Type 2 diabetes is a chronic health condition that affects how your body turns food into energy. Most of the food you eat is turned into glucose, a type of sugar that your body uses for energy. Insulin, a hormone made by your pancreas, helps glucose get into your cells.
In people with type 2 diabetes, the body either doesn’t make enough insulin or doesn’t use insulin as well as it should. This causes glucose to build up in your blood. Over time, high blood sugar can cause serious health problems, such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, and kidney disease.
The exact cause of type 2 diabetes is unknown, but there are several factors that can increase your risk, including:
- Age: Your risk of developing type 2 diabetes increases as you get older.
- Family history: If you have a family history of type 2 diabetes, you’re more likely to develop it yourself.
- Weight: Being overweight or obese is a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes.
- Race: African Americans, Hispanic Americans, and Native Americans are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than white Americans.
- Physical activity: People who are physically inactive are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes.
- Certain medical conditions: If you have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), you’re more likely to develop type 2 diabetes.
There is no cure for type 2 diabetes, but it can be managed with a combination of diet, exercise, and medication. The goal of treatment is to keep your blood sugar levels as close to normal as possible.
If you have any of the symptoms of type 2 diabetes, such as frequent urination, increased thirst, unexplained weight loss, or blurry vision, see your doctor right away. Early diagnosis and treatment can help prevent serious complications.
Here are some tips for managing type 2 diabetes:
- Eat a healthy diet. This means eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. It also means limiting unhealthy fats, processed foods, and sugary drinks.
- Exercise regularly. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week.
- Take medication as prescribed. If you need medication to manage your blood sugar, take it as prescribed by your doctor.
- Monitor your blood sugar levels regularly. This will help you make sure that your treatment plan is working.
- See your doctor regularly. Your doctor will monitor your progress and make adjustments to your treatment plan as needed.
By following these tips, you can manage your type 2 diabetes and live a long and healthy life.