How Does Diabetes Affect The Body?
Diabetes is a life-long disease that can't be cured. But it can be managed. It's easier to do this if you understand what's going on in your body. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder. This means it's a disease that affects how your body uses food for energy and growth. Here's how things work in a person without diabetes: When you eat, your body breaks food down into glucose. Glucose is a type of sugar that is your body's main source of energy. Glucose from food goes into your bloodstream. Your blood glucose (the amount of sugar in your blood) begins to rise. As your blood glucose rises, your pancreas responds by releasing a hormone called insulin. Insulin allows glucose to cross out of your bloodstream and go into your body's cells -- it's like a key that "unlocks" the cells. Once glucose gets in your cells, it's used for energy. Your liver also plays a role in the metabolic process. It stores glucose from your bloodstream and releases it when your cells need fuel (as, for example, when you haven't eaten for a while). When you have eaten, however, insulin blocks this release of glucose from your liver. When you have diabetes, your body still breaks down the food you eat into glucose. The problem is that your body doesn't have the right amount of insulin. The reasons for this depend on the type of diabetes you have, type 1 or type 2. But with both types of diabetes, the end result is the same: Your cells are starved for energy. Without an insulin "key" to help move glucose into your cells, you feel weak, hungry, and thirsty -- just plain awful. You'll also have ketones in your blood and urine (pee). Ketones are a sign that your body is breaking down fat and protein to get energy, since it's not able to use glucose normally. High levels of ketones are harmful to your body. Y Continue reading >>
Long-term Complications Of Diabetes
en espaolComplicaciones a largo plazo de la diabetes Many of the complications of diabetes don't show up until after many years even decades of having the disease. They usually develop silently and gradually over time, so even if people with diabetes aren't having any signs of complications, they may still eventually develop them. Talking or thinking about long-term complications can be scary. And it can be hard for anyone to make changes in how they live today to decrease the risk of health problems that may not show up for decades. But it's important to start now. Managing your diabetes by eating right, getting regular exercise, and taking your medicine as directed by your diabetes health care team is the best way to reduce the risk of developing complications. You may have wondered why doctors talk so much about keeping blood sugar levels in a healthy range. Here's why: Long-term diabetes problems or complications are often linked to higher blood sugar levels over a long period of time. These complications can affect several different parts of the body. But blood sugar control isn't the only thing that determines a person's risk for diabetes complications. Other factors, like genes, can also play a role. Parts of the body that can be most affected by diabetes complications are the: People with diabetes have a greater risk of developing eye problems, including: Cataracts: A cataract is a thickening and clouding of the lens of the eye. The lens is the part of the eye that helps you focus on what you see. Cataracts can make a person's vision blurry or make it hard to see at night. Doctors think that people with diabetes are more likely to develop cataracts if they have high blood sugar levels over a long period of time. If cataracts get in the way of seeing properly, a Continue reading >>
How Diabetes Harms The Brain
TIME Health For more, visit TIME Health. When blood sugar levels start to climb in diabetes, a number of body systems are harmed—and that list includes the brain, since studies have linked diabetes with a higher risk of stroke and dementia. Now, a new study published in the journal Neurology reports that changes in blood vessel activity in the brains of diabetics may lead to drops in cognitive functions and their ability to perform daily activities. Dr. Vera Novak, associate professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and her colleagues followed a group of 65 older people. About half had type 2 diabetes, and half did not. After two years, the diabetic patients had lower scores on cognitive tests compared to when they began, while people without diabetes showed little change on the tests. MORE: The Strange Way a Diabetes Drug May Help Skin Scars What drove the decline, says Novak, were changes in the brains of the diabetic patients. Diabetes can cause blood vessels to be less responsive to the ebb and flow of demand in different parts of the brain. Normally, flexible vessels will swell slightly to increase blood flow and oxygen to areas that are more intensely active, such as regions involved in memory or higher reasoning during intellectual tasks. But unchecked blood sugar can make these vessels less malleable and therefore less responsive. “When doing any task, from cognition to moving your fingers, you need to increase blood flow to that specific area of the brain,” says Novak. “With diabetes, however, that vasodilation ability is reduced, so you have fewer resources to perform any task.” MORE: Statins May Seriously Increase Diabetes Risk In the study, Novak measured the changes in the flexibility of the blood v Continue reading >>
