Diabetes is a chronic metabolic disorder. It affects the body’s ability to use the energy found in food. The body breaks down carbohydrate and sugars you eat to a special sugar called ‘Glucose’. Glucose fuels or gives energy to all the body cells to perform their functions.


Glucose in the bloodstream can come from two sources:

  1. The food we eat
  2. The Liver


For glucose to enter into the cells from the bloodstream, we require a hormone called Insulin (Insulin is a key which allows glucose to go into the cells). In Diabetes, there is either a deficiency of insulin or the body is unable to use the insulin made or a combination of both. Since the cells cannot take in Glucose from the bloodstream, leads to:

1) Accumulation of glucose in the blood leading to an increase in the blood glucose levels

2) The cells are deprived of energy giving rise to the symptoms of diabetes.


Types of Diabetes:

Type 1:

The onset of this type is usually at a young age, so it is also called Juvenile Diabetes. This is primarily a disorder wherein our body’s own immune system attacks the pancreas and the beta cells (cells in the pancreas which produce insulin). The damaged pancreas are hence not able to produce insulin.

The treatment of this type involves taking insulin which needs to be injected subcutaneously. This type is also called as insulin dependent diabetes mellitus.

Type 2:

The most common type of diabetes is type 2. The onset of this type is usually at an older age. There is not an absolute deficiency of insulin, the pancreas does produce some insulin. But the amount produced is not enough compared to the glucose which is produced or there is a lack of sensitivity to insulin by the cells. This, in the medical terms, is known as Insulin resistance wherein the pancreas have to work hard and more amount of insulin is required for the same amount of glucose to enter the cells.

This type of Diabetes can be controlled on oral hypoglycemic agents (tablets) after diagnosis, but as the disorder progresses with passing years the patient has to shift on insulin treatment.


Gestational Diabetes:

This type is seen in the second trimester or late pregnancy. The expectant mother is non-diabetic before conception, as pregnancy to some degree leads to insulin resistance diabetes could result. Since high sugar levels are circulated to the baby, gestational diabetes must be controlled for proper growth and development of the baby. Post delivery the sugars return to the normal levels but having gestational diabetes, however, puts the mother at a risk of developing type 2 diabetes later. This can happen anytime between a few weeks to 2 years post delivery. There are risks to the unborn baby as well as the mother.

The treatment of this type of diabetes includes insulin injections. Oral hypoglycemic agents are mostly not prescribed as it can have an adverse effect on the unborn baby.


Secondary Diabetes:

This type of diabetes is rare and can result from specific conditions. Like diseases of the pancreas, pancreatitis, any infections, surgeries, that affect the pancreas and the insulin produced thus, resulting in diabetes.

Diabetes does not have a scientific cure yet however, one can only keep it in control by diet, exercise, and medications and if not prevent at least delay the complications of diabetes.



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