Facts About Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes (sometimes called non-insulin-dependent diabetes or NIDDM) is the most common
form of diabetes. It usually occurs in middle age but can
occur at anytime. It is becoming more common in children now because of childhood obesity. Often, there is a
family history of diabetes. The most common
risk factor is overweight and obesity.
Type 2 diabetes develops slowly, quietly over many years and
may not be diagnosed until symptoms arise, many years after the
disease has started. Symptoms are related to elevated blood glucose
levels. The most common symptoms are increased thirst and urination,
unintentional weight loss, fatigue, poor wound healing and increased
risk of infections.
Type 2 diabetes is a complex disease syndrome. It involves
several tissues and organs such as the liver, pancreas, muscle and
fat tissue. Two different problems of metabolism occur in varying
degrees to cause the problem. “Insulin resistance” usually occurs
before defects in insulin secretion by the beta cell of the
The term “insulin resistance” refers to the higher insulin
levels, to accomplish do insulin’s job: get blood
glucose into the brain and muscle cells.
The body will produce more and more insulin to compensate for this insulin resistance. Eventually the pancreas stops producing enough insulin due to fatigue and a Type 2 diabetic may have to start taking insulin.
Treatment is focused on proper diet, exercise, weight control and medications.