Diabetes is a disease of the body that results from the malfunctioning of the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas to move glucose into the bloodstream and is necessary for all of the blood’s functions: digestion, absorption of nutrients and fat, and transportation of oxygen.

But once diabetes occurs, the pancreas no longer produces enough insulin, resulting in inadequate insulin to perform its duties. The sugar builds up in the blood and on the walls of the blood vessels. It is this buildup of blood sugar (glucose) that causes symptoms such as sudden headache, confusion, and sweating.

Diabetes also impairs the body’s ability to remove sugar from the blood into the cells. Because the cells do not have the ability to absorb sugar, the cells’ functions and needs are hampered. For example, the blood vessels in the feet may not be able to carry out the process of transporting glucose to the cells where it is needed. And, because the blood sugar level remains high, additional amounts of sugar become stored as fat cells in the body.

While this is happening, the sufferer doesn’t need to worry about falling ill. However, the buildup of blood sugar is not a good thing for a diabetic. It raises the risk of heart disease, kidney failure, nerve damage, blindness, depression, and other serious complications of diabetes.

Because diabetes is a public health issue, more people are becoming aware of the disease. In an effort to educate the public, several research organizations and medical journals have published an increasing number of articles about diabetes.

One of the most popular public health recommendations involves avoiding certain foods when you suspect you have diabetes. Foods high in carbohydrates and low in fiber should be avoided. They can provide too much blood sugar, even in small amounts. The best recommendation for preventing diabetes is to know your risk factors. Your age, your gender, and your race are the main determinants of your risk of developing diabetes. The only way to combat this is to control or avoid these risk factors.

If the sufferer has had glucose levels that are elevated in the past, he or she may be more prone to developing diabetes. In addition, women who have had diabetes in the past are at a higher risk than men. Another risk factor is the fact that people who have smoked and alcohol are at a higher risk than those who do not.

If diabetes is already in your family, your risk for developing the disease increases by two to four times with each passing year as your blood sugar levels climb. Your risk increases more if you have a long history of bad eating habits, such as overeating and obesity.

Your skin color, the type of diabetes you have, your weight, and your height should also be taken into account. If you are short, poor weight is a major risk factor for diabetes. People who are overweight, and even of average weight, are more likely to develop diabetes.

With a little knowledge and simple tips for living a healthy lifestyle, diabetes can be managed. By maintaining a proper diet and avoiding the risk factors mentioned above, many sufferers can control their disease. Most importantly, the pain of living with diabetes should not be ignored.

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