Type 2 Diabetes: Diagnosis, Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

By Linda Mondry June 4, 2021 in Health

Diabetes is a chronic disease, and in this complication, sugar or glucose levels in your body will build up in your bloodstream. Insulin, a helpful hormone, initiates and moves glucose from your blood into your cells to produce energy.

In type 2 diabetes, your body cells will not work or respond to insulin as well as they should. People with type 2 diabetes are insulin-resistant, and their bodies may not produce enough insulin in later stages.

Although there is no cure for type 2 diabetes, you can improve your condition with the help of a strict diet. Losing weight, eating good food, and exercising regularly can also help you deal with this impairment.

All About Type 2 Diabetes

Table of Contents

  • How to diagnose type 2 diabetes?
  • What are the symptoms of type 2 diabetes?
  • What causes this lifelong disease?
  • Home Remedies for Type 2 diabetes
  • Type 2 Diabetes Treatment Options with Medications

Type 2 Diabetes

How to Diagnose Type 2 Diabetes?

Usually, type 2 diabetes is diagnosed by using the glycated hemoglobin test. It is called the A1C test. This test will show you the average blood sugar level for the past two or three months.

You can follow the below-given result to compare your result:

  • If it is below 5.7%, then it is normal.
  • 7% to 6.4% will indicate that the patient is prediabetes.
  • 5% or higher will state that the patient has diabetes.

If A1C is not an option for you due to a specific condition present in your body that interferes with the test, then your doctor will use the following tests to decide if you have diabetes or not:

Random blood sugar test

Blood sugar values can be expressed in milligrams of sugar per deciliter (mg/dL) or millimoles of sugar per liter (mmol/L) of blood during the test. If you have a level of 200 mg/dL (11.1 mmol/L) or higher, then you will be diagnosed with diabetes, regardless of when you last ate.

Fasting blood sugar test

For this test, you have to do a fast before a blood sample is taken. Results are interpreted as follows:

  • Less than 100 mg/dL (5.6 mmol/L) indicates normal results.
  • 100 to 125 mg/dL (5.6 to 6.9 mmol/L) indicates that the patient has prediabetes.
  • 126 mg/dL (7 mmol/L) or higher on two separate tests indicates that the patient has diabetes.

Oral glucose tolerance test

This test is only used during pregnancy. To appear for this test, you will need to fast the night before and then consume a sugary liquid at the doctor’s office. For the next two hours, your blood sugar level will be tested periodically.

Type 2 Diabetes

Results are interpreted as follows:

  • Less than 140 mg/dL (7.8 mmol/L) is normal.
  • 140 to 199 mg/dL (7.8 mmol/L and 11.0 mmol/L) indicates that the patient has prediabetes.
  • 200 mg/dL (11.1 mmol/L) or a higher score indicates that the patient is diabatic.

Read More: 10 Home Remedies for Swollen Feet During Pregnancy

Screening

Route screening is the preferable method to diagnose type 2 diabetes in all adults age 45 or older and the following groups:

  • People who are younger than 45 and are overweight or obese and have one or more risk factors associated with diabetes
  • Women with gestational diabetes
  • People who are diagnosed with prediabetes
  • Children who are overweight or obese and have a family history of type 2 diabetes.

What are the Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes?

Your body cannot use insulin effectively to bring glucose into your cells in type 2 diabetes. This will cause your body to find alternatives and rely on other energy sources present in your tissues, muscles, and organs. This is a chain reaction, and it will cause a variety of symptoms.

Type 2 diabetes can develop slowly in your body. The symptoms are often mild and can be overlooked at the beginning. What follows are some of the early signs:

  • Constant hunger
  • A lack of energy
  • Fatigue
  • Weight loss
  • Excessive thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Dry mouth
  • Itchy skinType 2 Diabetes

If your blood sugar level has been on the higher side for a long time, then you may see some symptoms such as:

  • Yeast infections
  • Slow-healing cuts or sores
  • Foot pain
  • Feelings of numbness in your extremities or neuropathy

If you have more than two symptoms mentioned above, you need to see the doctor without any delay. If left untreated, diabetes can be a very fatal and life-threatening disease.

What Causes this Lifelong Disease?

The pancreas is responsible for making a hormone called insulin. Insulin helps our cells to turn glucose, a type of sugar you get from the food you eat, into energy. People with type 2 diabetes can make insulin, but their cells can use it as well as they should.

