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Can Type 1 Diabetes Kill You

Type 2 Diabetes: Insulin Resistance

Diabetes: Can Diabetes Kill You? Heres What You Need To Know

On the other hand, type 2 diabetes is caused by a condition called insulin resistance, which is a buildup of dietary fat in cells that are not meant to store it.

In the case of type 2 diabetes, your body produces insulin just fine, but cells in your liver and muscle have a difficult time responding to insulin. This, in turn, causes your blood sugar levels to rise, requiring your body to either overproduce insulin, or in certain cases inject insulin from external sources.

Can Diabetes Cause Hair Loss

Yes, its possible for diabetes to cause hair loss. Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to persistently high blood glucose levels. This, in turn, leads to blood vessel damage and restricted flow, and oxygen and nutrients cant get to the cells that need it including hair follicles. Stress can cause hormone level changes that affect hair growth. If you have Type 1 diabetes, your immune system attacks itself and can also cause a hair loss condition called alopecia areata.

What Is Hyperglycemic Hyperosmolar Nonketotic Syndrome

Hyperglycemic hyperosmolar nonketotic syndrome develops more slowly than diabetic ketoacidosis. It occurs in patients with Type 2 diabetes, especially the elderly and usually occurs when patients are ill or stressed.If you have HHNS, you blood glucose level is typically greater than 600 mg/dL. Symptoms include frequent urination, drowsiness, lack of energy and dehydration. HHNS is not associated with ketones in the blood. It can cause coma or death. Youll need to be treated in the hospital.

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Do I Buy Insulin Or Do I Buy Food

Henn said people would tell him all he needed to do was change his diet, and then he wouldnt have to use insulin anymore.

That, of course, is a lie, he said. What I wish for society to understand about diabetes is that it happens because our bodies are broken. We didnt eat too much cake. We didnt drink too much lemonade.

Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition caused by an autoimmune reaction that destroys the cells in the pancreas that make insulin, a hormone needed to allow sugar to enter cells to produce energy.

With Type 2 diabetes, too much glucose is circulating in the bloodstream, and those high blood sugar levels can damage circulation and organs. The pancreas produces enough insulin but the cells in the body have become resistant to it. More than 30 million Americans suffer from Type 2.

By 2050, the number battling all forms of diabetes could reach 1 in 3.

Dr. Rick deShazo, distinguished professor emeritus at the University of Mississippi Medical Center and adjunct professor of medicine at the University of Alabama School of Medicine in Birmingham, said genetics plays a huge role in Type 1 diabetes, which mainly strikes children.

Many of them show up in the emergency room in a coma, he said. You can die of it very easily if its not taken care of.

Henn said a number of his relatives suffer from the same Type 1 diabetes he battles.

Nationwide, 7 million Americans depend on insulin, and more than a fourth of them ration the drug because they cant afford it.

What Are The Different Types Of Diabetes

What Food Can Type 1 Diabetes Eat

The types of diabetes are:

  • Type 1 diabetes: This type is an autoimmune disease, meaning your body attacks itself. In this case, the insulin-producing cells in your pancreas are destroyed. Up to 10% of people who have diabetes have Type 1. Its usually diagnosed in children and young adults . It was once better known as juvenile diabetes. People with Type 1 diabetes need to take insulin every day. This is why it is also called insulin-dependent diabetes.
  • Type 2 diabetes: With this type, your body either doesnt make enough insulin or your bodys cells dont respond normally to the insulin. This is the most common type of diabetes. Up to 95% of people with diabetes have Type 2. It usually occurs in middle-aged and older people. Other common names for Type 2 include adult-onset diabetes and insulin-resistant diabetes. Your parents or grandparents may have called it having a touch of sugar.
  • Prediabetes: This type is the stage before Type 2 diabetes. Your blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be officially diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.
  • Gestational diabetes: This type develops in some women during their pregnancy. Gestational diabetes usually goes away after pregnancy. However, if you have gestational diabetes you’re at higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later on in life.

Less common types of diabetes include:

Diabetes insipidus is a distinct rare condition that causes your kidneys to produce a large amount of urine.

