Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects the way the human body controls the level of glucose in the blood. Glucose serves as fuel for the human body. Whereas glycogen is a mobilized form of glucose and is a form of energy storage in the human body. Insulin is a hormone that moves glucose from the blood into the cells. The two main types of diabetes are 1 and 2, which are caused by deviations in a person’s body related to insulin. Patients with type 1 diabetes do not produce insulin due to their immune system destroying the hormone-producing beta cells in the pancreas that produces the hormones the human organism needs to digest food, one of which is insulin. Their livers, which store and produce glucose, also do not respond to the body’s needs. Those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, although are able to produce insulin, their bodies cannot use the hormone the way it allows glucose to access the cells (What Is Diabetes? 2020). As a result, in both cases, the levels of blood sugar increase, leading to various physical and psychological consequences.
Symptoms of both types of diabetes include fatigue, hunger, thirst, mood changes, and irritability. Apart from that, type 2 diabetes can also result in limb numbness.
It is important to note that many of those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes develop the symptoms over many years (Symptoms & Causes of Diabetes, 2021), as their ability to produce insulin decreases as they age.
Diagnosis, Risks, and Treatment
The primary way to diagnose both types is the Hemoglobin A1C test (Understanding A1C, n.d.). The test measures a patient’s blood sugar levels over the past couple of months and, based on the results, among which 6.5% or higher indicate diabetes.
Risk factors of type 1 diabetes are as follows: family genes; age, since it is most common among children and adolescents; geographic location, as the disease prevails among the inhabitants far from the equator.
At the same time, type 2 diabetes risk factors are prediabetes, excess weight, age over 45, high physical inactivity, and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
To this day, there is no known cure for type 1 diabetes. People with such a diagnosis must regularly inject insulin into their bodies, especially after a severe carbohydrate intake, which can cause blood sugar levels to increase quickly. Type 2 can be treated to the point of its complete reversal with proper diet and exercise.
Symptoms & Causes of Diabetes. (2021). National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
Understanding A1C. (n.d.). American Diabetes Association.
What is Diabetes? (2020). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.