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DIABETES, TYPE II
Diabetes, type II, is a common disease in the United States, and this epidemic has been on a steep increase for the past few decades. About 10 % of Americans have type II diabetes, and less than 1 % of Americans have type I diabetes. There is a marked decrease in type II diabetes outside the United States, with the exception of more developed countries. 2 % of the international population has this disease. There is a direct correlation between being overweight or obese and developing Diabetes, type II. This type of diabetes is different from type I in that type II is a disorder in the uptake and sensitivity to Insulin, rather than a lack of Insulin -as in type I.
When you eat food, and particularly food with high sugar or carbohydrate content, this causes a spike in your blood sugar (blood glucose). In order to regulate this spike, the hormone Insulin is released naturally into your body, which causes an uptake of the sugar into tissues like muscle, fat, and the liver. With type II diabetes, these tissues become less sensitive to Insulin over time and your blood sugar will eventually remain high. Insulin loses its ability to cause your blood sugar to go in to your muscles, fat, and liver. If your blood sugar is elevated for an extended period of time, as with type II diabetes, this can cause permanent damage to organs and tissues.
Just like the electrolyte sodium, sugar concentration in our blood is regulated by physiological mechanisms in order to stay within a healthy range. In a person without diabetes, two hormones: Insulin & Glucogon, play opposite roles in the uptake and release of sugar into the blood. The liver plays an important role in this process and if damaged, can lead to damaging effects in your body. When this sensitive system is impaired, as with type II diabetes, the kidneys first kick in to try and void the extra sugar in the blood. This is why some of the first signs of the onset of type II diabetes include polyuria (increased urination) and increased thirst.
Additional symptoms of type II diabetes can include dizziness, fatigue, excessive hunger, and nausea. If the kidneys are over worked and overexposed to high concentrations of blood sugar, they will eventual start scarring & breaking down. This is why many diabetics require dialysis treatments in later stages. Dialysis is when you are hooked up to a machine, usually on a regular basis, and your blood is cleaned before re-entering your body. The blood requires cleaning by a medical machine because your body’s natural cleaning organs, the kidneys, are too damaged to perform their natural job. Dialysis usually takes several hours and is often performed several times a week. A person may feel fatigued or confused following these regular treatments.
When diabetes is left untreated it can lead to a slew of other complications. Some examples of diabetic complications include atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), heart attack, stroke, decreased vision, amputations, kidney failure, nerve damage, peripheral vascular disease, inability to walk, deafness, paralysis, dementia, inability to talk, infections, cancer, and death.
If a person’s type II diabetes is caused by being overweight or obese, often this type of diabetes can be improved or even eliminated if the person simply loses weight, exercises regularly, and begins eating more nutritiously. (10, 8C)