Diabetes mellitus, commonly known as diabetes, is a metabolic disease that causes high blood sugar. The hormone insulin moves sugar from the blood into your cells to be stored or used for energy. With diabetes, your body either doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t effectively use the insulin it does make.
Untreated high blood sugar from diabetes can damage your nerves, eyes, kidneys, and other organs.
There are a few different types of diabetes:
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. The immune system attacks and destroys cells in the pancreas, where insulin is made. It’s unclear what causes this attack. About 10 percent of people with diabetes have this type.
Type 2 diabetes occurs when your body becomes resistant to insulin, and sugar builds up in your blood.
Prediabetes occurs when your blood sugar is higher than normal, but it’s not high enough for a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes.
Gestational diabetes is high blood sugar during pregnancy. Insulin-blocking hormones produced by the placenta cause this type of diabetes.
A rare condition called diabetes insipidus is not related to diabetes mellitus, although it has a similar name. It’s a different condition in which your kidneys remove too much fluid from your body.
Each type of diabetes has unique symptoms, causes, and treatments. Learn more about how these types differ from one another.
Symptoms of diabetes
Diabetes symptoms are caused by rising blood sugar.
The general symptoms of diabetes include:
sores that don’t heal
Symptoms in men
In addition to the general symptoms of diabetes, men with diabetes may have a decreased sex drive, erectile dysfunction (ED), and poor muscle strength.
Symptoms in women
Women with diabetes can also have symptoms such as urinary tract infections, yeast infections, and dry, itchy skin.
Type 1 diabetes
Symptoms of type 1 diabetes can include:
unintentional weight loss
It may also result in mood changes.
Type 2 diabetes
Symptoms of type 2 diabetes can include:
sores that are slow to heal
It may also cause recurring infections. This is because elevated glucose levels make it harder for the body to heal.
Most women with gestational diabetes don’t have any symptoms. The condition is often detected during a routine blood sugar test or oral glucose tolerance test that is usually performed between the 24th and 28th weeks of gestation.
In rare cases, a woman with gestational diabetes will also experience increased thirst or urination.
The bottom line
Diabetes symptoms can be so mild that they’re hard to spot at first
Causes of diabetes
Different causes are associated with each type of diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes
Doctors don’t know exactly what causes type 1 diabetes. For some reason, the immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas.
ype 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes stems from a combination of genetics and lifestyle factors. Being overweight or obese increases your risk too. Carrying extra weight, especially in your belly, makes your cells more resistant to the effects of insulin on your blood sugar.
Women who are overweight when they get pregnant or who gain too much weight during their pregnancy are more likely to get gestational diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes isn’t preventable because it’s caused by a problem with the immune system. Some causes of type 2 diabetes, such as your genes or age, aren’t under your control either.
Yet many other diabetes risk factors are controllable. Most diabetes prevention strategies involve making simple adjustments to your diet and fitness routine.
If you’ve been diagnosed with prediabetes, here are a few things you can do to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes:
Get at least 150 minutes per week of aerobic exercise, such as walking or cycling.
Cut saturated and trans fats, along with refined carbohydrates, out of your diet.
Eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
Eat smaller portions.
Try to lose 7 percentTrusted Source of your body weight if you’re overweight or obese.
Diabetes in pregnancy
Women who’ve never had diabetes can suddenly develop gestational diabetes in pregnancy. Hormones produced by the placenta can make your body more resistant to the effects of insulin.
Some women who had diabetes before they conceived carry it with them into pregnancy. This is called pre-gestational diabetes.
Gestational diabetes should go away after you deliver, but it does significantly increase your risk for getting diabetes later.
For latest Health Tips & updates Subscribe to Arogya Prana