Living With Diabetes? Learn More About What It Means

Living With Diabetes? Learn More About What It Means

According to the CDC, “Diabetes is a disease in which blood glucose levels are above normal. Most of the food we eat is turned into glucose, or sugar, for our bodies to use for energy. The pancreas, an organ that lies near the stomach, makes a hormone called insulin to help glucose get into the cells of our bodies. When you have diabetes, your body either doesn't make enough insulin or can't use its own insulin as well as it should. This causes sugar to build up in your blood.”

The best defense against the complications of Diabetes is to educate yourself about your disease and how to take care of yourself now that you have been diagnosed.

Learn More About Diabetes

  • Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the Unites States.
  • Diabetes is a serious chronic diseases that affects young and old, all ethnic backgrounds and both genders.
  • 30.3 million people of all ages—or 9.4% of the U.S. population – have diabetes.
    • 7.2 million Americans – didn’t know they had the condition
  • There are two types of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2. Both are caused by problems making or using insulin, a hormone that makes it possible for cells to use glucose, also known as blood sugar, for energy.
  • Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body doesn't make enough insulin, or stops making it altogether. Type 1 diabetes often comes on suddenly, usually occurring in children and teenagers, but it can show up later in life. Type 1 diabetes can't be cured, but it can be managed by taking insulin.
  • Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body's cells don't respond to insulin. When sugar can't get into cells, it builds up in the bloodstream. Type 2 diabetes is most often brought on by being overweight or obese and not getting much physical activity.
  • Type 2 diabetes accounts for nearly 90% of diagnosed diabetes cases in the U.S .
  • Early detection and treatment of complications can prevent progression.
  • Diabetes can lead to serious complications, such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure and lower-limb amputation.
  • Improvements in self-management, following treatment and medication plans have been linked to positive clinical outcomes and improved quality of life.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Management

Originally published November 23, 2015; Revised 2019