Diabetes is a disease in which blood glucose (sugar) levels are very high. Glucose comes from foods that are consumed, especially carbohydrates that are broken down at the gastric and intestinal levels into glucose, which is a sugar necessary for the normal functioning of cells. On the other hand, insulin, is a hormone produced by the pancreas, and allows glucose to enter the cells to supply them with energy and fulfill their normal functions.
Types of diabetes
In type 1 diabetes, the pancreas does not produce insulin, therefore it is impossible for the cells to obtain energy to fulfill their basic functions. In type 2 diabetes, the most common, it develops when the body prevents insulin from being used properly, as a result, the pancreas can no longer produce it enough to keep blood sugar levels in balance. Some pregnant women can also develop diabetes, in this case it is called gestational diabetes, which if not properly treated can end up in type 2 diabetes, both the mother and the baby.
Symptoms associated with diabetes are: thirst and excessive urination, an exaggerated increase in appetite, fatigue, blurred vision, tingling in the hands and feet, injuries that are difficult to heal, and weight loss without apparent cause.
Diabetes prevention and control
Having healthy lifestyles like exercising regularly, managing weight, and sticking to a balanced meal plan can help prevent and control diabetes. Following an organized treatment plan such as taking medications, if prescribed, and having control of blood glucose levels allows you to have adequate control of the disease.
Diabetes-related health problems
Over time, excess glucose in the blood can cause serious problems and irreversible damage to the eye and kidneys, as well as heart disease, stroke and circulatory disease, leading to severe complications such as lower limb amputation.
A blood test, serum glycemia, can show if you have diabetes. One type of test, glycated hemoglobin A1c, allows us to see how you are managing your diabetes.