Type 2 Diabetes
Print Overview Type 2 diabetes, once known as adult-onset or noninsulin-dependent diabetes, is a chronic condition that affects the way your body metabolizes sugar (glucose), your body's important source of fuel. With type 2 diabetes, your body either resists the effects of insulin — a hormone that regulates the movement of sugar into your cells — or doesn't produce enough insulin to maintain a normal glucose level. More common in adults, type 2 diabetes increasingly affects children as childhood obesity increases. There's no cure for type 2 diabetes, but you may be able to manage the condition by eating well, exercising and maintaining a healthy weight. If diet and exercise aren't enough to manage your blood sugar well, you also may need diabetes medications or insulin therapy. Symptoms Signs and symptoms of type 2 diabetes often develop slowly. In fact, you can have type 2 diabetes for years and not know it. Look for: Increased thirst and frequent urination. Excess sugar building up in your bloodstream causes fluid to be pulled from the tissues. This may leave you thirsty. As a result, you may drink — and urinate — more than usual. Increased hunger. Without enough insulin to move sugar into your cells, your muscles and organs become depleted of energy. This triggers intense hunger. Weight loss. Despite eating more than usual to relieve hunger, you may lose weight. Without the ability to metabolize glucose, the body uses alternative fuels stored in muscle and fat. Calories are lost as excess glucose is released in the urine. Fatigue. If your cells are deprived of sugar, you may become tired and irritable. Blurred vision. If your blood sugar is too high, fluid may be pulled from the lenses of your eyes. This may affect your ability to focus. Slow-healing sores o Continue reading >>
Which Systems Of The Body Are Affected By Diabetes?
Diabetes mellitus is a metabolic disorder in which inadequate production of the hormone insulin or a resistance to its actions in the body can lead to high blood sugar levels. Insulin is needed to get sugar into cells of the body, where it is used for energy. When sugar cannot get into cells, it remains in the blood at high levels. Complications of diabetes arise from long-term exposure to high blood sugar. The cardiovascular, nervous, visual and urinary systems are most commonly affected by chronically high blood sugars. Video of the Day The cardiovascular system includes the heart and blood vessels. High blood sugar and increased blood fat levels commonly found in people with diabetes contribute to fatty deposits called plaques on the inner walls of blood vessels, causing inflammation. This leads to decreased blood flow and hardening of the blood vessels called atherosclerosis. High blood sugar also results in glycation, where sugars attach to proteins, making them sticky. This occurs on proteins found in blood vessels, also resulting in inflammation. When this occurs in the heart, it can lead to cardiovascular disease. According to a 2016 report from the American Heart Association, 68 percent of people with diabetes older than 65 die of heart disease. Nerve damage called diabetic neuropathy is common in people with diabetes. Symptoms typically appear after several years but may be present when diabetes is diagnosed, as the disease may have gone undetected for many years. Diabetic nerve damage known as peripheral neuropathy is most common in the legs and feet. According to a 2005 statement by the American Diabetes Association, up to 50 percent of people with diabetes have peripheral neuropathy. This typically starts as numbness or tingling that progresses to loss of p Continue reading >>
Avoiding Complications Of Diabetes
It can take work to get your diabetes under control, but the results are worth it. If you don't make the effort to get a handle on it, you could set yourself up for a host of complications. Diabetes can take a toll on nearly every organ in your body, including the: Heart and blood vessels Eyes Kidneys Nerves Gastrointestinal tract Gums and teeth Heart and Blood Vessels Heart disease and blood vessel disease are common problems for many people who don’t have their diabetes under control. You're at least twice as likely to have heart problems and strokes as people who don’t have the condition. Blood vessel damage or nerve damage may also cause foot problems that, in rare cases, can lead to amputations. People with diabetes are ten times likelier to have their toes and feet removed than those without the disease. Symptoms: You might not notice warning signs until you have a heart attack or stroke. Problems with large blood vessels in your legs can cause leg cramps, changes in skin color, and less sensation. The good news: Many studies show that controlling your diabetes can help you avoid these problems, or stop them from getting worse if you have them. Diabetes is the leading cause of new vision loss among adults ages 20 to 74 in the U.S. It can lead to eye problems, some of which can cause blindness if not treated: Glaucoma Cataracts Diabetic retinopathy, which involves the small blood vessels in your eyes Symptoms: Vision problems or sudden vision loss. The good news: Studies show that regular eye exams and timely treatment of these kinds of problems could prevent up to 90% of diabetes-related blindness. *CGM-based treatment requires fingersticks for calibration, if patient is taking acetaminophen, or if symptoms/expectations do not match CGM readings, and if not pe Continue reading >>
