What Is Diabetes
Diabetes is a metabolism disturbance (metabolism is defined as the processes through which our body uses the food we eat for obtaining energy, basically all the chemical reactions that occur in any living cell to sustain life). Many aliments we eat are decomposed to glucose, which is the formula of sugar in the blood stream. Glucose is the main fuel of our body.
After digestion, the glucose passes into the blood stream and is delivered to the whole body, to every living cell where is used for energy purposes and growth. For glucose to enter the cell, presence of insulinis needed. Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas, a large size gland situated posterior to the stomach.
When we eat, the pancreas automatically produces the required amount of insulin for moving the large quantity of glucose from the blood stream inside the cells. For persons who suffer from diabetes, the pancreas produces less insulin than needed or not at all, or the cells do not respond adequately to the insulin produced by the pancreas. This way, the body loses its primary source of fuel, even though the blood contains high levels of glucose (sugar).
What are the types of diabetes?
- Diabetes type 1
- Diabetes type 2
- Gestational Diabetes
Diabetes type 1 is an autoimmune disease and occurs when the immune system of the body which main role normally is the anti-infectious one, turns against your own structures. In diabetes the immune system attacks the beta producing cells situated in the pancreas and destroys them. Therefore the pancreas produces insulin in small quantities or not at all. A person with type 1 diabetes must receive insulin every day to survive. Till present scientists don't know exactly what triggers the immune system to attack the beta cells, but genetic, auto immune, environmental and viral factors are suspicioned.
Diabetes type 1 occurs at approximately 5 to 10 % from all cases of diabetes. It is diagnosed frequently at children and young adults, but may occur at any age.
Diabetes type 2 is the most frequent type, approximately 89-95% from the total number of diabetes cases are type 2. This form is associated with older people, obesity, family cases of diabetes, lack of physical activity. Approximately 80% of diabetes type 2 patients are obese. When is diagnosed in the type 2 diabetes case, the pancreas produces enough insulin but due to still unknown causes the organism cannot use it effectively, situation named insulin resistance. After several years the production of insulin drops, resulting in type 1 diabetes. The quantity of glucose elevates in the blood stream and the body cannot use it as an energy source.
Gestational Diabetes occurs obviously during pregnancy and just like type 2 diabetes, appears more frequently at Afro Americans, Indians, Hispanics, and at women with family cases of diabetes.Woman who had gestational diabetes are prone to type 2 diabetes, with a 20 to 50 %probability factor in the next 5 to 10 years.