Find A Doctor Common Conditions Recipes Forums Magazine

Home > Magazine > What happens to your body when you have diabetes

Featured Providers

Logo
www.DiabetesIQ.com

What happens to your body when you have diabetes

What happens to your body when you have diabetes

  By: Editors at DiabetesIQ  |  Published: January 04, 2021   
Published: January 04, 2021   

© Kaspars Grinvalds | Dreamstime.com

Diabetes is one of the most common chronic medical conditions in the world. And the United States, with over 34 million people affected, cannot be considered an exception when it comes to commonness of the disease. There are several types of diabetes. But almost 95% of diabetic patients in America have type 2 diabetes. This disease wouldn’t be such an issue if people were able to recognize its symptoms and catch it early. Unfortunately, most of the diabetic patients notice that something is not right when it’s too late to prevent, reverse, or even delay the disease. And when people start realizing that something is wrong, what they feel is the effects of diabetes on the body.

When someone has diabetes, the person’s body either does not produce a sufficient amount of insulin or does not have an ability to utilize insulin properly. Insulin is a hormone that helps glucose (blood sugar) get from the blood stream into the body’s cells to produce energy. Because of the insulin production and utilization issue, glucose cannot pass into the body’s cells and gets accumulated in the blood, which leads to high blood sugar. When blood sugar level remains high for a continuous period of time, an alarming number of health problems can arise.

One of the most common problems caused by diabetes is damage of the cardiovascular system (circulatory system). High blood sugar reduces blood vessel elasticity, causing blood vessels to narrow and obstruct the blood flow, which may lead to large and small blood vessel damage, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

Large blood vessel damage may increase the risk of peripheral arterial disease, heart attack, and stroke, while small blood vessel damage can cause issues with nervous system, eyes, and kidneys, including numbness and pain in the extremities, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, cataracts, macular edema, and diabetic nephropathy. Also, damage to the nervous system may negatively affect the digestive system, originating such issues as abdominal pain, acid reflux, nausea, vomiting, and weight loss, as well as affect sexual health, causing erectile dysfunction, and fertility problems in women and men. Besides, damage to circulatory system causes a low supply of blood, nutrients, and oxygen, which affects the ability of the body to heal wounds and infection.

Furthermore, diabetes can be a reason for some serious metabolic conditions, such as hyperosmolar hyperglycemic state (HHS) and diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), both of which can be fatal. HHS may happen when blood sugar level is significantly higher than normal, which can lead to dehydration, confusion, loss of consciousness and coma. DKA occurs when the body loses the ability to utilize glucose and starts breaking down fat, instead of sugar, as a source of energy, releasing chemicals called ketones, high level of which makes the blood too acidic. This can lead to stomach pains, nausea, vomiting, shortness of breath, and similarly to HHS, diabetic ketoacidosis can cause loss of consciousness and coma as well.

Diabetes can also cause a variety of skin problems that may include itching, blisters, skin tags, dry skin, diabetic dermopathy, bacterial and fungal infections, and psoriasis. Additionally, diabetes can be associated with some mental health issues, such as depression and distress, that are triggered by diabetes related concerns.

Most of the issues described above can be successfully avoided if people educate themselves on the symptoms of diabetes. Consequently, they will be able to recognize the signs of diabetes early enough to take proper measures for the disease to take a very different and much less destructive course.


AS SEEN ON

AS SEEN ON

Do you have any questions about your diabetes condition or general questions about diabetes? You can now post those questions in DiabetesIQ Forum and have our diabetes experts answer your questions for FREE! Yes, there is absolutely no catch! - Registration only takes a few seconds and it's FREE. No credit card needed. You can ask any number of diabetes questions, all for FREE! Register today and join the conversation!

Find Best Doctors Near You
Latest In Forums
Latest In Forums
Topic Started By Posts Last Poster
Have high risk of diabetes, need advice
January 22, 2021 at 7:13 PM
dave
2
June 23, 2021 at 2:07 AM
ShimaRDN
Have high risk of diabetes, need advice
January 22, 2021 at 7:13 PM
dave
I have LADA. Any advice?
January 18, 2021 at 11:21 PM
freddie_57
1
January 18, 2021 at 11:21 PM
freddie_57
I have LADA. Any advice?
January 18, 2021 at 11:21 PM
freddie_57
Sugar numbers jump
January 16, 2021 at 8:11 PM
alexrod
1
January 16, 2021 at 8:11 PM
alexrod
Sugar numbers jump
January 16, 2021 at 8:11 PM
alexrod
High blood test results - what to do?
January 15, 2021 at 1:16 PM
mike22
1
January 15, 2021 at 1:16 PM
mike22
High blood test results - what to do?
January 15, 2021 at 1:16 PM
mike22
Why my sugar jumped so high?
January 14, 2021 at 8:03 AM
jack5
1
January 14, 2021 at 8:03 AM
jack5
Why my sugar jumped so high?
January 14, 2021 at 8:03 AM
jack5
How to push my sugar down?
January 14, 2021 at 5:28 PM
frankie_a
1
January 14, 2021 at 5:28 PM
frankie_a
How to push my sugar down?
January 14, 2021 at 5:28 PM
frankie_a
Explain my test results
January 13, 2021 at 7:51 AM
johnny11932
1
January 13, 2021 at 7:51 AM
johnny11932
Explain my test results
January 13, 2021 at 7:51 AM
johnny11932
What burning off insulin means?
January 13, 2021 at 4:14 PM
sammy_v
1
January 13, 2021 at 4:14 PM
sammy_v
What burning off insulin means?
January 13, 2021 at 4:14 PM
sammy_v
What's the experinece of using a pump?
January 13, 2021 at 11:51 PM
ali27
1
January 13, 2021 at 11:51 PM
ali27
What's the experinece of using a pump?
January 13, 2021 at 11:51 PM
ali27
When my blood sugar will start going down?
January 12, 2021 at 10:10 PM
a_lawrence
1
January 12, 2021 at 10:10 PM
a_lawrence
When my blood sugar will start going down?
January 12, 2021 at 10:10 PM
a_lawrence
Find Best Doctors Near You
Expert advice & latest treatment information!
Get FREE Diabetes Newsletter.
By subscribing to our newsletter, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Featured Diabetic-Friendly Recipes

Featured Diabetic-Friendly Recipes

Raspberry Lemonade

Raspberry Lemonade

Filet Mignon with Creamy and Pepper Sauce

Filet Mignon with Creamy and Pepper Sauce

Warm Tofu with Hot Garlic Sauce

Warm Tofu with Hot Garlic Sauce

Featured Articles

Featured Articles

Best Low-Sugar Energy Drinks - Everything You Need to Know!

Best Low-Sugar Energy Drinks - Everything You Need to Know!

Diabetes and Heart Health - Why People with Diabetes Need to See a Cardiologist

Diabetes and Heart Health - Why People with Diabetes Need to See a Cardiologist

Diabetes and Skin Problems. Why People with Diabetes Need To See Dermatologist

Diabetes and Skin Problems. Why People with Diabetes Need To See Dermatologist

Featured Articles

Expert advice & latest treatment information!
Get FREE Diabetes Newsletter.
By subscribing to our newsletter, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.
Go To Top