This Morning: Type 2 diabetes can be 'devastating' says expert
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Diabetes is a life-long condition in which your blood glucose levels become elevated. Leaving your blood sugar untreated can trigger severe health problems, ranging from heart disease to nerve damage. However, diabetes isn’t so easy to spot without knowing what to look for. Many patients can suffer from the condition “for years without realising it”. Here are the symptoms to help you identify it.
Diabetes has become a prevalent condition, targeting almost five million people in the UK.
What’s worse, this statistic is set to climb even further by 2030, affecting one in 10.
Fortunately, diabetes can be managed through lifestyle modifications or treatments once you get your diagnosis confirmed.
The NHS explains that early warning signs can be quite “general”, so it might help to be aware of them.
One of the common diabetes symptoms can show up when you eat or during the day.
Diabetes UK explains this symptom is “increased hunger”.
This warning sign is also referred to as polyphagia in medical terms.
The reason why this sign occurs is due to high blood sugar levels.
When your glucose levels remain “abnormally high” in your blood, this sugar can’t enter your cells and be converted into energy.
This happens because of the problems with insulin production, Diabetes.co.uk explains.
When you have diabetes, your body either can’t produce insulin, the insulin isn’t effective or there’s not enough of it.
So, while the blood sugar is stuck and your energy levels are low, your body tricks you into feeling hungrier.
Unfortunately, you can’t get an easy fix in the form of a snack to get rid of this hunger.
Eating more food will just add to the already elevated blood sugar levels.
The charity recommends trying exercise instead to help lower these soaring levels.
But if the hunger is still persisting, it might be worth talking to your doctor.
Increased hunger isn’t the only symptom of the blood sugar condition, others include:
- Feeling very thirsty
- Peeing more frequently than usual (especially at night)
- Feeling very tired
- Weight loss and loss of muscle bulk
- Itching around the penis or vagina, or frequent episodes of thrush
- Cuts or wounds healing slowly
- Blurred vision.
Diabetes UK stresses that you need to “contact your GP” if you experience these symptoms.
Although some people might live with diabetes for years without realising it, symptoms can develop quickly over weeks or days, the NHS adds.
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