Diabetes is a disorder that affects blood glucose levels. There are a few different types of diabetes, some you maybe not even be aware of.
Type 1 (Insulin-Dependent)
An autoimmune disease that causes the body’s own immune system to attack and destroy insulin producing cells, causing glucose levels to increase to damaging levels. This is also sometimes known as juvenile diabetes as it normally develops before the age of 40, most often between childhood and young adulthood.
Having a family member with Type 1 diabetes increases your risk of developing it, though it is not a guarantee as environmental factors can also play a role. Sufferers of Type 1 diabetes require daily insulin injections in order to continue living a healthy life as they are completely unable to produce enough for normal daily functioning.
Type 2 (Non-Insulin-Dependent)
Type 2 diabetes is much more common whereby the body is unable to produce sufficient amounts of insulin or the body is unable to react correctly to the insulin.
Type 2 diabetes is often related to obesity, as being overweight significantly increases your risk of developing it. While Type 2 diabetes normally does not require insulin injections, more severe cases will require special prescriptive tablets to be taken. Type 2 diabetes is also a progressive condition, and so, symptoms can often be controlled through a healthy diet, regular exercise and careful monitoring of blood glucose levels.
While diabetes is usually known as Type 1 or Type 2, it can also happen for short periods of time, or during pregnancy. These situations are sometimes known as reversible diabetes.
Occasionally, our blood glucose levels can rise above the normal range, yet does not reach the threshold for being diagnosed as full-blown diabetes. This is known as prediabetes and it is a potential warning sign, yet reversible situation. With proper lifestyle changes, most people with prediabetes do not reach full-fledged diabetes, but without proper supervision, Type 2 diabetes occurs.
Another common form of diabetes occurs during pregnancy, known as gestational diabetes. It often develops in the second trimester of pregnancy (14 to 26 weeks), and usually disappears after the baby is born. This occurrence however, puts women at greater risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life. Gestational diabetes also poses potential health risks to an unborn child, and so careful monitoring should be undertaken.
The best way to prevent and manage this disease is to understand it and make the right lifestyle choices. Halting this disease is something we can all do together.