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How Long Can A Type 2 Diabetic Go Without Insulin

Missing Meals? Avoid Dangerous Blood Sugar If You Have Diabetes

Missing Meals? Avoid Dangerous Blood Sugar If You Have Diabetes

Skipping a meal is typically no big deal. But if you have diabetes, missing meals can throw off the important balancing act between food intake and medication. The result is blood sugars that are too low (hypoglycemia) or too high (hyperglycemia) — and that’s dangerous. “If you take medications for diabetes that can cause low blood sugars, you should try not to skip meals,” says registered dietician Dawn Noe. “If you’re just not up to eating on a regular schedule, talk to your doctor about diabetes medications that won’t cause low blood sugars,” she says. Monitoring sugars is vital When you’re ill or just don’t feel like eating much, it’s important to monitor your blood sugar levels more closely than ever. How often depends on whether you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes and what medications you take. For type 1 diabetes: Be sure to monitor your blood sugar before meals and before bedtime, typically four times per day, says diabetes specialist Bartolome Burguera, MD. Beyond that, check your blood sugars if you notice symptoms of low blood sugar. Those symptoms include: Hunger Shakiness or nervousness Sweating Dizziness or light-headedness Sleepiness Confusion Difficulty speaking Anxiety Weakness For type 2 diabetes: If you are taking a sulfonylurea medication, check your blood sugars at least twice a day — in the morning and at bedtime. “It’s important to keep in mind that sulfonylureas may cause blood sugar to drop during the day if you don’t eat anything after taking your medication,” Dr. Burguera says. If your only treatment is metformin, you may not need to check your blood sugar more than once a day. This medication doesn’t typically cause hypoglycemia. It is important to be aware of the symptoms associated with low blood sugars and Continue reading >>

7 Scary Things That Can Happen When You Don't Treat Your Diabetes

7 Scary Things That Can Happen When You Don't Treat Your Diabetes

Swallowing pills, checking your blood sugar all the time, or sticking yourself with needles full of insulin probably doesn't sound like your idea of a good time. But taking steps to keep your diabetes under control is your best shot at preventing a slew of frightening complications. If you don't take care of yourself, "diabetes complications typically start within 5 years; within 10 to 15 years, the majority of patients will progress to have multiple health issues," says Betul Hatipoglu, MD, an endocrinologist at Cleveland Clinic. Fortunately, eating a nutritious diet, exercising, and taking your medication may not only stop complications from progressing, but can also reverse them, she says. Need motivation to stick to your treatment plan? Here's what can happen when you slack off. With type 1 diabetes, your body stops producing insulin, a hormone that regulates blood sugar; with type 2 diabetes, your body can't properly use the insulin you do produce. In turn, your HDL (or "good") cholesterol lowers, and your levels of harmful blood fats called triglycerides rise. Insulin resistance also contributes to hardened, narrow arteries, which in turn increases your blood pressure. As a result, about 70% of people with either type of diabetes also have hypertension—a risk factor for stroke, heart disease, and trouble with thinking and memory. (Add these 13 power foods to your diet to help lower blood pressure naturally.) Failing to control high blood pressure and high cholesterol, either with diet and exercise alone or by adding medications, accelerates the rate at which all your other complications progress, says Robert Gabbay, MD, PhD, chief medical officer at Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston. More than 4 million people with diabetes have some degree of retinopathy, or dam Continue reading >>

