7 Diabetes Signs and Warnings
In the last few years, research has provided us with an understanding of how pre-diabetes can progress into diabetes type 2. Because pre-diabetes will lead always to diabetes if you don’t put the means to prevent it, you need to be attentive to what the signs of diabetes are so you can prevent it or delay it if you are at high risk.
Signs of diabetes type 2
- The problem starts if you are inactive and have excess weight. Fat tissues release markers of chronic inflammationinto the bloodstream.
- This inflammation causes insulin resistance to go up because it inhibits the action of insulin made in the pancreas. High levels of insulin in the bloodstream can damage your body’s tissues but at this stage you will probably not be aware that this is
- With inflammation and insulin resistance, your body “asks” the beta cells to send more insulin to the blood in an effort to lower blood sugar to keep it at a normal level. At this stage, blood pressure starts to rise and LDL cholesterol, the bad guy, and triglycerides become too high.
- The production of insulin from the beta cells starts to fail and little by little, the level of blood sugar starts to rise above normal. At this stage, the level of blood glucose after meals tends to be higher than the fasting level.
- Blood glucose keeps going up. The beta cells in the pancreas slowly become exhausted and can’t make enough insulin to keep up with the level of glucose in the blood. This is when blood glucose levels start going up and the diabetes A1C level raises enough to put you at high risk for diabetes type 2. This process can take about 10 years for adults. In children can happen more quickly.
- The pancreas can’t keep up any more with the body’s demand for insulin. The blood glucose rises to levels that are diagnostic for diabetes. At this stage, many people have lost between 50 and 80 percent of their beta cells and need to take medication to lower their blood glucose.
- As time goes by, the beta cells may produce less insulin. To keep blood glucose at normal levels you will need to increase your medication. Many people who live long enough, eventually may need to take insulin by injection.
What can you do?
According to the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), a study that started in the late 1990s, people at risk for type 2 diabetes who lost a small amount of weight (5-7% or about 10-20 pounds) and became physically active, could prevent or delay the development of type 2 diabetes.
The participants in the study engaged in 30 minutes a day, five days a week. They lost weight and kept it off for the three years the study lasted by eating fewer calories, less fat, and smaller portions of food. The participants also lowered their blood pressure, improved their levels of cholesterol and triglycerides and could reduce the medications needed to control these conditions.
Research shows that the key features of a diabetes treatment plan, regardless of the medications you use to control glucose levels, cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure, are three:
- Healthy eating
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Being physically active
You can start taking charge of your health and prevent diabetes by becoming physically active and eating healthy. In this website you can find many articles that can help you doing that. You may want to take your time and read some of the articles here.
To your health!
Emilia Klapp, R.D., B.S.