Your pancreas will work typically and produce more insulin to try to push glucose into your cell. However, it won’t keep up, and the glucose will be stored and built up in your blood instead of going into cells.

Usually, a combination of things causes type 2 diabetes that includes:

  • Studies have found that different bits of DNA typically affect how your body makes insulin, and hence it is categorized as a genetic disease.
  • If you are overweight or obese, it will create insulin resistance, especially if you have more fat stored in the middle part of your body.
  • People who have insulin resistance often suffer from a group of conditions that include high blood sugar, extra fat around the waist, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
  • When your blood sugar level is low, your liver will make and send more glucose. After you finish your meal, your blood sugar will increase; this will make your liver slower to store its glucose for later. But some people’s liver doesn’t slow down and keeps producing sugar.

Home Remedies for Type 2 diabetes:  

Healthy eating

Contrary to modern beliefs, there is particularly no specific diet for diabetes. However, you should not go overboard and control your diet. It would be best if you introduced some healthy eating habits such as:

  • A regular schedule for meals and healthy snacks
  • Smaller portion sizes
  • Include high-fiber foods like fruits, non-starchy veggies, and whole grains
  • Fewer refined grains, starchy vegetables, and sweets
  • Include low-fat dairy, low-fat meat, and fish instead of red meat
  • Utilize healthy cooking oils like olive oil and canola oil
  • Fewer caloriesSee your healthcare provider or visit a registered dietitian who can help you with:
  • Identifying healthy choices among your food preferences
  • Help you plan well-balanced, nutritional meals
  • Help you in developing new habits and address barriers to changing habits
  • Help you evaluate your carbohydrate intake to keep your blood sugar levels more stable

Physical activity

Aerobic exercise – Select an aerobic exercise that you love to do, like walking, swimming, biking, or running. If you are an adult, you should aim for at least 30 minutes or more moderate aerobic exercise for at least 150 minutes a week. Children should be performing more than 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise daily.

Resistance exercise – This exercise will increase your strength and allow you to perform your daily activities more efficiently. Weight lifting, yoga, and calisthenics can be included in resistance exercise.

Adults who have type 2 diabetes should aim for at least two or three sessions every week.

Limit inactivity – Avoiding long periods of inactivity, such as sitting in front of the computer, can help you control your blood sugar levels. Taking out some time to stand, walk, or do some light activity during work hours can help a lot.

Weight loss

Weight loss will help you control various blood sugar levels, cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure. If you can lose 5% of your body weight, you will see the improvements instantly. The more weight you lose, the more benefits you will enjoy!

Take help from your healthcare provider or dietitian as they will help you with a diet chart and exercise chart to maintain your weight and enjoy a more healthy lifestyle.

Read More: Best Exercises For Weight Loss That You Can Try To Burn Fat

Type 2 Diabetes Treatment Options with Medications:

In most cases, if you change your lifestyle, you will be able to deal with diabetes and keep type 2 diabetes under control. If not, then there are numerous medicines available that can help you deal with the condition. What follow are some of the medications that can help you with type 2 diabetes:

  • metformin can help you lower your blood glucose levels and enhance the response of your body toward insulin. It is one of the best type 2 diabetes treatment options
  • Sulfonylureas are an oral medication that will boost your body to make more insulin
  • Meglitinides is a short-duration medication that will help your pancreas to release more insulin
  • Thiazolidinediones will make your body to be more sensitive to insulin
  • dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors are milder medications that will work to reduce blood glucose levels in your body
  • glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonists will slow down digestion and improve blood glucose levels
  • sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors will prevent the kidney from reabsorbing glucose into the blood and sending it out in your urine

These medications also have side effects. Hence, it would help if you used it after consulting your doctor.

If you suffer from blood pressure and cholesterol, you may need some more medicines to address these complications. If your body cannot produce enough insulin, you may need to go under insulin therapy. Insulin injections may be the way forward for you as you may have to take a long-acting injection at night or need insulin injection several times per day.

Read More: Some Proven Home Remedies for Diabetes Type 2

Final Words

Designing a definite treatment plan and diet plan is necessary if you want to fight type 2 diabetes. Consult a personal nutritionist and determine exercise routine and calorie goals. Change your lifestyle, and you may fight type 2 diabetes!

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Linda Mondry

11 articles by Linda Mondry | View Author Profile

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