The Diabetes Homepage

According to data from the 2011 National Diabetes Fact Sheet, 25.8 million children and adults in America have diabetes; that’s 8.3% of the population. With those figures and the fact that the number of diagnosed cases is increasing yearly, many people are looking for information pertaining to the different types of diabetes, symptoms and the ways to manage the condition. We provide a starting point to find current resources relating to diabetes.

What is diabetes?

Diabetes is a metabolic disease in which blood sugar is unusually high, resulting from inadequate insulin production or because cells in the body do not respond in the usual way to insulin. There are three forms of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes results from an inability for the body to produce insulin, and requires insulin injections to control the condition; Type 2 diabetes (formerly referred to as adult-onset diabetes), where cells fail to react to insulin, occurs as a result of insulin resistance; and Gestational diabetes, developed by pregnant women with no previous diagnosis of diabetes.

For more information, the following resources provide information on Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes and Gestational diabetes.

Symptoms of Diabetes

With an estimated 79 million people being pre-diabetic it’s important to understand and be aware of the symptoms of diabetes.

There are several common symptoms that may indicate you or someone you know is suffering from diabetes. These symptoms include excessive thirst and frequent urination, extreme hunger, fatigue, unusual weight loss and blurred vision. If you are concerned about these symptoms, seek the help of a medical practitioner.

To understand more, check the details of common symptoms of diabetes, or take an online diabetes risk test.

Healthy Eating for Diabetics

For people with diabetes, a healthy eating plan can help control the symptoms of the disease. A healthy diet for diabetics is much like a healthy diet for non-diabetics - it should be high in nutrients, low in fat, and generally moderate in calories. You don’t have to avoid sugar completely, the key is to plan and consume in moderation. The key to a healthy diet for diabetic is choosing your carbs wisely; high fibre, slow release carbohydrates are ideal for diabetics. Focus on whole-grain foods, fruits and vegetables, and try to eat smaller portions more frequently.

For more tips on a healthy diet for diabetics, see the National Institutes of Health guidelines. Ideas for appropriate carbohydrate substitutes can be found here. Having some good recipes helps to maintain a healthy diet for diabetics, and there are several resources available with recipes specifically designed for diabetics.

Exercise and Fitness for Diabetics

Exercise is particularly important for patients in controlling Type 2 diabetes, as it helps to lower blood sugar and decrease weight. Decreasing body fat helps in improving insulin sensitivity, and is therefore particularly beneficial to those with Type 2 diabetes. The key is to undertake sustained exercise so your muscles take up glucose, lowering blood sugar.

Read more about the benefits of exercise for Type 2 diabetics, or get some tips on the types of exercise.

Diabetes Research

Research into controlling and curing diabetes is on-going, with the latest developments surrounding producing ‘artificial organs’ to monitor and control insulin levels in the body. Keep up with the latest in diabetes news and research online.

Complications

A complex condition, diabetes can result in long term complications. Regardless of whether the condition is managed with healthy eating and exercise alone or treated in conjunction with injections or tablets, all poorly controlled case of diabetes will cause damage to the body.

Common diabetic complications include:


More information on diabetes complications is provided by the American Diabetes Assoication.

Diabetes alone can be a difficult condition to manage but the additional, potential complications make it all the more important to keep up-to-date on the best treatments, research and management programmes available.