Effects Of Diabetes On The Body And Organs
Over time, the raised blood sugar levels that result from diabetes can cause a wide range of serious health issues. But what do these health issues involve, and how are the organs of the body affected? Can these effects be minimized? When people have diabetes, the body either does not make enough insulin or cannot use what it has effectively. As a result, the amount of sugar in the blood becomes higher than it should be. Glucose, or blood sugar, is the main power source for the human body. It comes from the food people eat. The hormone insulin helps the cells of the body convert glucose into fuel. Fortunately, taking a proactive approach to this chronic disease through medical care, lifestyle changes, and medication can help limit its effects. Effect on systems and organs The effects of diabetes can be seen on systems throughout the body, including: The circulatory system Diabetes can damage large blood vessels, causing macrovascular disease. It can also damage small blood vessels, causing what is called microvascular disease. Complications from macrovascular disease include heart attack and stroke. However, macrovascular disease can be prevented by: Microvascular disease can cause eye, kidney, and nerve problems, but good control of diabetes can help prevent these complications. The cardiovascular system Excess blood sugar decreases the elasticity of blood vessels and causes them to narrow, impeding blood flow. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute say diabetes is as big a risk factor for heart disease as smoking or high cholesterol. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the risk of stroke or dying of heart disease increases by 200-400 percent for adults with diabetes. The nervous system When people have diabetes, they can develop n Continue reading >>
Diabetes - Long-term Effects
On this page: Diabetes is a condition in which there is too much glucose (a type of sugar) in the blood. Over time, high blood glucose levels can damage the body's organs. Possible complications include damage to large (macrovascular) and small (microvascular) blood vessels, which can lead to heart attack, stroke, and problems with the kidneys, eyes, gums, feet and nerves. Reducing risk of diabetes complications The good news is that the risk of most diabetes-related complications can be reduced by keeping blood pressure, blood glucose and cholesterol levels within recommended range. Also, being a healthy weight, eating healthily, reducing alcohol intake, and not smoking will help reduce your risk. Regular check-ups and screening are important to pick up any problems early Diabetes and healthy eating If you have diabetes it’s important to include a wide variety of nutritious and healthy foods in your diet, and to avoid snacking on sugary foods. Eating healthy foods can help control your blood glucose and cholesterol levels, and your blood pressure. Enjoy a variety of foods from each food group – be sure to include foods high in fibre and low in fat, and reduce your salt intake. It’s helpful to consult with a dietitian to review your current eating plan and provide a guide about food choices and food quantities. Alcohol intake and diabetes Limit alcohol intake. If you drink alcohol, have no more than two standard drinks per day. If you are pregnant or considering pregnancy or are breastfeeding, then zero alcohol intake is recommended. Diabetes and healthy weight If you are overweight, even losing a small amount of weight, especially round the abdomen, helps lower your blood pressure, blood glucose and cholesterol levels. It can be daunting trying to lose weight, so Continue reading >>
Long-term Complications Of Diabetes
It is important to keep your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol in a healthy range. You should learn these basic steps for managing diabetes and staying as healthy as possible. Steps may include: A healthy diet Exercise Medicines You may need to check your blood sugar daily or more often. Your health care provider will also help you by ordering blood tests and other tests. All these may help you keep complications of diabetes away. You will need to check your blood sugar level at home. You will use a special device called a glucose meter to test your blood sugar. Your provider will let you know if you need to check it every day and how many times each day. Your provider will also tell you what blood sugar numbers you are trying to achieve. This is called managing your blood sugar. These goals will be set for different times during the day. To prevent heart disease and stroke, you may be asked to take medicine and change your diet and activity: Your provider may ask you to take a medicine called an ACE inhibitor or a different medicine called an ARB, for high blood pressure or kidney problems. Your provider may ask you to take a medicine called a statin to keep your cholesterol down. Your provider may ask you to take aspirin to prevent heart attacks. Ask your provider if aspirin is right for you. Regular exercise is good for people with diabetes. Talk to your provider first about what exercises are best for you and how much exercise you should do every day. DO NOT smoke. Smoking makes diabetes complications worse. If you do smoke, work with your provider to find a way to quit. To keep your feet healthy, you should: Get a foot exam by your provider at least every 6 to 12 months and learn whether you have nerve damage. Make sure you are wearing the right kinds of Continue reading >>
