Diabetes is a chronic (long-term) disease that affects the way the body converts food into energy.

Most of the food we eat is converted to sugar (also called glucose) which is released into the bloodstream. The pancreas produces a hormone called insulin, which acts as a key that allows blood sugar to enter the body's cells so they can use it for energy.

If a person develops diabetes, their body would not produce enough insulin or would not be able to properly use the insulin it produces. When there is not enough insulin or cells stop responding to insulin, too much sugar remains in the bloodstream, and over time this can cause serious health problems, such as heart disease, vision loss, and kidney disease. .

There are three main types of diabetes: type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy).

The exact cause of type 1 diabetes is unknown. What is known is that your immune system, which normally fights harmful bacteria or viruses, attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. This leaves you with very little insulin, or no insulin at all. Instead of being transported to your cells, sugar accumulates in your bloodstream.

Type 1 is thought to be caused by a combination of genetic susceptibility and environmental factors, although it is not yet clear what those factors are. Weight is not thought to be a factor in type 1 diabetes.

In prediabetes, which can lead to type 2 diabetes, and in type 2 diabetes, cells become resistant to the action of insulin, and the pancreas cannot produce enough insulin to overcome such resistance. Instead of moving into your cells where it is needed as a source of energy, sugar builds up in your bloodstream.

It is not known exactly why this happens, although genetic and environmental factors are thought to play a decisive role in the development of type 2 diabetes. Being overweight is closely related to the development of type 2 diabetes, but not all People with type 2 diabetes are overweight.

During pregnancy, the placenta produces hormones to support the pregnancy. These hormones cause your cells to become more resistant to insulin.

Normally, your pancreas responds by producing enough additional insulin to overcome this resistance. But sometimes, the pancreas can't keep up. When this happens, too little glucose enters your cells and too much glucose remains in your blood, leading to gestational diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes cannot be prevented. However, the same healthy lifestyle choices that help treat prediabetes, type 2 diabetes, and gestational diabetes can also help prevent them.

  • Eating healthy food. Choose foods rich in fiber, low in fat and low in calories. Focus on fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Try to get him to eat a variety of foods so he doesn't get bored.
  • Do more physical activity. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity most days of the week, or about 150 minutes per week.
  • Lose excess weight. If you are overweight, losing even 7% of your body weight—for example, 14 pounds (6.4 kilograms) if you weigh 200 pounds (90.7 kilograms)—can reduce your risk of diabetes.

However, don't try to lose weight during pregnancy. Ask your doctor how much weight is healthy for you to gain during pregnancy.

To keep your weight in a healthy range, focus on permanent changes in your eating and exercise habits. To motivate yourself, remember the benefits of losing weight, such as having a healthier heart, more energy, and greater self-esteem.

Sometimes medications are also an option. Oral diabetes medications, such as metformin, can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, but healthy lifestyle choices are still key. Have your blood glucose level checked at least once a year to make sure you don't have type 2 diabetes.

Lifestyle changes can help prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease. Prevention is especially important if you are currently at increased risk of type 2 diabetes due to excess weight or obesity, high cholesterol levels.

If you have been diagnosed with prediabetes (a high blood glucose level that does not meet the threshold for a diabetes diagnosis), lifestyle changes can prevent or delay the onset of the disease.

Making some lifestyle changes now can help you avoid serious diabetes complications later, such as damage to your nerves, kidneys, and heart. It's never too late to start.

Losing weight reduces the risk of diabetes. People in a large study reduced their risk of developing diabetes by almost 60% after losing about 7% of their body weight with changes in physical activity and diet.

The American Diabetes Association recommends that people with prediabetes lose at least 7% to 10% of their weight to prevent disease progression. The more weight you lose, the greater benefits you will achieve.


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