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Diabetes mellitus type 2

Diabetes mellitus type 2: Description, Causes and Risk Factors:

Alternative Names: Type 2 diabetes, non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, adult-onset diabetes.

Diabetes mellitus type 2

Diabetes mellitus type 2 is a chronic disease marked by high levels of sugar (glucose) in the blood. Our body uses a hormone called insulin to handle glucose, which is a simple sugar that’s a main source of energy. To maintain a constant blood glucose level, the body relies on two hormones produced in the pancreas that have opposite actions, insulin and glucagon. In diabetes mellitus type 2, something goes wrong in the body so that you can not produce insulin or are not sensitive to it. That means that your body produces high levels of blood glucose, which acts on organs to produce the symptoms of the diabetes mellitus type 2. Diabetes mellitus type 2 ranks seventh as a cause of death in the United States, and costs the national economy over $100 billion yearly.

Risk factors may include:

  • Age greater than 45 years.
  • Race/ethnicity (African Americans, Hispanic Americans, and Native Americans all have high rates of diabetes).
  • High blood pressure.
  • HDL cholesterol of less than 35 mg/dL or triglyceride level of greater than 250 mg/dL.
  • History of gestational diabetes.
  • Previously identified impaired glucose tolerance by your doctor.


Symptoms may include:

  • Excessive thirst.
  • Increased urination.
  • Fatigue.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Sores that do not heal.
  • Weight loss.
  • In women, vaginal yeast infections or fungal infections under the breasts or in the groin.
  • Severe gum problems.
  • Itching.
  • Erectile dysfunction in men.
  • Unusual sensations, such as tingling or burning, in the extremities.

Complications may include:

  • Blindness.
  • Chronic renal failure or kidney failure.
  • Atherosclerosis.
  • Diabetic neuropathy.
  • Foot ulcers.
  • Autonomic neuropathy.


The diagnosis of diabetes is based on blood testing, which, wherever possible, should use venous samples, not capillary.

Your doctor can use any of the following ways to diagnose type 2 diabetes:

  • A fasting plasma glucose test measures your blood glucose level after you have gone at least 8 hours without eating. Experts recommend this test for diagnosis.
  • An oral glucose tolerance test measures your blood glucose level after you have gone at least 8 hours without eating and 2 hours after you drink a glucose-containing beverage.
  • In a random plasma glucose test, your doctor checks your blood glucose level at any time of the day without regard to when you last ate.

Above test results indicating that a person has diabetes should be confirmed with a second test on a different day.


With type 2 diabetes you have to eat healthy (fruits, vegetables, bread, milk) in order to keep your sugar levels well maintained

  • Fruits and vegetables (apples, bananas, broccoli, spinach, etc).
  • Whole grain, cereals, and bread. (Wheat, barley, rice, and bran).
  • Dairy products (yogurt, skim milk, cream).
  • Meat: Fish, poultry, eggs, dried beans.

Exercise at least 30 minutes for 4-5 days a week (swimming, walking, basketball, running, etc).

Making your insulin plan:

Everyone who takes insulin needs a personal insulin plan. Your doctor will help you make a plan that works for you.

Your plan will help you take insulin the way your body would make it if you did not have diabetes.

Your plan will be based on:

  • When and how much you eat.
  • Your current blood sugar level.
  • Your level of physical activity.
  • Your lifestyle.

Your plan will tell you:

  • What type of insulin to take.
  • How much insulin to take.
  • When to take it.

Preventive Measures:

  • Take your medication as prescribed.
  • Do not smoke.
  • Follow a balanced meal plan.
  • Be physically active.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Manage your stress effectively.
  • Keep your blood pressure close to target level.
  • Check your blood glucose levels regularly and keep them within your target range.
  • Keep your cholesterol and other blood fats within your target range.
  • Take care of your feet.
  • In addition to regular check-ups with your doctor, also include regular visits to your dentist and eye care specialist (every one to two years).

Disclaimer: The above information is educational purpose. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition.

DISCLAIMER: This information should not substitute for seeking responsible, professional medical care.


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