Did you know that diabetes is among the top causes of death in the U.S.?
Here are the top ten causes of death in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Top causes of death in U.S.
- Heart disease
- Chronic lower respiratory disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Flu and Pneumonia
- Kidney disease
With diabetes number 7 on the top causes of death, it’s important to get tested and be aware of the many diabetes facts and symptoms of diabetes. Many people have diabetes or prediabetes and don’t even know it.
What is type 2 diabetes?
Healthy bodies produce insulin in order to convert sugar into energy. Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body stops responding to insulin produced in the pancreas. When this happens, blood sugar builds up in the blood stream and damages tiny blood vessels throughout the body.
Type 2 diabetes is often called a lifestyle disease because it typically results from poor diet and lack of exercise. However, even healthy people can develop the disease if their body stops processing insulin correctly. This is how type 2 diabetes differs from type 1 diabetes, which is an autoimmune disease where the pancreas produces little to no insulin.
Type 2 diabetes can sometimes be symptomless and go undetected for years. If you have any of the following symptoms, talk with your doctor about testing your blood sugar to check for type 2 diabetes:
- Increased thirst
- Frequent urination
- Increased hunger
- Blurred vision
- Weight loss
- Slow-healing wounds
- Areas of darkened skin around neck or armpits
Although it’s largely considered a lifestyle disease, there are certain risk factors that might make a person more susceptible for developing type 2. Risk factors include:
- Being overweight or obese
- Carrying excess weight around the midsection
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Family history of diabetes
- History of gestational diabetes
- History of prediabetes or insulin resistance
- Age 45 or older
Complications that can arise with diabetes include kidney problems, eye problems, heart disease, neuropathy, and amputation. Diabetes is manageable if you take the right steps. If you think you might have diabetes, see a doctor and make a plan to get on a path to health.