Symptoms of Diabetes
More than 100 million American adults live with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, according to the latest estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But the number of people who know they have the diseases, which can lead to life-threatening complications, such as blindness and heart disease, is much less.
Data from the CDC suggest that of the approximately 30.3 million Americans with type 2 diabetes, 7.2 million, or 1 in 4 adults living with the disease, do not know it. And among people living with prediabetes, only 11.6 percent know they have the disease.
Prediabetes is marked by higher than normal blood sugar levels, although not high enough to qualify as diabetes. The CDC notes that this condition often leads to type 2 diabetes within five years if left untreated through changes in diet and lifestyle.
Type 2 diabetes, which is often diagnosed when a person has an A1C of at least 7 on two different occasions, can cause potentially serious problems, such as neuropathy or nerve damage; Eye sight problems; an increased risk of heart disease; and other complications of diabetes. A person's A1C is the average of two to three months of their blood sugar levels.
According to the Mayo Clinic, doctors can use other tests to diagnose diabetes. For example, they can perform a fasting blood glucose test, which is a blood glucose test after a night of fasting. While a fasting blood sugar level of less than 100 milligrams per deciliter (mg / dL) is normal, one between 100 and 125 mg / dL indicates prediabetes and a reading that reaches 126 mg / dL on two different occasions It means you have diabetes.
People with full-blown type 2 diabetes can not use the hormone insulin properly, and they have what's called insulin resistance. Insulin is needed for glucose, or sugar, to reach the cells from the blood and be used for energy. When there is not enough insulin, or when the hormone does not work as it should, glucose builds up in the blood instead of being used by the cells. This accumulation of sugar can lead to the aforementioned complications.
It can help you assess your chances of developing type 2 diabetes by requesting an A1C test from your doctor, as well as talking with your family about your health history with the disease, since your genetics can influence your risk of diabetes.
According to the Mayo Clinic, other risk factors for type 2 diabetes include obesity, inactivity, old age, personal history of gestational diabetes and race. For example, if you are Hispanic, African American, or Asian American, you may have an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.
However, it can prevent prediabetes and type 2 diabetes while maintaining a healthy weight; following a healthy diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and lean proteins; sleep enough; and exercise regularly.
But preventing the progression of the disease if you already have it requires first being able to detect the signs and symptoms of diabetes when they appear. While some symptoms of type 2 diabetes may not appear, you can monitor the following common signs of the disease and alert your doctor, especially if you have any of the most common risk factors for diabetes. Also keep in mind that while most of the symptoms of type 2 diabetes are the same in men and women, there are some distinctions.
Video credits to wholistica.org YouTube channel