Diabetes mellitus is a class of metabolic diseases, all of them have in common high blood sugar (glucose) levels that stem from problems with insulin secretion, its action, or both. Usually, blood glucose levels are controlled by a hormone secreted by the pancreas known as insulin. When there is a rise in blood glucose levels, then the pancreas releases insulin to normalize the glucose level. There are mainly two types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2.
Both types are chronic diseases that affect the way blood sugar, or glucose regulation in the body. Glucose is like the fuel which feeds the body’s cells, but to enter cells it needs a key which is insulin.
Type 1: People with diabetes of this type don’t produce insulin.
Type 2: People with diabetes of this type don’t respond to insulin and later in the disease often fail to make enough insulin.
What is insulin?
Insulin is a hormone that is generated by specialized cells of the pancreas. Insulin is also important in strictly controlling the level of glucose in the blood.
People with type 2 diabetes may need insulin when their meal plan, weight loss, exercise and drugs do not accomplish targeted blood glucose (sugar) levels. In a progeressive disease like diabetes, insulin injections may be required to compensate for declining production by the pancreas. That is why insulin treatment should never be perceived as a failure.
Type 1: No cure at the moment however lifetime treatment can deal with symptoms. Gene therapy, regenerative medicine using stem cells, or pancreatic islet transplantation over time may become an option.
Type 2: Currently no cure, but adopting measures can slow progression and manage symptoms. Symptoms can be reduced using gastric bypass in people with severe obesity.
Type 1: It is not yet possible to prevent.
Type 2: A healthful diet with regular exercise must be followed. If prediabetes is diagnosed, follow a doctor’s instructions.
Diabetes is a serious condition. For type 1, insulin and other drugs can help individuals to manage symptoms and live a normal life. While there could be a hereditary link for both types of diabetes, risks can be reduced and managed for type 2 diabetes by following a healthful lifestyle with regular exercise. Anyone with a prediabetes diagnosis should make healthy lifestyle choices to eliminate the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.