Life With Type Two Diabetes

Elena Beckman and Alli Mayfield

Biology of Diabetes

A type two diabetic's body produces insulin, but it does not function properly. After eating, the blood sugar rises, but the insulin is unable to "unlock the door" to your cells for the glucose to enter. Because of this, the blood sugar levels remain high.

How do I know if I have type two diabetes?

The first step to know if you suspect something isn't normal with your body is to go to your doctor. But you may be asking yourself "what should concern me?". Some signs to look for are pain, numbness, or tingling in your hands and feet, fatigue, blurred vision, frequent urination, increased thirst and hunger, and infections or wounds are healing slowly.

Who can help?

Exercise

Aerobic exercises have been proven to help your body use insulin better. A few exercises that you can do are swimming, walking, dancing, and even kickboxing.

Monitoring Blood Sugar

People who are diagnosed with diabetes use a blood glucose meter in order to know their blood sugar level. This device provides a diabetic with the information needed to know to maintain a healthy blood sugar level of about 80 to 130. To collect this information, the diabetic will prick their finger, put the drop of blood on a testing strip, get the results.

Dangers of High Blood Sugar

If your blood sugar is not properly monitored and increases, you could experience some unpleasant symptoms. When your blood sugar remains high you could feel extremely thirsty, causing you to drink lots of liquid and urinate frequently. Some other symptoms you could experience are increased appetite, fatigue, blurred vision, and lightheadedness.

What Foods Can I Eat?

A person with type two diabetes can eat anything you can. The only difference is that they have to be more careful about where their calories come from. The ideal diet is a wide variety of foods from all of the major food groups: protein, dairy, grains, fruits, and vegetables. Diabetics must also watch their proportion sizes. This means getting enough fiber without the excess fat, salt, and sugar. This doesn't mean that a diabetic can't have some dessert, it means that they need to watch what they eat and plan around it.

Treatment Options

Lifestyle changes may be enough for some diabetics, but for others, there are many different options. Many of these options revolve around insulin. Some long term insulin shots only require once daily, but others can be taken before every meal. If a diabetic has issues with needles or just wants an easier option, they can opt for an insulin pump that only needs to be changed about every 3 days.
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