There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2 diabetes. If you have type 1 diabetes, your pancreas doesn't produce any insulin. If you have type 2 diabetes, your pancreas doesn’t produce enough insulin, or your body does not properly use the insulin it makes.
Insulin is a hormone in the body that moves the glucose from your blood into the cells. Diabetes causes glucose (sugar) to build up in your blood. Glucose is a type of sugar we get from foods, and as it travels through the bloodstream to the cells, it’s called blood sugar or blood glucose. Glucose is found mainly in foods rich in carbohydrates, like fruit, bread, pasta and yogurt, and the body uses it for energy.
Blood glucose monitoring is an important part of any diabetes management plan. If you have diabetes, it’s important to check your blood sugar levels as prescribed by your doctor. This will determine if you have low or high blood sugar and show you how your medication and lifestyle are affecting your blood sugar levels. If you’re diagnosed with diabetes, you’ll work closely with your healthcare team to manage the disease and prevent complications.
Type 1 & Type 2 Diabetes Treatment
Your primary care provider will probably refer you to an endocrinologist, a doctor who is specially trained in conditions affected the glands and hormones. During visits with your primary care provider or endocrinologist, he or she will perform an A1C test to measure the glucose (blood sugar) in your blood by checking hemoglobin. Your physician may also take blood or urine samples to assess kidney, liver and thyroid function.
If you have type 1 or type 2 diabetes, there are several associated conditions to be aware of. From diabetic neuropathy to eye complications, local endocrinologists, diabetes nurses and dietitians can help.
Almost 90% of people who have type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese. If you're overweight or obese, you will need to create an effective diet and exercise plan with your diabetes healthcare team. Being overweight or obese puts added pressure on the body's ability to properly use insulin to control blood sugar levels.
Print this Action Plan and check off items that you want to discuss with your healthcare provider or endocrinologist.