What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a disease that affects the way your body uses food for energy and causes your blood sugar levels to stay consistently above normal. There are two main types of diabetes:
- People with Type 1 diabetes are completely unable to produce insulin, a hormone that helps move glucose--or sugar--into your cells to be used as fuel.
- People with Type 2 diabetes can produce insulin, but either in levels that are too low, or their cells simply do not respond to it.
Both types of diabetes are manageable. More than 57 million people in the United States have pre-diabetes. This means your blood glucose levels are higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed with diabetes. With education and life-style changes you can keep pre-diabetes from turning into Type 2 diabetes.
You may be at risk if you:
- Are over 40 years of age
- Are overweight
- Have a history of diabetes
- Have high blood pressure
- Have had diabetes during pregnancy
- Have given birth to a baby weighing over 9 pounds
- Have the stress of an illness or injury
- Are African American, Hispanic/Latino American, American Indian, Asian American or Pacific Islander
The following websites contain valuable information for people with diabetes and their loved ones.
- dLife - For Your Diabetes Life! - This is a great resource!