Diabetes Mellitus is when people have abnormally high levels of sugar in the blood due to the fact that not enough insulin is produced to meet the body's needs.
Insulin is a hormone which is released from the pancreas and controls the amount of sugar in the blood. When food or drink is consumed, the sugar in the food is absorbed into the bloodstream and stimulates the pancreas to produce insulin. Insulin is needed to help move the sugar from the bloodstream into the cells where it's converted into energy.
Sugar levels rise after eating and then return to normal after about two hours, and at this time the insulin level also decreases.
If there's not enough insulin production to enable the sugar to be transported into the cells, the sugar remains in the blood and the cells are starved. This produces the symptoms of diabetes.
Fatigue, needing to urinate often, drinking more than normal, having blurred vision, nausea and feeling tired after little exertion. These are some of the symptoms people suffering from diabetes experience.
High sugar levels can eventually cause a narrowing of the blood vessels and this in turn can cause poor circulation. Bad circulation can harm the heart, brain, legs, eyes, kidneys, nerves and skin. Heart attacks are more common in people with diabetes and poor circulation can lead to ulcers and infections which take a long while to heal.
It's important to understand the condition and to learn as much as possible about it's causes and the best way to tackle it. Initially your doctor will arrange a blood test to confirm the type of diabetes, and you will then be given medication to maintain your blood sugar level.
Complications are less likely to develop if the patient learns to follow a strict diet and exercise regime which, coupled with the medication, will keep the diabetes under control.
Managing your diet will mean eating very little sweet food, and eating regularly. Try to eat whole foods only as opposed to processed or fast foods, and eat plenty of fresh fruit and green, orange, red or purple type vegetables.
Stop smoking and limit your alcohol intake.
Exercise daily by swimming or taking a walk if that's all you have time for. Walking helps the blood flow around the body and keeps your energy level up.
Diabetes mellitus is a serious illness, and learning about it and how you can best avoid complications from it is absolutely essential if you want to live a normal, healthy life.