Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes or NIDDM (non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus) as it was previously known is the most common form of diabetes in the world. Out of all diabetics, type 2 diabetes makes up approximately 80-85% of cases and is nowadays easily treated.

Just like type 1 diabetes, type 2 is characterised by a high blood sugar level, that if left untreated can cause problems with your eyes and nerves to name just a few. The condition starts when special receptors on the cells in your body are unable to respond to insulin, which usually tells them to take up sugar. When your blood sugar level rises as a consequence, your body produces lots more insulin, which usually helps to correct the problem. This stage of type 2 diabetes is known as insulin resistance, during this stage you will not usually notice any symptoms, as your body is still working fine.

Over time, your pancreas will have to keep producing increased amount of insulin to compensate for the decreased sensitivity of your insulin receptors. It is likely that when you develop type 2 diabetes, you have a combination of decreased insulin production from the pancreas and decreased insulin receptor sensitivity. Eventually your body will not be able to produce all the insulin that you need and your blood sugar will remain very high, a condition known as hyperglycaemia. It is essential that you try to keep your blood sugar concentration as low as possible, as this will help you to remain fit and healthy. 

There are many treatments available nowadays to help treat this condition. The one that is used most commonly and proves to be the best is called lifestyle modification. This is basically increasing the amount of exercise you take, whilst following a sensible diet. This works well because over 55% of people who have type 2 diabetes also have central obesity (high levels of fat around the abdomen), a risk factor for developing the condition.

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