There are mainly two types of diabetes - type I and type II. Type I diabetes, also called insulin-dependent diabetes, occurs mostly in children as a result of autoimmune disorders. That is, the body’s immune system destroys the insulin producing beta cells of pancreas. Type II diabetes, also known as non-insulin-dependent diabetes, occurs in adults as a result of lower insulin level or poor utilization of insulin. Gestational diabetes is another type that occurs in pregnant women. Type II is the most common form - it makes 90-95% of all diabetic cases.
Frequent urination, excessive thirst, unexplained weight loss, extreme hunger, sudden vision changes, tingling or numbness in hands or feet, feeling very tired, dry mouth, very dry skin, and sores that are slow to heal. Some other symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and stomach pains may also be present.
Diabetes can lead to many health problems such as heart disease, blindness, kidney failure, delayed healing of wounds, and lower-extremity amputations. In the United States, diabetes is the sixth leading cause of death.
Elderly people, obese people and people with a family history of diabetes and gestational diabetes and people with impaired glucose tolerance are more prone to diabetes.
For type I diabetes, the classical treatment is insulin injections. In case of type II diabetes, healthy eating, physical activity, blood glucose testing and administration of oral medicines are recommended.
The precautions include practicing a healthy diet with reduced carbohydrates and fats, reducing body weight and engaging in moderately vigorous physical activities.