Diabetes is a condition that most often goes unnoticed, unless you are aware about its symptoms or facing a health problem that interferes with your life. This can be very risky as the glucose levels are not monitored and controlled and can affect various body organs over time. Hence a regular check-up is often recommended to prevent the onset of the condition.
Glucose is like a fuel to various parts of the body. When the body is unable to regulate its glucose levels in the bloodstream, it leads to Diabetes. Glucose levels in the body are normally under strict control by insulin, a glucose-regulating hormone, which ensures that adequate energy is provided to all body parts.
Insulin is of two types:
- Type 1 – People cannot produce any insulin
- Type 2 – Inadequate/reduced insulin production
Diabetes, when detected early, makes it relatively easy to manage. It’s important to watch out for symptoms like blurred vision, excessive urination to help treat the condition in time without delay. In other words, early intervention is wise to avoid some serious hurdles a diabetic might have to face later in life. Type 2 diabetes leads to major health complications and hence it is crucial to be aware of the indicators of diabetes to treat this condition effectively. A research report on Diabetes Epidemic in India as published in The Pharma Innovation, says, “The world’s second most populous country, now has more people with type 2 diabetes (more than 50 million) than any other nation. With India having the highest number of diabetic patients in the world, the sugar disease is posing an enormous health problem in the country.”
Some diabetics are still unfamiliar about indicators associated with diabetes, while most others are well aware that their blood circulation gets affected. In case you’re suffering from some unexpected wounds or a fading vision, you might want to first rule out if you’re already having the condition.
Here’s a glimpse into the top 5 indicators of diabetes:
1. Multiple Eye Issues
Majority of diabetics suffer from only minor vision-related issues like blurred vision or a related illness. The American Diabetes Association reports that diabetics have 40% more chances of developing glaucoma (a condition wherein pressure builds up in the eye and pinches the optic nerve or the retina) a condition that leads to blindness or loss of vision, if neglected. In the early stages, since glucose builds up in the eye, the lens cannot focus properly and this changes its shape temporarily. A prominent nurse practitioner, Dr.Cypress quotes, "You're not going blind from diabetes," "In about six to eight weeks after your blood sugars are stabilized, you’re not going to feel it anymore; the eye will adjust." Therefore, upon noticing such changes, you need to consult a specialist immediately, without further delay.
2. Excessive Thirst
Feeling thirsty frequently is another indicator. High blood glucose levels in the bloodstream create a domino effect across various bodily functions, leading to frequent urination and subsequent fluid loss. This is because the kidney spills excessive sugar and the body counteracts by having the blood diluted, thus translating into thirst.
The physician might suggest FPG (fasting plasma glucose test) and OGT (oral glucose tolerance test) to be conducted.
3. Ravenous Hunger
Insulin resistance is a common scenario in Type 2 diabetic patients, wherein the body fails to use insulin properly and thus glucose cannot get to the cells. In response, the pancreas (the organ that makes insulin) starts producing more insulin in an effort to compensate. According to Fernando Ovalle, MD, University of Alabama's Multidisciplinary Diabetes Clinic in Birmingham, “this results in high insulin levels in the body.” This increased level sends the brain a signal that the body is hungry.
4. Slow Wound Healing
White blood cells, our body’s defence against bacteria are prevented from their destined function to fight infection, due to high blood sugar levels. Wounds, as a result, take longer-than-usual time to heal as these cells can’t function. This also causes frequent infections. Long-standing diabetes thickens blood vessels, thus preventing blood circulation. It also causes consequent thinning of blood vessels. So, thicker walls + thinner cells affect the blood stream from carrying more WBCs to the wounded site and leading to delayed healing.
5. Unexplained Weight Loss
Despite eating properly, diabetics lose weight suddenly as they cannot process most calories present in their food. As a result, the body does not get enough glucose into the cells from the blood to use it as energy. So, although diabetics eat frequently, even in large amount, they lose water and sugar through urine. This causes dehydration and subsequent weight loss. Usually, sudden weight loss is noticed prior to diagnosis in type 1 patients, while type 2 diabetic patients also get affected.
Top 5 Foods to Control Diabetic Indicators
Did you know that you can maintain optimum amount of glucose in your blood by eating the right food? Here are 5 natural ingredients that can control indicators for diabetes –
3. Bitter gourd