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Diabetes Home Page
Whether it is yourself, a loved one, or anyone else, you
might have a hard time believing and accepting that you, or they, have
diabetes. You may feel
Scared Shocked Angry
Overwhelmed Confused Sad
This is normal and most people feel these emotions when
they find out they have diabetes. Be
sure to share these feelings with your loved ones & support structure
that surrounds you, remember you’re not alone, and don’t worry, there is great
hope. With careful management of
this disorder, people can live long healthy lives that are very fulfilled, granted they remain committed their
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progress or adverse effects.
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– any disorder of metabolism causing excessive thirst and the production of
large volumes of urine.
diabetes mellitus - (the
most common form of the disease) is a disorder in which blood levels of
glucose (a simple sugar created by the metabolism or the body’s process of
breaking down of carbohydrates, i.e. fruits, vegetables, grains) are
abnormally high because the body doesn't
release or use insulin (a hormone produced by the pancreas)
adequately. The oxidation or
metabolism of these sugars from carbohydrates is the major source of energy
for the human body.
Doctors often use the full name diabetes mellitus,
rather than diabetes alone, to distinguish this disorder from diabetes insipidus, a relatively rare disease.
Blood sugar (glucose) levels vary throughout the day,
rising after a meal and returning to normal within 2 hours. Blood sugar
levels are normally between 70 and 110 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) of blood in the morning after an overnight fast.
They are usually lower than 120 to 140 mg/dL 2
hours after eating foods or drinking liquids containing sugar or other
carbohydrates. Normal levels tend to
increase slightly but progressively after age 50, especially in people who
Insulin, a hormone released from the pancreas, is the
primary substance responsible for maintaining appropriate blood sugar
levels. Insulin allows glucose to be transported into cells so that they
can produce energy or store the glucose until it's needed. The rise in
blood sugar levels after eating or drinking stimulates the pancreas to
produce insulin, preventing a greater rise in blood sugar levels and
causing them to fall gradually. Because muscles use glucose for energy, blood
sugar levels can also fall during physical activity.
Type 1 diabetes, no one knows what causes type 1
diabetes, but it is known that it occurs when the pancreas (a gland needed
in the digestive process) no longer produces any or very little insulin.
The body needs insulin to use sugar obtained from food for energy.
Approximately 10 percent of people with diabetes have type 1 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes occurs
when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body does not
use the insulin that is produced effectively. 90 percent of people with
diabetes have type 2.
Gestational diabetes is a temporary condition
that occurs during pregnancy. It affects two to four percent of all
pregnancies with an increased risk of developing diabetes for both mother
Diabetes is a leading cause of death by disease
worldwide. If not recognized or improperly managed, the high levels of
blood glucose (sugar) can slowly damage both the small and large blood vessels
in the body, possibly resulting in many serious health complications such
as heart disease, which is two to four times more common in people with
diabetes than without, it is also a leading cause of adult blindness &
kidney disease. At least 50% of all
limb amputations not due to traumatic injury are due to diabetes, and
diabetes is now considered to be a major cause of erectile dysfunction
(male sexual organ problems).
With careful management, these complications can be
delayed and even prevented. The first step in preventing the onset of these
complications is recognizing the signs
& symptoms that may indicate you have diabetes.
Some of the risk factors that may contribute to the
development of diabetes are:
age 45 or over,
overweight (especially around your abdomen or belly),
member of a higher-risk group (Aboriginal peoples,
Hispanic, Asian or African),
have a parent, brother or sister with diabetes,
have given birth to a baby that weighed over 4 kg (9
lbs) at birth, or have had gestational diabetes (diabetes during
high cholesterol or other fats in the blood,
higher-than-normal blood glucose levels,
high blood pressure or heart
It is recommended to have routine screening every three
years for everyone age 45 or over and screening every year for individuals
with other risk factors.