About Diabetes

About Diabetes

How Diabetes Develops After eating a meal, the food is broken down by the digestive system and blood sugar (or glucose) rises. The pancreas is an organ near the stomach, which produces a hormone called insulin. With the help of insulin, the body's cells take up the glucose and use it for energy. When your body does not produce enough insulin and/or does not efficiently use the insulin it produces, sugar levels rise in the bloodstream. When this happens, it can cause two problems: Right away, the body's cells may be starved for energy. Over time, high blood glucose levels may damage the eyes, kidneys, nerves or heart. Types of Diabetes There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. A family history of diabetes can significantly increase a person's risk of developing the condition. Type 1 Diabetes Type 1 diabetes is a serious condition that occurs when the pancreas makes little or no insulin. Without insulin, the body is unable to take the glucose (blood sugar) it gets from food into cells to fuel the body. People with type 1 diabetes must take daily insulin or other medications daily. For that reason, this type of diabetes is also referred to as insulin-dependent diabetes. Type 1 diabetes was previously known as juvenile diabetes because it's usually diagnosed in children and young adults. However, this chronic, lifelong disease can strike at any age, and those with a family history of type 1 diabetes have a greater risk. Health Risks for Type 1 Diabetes During the development of type 1 diabetes, the body's immune system attacks certain cells (called beta cells) in the pancreas. Although the reasons this occurs are still unknown, the effects are clear. Once these cells are destroyed, the pancreas produces little or no insulin, so the glucose s Continue reading >>

> Diabetes: What's True And False?

> Diabetes: What's True And False?

If you're like most people with diabetes, you'll get all kinds of advice about it from friends and family or online. Some of this information is wrong. Here's the truth about some of the common things you might hear. No, it doesn't. Type 1 diabetes happens when cells in the pancreas that make insulin are destroyed. This happens because something goes wrong with the body's immune system. It has nothing to do with how much sugar a person eats. Sugar doesn't cause diabetes. But there is one way that sugar can influence whether a person gets type 2 diabetes. Consuming too much sugar (or sugary foods and drinks) can make people put on weight. Gaining weight leads to type 2 diabetes in some people. Of course, eating too much sugar isn't the only reason why people gain weight. Weight gain from eating too much of any food can make a person's chance of getting diabetes greater. Can people with diabetes eat sweets? Yes! You can have your cake and eat it too, just not the whole cake! Like everyone, people with diabetes should put the brakes on eating too many sweets. But you can still enjoy sweets sometimes. Do people "grow out of" diabetes? People with type 1 diabetes don't grow out of it. With type 1 diabetes, the pancreas stops making insulin and won't make it again. People with type 1 diabetes will always need to take insulin, at least until scientists find a cure for diabetes. People with type 2 diabetes will always have a tendency to get high blood sugar levels. But if they take steps to live a healthier life, it can sometimes lower their blood sugar. If people eat healthy foods and exercise enough to get their blood sugar levels back on track, doctors might say they can stop taking insulin or other medicines. Can you catch diabetes from a person who has it? No. Diabetes is Continue reading >>

The High Price Of Insulin Is Literally Killing People

The High Price Of Insulin Is Literally Killing People

Diabetics stretching their doses should be scared of the GOP’s health plan. Micaela Marini Higgs Apr 5 2017, 12:00pm Image: JEAN-FRANCOIS MONIER / Stringer / Getty Shane Patrick Boyle died on March 18th, 2017, from Type I Diabetes. Not from late-in-life complications from the disease, or from some unexpected situation—Boyle died because he was $50 short of reaching his $750 GoFundMe goal to pay for a month's supply of insulin, the drug necessary to keep diabetics alive. After presumably stretching the meds he had as long as they could possibly go, he developed diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), a fatal complication that results from the body being unable to move glucose out of the blood and into cells, where it's needed. Advertisement Boyle had recently relocated from Houston, Texas, to Mena, Arkansas, so he could be with his ailing mother Judith, who died a week before Shane did. By crossing state lines, he lost his prescription benefits. The cause of his death, really, was complications from waiting for his new healthcare status to be approved. When you're on an ACA plan without an out-of-state network, you can only use their insurance for emergency or urgent care, not prescriptions, says Obianuju Helen Okoye, a public health physician and healthcare consultant in St. Louis, Missouri. Even when people think their plan has out-of-state coverage, that isn't always the case, since multi-state plans "don't necessarily have network providers or cover services in multiple states," according to healthcare.gov. In both of these scenarios, patients pay for prescriptions like insulin out of pocket. Type 1 diabetes, which according to the CDC accounts for about 5 percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes, is an autoimmune condition in which the body attacks and destroys the insul Continue reading >>

