Diabetes is a chronic disease which hinders the body’s ability to process food, specifically glucose, properly. In order to metabolize glucose the body requires insulin, which is produced by the pancreas and is essential to the metabolic process. Diabetes causes the body to either not produce enough insulin or not be able to properly metabolize glucose. Without insulin to turn glucose into energy, the glucose piles up in the bloodstream. Prolonged high blood glucose can cause glucose absorption in the lens of the eye, which leads to changes in its shape, resulting in vision changes. Blurred vision is a common complaint leading to a diabetes diagnosis. A number of skin rashes that can occur in diabetes are collectively known as diabetic dermadromes. High sugar levels in an individual’s blood and urine are the most common symptom of diabetes.

There is no cure for diabetes but it can be controlled effectively through diet and medicine. The specific kind of treatment used to control blood sugars depends on the specific type of diabetes. There are two types of diabetes - Type I and Type II.

Type I Diabetes

In this form of Diabetes the pancreas produces little or no insulin so the body cannot properly metabolize glucose. Although the causes for this are not entirely known it is unrelated to lifestyle and is link with heredity. Research shows in this instance of Diabetes the immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. In order to have the necessary insulin to properly function, individuals with Type I Diabetes must take injections of insulin every day in order to metabolize their food. The individual can test their own blood sugar levels to determine the proper dosage of insulin needed.

This form of Diabetes is commonly referred to as “juvenile diabetes” because it usually appears in children or young adults.

Type II Diabetes

Type II Diabetes refers to a condition where the pancreas is still producing insulin but the body is not using it effectively. So, despite of the presence of adequate amounts of insulin, blood glucose levels are not normal. Several lifestyle factors contribute to the development of Type II Diabetes including obesity, lack of physical activity, poor diet, and stress. Type II Diabetes can be treated in a variety of ways including weight loss, proper diet, reduced sugar intake and exercise. More severe cases may be treated with oral drugs or insulin injections.

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