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How Often Do I Need To See My Primary Diabetes Healthcare Professional

In general, if you are being treated with insulin shots, you should see your doctor at least every three to four months. If you are treated with pills or are managing diabetes through diet, you should be seen at least every four to six months. More frequent visits may be needed if your blood sugar is not controlled or if complications of diabetes are worsening.

What Are The Symptoms Of Diabetes

Symptoms of diabetes include:

Type 1 diabetes symptoms: Symptoms can develop quickly over a few weeks or months. Symptoms begin when youre young as a child, teen or young adult. Additional symptoms include nausea, vomiting or stomach pains and yeast infections or urinary tract infections.

Type 2 diabetes and prediabetes symptoms: You may not have any symptoms at all or may not notice them since they develop slowly over several years. Symptoms usually begin to develop when youre an adult, but prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes is on the rise in all age groups.

Gestational diabetes: You typically will not notice symptoms. Your obstetrician will test you for gestational diabetes between 24 and 28 weeks of your pregnancy.

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How Does Diabetes Affect Your Heart Eyes Feet Nerves And Kidneys

Blood vessels are located throughout our bodys tissues and organs. They surround our bodys cells, providing a transfer of oxygen, nutrients and other substances, using blood as the exchange vehicle. In simple terms, diabetes doesnt allow glucose to get into cells and it damages blood vessels in/near these organs and those that nourish nerves. If organs, nerves and tissues cant get the essentials they need to properly function, they can begin to fail.Proper function means that your hearts blood vessels, including arteries, are not damaged . In your kidneys, this means that waste products can be filtered out of your blood. In your eyes, this means that the blood vessels in your retina remain intact. In your feet and nerves, this means that nerves are nourished and that theres blood flow to your feet. Diabetes causes damage that prevents proper function.

What Complications Are Associated With Type 1 Diabetes

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Having type 1 diabetes increases a persons risk of developing long-term health complications. Over time, the high blood sugar levels that are associated with diabetes can damage the body, affecting the nervous system, blood vessels, eyes, heart, and kidneys. Careful management, and maintaining stable blood glucose levels, can reduce a persons risk for complications. To read more about complications, click here.

In the short term, type 1 diabetes can cause hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia , as well as diabetic ketoacidosis, or DKA.

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What Causes Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is thought to be caused by an autoimmune reaction that destroys the cells in the pancreas that make insulin, called beta cells. This process can go on for months or years before any symptoms appear.

Some people have certain genes that make them more likely to develop type 1 diabetes, though many wont go on to have type 1 diabetes even if they have the genes. Being exposed to a trigger in the environment, such as a virus, is also thought to play a part in developing type 1 diabetes. Diet and lifestyle habits dont cause type 1 diabetes.

Is There A Type 1 Diabetes Diet

The basics of a type 1 diabetes diet include making sure carbohydrate intake is matched with insulin and choosing healthy options to maximize nutrition in each calorie. People with type 1 diabetes will find it is easiest to match carbohydrates to insulin if they follow a low-glycemic load diet, so that the impact of carbohydrates on blood sugar is slow and gradual. This also makes it easier to predict and match to required insulin.

Because weight gain can be a side effect of injecting insulin, a type 1 diabetes diet should be healthy and low in calories to help the person maintain or lose weight. Food lists of low-glycemic load options can help people learn what to include in their diet.

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Myth: Type 2 Diabetes Only Occurs In Adults

Fact: With less food preparation and decreased physical activity, there is an increase in the number of children being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is also increasing, but this is due to an increase in diagnosed autoimmune disorders. Type 1 used to be called juvenile diabetes when in fact it can be diagnosed at any age, yes any age.

What Should You Do If Someone Is Going Into A Diabetic Coma


In either case, call 911 immediately, and seek immediate medical attention. If someone has an extremely low blood sugar and they have emergency glucagon on hand, use that immediately while you wait for an ambulance to arrive.

Its important to remember that someone who is experiencing severe low blood sugar may not always be able to chew and swallow, so trying to give them food when theyre losing consciousness can put them at risk of choking. This makes glucagon the best option while you wait for professional medical help to arrive.

