Diabetes is a group of metabolic disorders where there are prolonged elevated blood sugar levels. Untreated diabetes can lead to complications such as hyperosmolar hyperglycemic state, diabetic ketoacidosis, and death. Long-term, it can cause issues with the kidneys, heart, eyes, and disorders such as foot ulcers and stroke. Diabetes can occur when there is insulin resistance or inadequate insulin production by the pancreas.
There are 3 main types of diabetes: type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is usually seen among younger patients and occurs when the pancreas is unable to produce enough insulin. Type 2 diabetes occurs when there is insulin resistance and is more commonly seen among adult patients. Gestational diabetes is seen among pregnant women without a previous history of diabetes. Control and prevention of diabetes can be done through maintenance of a healthy diet, normal body weight, regular exercise, and avoidance of tobacco. To prevent complications, it is important to teach patients regarding proper foot care and blood pressure control.
The main management of type 1 diabetes is through insulin injections. In type 2 diabetes, medications with or without insulin can be used. Weight loss can also be an effective measure to help control type 2 diabetes. Gestational diabetes usually resolves once the baby has been delivered. As of 2015, it has been estimated that there are about 415 million individuals with diabetes globally with type 2 diabetes consisting of 90 percent of the cases. Diabetes doubles the risk of early death. In 3 years (2012 – 2015), diabetes has resulted about 1.5 to 5 million deaths annually. It is also a disorder that has a significant economic cost globally.
Diabetes Sign #1: Weight Loss
Weight loss occurs when there is a total reduction of body mass due to loss of adipose tissue, muscle, fluid, bone mineral deposits, or other connective tissue. Weight loss can occur both intentionally and unintentionally. Unintentional weight loss usually occurs due to malnourishment or underlying disorder such as cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, gastritis, pancreatitis, diarrhea, infection, renal disease, diabetes, and more.
Weight loss can occur when there is impaired intake of food, impaired absorption or digestion, altered metabolic demands, or excessive nutrient loss.