Type 2 Diabetes (Part 1 of 3)



This is a three part series that compiles and presents information on diabetes. Part 1 defines what diabetes is, part 2 is regarding measurement of glucose levels (levels of diabetes) and the effects of diabetes on the body and part 3 is regarding how to control diabetes.

We concern ourselves with Type-2 diabetes which is Part-1 of this series. Type-1 diabetes is not covered here.

Type 2 diabetes

Every body needs certain amount of sugar levels in blood. The sugar (glucose) comes from the food one consumes and from what the liver produces. Glucose level of 70–99 mg/dl is considered normal. We are concerned here with people with glucose levels higher than 100 who are called diabetic.

Diabetes occurs when a body cannot make or effectively use its own insulin, a hormone made by special cells in the pancreas called islets (eye-lets). Insulin serves as a “key” to open body cells, to allow the sugar (glucose) to enter. Then, the cells (body) uses that glucose for energy.

But with diabetes, several major things can go wrong to cause diabetes. Type 1 and type 2 diabetes are the most common forms of the disease.

The most common form of diabetes is called type 2 diabetes, or non-insulin dependent diabetes. About 90% of people with diabetes have type 2. Type 2 diabetes is also called adult onset diabetes, since it typically develops after age 35. A patient with Type 2 diabetes may have pancreas that produce lesser amount of insulin or the insulin that serves as the “key” to open the body’s cells, to allow the glucose to enter won’t work. In either case, the cells won’t open fully. This is called insulin resistance. Type 2 diabetes is typically tied to people who are overweight with a sedentary lifestyle.

One may ask: “what should be the sugar level and “what if the glucose (sugar level) is high”. These questions lead to Part-2.

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