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Signs and symptoms

The classical triad of diabetes symptoms is polyuria, polydipsia and polyphagia, which are, respectively, frequent urination, increased thirst and consequent increased fluid intake, and increased appetite. Symptoms may develop quite rapidly (weeks or months) in type 1 diabetes, particularly in children. However, in type 2 diabetes symptoms usually develop much more slowly and may be subtle or completely absent. Type 1 diabetes may also cause a rapid yet significant weight loss (despite normal or even increased eating) and irreducible mental fatigue. All of these symptoms except weight loss can also manifest in type 2 diabetes in patients whose diabetes is poorly controlled.

When the glucose concentration in the blood is raised beyond its renal threshold, reabsorption of glucose in the proximal renal tubuli is incomplete, and part of the glucose remains in the urine (glycosuria). This increases the osmotic pressure of the urine and inhibits reabsorption of water by the kidney, resulting in increased urine production (polyuria) and increased fluid loss. Lost blood volume will be replaced osmotically from water held in body cells and other body compartments, causing dehydration and increased thirst.

Prolonged high blood glucose causes glucose absorption, which leads to changes in the shape of the lenses of the eyes, resulting in vision changes; sustained sensible glucose control usually returns the lens to its original shape. Blurred vision is a common complaint leading to a diabetes diagnosis; type 1 should always be suspected in cases of rapid vision change, whereas with type 2 change is generally more gradual, but should still be suspected.

Patients (usually with type 1 diabetes) may also initially present with diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), an extreme state of metabolic dysregulation characterized by the smell of acetone on the patient's breath; a rapid, deep breathing known as Kussmaul breathing; polyuria; nausea; vomiting and abdominal pain; and any of many altered states of consciousness or arousal (such as hostility and mania or, equally, confusion and lethargy). In severe DKA, coma may follow, progressing to death. Diabetic ketoacidosis is a medical emergency and requires immediate hospitalization.

A rarer but equally severe possibility is hyperosmolar nonketotic state, which is more common in type 2 diabetes and is mainly the result of dehydration due to loss of body water. Often, the patient has been drinking extreme amounts of sugar-containing drinks, leading to a vicious circle in regard to the water loss.

Have Diabetes? Limit These 3 Types of Foods

If you just found out that you have diabetes you are probably struggling with your diet. It is so frustrating and hard to have to change the way you have been eating your entire life up until now. Not to mention just dealing with all your emotional aspects of being told you have this awful condition is hard to adjust to also. Now, changing your lifelong habits not only going to be difficult and challenging, but it will be lifesaving. Type 2 Diabetes is a disease that can be controlled to a greater extent by what foods you eat and which ones you avoid.

There are certain foods that you really must cut way back on or avoid altogether if you have diabetes. These foods can further damage your pancreas and affect the output of your insulin levels. Maintaining a strict diet can help regulate this disease so that it puts you back into control of your own life.

List of 3 types of foods to limit if you have diabetes

1. Fats are number one on the list because even though they may not cause your blood sugar to spike, they will affect your ability to lose weight. Since a person who is diabetic has a higher risk of heart disease, it is important to control the blood fats and prevent weight gain. However, there are good fats and bad fats. The bad fats to limit or avoid are:

  • Fatty meats
  • Fatty dairy products like cheese and ice cream
  • Butter
  • Fried foods
  • Solid vegetable fats like hydrogenated shortening that are in cookies and other such snacks
  • Egg yolk (only 3 per week)

Avoid so-called diabetic foods, they have way to much fat to make up for the lack of sugar

2. Sugar should only be limited, not eliminated. Everyone needs a certain amount of sugar to maintain proper body and brain functioning. The problem is, Americans eat way too much sugar in their daily diet and that really is contributing to the rise in diabetes in this country.

Limit sugar intake between meals

Avoid eating high sugar foods like candy, even high sugar fruit drinks
Only eat sugar that is a part of your meal, as in fruit salads, pies or puddings, etc
Eliminate all soft drinks, even diet soft drinks if you are able to

Avoid processed foods high in sugar

3. Salt should be watched. People who have diabetes usually have high blood pressure. As a consequence, you should limit your salt intake. Research has proven that too much salt in the diet is not good for people who have high blood pressure.

  • Remove the salt shaker from the your table, replace with a product like Mrs. Dash all natural seasonings
  • Slowly cut down on the salt you use when cooking food
  • Avoid high sodium chips, cracker, canned foods and processed meats
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Healthy Blood Sugar Levels

It is important to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.

Hyperglycemia, high blood sugar levels can, over time, damage the blood vessels that supply blood to our vital organs. This, in turn, increases the risk of heart and kidney disease, as well as leading to vision problems and problems with your nervous system. Researchers have linked high blood sugar levels with cancer in women. Hypoglycemia, low blood sugar,  can cause us to feel tired, depressed and lead to food eating disorders.

It's important to keep our blood sugar level within the parameters of normal, so that it is neither too high nor too low.

Every time we eat, our stomach and intestines transform the food into glucose. Our cells need the glucose for energy. Our pancreas releases insulin to work with the glucose, but when our sugar levels are not at their optimum levels the result is, high blood sugar or low blood sugar levels.

For most of us, it's easy to raise our blood sugar levels by simply drinking some fruit juice or eating a doughnut. Lowering our blood sugar levels, on the other hand, may be more of a challenge.

One way that we can lower our blood sugar level is to eat smaller meals several times a day.  It's easier for our system to break down the sugars and send it to our vital organs, if it doesn't have to work as hard. Eating four to six smaller meals throughout the day, while drinking plenty of water, is easier on the stomach, the intestines, the pancreas and even the digestive enzymes that are working to transform the food into nutrients.

Don't just sit there, get up and exercise. In order for everything to work properly, our bodies need the stimulation that it can only get through proper amounts of exercise. If you can work out, that is great, but if you can't or just don't want to,  taking several short brisk walks a day is better than just sitting around all day.

Instead of grabbing that doughnut, eat an apple. Eating foods high in fiber like, apples, oatmeal, nuts and seeds help to fill us up without adding the extra sugars. But, if you must have that doughnut, include some cheese or a hard boiled egg along with it. Since carbohydrates quickly convert into glucose, adding the protein found in cheese or eggs will slow the the conversion of the carbohydrates to glucose, preventing a marked increase in blood sugar levels.

Eat some cinnamon every day. Cinnamon works to naturally lower blood sugar levels and help balance cholesterol levels. You need to eat about a gram a day, to gain these benefits, but you can add it to your oatmeal, toast and even your coffee. It tastes good and works great.

Finally, make sure you are getting the optimum amount of vitamins and minerals in your daily diet. If you aren't getting the levels you need in your food, find a good supplement that contain vitamins, minerals, trace minerals and herbal additives. If our bodies aren't receiving the proper amounts of vitamins and minerals, it may affect the ways we are able to convert the foods we are eating into the right blood sugar levels.

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