in males can result from nerve injury.
Kidney illness: Dialysis or a kidney transplant may be necessary if diabetes results in chronic renal disease or irreversible end-stage kidney disease.
Eye injury: Diabetes may harm the blood vessels in the retina, potentially resulting in blindness, and also raises the risk of significant eye conditions such cataracts and glaucoma.
Skin problems: Diabetes may make you more prone to bacterial and fungal infections, among other skin issues.
Slow Recovery Cuts and blisters can develop into dangerous infections that may not heal properly if left untreated. Amputations of the toe, foot, or leg may be necessary for severe injuries.
Impairment of Hearing: Diabetes patients are more likely to experience hearing issues.
Slumber Apnea: In persons with type 2 diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea is widespread. The primary causative component in both diseases may be obesity. Whether treating sleep apnea enhances blood sugar regulation is unclear.
Dementia: Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia-causing conditions appear to be more common in people with type 2 diabetes. Memory loss and other cognitive impairment are also associated with poor blood sugar management.
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Even if you have genetically predisposed family who have diabetes, adopting a healthy lifestyle can help prevent type 2 diabetes. If you’ve been diagnosed with prediabetes, making lifestyle modifications may stop or slow the development of diabetes.
A healthy lifestyle consists of:
Eating Nutritious Food: Pick foods that are higher in fibre and lower in calories and fat. Put an emphasis on whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.
Becoming Active: Aim for 150 or more minutes per week of cardiovascular exercise, such as a brisk walk, a bike ride, a run, or swimming.
Weight loss: Prediabetes can be delayed from progressing to type 2 diabetes by losing a modest amount of weight and keeping it off. The risk of developing diabetes can be lowered if you have prediabetes by decreasing 7% to 10% of your body weight.
Avoiding Extended Periods of Inactivity: Your risk of type 2 diabetes may rise if you sit still for extended periods of time. Consistently get up and move about for at least a few minutes every 30 minutes.
The oral diabetes drug metformin (Fortamet, Glumetza, and others), which lowers the risk of type 2 diabetes, may be administered for persons with prediabetes. This medication is typically provided to older persons who are obese and unable to reduce their blood sugar levels by lifestyle changes.
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