The Effects Of Diabetes On Your Body
When you hear the word “diabetes,” your first thought is likely about high blood sugar. Blood sugar is an often-underestimated component of your health. When it’s out of whack over a long period of time, it could develop into diabetes. Diabetes affects your body’s ability to produce or use insulin, a hormone that allows your body to turn glucose (sugar) into energy. Here’s what symptoms may occur to your body when diabetes takes effect. Diabetes can be effectively managed when caught early. However, when left untreated, it can lead to potential complications that include heart disease, stroke, kidney damage, and nerve damage. Normally after you eat or drink, your body will break down sugars from your food and use them for energy in your cells. To accomplish this, your pancreas needs to produce a hormone called insulin. Insulin is what facilitates the process of pulling sugar from the blood and putting it in the cells for use, or energy. If you have diabetes, your pancreas either produces too little insulin or none at all. The insulin can’t be used effectively. This allows blood glucose levels to rise while the rest of your cells are deprived of much-needed energy. This can lead to a wide variety of problems affecting nearly every major body system. The effects of diabetes on your body also depends on the type you have. There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2. Type 1, also called juvenile diabetes or insulin-dependent diabetes, is an immune system disorder. Your own immune system attacks the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, destroying your body’s ability to make insulin. With type 1 diabetes, you must take insulin to live. Most people are diagnosed as a child or young adult. Type 2 is related to insulin resistance. It used to occur i Continue reading >>
Video: How Diabetes Affects Your Blood Sugar
Your body uses glucose for energy. Glucose metabolism requires insulin, a hormone produced by your pancreas. Here's how normal glucose metabolism works, and what happens when you have diabetes — a disease where your body either can't produce enough insulin or it can't use insulin properly. The food you eat consists of three basic nutrients: carbohydrates, protein and fat. During digestion, chemicals in your stomach break down carbohydrates into glucose, which is absorbed into your bloodstream. Your pancreas responds to the glucose by releasing insulin. Insulin is responsible for allowing glucose into your body's cells. When the glucose enters your cells, the amount of glucose in your bloodstream falls. If you have type 1 diabetes, your pancreas doesn't secrete insulin — which causes a buildup of glucose in your bloodstream. Without insulin, the glucose can't get into your cells. If you have type 2 diabetes, your pancreas secretes less insulin than your body requires because your body is resistant to its effect. With both types of diabetes, glucose cannot be used for energy, and it builds up in your bloodstream — causing potentially serious health complications. Continue reading >>
How Does Diabetes Affect Your Body?
Your diabetes care team may seem like they are nagging you to keep your condition well managed, but there's good reason for keeping your test results within target ranges: you'll feel better, and help to avoid damaging complications as a side effect of diabetes. Diabetes and the high blood sugar it can cause can affect nearly every organ in your body, including: Heart and blood vessels - Heart disease and blood vessel disease are common problems for many people who don’t have their diabetes under control. This increases the risk of having a stroke or heart attack. Blood vessel damage or nerve damage also risks leg and foot amputations. Eyes - Vision loss or eyesight being affected can be a side-effect of diabetes over time. That's why the NHS arranges special examinations of the back of the eyes every year for people with diabetes to check for signs of diabetic retinopathy. Kidney disease - Diabetes can affect the kidneys over time. You might not notice any symptoms to begin with due to diabetes-related kidney disease, but it can cause swelling of the legs and feet. As well as keeping diabetes under control, having blood pressure in a healthy range is also important for your kidneys. Nerves - Over time, high blood sugar levels can damage your nerves and this can cause peripheral diabetic neuropathy with pain and burning, or a loss of feeling in your feet. This may begin with the toes and spread to hands and other parts of the body. Nerve problems can also cause erectile dysfunction in men, digestive issues ( gastroparesis), bladder problems, fainting or a lack of awareness of low blood sugar levels (hypos). Teeth and gums - Diabetes increases your risk of gum disease, making them red, swollen and more likely to bleed. Make sure your dentist knows about your diabetes a Continue reading >>
How Does Diabetes Affect The Body?