Insulin For Type 1 And Type 2 Diabetes

Insulin For Type 1 And Type 2 Diabetes

Examples The different types of insulin are categorized according to how fast they start to work (onset) and how long they continue to work (duration). The types now available include rapid-, short-, intermediate-, and long-acting insulin. Rapid-acting Generic Name Brand Name insulin aspart NovoLog insulin glulisine Apidra insulin human (inhalation powder) Afrezza insulin lispro Humalog Short-acting Intermediate-acting Long-acting Generic Name Brand Name insulin detemir Levemir insulin glargine Lantus Mixtures Generic Name Brand Name 70% NPH and 30% regular Humulin 70/30, Novolin 70/30 50% lispro protamine and 50% lispro Humalog Mix 50/50 75% lispro protamine and 25% lispro Humalog Mix 75/25 70% aspart protamine and 30% aspart NovoLog Mix 70/30 50% NPH and 50% regular Humulin 50/50 Packaging Injectable insulin is packaged in small glass vials (bottles) and cartridges that hold more than one dose and are sealed with rubber lids. The cartridges are used in pen-shaped devices called insulin pens. Inhaled insulin is a powder that is packaged in a cartridge. Cartridges hold certain dosages of insulin, and more than one cartridge might be needed to take enough insulin. How insulin is taken Insulin usually is given as an injection into the tissues under the skin (subcutaneous). It can also be given through an insulin pump, an insulin pen, or jet injector, a device that sprays the medicine into the skin. Some insulins can be given through a vein (only in a hospital). Powdered insulin is packaged in a cartridge, which fits into an inhaler. Using the inhaler, a person breathes in to take the insulin. How It Works Insulin lets sugar (glucose) in the blood enter cells, where it is used for energy. Without insulin, the blood sugar level rises above what is safe for the body. If the Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes And Insulin

Type 2 Diabetes And Insulin

People with type 2 diabetes do not always have to take insulin right away; that is more common in people with type 1 diabetes. The longer someone has type 2 diabetes, the more likely they will require insulin. Just as in type 1 diabetes, insulin is a way to control your blood glucose level. With type 2 diabetes, though, dietary changes, increasing physical activity, and some oral medications are usually enough to bring your blood glucose to a normal level. To learn about how the hormone insulin works, we have an article that explains the role of insulin. There are several reasons people with type 2 diabetes may want to use insulin: It can quickly bring your blood glucose level down to a healthier range. If your blood glucose level is excessively high when you are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, the doctor may have you use insulin to lower your blood glucose level—in a way that’s much faster than diet and exercise. Insulin will give your body a respite; it (and especially the beta cells that produce insulin) has been working overtime to try to bring down your blood glucose level. In this scenario, you’d also watch what you eat and exercise, but having your blood glucose under better control may make it easier to adjust to those lifestyle changes. It has fewer side effects than some of the medications: Insulin is a synthetic version of a hormone our bodies produce. Therefore, it interacts with your body in a more natural way than medications do, leading to fewer side effects. The one side effect is hypoglycemia. It can be cheaper. Diabetes medications can be expensive, although there is an array of options that try to cater to people of all economic levels. However, insulin is generally cheaper than medications (on a monthly basis), especially if the doctor wants yo Continue reading >>

How Long Can A Diabetic Go Without Food?

How Long Can A Diabetic Go Without Food?

