7 Keys to Treating Type 2 Diabetes

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Type 2 diabetes can be taxing on the body and potentially life-threatening. Out of all people with diabetes, most of them suffer from type 2 diabetes. People with type 2 diabetes either do not produce enough insulin in the pancreas or the body cannot use insulin properly. When the body cannot use insulin, then sugar can’t be broken down and absorbed into the cells, resulting in damage to veins and organs throughout the body as a result of excess blood sugar. Type 2 diabetes is very serious, with severe symptoms and dangerous long-term effects. Luckily, this disease can be managed if caught early.

Look for Signs of Type 2 Diabetes

The first step in treating diabetes is to notice any signs that you may be affected by it. With an increase in blood sugar comes an increase in urination. Frequent urination can lead to thirst and dehydration. Due to dehydration, people often experience dry mouth. Additionally, a life-threatening diabetic coma can take place if a person with type 2 diabetes becomes severely ill or dehydrated. All of these symptoms are the result of the body trying to flush out extra sugar from the body.

People who are diabetic may also suffer from fatigue, which is also the result of the body’s inability to convert sugar into energy. Individuals with type 2 diabetes may experience blurred vision or permanent vision loss. Furthermore, individuals with type 2 diabetes often suffer from headaches. Despite all these possible symptoms, many people who are in the early stages of type 2 diabetes are completely unaware of their conditions.

Consult a Doctor

You should definitely talk to your doctor if you believe you are at risk for type 2 diabetes. High blood sugar levels can damage nerves, as well as blood vessels of the eyes, kidneys, and heart, leading to the hardening of the arteries that can cause a stroke or heart attack. That is why it is important that if you suspect you have type 2 diabetes, you consult a doctor as soon as possible. There are a number of blood glucose tests that can be performed to determine whether or not you are diabetic. If you are found to be diabetic, then your doctor will review your available treatment options.

Start a Healthy Diabetic Diet

Even though there is no specific diet for diabetics, eating high-fiber and low-fat foods can help manage it. Fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain foods should be on every diabetic’s menu. These foods provide essential nutrients without added sugar that elevates blood sugar levels. Foods high in fat and sugar with little nutritional benefit should be avoided. Lean meats are fine in moderation.

Exercise Against Diabetes

Just like everyone else, people with type 2 diabetes need exercise. Physical activity can lower blood sugar and prevent it from becoming too high. Activities such as running, walking, swimming and biking are all good exercises for type 2 diabetics. In combination with strength training, exercise can be tremendously effective in lowering blood sugar. However, for people who take medication to lower blood sugar, it is best to consult a doctor before starting an exercise routine in order to prevent blood sugar levels being too low.

Insulin Therapy

Some people with type 2 diabetes need insulin injections. Insulin must be injected since normal digestion would interfere with insulin if taken through the mouth. Some individuals may need to take shots throughout the day, while others may take single long-acting shots in the morning or at night.

Type 2 Diabetes Medication

Metformin is a medication that can help the body use insulin properly. This medication also lowers glucose production in the liver. The downside to this medication is that it can cause nausea and diarrhea in some patients. Thiazolidinediones also works in the same way as metformin, but it can have more severe side effects. Both medications can cause weight gain, fractures and increased susceptibility to heart failure. Sulfonylureas help the body produce more insulin. It can cause low blood sugar and weight gain. Meglitinides also encourage the production of insulin but does it much faster. However, this medication does not work as long. DPP-4 inhibitors reduce blood sugar levels but not by very much. SGLT2 inhibitors are newer and the prevent kidneys from reabsorbing sugar in the blood. Sugar is excreted into the urine instead.

Seek Bariatric Surgery

For individuals with type 2 diabetes with a body mass index greater than 35, weight-loss surgery may be an option. After surgery, blood sugar levels can possibly return to normal depending on the procedure performed. Nevertheless, the surgery is expensive and risky, and afterward dramatic lifestyle changes will be required.

Anna enjoys blogging about a variety of topics, from fashion and beauty to food and travel. Find Anna on LinkedIn!

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