Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes
Symptoms of type 2 diabetes can be worrying to notice. Diabetes is when the body cannot use sugars in the blood properly for energy. This causes a buildup of sugar, which leads to other issues such as vision and heart problems. It is crucial to know what type of diabetes you may have in order to receive proper treatment and preventative measures.
Types of diabetes
Prediabetes: Prediabetes is when blood sugar levels are elevated but not high enough to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
Type 1 Diabetes: This is when the pancreas develops little to no insulin. People of any age can develop this, but it is most common in children, teenagers, and young adults. This type cannot be prevented but is treatable.
Type 2 Diabetes: Like type 1, this is when the pancreas develops little to no insulin. This primarily occurs in adults over the age of 45 but can develop in children and teens. Type 2 diabetes is preventable with lifestyle changes such as increased physical activity and dietary changes to manage blood sugar.
Gestational Diabetes: This form of diabetes develops during pregnancy without previously having any form of diabetes. Changes in hormones during pregnancy with weight gain may cause insulin resistance.
Knowing the different types of diabetes, we can now look into the risk factors.
Risk factors for type 2 diabetes
Some risk factors for type 2 diabetes include:
Being over the age of 45
Having Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Family history of type 2 diabetes
Knowing the risk factors are will hopefully make you more aware of your health and prevent type 2 diabetes. However, it is also crucial to understand the symptoms if you are unsure about seeking treatment.
Symptoms of type 2 diabetes
Some symptoms of type 2 diabetes include:
Unintentional weight loss
Slow healing sores and frequent infections
Type 2 diabetes usually develops over time and people can have symptoms for years without noticing. While self-diagnosing is not a good idea, it may be good to visit a doctor if many of these symptoms apply to you.
When to visit a doctor
As stated previously, if you are experiencing many of the symptoms associated with type 2 diabetes, then you should see a doctor. When visiting a doctor, they will perform tests such as a fasting blood sugar test and a glucose tolerance test. Knowing the risk factors and symptoms of type 2 diabetes will help you prevent future issues.
Preventing type 2 diabetes
Weight loss: Losing weight, even just 5% to 10% of your bodyweight can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Dietary changes: It is crucial to eat nutritious filling foods that are low in calories. It is good to incorporate fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and high fiber foods into your diet.
Increasing physical activity: A good amount of physical activity to aim for would be around 30 minutes a day or 150 minutes per week. Getting enough physical activity does not have to be a big deal like going to the gym. A light walk around the block or even household chores such as cleaning and doing laundry is a great place to start.
Preventing type 2 diabetes depends on making proper lifestyle changes and maintaining those new habits. Drastic changes to your lifestyle may work in the short term but will not help in the long term. For this reason, it is crucial to make small changes over time to maintain long term prevention.