A diabetic cannot go without food for long. If a diabetic doesn't eat regularly, her blood glucose level can plummet. Diabetics should eat snacks and meals on a schedule because a delay of as little as half an hour can lower blood sugar, which can have catastrophic results. Diabetics are especially prone to a condition known as hypoglycemia, a reaction caused by too much insulin in the bloodstream. Once a diabetic takes insulin, it is important to eat something within 30 minutes before blood sugar begins dropping. The dose of insulin you take must also match the amount of carbohydrates you consume in order to keep blood sugar levels under control. When a diabetic does not eat enough food, but still administers insulin, blood glucose levels can drop dangerously low, inducing hypoglycemia. Early signs of hypoglycemia include dizziness, weakness, headache, hunger or shakiness. If blood glucose drops too low, a person can become confused or even lose consciousness. In some cases, insulin shock can lead to coma. Although all diabetics suffer hypoglycemia at times, according to the American Diabetes Association, you should talk to your doctor about what your blood glucose levels should be. If your blood sugar falls below what your doctor recommends, you are likely hypoglycemic. When hypoglycemia occurs, you need to get some sugar into your body quickly. Fruit juice, milk, a few pieces of hard candy, or a tablespoon of sugar or honey can help raise glucose levels in the blood temporarily. Diabetics often need to adjust the doses of insulin they take depending on how many grams of carbohydrates they eat for a meal or snack. While this balance can be different for one person than for another, counting the carbohydrates you consume allows you to maintain a healthful blood glucose Continue reading >>

Diabetes During A Disaster: What To Do When You’re Out Of Medication

Diabetes During A Disaster: What To Do When You’re Out Of Medication

by James Hubbard, M.D., M.P.H. Okay, it’s disaster time, you’re a type 2 diabetic, and you’ve run out of or lost your oral medication. What do you do? Here are some ideas to lower your blood sugar. First, continue your diet and exercise. If you’re on oral medications that means you still produce insulin. Insulin works most efficiently when you (1) eat small meals not loaded with simple sugars, (2) stay hydrated with water, (3) do a little exercise. Of course, you and your family’s safety comes first, and you may already be working to exhaustion, but if you’re stuck sitting all day in a shelter, get up and stir around a bit. This is good advice with or without your medication. Natural Ways to Lower Blood Sugar When You’re Without Medication There are about as many natural suggestions to lower your blood sugar as there are type 2 diabetics. Few work very well. None work nearly as well as prescription medication. Of the ones I’ve found, here are the three with the most evidence that they can significantly lower your blood sugar. Before trying any of these, check with your doctor. Although they can’t take the place of your prescriptions, if you take your regular dose of medication plus one of these, your blood sugar can drop too low. To make ginseng tea, just pour boiling water over five to eight slices of ginseng. Steep four to five minutes (or longer for stronger tea). Schumacher Ginseng, a ginseng farm in Wisconsin, says you can reuse the ginseng for two or three more cups of tea and then eat it. The question would be whether repeated steeping reduces the components that help with blood sugar. 1. Alpha-lipoic acid It’s found in liver, spinach, broccoli, and potatoes. There’s also a supplement. Recommended dose is 200–300 mg per day. 2. American gi Continue reading >>

Diabetes Life Expectancy

Diabetes Life Expectancy

Tweet After diabetes diagnosis, many type 1 and type 2 diabetics worry about their life expectancy. Death is never a pleasant subject but it's human nature to want to know 'how long can I expect to live'. There is no hard and fast answer to the question of ‘how long can I expect to live’ as a number of factors influence one’s life expectancy. How soon diabetes was diagnosed, the progress of diabetic complications and whether one has other existing conditions will all contribute to one’s life expectancy - regardless of whether the person in question has type 1 or type 2 diabetes. How long can people with diabetes expect to live? Diabetes UK estimates in its report, Diabetes in the UK 2010: Key Statistics on Diabetes[5], that the life expectancy of someone with type 2 diabetes is likely to be reduced, as a result of the condition, by up to 10 years. People with type 1 diabetes have traditionally lived shorter lives, with life expectancy having been quoted as being reduced by over 20 years. However, improvement in diabetes care in recent decades indicates that people with type 1 diabetes are now living significantly longer. Results of a 30 year study by the University of Pittsburgh, published in 2012, noted that people with type 1 diabetes born after 1965 had a life expectancy of 69 years.[76] How does diabetic life expectancy compare with people in general? The Office for National Statistics estimates life expectancy amongst new births to be: 77 years for males 81 years for females. Amongst those who are currently 65 years old, the average man can expect to live until 83 years old and the average woman to live until 85 years old. What causes a shorter life expectancy in diabetics? Higher blood sugars over a period of time allow diabetic complications to set in, su Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes Faqs

