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Complications Of Type 2 Diabetes

Feb 21, 2008
Diabetes is often termed a metabolic disorder because it is the result of how we metabolize or use the food that we eat. Diabetics have a problem with the hormone insulin. Insulin is secreted when food is eaten, or more specifically, when carbohydrates are eaten and broken down to form glucose. Glucose enters the bloodstream and is used to provide energy to the cells of body. During this process the glucose levels in the blood return to a normal level. Returning the blood sugar level to normal is the job of insulin. In diabetics this often cannot be achieved and they have to either take insulin replacement therapy or some form of medication that makes the body more sensitive to the naturally occurring insulin. This article will discuss some of the health problems caused by type 2 diabetes. It will first differentiate between type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes is thought to be an autoimmune disorder. The immune system thinks that the beta cells in the pancreas, that create insulin, are foreign and destroys them. Type 2 diabetes is more to do with insulin resistance. The body continues to produce insulin but the body does not respond to the insulin as it used to. Diabetes during pregnancy is another type of diabetes that is similar to type 2 diabetes in that it is resistance to the naturally occurring insulin.

Type 1 can be managed through a combination of insulin injection, proper diet and regular exercise. Type 2 is the same, except that there is often no need to inject insulin. In some cases medication may be needed to make the body more sensitive to insulin.

Why Does Type 2 Diabetes Occur

The body simply stops recognizing or using insulin. This may be some cells in the body or all of them. It is thought that the cells that are resistant to insulin have lost the receptor that senses insulin. People that are overweight, particularly around the waist, are most at risk to type 2 diabetes because the fatty tissues around the waist create adipokines that are thought to reduce the body's tolerance to insulin.

Common Health Problems

It is important to manage blood glucose levels. If they are high for long periods of time then the consistency of the blood affects many areas of the body that it flows to. In particular, it can score the inner walls of the arteries. This makes it more likely that LDL cholesterol that passes through the arteries with the blood will stick to the inner walls. This is the cause of atherosclerosis and can lead to blood clots and strokes when bits of LDL cholesterol break off the walls and obstruct the flow of blood.

Poor circulation is another problem brought about by type 2 diabetes. Poor circulation can lead to a number of problems including eye conditions. Diabetic retinopathy is one such example. The capillaries that bring blood to the eyes die because they stop getting blood. This forces the body to create more capillaries to support the eyes but they are weaker than the original capillaries and may burst or leak blood. this goes into the eye and can cloud the vision or even lead to blindness.

Poor circulation also means that the extremities of the body do not get all the nutrients that they need. This means that areas like the feet and hands become more open to infection, cuts and bruising. They also take a longer time to heal.

The nervous system is also affected in people with type 2 diabetes. This means problems with feet, like cuts or infections are not felt and go unnoticed because people rarely look or see their feet.

The simplest treatment for type 2 diabetes is exercise and diet. Get a regular exercise schedule. Start off small and build up as you get more stamina. Consult a doctor about what and how much exercise you should do. Plan a diabetic diet with a dietitian and make sure it is balanced to give you all the vitamins and nutrients you need.
About the Author
Learn more about a diabetic diet plan at www.diabeticdietsplan.com. The site deals with diets and eating nutritious diabetes foods and some common symptoms of diabetes.
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