What Causes Diabetes?

I want you to think about something for a minute. It’s not meant to scare you. It’s just as a matter of fact.

There is no “cure” for diabetes

You can’t take a pill or a shot and magically be cured of the fact that  your pancreas is not producing enough insulin.Diabetes is not a viral or bacterial infection. In the majority of cases, it’s a lifestyle disease.  And a lifestyle disease is a matter of the choices you make from day to day.

Now, depending on which type of diabetes you have you can treat your diabetes differently, but it’s still important to carefully monitor your blood sugar and control your diet and exercise regularly.

Type I and type II diabetes is a condition in which your pancreas does not produce enough insulin to transport sugar molecules from your blood into your body’s cells where it can be used for energy. It therefore, stays in the blood and causes a lot of problems for the whole body.

Why Is Insulin Important

So let’s lay a foundation for this whole thing.

There is a “sugar thermostat” in everyone’s body. When this “thermostat” reads a high amount of sugar in your blood stream, the brain triggers your pancreas to produce and secrete a certain amount of insulin into your body to help metabolize all the excess sugar to bring sugar levels back to “normal”.

There are two types of diabetes. Type I, which people are born with due to a problem with the pancreas. And, type II which is more of the lifestyle, diet, lack of exercise, type of diabetes.

There are a few different drugs that people use to manage their diabetes problem.  One of the main drugs is insulin.  But, while injecting insulin brings levels down, it’s far from a perfect system to deal with the symptoms of diabetes.

Often, the type, amount, and timing of injecting insulin even affect how that insulin will work.  Plus, the dose must cover the amount of sugar/carbohydrates that are consumed and the corresponding rise in blood sugar.

So, if you get too much insulin, you could trigger hypoglycemia. This is where you have too little sugar in the blood and you consciousness. If you don’t get enough insulin, then you get hyperglycemic and run the risk of kidney damage and other health issues.

So, these are the main reasons why the amount of insulin in your body, and your body’s ability to produce it, is so important.

Management of Diabetes is a Full Time Job

But even with vigilant attention to your diet, and a good understanding of how foods affect you and your glycemic index, it still can be pretty challenging to properly determine the right amounts of insulin to give yourself. There are a lot of different factors that cann affect the insulin levels in your body. Stress, other medicines, and even something simple like a cold or allergies can result in a rise of blood sugar and possibly lead to a diabetic emergency.

So, what this really means is that only managing your diabetes by taking insulin is basically just a buffer against large amounts of sugar circulating in your blood. Any irregularities in your life are likely to mess with how the medicine reacts to you. In the end, you’re just fighting against yourself- constantly taking medicine to help you feel better.

Typical Diabetes Management

While there is no cure for diabetes, the best way that doctors have found to manage it is to take insulin or these types of medications. The medicines tend to mimic the action of natural insulin that the pancreas normally produces. But, it’s just symptom management. It’s not a cure.

The only way to really control your diabetes is by limiting the amounts of sugar or carbohydrate that you put into it. And, this is done with a diet that controls these things. Most people in the western world simply eat too many carbs in the form of cereals, breads, pastries, pastas, sugary drinks, and added sweeteners. All these are lifestyle choices.

True treatment, reversal, or even prevention of diabetes can actually be attained by a balanced diet of  “slow” carbohydrates, fats and proteins that limit the amount of sugar released into the body. And exercise or physical activity that increases the amount of sugar/energy that your body uses throughout the day.

Dieting and exercise have been proven as effective to help manage  and even reverse diabetes in many people. And, while these two can never substitute for a diabetic emergency, they are necessary lifestyle changes to treat and reverse diabetes. And, they are within your direct control as you can decide what to eat and when to exercise.