Diabetes is a condition that impairs the body’s ability to process blood glucose, otherwise known as blood sugar. It occurs either when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone that regulates blood sugar. Elevated levels of blood glucose hyperglycemia lead to spillage of glucose into the urine, hence the term sweet urine. There are two types of diabetes that are currently onboard.
Type 1 diabetes (previously known as insulin-dependent, juvenile, or childhood-onset) is characterized by deficient insulin production and requires daily administration of insulin. The cause of type 1 diabetes is not known and it is not preventable with current knowledge. Symptoms include excessive excretion of urine (polyuria), thirst (polydipsia), constant hunger, weight loss, vision changes, and fatigue. Type 1 diabetes is managed with insulin as well as dietary changes and exercise
Type 2 diabetes (formerly called non-insulin-dependent, or adult-onset) results from the body’s ineffective use of insulin. Type 2 diabetes comprises the majority of people with diabetes around the world and is largely the result of excess body weight and physical inactivity. Type 2 diabetes may be managed with non-insulin medications, insulin, weight reduction, or dietary changes
Gestational diabetes is hyperglycemia with blood glucose values above normal but below those diagnostics of diabetes, occurring during pregnancy. Women with gestational diabetes are at an increased risk of complications during pregnancy and at delivery.
Symptoms may be similar to those of type 1 diabetes but are often less marked. As a result, the disease may be diagnosed several years after onset, once complications have already arisen
Many people are unaware that they have diabetes, especially in its early stages when symptoms may not be present. There is no definite way to know if you have diabetes without undergoing blood tests to determine your blood glucose.
Here are some general symptoms:
The early symptoms of untreated diabetes are related to elevated blood sugar levels, and loss of glucose in the urine.
A relative or absolute insulin deficiency eventually leads to weight loss.
The weight loss of diabetes occurs despite an increase in appetite.
Some untreated diabetes patients also complain of fatigue.
Nausea and vomiting can also occur in patients with untreated diabetes.
Frequent infections (such as infections of the bladder, skin, and vaginal areas).
The WHO advises the following to help prevent type 2 diabetes and its complications, people should:
Achieve and maintain a healthy body weight;
Be physically active at least 30 minutes of regular, moderate-intensity activity on most days. More activity is required for weight control;
Eat a healthy diet, avoiding sugar and saturated fats intake; and
Avoid tobacco use smoking increases the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.