The Basics of Diabetes Control

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Fresh vegetables sit on the shelves of the commissary during the Healthy Lifestyles event held May 26, 2017 at Sagamihara Family Housing Area Commissary.  (U.S. Army photo by Honey Nixon)

Diabetes is incredibly common in today’s society. More and more people are getting diabetes every year. Diabetes is serious and can seriously affect a person’s life. That’s why it is important to understand diabetes control and how to manage it if you find out you have diabetes.

Diabetes: the basics

Diabetes is a condition in which someone has elevated blood sugar levels. This stems from one of two problems: The body either no longer produces its own insulin, which regulates blood sugar levels – or the body still produces insulin as it should, but something hinders the ability of the body’s cells to process this insulin correctly. Both are dangerous.

There are actually two different types of diabetes. The first type, known as Type 1 diabetes, is more severe and incurable. Type 1 is often the type of diabetes someone was born with. Many people who are born with it may end up with some very serious side effects. In type 1 diabetes, the body stops producing the needed insulin. Insulin injections are therefore usually required to keep their blood sugar levels under control.

The second type of diabetes is type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is referred to as “insulin resistance”. In other words, the cells in the body stop being able to process insulin correctly.

There is also a third type of diabetes, gestational diabetes. Pregnant women sometimes get high levels of glucose during pregnancy and need to monitor their blood sugar closely to make sure they and their baby proceed safely through pregnancy.

The importance of diabetes control

It is important to maintain diabetes control because the complications can be fatal. In addition to relatively mild side effects – frequent urination, increased thirst, and even weight loss – there are complications that are more deadly. It is common for people to develop eye problems such as cataracts or glaucoma. Even diabetic retinopathies – bleeding and eye damage – may occur.

There are other complications as well, all of which are not listed in this article. The risk of a heart attack increases, and because heart attacks are often fatal, it is very dangerous. Sometimes, there is damage to the blood vessels that supply blood to the arms and legs, which can lead to further complications. Even high cholesterol and strokes can be caused by uncontrolled diabetes and strokes are known to be difficult to recover from. Renal failure and kidney disease are among the most dangerous complications.

Best diabetes control methods

Since most forms of diabetes occur because someone is overweight, one of the easiest things someone can do to combat diabetes is to change your diet and start exercising. First consult a clinician to be sure it is okay to change your diet and exercise routine. Next, limit your diet to smaller portions and healthier things to help you lose weight. When you start losing weight, your cells can function properly and respond properly to the insulin in your body. This will reduce blood sugar spikes and you will also be healthier. Exercise does the same – it helps you burn fat, which helps with your weight and helps your cells to correct themselves.

And for those whose bodies have stopped producing insulin, there are insulin injections. These injections can only be prescribed by a clinician, and sometimes have to be made several times a day. However, it is also necessary that you pay attention to your diet as it can naturally help with diabetes control. Diabetes is not the end of the world. Although it is changing your life, it is still possible to achieve diabetes control. 

Always consult a clinician before making changes to your diet or exercise routine. Help from a medical professional is a necessary first step in diabetes management. 

*The author of this blog is not a medical professional and this article does not contain professional medical advice. This blog is not intended to substitute for medical advice, treatment, or diagnosis. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of the contents of this article. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call 911 immediately. 

 

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