Tweet Knowing how diabetes affects your body can help you look after your body and prevent diabetic complications from developing. Many of the effects of diabetes stem from the same guilty parties; namely high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels and a lack of blood glucose control. Signs of diabetes When undiagnosed or uncontrolled, the effects of diabetes on the body can be noticed by the classic symptoms of diabetes, namely: Increased thirst Frequent need to urinate Fatigue Blurred vision and Tingling or pain in the hands, feet and/or legs Long term effects of diabetes on the body In addition to the symptoms, diabetes can cause long term damage to our body. The long term damage is commonly referred to as diabetic complications. Diabetes affects our blood vessels and nerves and therefore can affect any part of the body. However, certain parts of our body are affected more than other parts. Diabetic complications will usually take a number of years of poorly controlled diabetes to develop. Complications are not a certainty and can be kept at bay and prevented by maintaining a strong level of control on your diabetes, your blood pressure and cholesterol. These can all be helped by keeping to a healthy diet, avoiding cigarettes and alcohol, and incorporating regular activity into your daily regime in order to keep blood sugar levels within recommended blood glucose level guidelines. The effect of diabetes on the heart Diabetes and coronary heart disease are closely related. Diabetes contributes to high blood pressure and is linked with high cholesterol which significantly increases the risk of heart attacks and cardiovascular disease. Diabetes and strokes Similar to how diabetes affects the heart, high blood pressure and cholesterol raises the risk of strokes. How dia Continue reading >>
Body Areas Affected By Diabetes
XIAFLEX® is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with Dupuytren's contracture when a "cord" can be felt. It is not known if XIAFLEX® is safe and effective in children under the age of 18. Do not receive XIAFLEX® if you have had an allergic reaction to collagenase clostridium histolyticum or any of the ingredients in XIAFLEX®, or to any other collagenase product. See the end of the Medication Guide for a complete list of ingredients in XIAFLEX®. XIAFLEX® can cause serious side effects, including: Tendon rupture or ligament damage. Receiving an injection of XIAFLEX® may cause damage to a tendon or ligament in your hand and cause it to break or weaken. This could require surgery to fix the damaged tendon or ligament. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have trouble bending your injected finger (towards the wrist) after the swelling goes down or you have problems using your treated hand after your follow-up visit Nerve injury or other serious injury of the hand. Call your healthcare provider right away if you get numbness, tingling, increased pain, or tears in the skin (laceration) in your treated finger or hand after your injection or after your follow-up visit Hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylaxis. Severe allergic reactions can happen in people who receive XIAFLEX® because it contains foreign proteins. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these symptoms of an allergic reaction after an injection of XIAFLEX®: hives swollen face breathing trouble chest pain low blood pressure dizziness or fainting Increased chance of bleeding. Bleeding or bruising at the injection site can happen in people who receive XIAFLEX®. Talk to your healthcare provider if you have a problem with your blood clotting. XIAFLEX® may not b Continue reading >>
How Type 2 Diabetes Can Damage Your Body
Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure in the U.S.(ISTOKEPHOTO) Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes by farmaking up more than 90% of the 24 million cases in the U.S. Experts use words like "epidemic" and "worldwide crisis" when they talk about it: Millions of people have it and a staggering number are expected to get it (300 million worldwide by 2025, according to one study). Diabetes doesn't get the attention of, say, cancer or scary viruses. One reason might be because type 2 diabetes is so incredibly commonabout 20% of people over age 60 get it. A large chunk of the population just seems to have the genetic programming to develop the disease with age. Type 2 diabetes is showing up in young people However, diabetes is also on the rise because our modern lifestylelots of food and little exercisespeeds up the process. So people who might have developed this "old-age disease" in their 60s and 70s are now developing the disease much earlier due to obesity and lack of exercise; sometimes in their teens or in childhood. Anyone can get diabetes. But some people are at much higher risk, particularly those who are obese. (Are you overweight? Use this body mass index calculator to find out.) One in three children born in the U.S. in 2000 will develop diabetes at some point in their life (including more than half of Hispanic females), according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study published in 2003. But not all is gloom and doom. If you have diabetes, you have a lot more control over the disease now than just about any other point in history. And if you have prediabetes, you have a good chance of preventing or delaying the disease by making lifestyle changes or taking medication. What happens in the body when you have type 2 diabetes Wit Continue reading >>