Type 2 Diabetes Faqs

Common questions about type 2 diabetes: How do you treat type 2 diabetes? When you have type 2 diabetes, you first need to eat a healthy diet, stay physically active and lose any extra weight. If these lifestyle changes cannot control your blood sugar, you also may need to take pills and other injected medication, including insulin. Eating a healthy diet, being physically active, and losing any extra weight is the first line of therapy. “Diet and exercise“ is the foundation of all diabetes management because it makes your body’s cells respond better to insulin (in other words, it decreases insulin resistance) and lowers blood sugar levels. If you cannot normalize or control the blood sugars with diet, weight loss and exercise, the next treatment phase is taking medicine either orally or by injection. Diabetes pills work in different ways – some lower insulin resistance, others slow the digestion of food or increase insulin levels in the blood stream. The non-insulin injected medications for type 2 diabetes have a complicated action but basically lower blood glucose after eating. Insulin therapy simply increases insulin in the circulation. Don’t be surprised if you have to use multiple medications to control the blood sugar. Multiple medications, also known as combination therapy is common in the treatment of diabetes! If one medication is not enough, you medical provider may give you two or three or more different types of pills. Insulin or other injected medications also may be prescribed. Or, depending on your medical condition, you may be treated only with insulin or injected medication therapy. Many people with type 2 diabetes have elevated blood fats (high triglycerides and cholesterol) and blood pressure, so you may be given medications for these problem Continue reading >>

What Is The Life Expectancy For Diabetics?

What Is The Life Expectancy For Diabetics?

Diabetes is recognized as one of the leading causes of disability and death worldwide. There was a time when Type 2 diabetes was common in people in their late forties and fifties. However, thanks to the easy availability of processed foods, sedentary lifestyles, poor sleep and a host of other unfavorable factors, type 2 diabetes affects millions of young adults throughout the globe today. A report was commissioned in 2010 by the National Academy on an Aging Society. It showed that diabetes cut off an average of 8.5 years from the lifespan of a regular, diabetic 50-year-old as compared to a 50-year-old without the disease. This data was provided by the Health and Retirement Study, a survey of more than 20,000 Americans over the age of 50, done every two years by the University of Michigan. Characterized by high blood glucose levels, T2D can be the result of a combination of genes, obesity and an unhealthy lifestyle. If left untreated, diabetes can be life-threatening. Complications of this disease can take a serious toll on a patient’s health and well-being. So, how long do diabetics live, you ask? Does having diabetes shorten one’s life? Let’s address these questions, one by one. MORE: Decoding The Dawn Phenomenon (High Morning Blood Sugar) How Long Do Diabetics Live? Diabetes is a system-wide disorder which is categorized by elevated blood glucose levels. This blood travels throughout the human body and when it is laden with sugar, it damages multiple systems. When the condition is left unchecked or is managed poorly, the lifespan of diabetic patients is reduced due to constant damage. Early diagnosis and treatment of diabetes for preventing its long-term complications is the best coping strategy. So, don’t ignore your doctor’s advice if you’re pre-diabeti Continue reading >>

