Diabetes is a condition that seems to escape people. While there are millions who suffer from it, there are millions more who do not want to admit they have it or they really just do not know they have it. What are the causes of diabetes? What can an individual do to control or reverse it?
Unlike some other conditions and diseases, there is a lot known about diabetes: why people get it, how to prevent it, and how to treat it. Understanding the causes of diabetes will help us to learn to prevent it. The first step is to get a diabetes screening test if you suspect you may have this condition.
A person’s body who does not have diabetes handles glucose much differently than the person who does. Glucose, which is a sugar, comes from carbohydrates. Carbohydrates is a fancy word for starch and sugars. Starches are in foods such as some vegetables like potatoes and corn, they are found in bread, rice, pasta, grains, and cereals. Foods that contain natural sugars are fruit, milk, and yogurt. Foods that contain added sugar are soft drinks, pastries, cakes, etc. which aid the causes of diabetes.
Glucose begins it’s journey into the body as a carbohydrate. It’s first stop is the mouth, of course, then the stomach and small intestine. This is where it begins to broken down from a carbohydrate to a glucose. From the small intestine, it begins to be absorbed into the blood stream and the blood streams takes it to the desired destinations; our cells.
Specifically, the muscles, the brain, and the liver. This is where insulin comes into the picture; glucose can only enter the cell with the aid of insulin. Insulin is a hormone made in the pancreas. The blood glucose levels rise after the consumption of food and the pancreas released insulin into the blood stream. The body stores glucose as reserves of energy that can be used when needed.
Diabetes occurs when the pancreas stops producing insulin or when the body does not respond like it should to insulin. There are many myths as to what the causes of diabetes are. One myth is that being overweight is a cause and another says that eating too much sweets is a cause. The truth behind Type 1 diabetes is the cells in the pancreas that make insulin are destroyed which results in a severe lack of insulin.
This could be an effect of an autoimmune reaction where the body attacks it’s own cells. There is some speculation why this happens, but no clear causes. Type 2 diabetes is believed to result when the cells stop being receptive to insulin because they fail to be stimulated by it. This would result in too much insulin being produced and cause exhaustion in the pancreas cells that produce the insulin.
It may also develop when insufficient amounts of insulin are available or the insulin available is abnormal for some reason. The causes of diabetes are not clearly pinpointed, but one thing that most experts and health care professionals agree on is that a diabetic can benefit from a healthy lifestyle which includes daily exercise and healthy meals.