That’s how diabetes occurs. Four symptoms that everyone ignores
Diabetes is a syndrome characterized by elevated blood glucose concentration (hyperglycaemia) and metabolic imbalance. The hormone called insulin allows the body’s cells to use glucose as a source of energy. When insulin secretion is inadequate or when insulin does not fulfil its role in the body, the condition is called diabetes.
Diabetes can be controlled by careful diet and weight monitoring and by physical exercise as a supplement to medical treatment.
WHO (World Health Organisation) recognizes three main forms of diabetes: type 1, type 2 and gestational (pregnancy related). The most common forms are type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes.
The term type 1 diabetes has replaced several old terms such as juvenile diabetes and insulin dependent diabetes. Similarly, the term type 2 diabetes has replaced old names, including insulin-independent diabetes (non-insulin-dependent).
Type 1 diabetes
Type 1 diabetes is characterized by the destruction of insulin-producing pancreatic beta cells from the Langerhans isles in the pancreas, leading to an insulin deficiency. The main cause is an autoimmune reaction mediated by T lymphocytes.
Type 1 diabetes accounts for about 10% of cases of diabetes in Europe and North America.
Most patients have their onset while fully healthy, often during childhood (although they may occur at any age). Insulin sensitivity is normal, especially in early stages.
Type 1 diabetes requires insulin injection treatment. In addition, a fairly strict diet is needed, with weighing food at each meal and calculating the carbohydrate count plus glycaemic self-control (blood glucose measurement at least before each meal).
Although advances in recent years are remarkable (more advanced insulin pens, insulin pumps, including wireless, continuous blood glucose monitoring), an artificial pancreas or another remedy for this disease is still delayed.
Type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is due to increased insulin resistance of tissues, accompanied by decreased insulin secretion. Lack of tissue insulin response is most likely due to alteration of the insulin receptor on the cell membrane. Factors that can cause type 2 diabetes include: sedentary lifestyle and calorie abundance of a modern diet, which is the result of obesity or even body mass index, smoking tobacco, cholesterol elevation, high blood pressure.
Type 2 is treated with oral medication for a long time, requiring external insulin intake only when oral treatment is no longer effective in controlling blood glucose (type 2 is characterized by high insulinemia (as a compensatory effect), a fact which leads, over time, to exhaustion of endogenous secretion capacity; new oral drugs that raise the sensitivity of cells to insulin tend to protect secretion, in contrast to those who, on the contrary, base their action on stimulating it.
1. You are always thirsty and hungry
One of the most common symptoms of diabetes is excessive thirst, accompanied by excessive urination. You are thirsty despite having already consumed enough liquid.
Diabetes can also cause excessive hunger.
You can feel that you are hungry even after having served a rich meal. What’s curious is that diabetes can cause weight loss even if you eat too much. This should not be considered an advantage by people who want to lose weight – but an alarming signal that it’s time to consult a doctor.
2. You have vision problems
Blurred vision is one of the most common symptoms of undiagnosed diabetes and sometimes the first clue observed. The pupils swell and change their shape, and the affected people can no longer concentrate.
Diabetes can also contribute to cataract, which may blur the vision, and the appearance of glaucoma, which destroys the vision – usually so slowly that it is overlooked. A regular ophthalmologic examination can identify such problems.
3. You feel tired and irritable
People with diabetes are often tired because their endocrine system has problems with burning glucose (blood sugar), which is also the main energy source of the body. Many people with diabetes also have other causes that increase fatigue, such as obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease or kidney problems.
Diabetes can cause irritability, depression or mood swings, resulting in a weakened ability to cope with daily tasks. These people just do not feel good, their brains do not have the necessary glucose.
4. Your wounds heal with difficulty
Slow healing wounds are one of the most problematic signs of diabetes. It may take quite a long time for a simple cut or scratch to heal for someone with diabetes. Why?
Blood supply does not work very well, and then the immune cells that help the wounds heal do not react properly. If not treated, the wounds of diabetics can become very dangerous.