Diabetes Resources for Patients

Diabetes is a serious condition that causes higher than normal blood sugar levels. Hispanic/Latino Americans are particularly vulnerable to developing type 2 diabetes with more than 50% higher chances of developing it in their lifetime.

What is Diabetes?

Prevention

What is Type 1 Diabetes?

  • Type 1 diabetes is the most severe form of diabetes
    • 5% of people who have diabetes have type 1
    • Type 1 diabetes is also known as insulin-dependent diabetes
  • Type 1 usually develops in children and teenagers but can be developed by people of all ages
  • Type 1 diabetes is caused by the body’s immune system attacking insulin-producing cells in the pancreas
  • Since the body attacks its own cells, type 1 diabetes is known as an autoimmune disease

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Treatment for Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes must be treated through a daily regimen of insulin therapy. The amount of insulin taken is dependent on:

  • Food
  • Exercise
  • Stress
  • Emotions and general health

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Warning Signs of Type 1 Diabetes

The onset of type 1 diabetes is very quick. The following symptoms can occur sudden:

  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination (bed-wetting may occur in children)
  • Rapid and unexplained weight loss
  • Extreme hunger
  • Extreme weakness or fatigue
  • Unusual irritability
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain
  • Unpleasant breath odor
  • Itchy skin1

What is Type 2 Diabetes?1

  • Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes
    • It is non-insulin dependent
    • 90% of people with diabetes have type 2 diabetes
  • Type 2 diabetes is typically developed after the age of 35
    • However, a growing number of young people are developing type 2 diabetes
  • People with type 2 diabetes can produce some insulin, but not enough.
    • This is often a result of obesity and sedentary habits

Warning signs of Type 2 Diabetes1

The warning signs of type 2 diabetes include:

  • Increased thirst
  • Rapid and unexplained weight loss
  • Extreme hunger
  • Extreme weakness or fatigue
  • Unusual irritability
  • Blurred vision
  • Nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain
  • Unpleasant breath odor
  • Itchy skin

These symptoms are often slower to present themselves and develop. It is important to talk to a doctor if you are experiencing any of these symptoms, as they can often be mistaken for other conditions.

Treatment for Type 2 Diabetes1

The main treatment for type 2 diabetes is improving the use of insulin by the body. This can include:

  • Creating a healthy diet
  • Increasing physical activity
  • Weight loss

Some medications and in some cases, insulin, can act as a treatment for type 2 diabetes.

How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes1

In order to prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes, lifestyle changes can be made. These lifestyle changes include:

  • Losing weight
  • Increasing physical activity (150 minutes per week)
  • Spending less time being sedentary
  • Introducing healthy foods into your diet

What is Prediabetes?

  • Prediabetes can occur before the onset of type 2 diabetes.
  • Prediabetes occurs when blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not quite as high as diabetic blood sugar levels
    • More than 1 in 3 U.S adults have prediabetes, and many of those with prediabetes will have type 2 diabetes within 10 years.
  • However, use of preventative tactics such as weight loss, increased physical activity, and a healthy diet can delay or prevent type 2 diabetes.2