Treating Type 2 Diabetes Without Insulin

Treating Type 2 Diabetes Without Insulin

When you think of diabetes medication, you probably think of insulin. In many cases, treatment for type 2 diabetes may never actually involve insulin replacement. Although type 2 diabetes is caused by a failure of the body to make or properly use its own insulin, a hormone needed for blood sugar control, there are many treatment plans for type 2 diabetes without insulin replacement. “You could say that everybody with type 2 diabetes will eventually need insulin if they lived long enough," explains Kevin M. Pantalone, DO, an endocrinologist and diabetes expert at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. "But in reality, only about 20 to 30 percent of people with type 2 diabetes ever need it. We have lots of other options we can use first." First-Line Options: Diet, Exercise, and Metformin “Diet and exercise alone were once the standard diabetes therapies for early type 2 diabetes, but that has changed over the past few years," Dr. Pantalone says. "The American Diabetes Association (ADA) now recommends starting the diabetes medication metformin early. Today, only a minority of people are prescribed diet and exercise alone for diabetes." According to a review of type 2 diabetes management plans published in the journal Clinical Diabetes in 2012, metformin should be used as initial therapy for type 2 diabetes because it can lower A1C by 1 to 2 percent. A1C is a blood test that measures your average blood sugar over the past two to three months. The goal is to have an A1C score of 7 percent or less. Doctors use this measurement to decide on treatment options from lifestyle changes and oral medications to insulin replacement. Here’s more on the first-line treatments for diabetes: A diabetes diet. A healthy diet is important for controlling blood sugar, maintaining a healthy weight Continue reading >>

Reversing Diabetes Is Possible

Reversing Diabetes Is Possible

Bethesda, Maryland (CNN) -- When Jonathan Legg of Bethesda, Maryland, got a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes at 39, he was shocked. "I had always been pretty active," said Legg. "But it was a big wake-up call, that what I was doing and my current weight were not OK." That was two years ago. Since that time, the Morgan Stanley executive decided to make some changes and reverse his diabetes. Although his doctor recommended he go on medication to control his illness, Legg took a different approach. Instead of meds, he began to exercise every day and changed his diet, cutting out alcohol, fatty foods and watching his carbs. Do you have diabetes? How well are you managing it? "I wanted to be able to know the changes I was making were making a difference, and it wasn't the drug," said Legg. According to new statistics just out from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 25.8 million people, or 8.3% of the U.S. population, are affected by either type 1 or type 2 diabetes. Most, like Legg, have type 2 diabetes, which in many people develops later in life. Caused primarily by genetic makeup, a sedentary lifestyle and poor eating habits, type 2 diabetes can be reversed in some cases. By making changes to their lives such as adding exercise and improving their diets, many type 2 diabetics can drop their glucose or sugar numbers back to the normal range, reversing their condition. "We have seen numerous people reverse their condition," says Dr. Michelle Magee, director of the MedStar Diabetes Institute in Washington. "But it takes a real dedication for the rest of their lives," she notes. So why do exercise and diet help reverse diabetes? To answer that question, we first need to know why people get diabetes in the first place. Diabetes is caused when there is too much glucose Continue reading >>

Why Do Some Patients With Type 1 Diabetes Live So Long?

Why Do Some Patients With Type 1 Diabetes Live So Long?

Go to: Abstract While the lifespan of people with type 1 diabetes has increased progressively since the advent of insulin therapy, these patients still experience premature mortality, primarily from cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, a subgroup of those with type 1 diabetes survives well into old age without significant morbidity. It is the purpose of this review to explore the factors which may help in identifying these patients. It might be expected that hyperglycaemia plays a major role in explaining the increased incidence of CVD and mortality of these individuals. However, while a number of publications have associated poor long term glycaemic control with an increase in both all-cause mortality and CVD in those with type 1 diabetes, it is apparent that good glycaemic control alone cannot explain why some patients with type 1 diabetes avoid fatal CVD events. Lipid disorders may occur in those with type 1 diabetes, but the occurrence of elevated high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol is positively associated with longevity in this population. Non-renal hypertension, by itself is a significant risk factor for CVD but if adequately treated does not appear to mitigate against longevity. However, the presence of nephropathy is a major risk factor and its absence after 15-20 years of diabetes appears to be a marker of long-term survival. One of the major factors linked with long-term survival is the absence of features of the metabolic syndrome and more specifically the presence of insulin sensitivity. Genetic factors also play a role, with a family history of longevity and an absence of type 2 diabetes and hypertension in the family being important considerations. There is thus a complex interaction between multiple risk factors in determining which patients with type Continue reading >>

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