Diabetes is a metabolic disorder that prevents proper utilization of sugar in the body. If it is not diagnosed, treated and managed efficiently, the consequences can be life-threatening.
The pancreas is an organ which produces insulin, a hormone that drives sugar into the cells in the human body. This allows the body to metabolize sugar in an efficient manner. When sugar crosses the cell barrier, it provides energy to the body.
In the diabetic child or adult, one of two things can happen. The body may be unable to produce adequate amounts of insulin. On the other hand, 'insulin sensitivity' may decrease. This means that glucose is unable to enter cells, resulting in high sugar levels in the blood.
Individuals with diabetes need to take active measures to control blood sugar levels and exercise plays an important role in the treatment process.
Types of Diabetes
- Type 1: formerly called Juvenile Diabetes. Insulin has to be administered.
- Type 2: formerly adult onset but is seen now in children. Pills are often recommended. At times, insulin may also be used in the treatment process.
- Gestational Diabetes (pregnancy induced diabetes)
Common Symptoms of Diabetes include:
- Frequent urination
Complications of Diabetes
When diabetes is left untreated, damage to the blood vessels and tissues can affect major target organs over a period of time. Adverse effects can be seen in the following organs:
- Lower limbs