As we all familiar the Diabetes is a medical condition characterized by high levels of sugar in your blood. In the case of diabetes, your body does not process food efficiently to make use of energy. If you were told you have diabetes and if you want to live well, you need to upgrade your living. What would you do? Is this how you would feel? Change is always difficult. And this Article features the small changes you can make to alter your life.
This Article is a comprehensive tool that provides effective guidelines for the treatment of diabetes.
This article is all about,
What is Diabetes?
The food we eat is turned into glucose or sugar (i.e. to use for energy) by the help of hormone insulin. This hormone is secreted by the pancreas and help glucose get into the cells of our body. When you have diabetes, your body either does not make any insulin, or enough insulin or the insulin that is produced does not work properly (i.e. insulin resistance) causing the sugar to build up in your blood. This condition can also be referred to as “sugar” in layman terms.
A diabetic may have some or none the following symptoms:
- Frequent urination
- Cuts/bruises that are slow to heal
- Excessive thirst
- Extreme fatigue
- Unexplained weight loss
- Extreme hunger
- More infections than usual
- Sudden vision changes (blurry vision)
- Tingling or numbness in hands or feet
- Very dry skin
Types of Diabetes
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes was previously known as juvenile diabetes or insulin-dependent diabetes. As the name suggests, the body comes in an insulin-dependent state where little or no insulin is produced by the pancreas.
Factors that may contribute to this type include genetics, exposure to certain viruses, autoimmune, and environmental. This type of diabetes usually appears during childhood or adolescence; however, it also can begin in adults. Moreover, this type of diabetes accounts for 5 % to 10 % of all diagnosed cases.
Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes was previously known as non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) or adult-onset diabetes. In type 2 diabetes, your body does not respond correctly to insulin and develops an insulin resistance which causes sugar to accumulate in the blood instead of being stored for energy. This state of a high level of sugar build up in the blood is called hyperglycaemia.
Moreover, this type usually occurs in overweight or obese people like the increased fat in your body makes it harder to use insulin the correct way. However, it can also develop in people who are thin.
Factors that contribute to this type are:
- Family history
- Low activity level
- Poor diet
- Older age
- Prior history of gestational diabetes
- Impaired glucose tolerance
- Race or ethnicity
Treatment of Diabetes
The aim of diabetes treatment is to keep the level of blood glucose in your body as near to normal as possible. Insulin is produced by the beta cells inside the pancreas. After every meal, these cells release insulin to help the body use or store the glucose it gets from food.
Type 1 diabetics are prescribed with insulin because their beta cells are completely destroyed and no longer produce insulin.
Type 2 diabetics make insulin but their bodies don’t respond to it. In such cases, pills are prescribed to help their bodies use glucose for energy. In certain situations, people with type 2 may take insulin slots as well.
Insulin has four types and they differentiate from each other based on its onset (i.e. how soon it starts working), peak time (i.e. when it works the best) and duration (i.e. how long it lasts). However, each person responds to insulin in his or her own way. Following is a list of the types of insulin.
Lispro Insulin (Rapid-acting)
Onset: 15 minutes after injection
Peak time: 30 to 90 minutes later
Duration: May lasts as long as 5 hours
Regular Insulin (Short-acting)
Onset: 30 minutes after injection
Peak time: 2 to 4 hours later
Duration: May lasts as long as 4 to 8 hours
NPH and Lente Insulin (intermediate-acting)
Onset: 2 to 6 hours after injection
Peak time: 4 to 14 hours later
Duration: May lasts as long as 14 to 20 hours
Ultralente Insulin (long-acting)
Onset: 6 to 14 hours after injection
Peak time: small peak 10 to 16 hours later
Duration: May lasts as long as 20 to 24 hours
Treatment Of Diabetes With Medication
Medication is another treatment option that is considered for people with diabetes. Numerous types of medicines (anti-diabetic drugs) including insulin (discussed earlier) are prescribed to diabetics depending on their condition.
Each drug is unique and works to help patients keep their blood sugar under control. However, some act alike and are paired in the same class. Some medicines are taken orally while others are injected directly into the blood.
Following is a list of medicines for diabetes:
It slows down carb digestion. Example: Acarbose
It assists insulin in controlling post-meal glucose levels. Example: (Pramlintide)
It prevents the production of glucose in the liver. Example: Metformin
It avoids incretin hormones from being destroyed. Example: (Sitagliptin),(Vildagliptin), (Saxagliptin)
It imitates the actions of the body’s incretin hormones. Example: (Liraglutide), (Exenatide), (Exenatide), (Lixisenatide)
Prandial Glucose Regulators
It stimulates pancreatic beta cells to produce insulin. Example:(Repaglinide)
It acts on the kidneys to lower blood glucose levels. Example: (Dapagliflozin), (Canagliflozin)
It stimulates the production of insulin by the pancreas. Example: (Glimepiride)
It reduces the body’s resistance to insulin. Example: (Pioglitazone)
The purpose of an artificial pancreas is to release insulin in response to changes in blood glucose level. It is a man-made device that pairs the technology of an insulin pump with a continuous glucose monitor. The monitor measures the glucose level in the blood whereas the insulin pump delivery (if needed) a certain amount of dosage of insulin into the body.
This artificial pancreas is implanted through surgery and is smaller than the palm of your hand. Moreover, the system uses a bioresponsive gel that makes the release of insulin smoother. The insulin pump releases the insulin into a membrane (peritoneum) in the abdominal cavity which is then passed into the bloodstream.
This implantable system is very useful but it needs regular insulin refilling.
Research has proven that herbs and spices have characteristics that help lower blood sugar. Moreover, clinical studies have generated positive links between herbal therapies and improved blood glucose control.
Some studies have supported plant-based therapies for their anti-diabetic properties. Examples include: Aloe vera, Bilberry extract, Bitter melon, Cinnamon, Fenugreek, Ginger, Okra
Moreover, the following is a list of alternative therapies that may or may not help a diabetic depending on his/her condition:
- Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture
- Dietary Supplements
- Relaxation Therapy and Guided Imagery
- Massage Therapy and Reflexology
- Colour, Music and Art Therapy