While these conditions may not be 100 percent preventable if you have insulin-dependent T1D, there are steps to take to help protect yourself:

  • Wear a CGM that alarms you of both high and low blood sugars.
  • If you experience hypoglycemia unawareness, look into getting a diabetes alert dog.
  • Check your blood sugars often, especially right before going to sleep at night, when you are sick or fighting off an infection, and before, during, and after strenuous exercise.
  • Check your blood sugar 90 minutes after changing your insulin pump site, to make sure the cannula is inserted correctly.
  • Limit alcohol consumption.

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Damaged Organs Over Time

Another way diabetes can lead to death is by damage done to organs and tissues in the body over a long period of time. For example, the blood vessels in the kidneys can be damaged by high blood sugar, says Dr. Mcclaina complication that can lead to kidney failure and require dialysis.

This same type of organ and blood-vessel damage can also lead to blindness and to amputation of feet or legs, he adds, which can reduce quality of life and raise the risk of infection, injuries, or additional illnesses. We know that keeping blood sugar under control, for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, is one of the best ways to reduce the risk of these complications, says Dr. Mcclain.

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What Are The Complications Of Diabetes

If your blood glucose level remains high over a long period of time, your bodys tissues and organs can be seriously damaged. Some complications can be life-threatening over time.

Complications include:

  • Dental problems.

Complications of gestational diabetes:

In the mother:Preeclampsia , risk of gestational diabetes during future pregnancies and risk of diabetes later in life.

In the newborn: Higher-than-normal birth weight, low blood sugar , higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes over time and death shortly after birth.

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Type 1 Diabetes & Heart Attack

Myra Lipes, MD, is an investigator at the Joslin Diabetes Center, and she explained that the strategy used to counter heart disease should be different for type 2 and type 1 diabetes. In type 1 diabetes, the production of insulin is impeded by an autoimmune reaction. This autoimmune reaction shares some resemblance with the action of a protein called alpha-myosin. Studies in both mice and humans showed that this protein is nestled in the heart and triggers chronic heart inflammation. While this process naturally goes away in the general population who experiences a heart attack, the same cannot be said for people with type 1 diabetes. On the long run, this reaction can eat away your heart and pave the way to heart failure.

Did you know?

According to a study published in the journal Circulation AHA, roughly 45% of heart attacks are silent. Researchers were only able to detect these silent myocardial infarctus using an electrocardiogram .

Learning Healthier Lifestyle Choices

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Reducing the lifestyle-dependent spikes in blood sugar is where the biggest value can be found, says Josh Clemente, co-founder of Levels. We studied all the literature thats available. People who are able to maintain blood sugar control in that 70-110 mg/dL range consistently have the lowest risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, dementiaall the comorbidities of metabolic dysfunction.

Its important to note, however, that many Americans dont have the means to alter their diets. Quick TV dinners may be all thats practical for Americans who work long, exhausting hours at minimum wage. That doesnt mean its healthy to reach for the soda to go with that TV dinner, but tackling Americas sugar addiction requires systemic change.

For me, Levels is like the angel of health on my shoulder alerting me to the sugar-laden devil in the details. Thanks to Levels, I know when my blood sugar stays elevated at levels higher than ideal, and which meals are causing this. For example, I didnt realize just how sugary durian fruit was. Like my morning smoothie, it spiked my blood glucose right up. Maybe those werent so surprisingbut my oat milk was. Turns out theres added sugar in that, too.

What I have noticed, however, is that adding exercise to my routineeven just a short walk before or after a mealkeeps my blood glucose in better check. According to Means, thats a pretty common theme among users.

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Can You Be Born With Diabetes Is It Genetic

You arent born with diabetes, but Type 1 diabetes usually appears in childhood. Prediabetes and diabetes develop slowly over time years. Gestational diabetes occurs during pregnancy.Scientists do believe that genetics may play a role or contribute to the development of Type 1 diabetes. Something in the environment or a virus may trigger its development. If you have a family history of Type 1 diabetes, you are at higher risk of developing Type 1 diabetes. If you have a family history of prediabetes, Type 2 diabetes or gestational diabetes, youre at increased risk of developing prediabetes, Type 2 diabetes or gestational diabetes.

Can You Die From Type 2 Diabetes

Another common type of diabetes is type 2. So, the question here is: can you die of type 2 diabetes? Well, it I not uncommon to hear about the deaths that occur due to type 2 diabetes. The common causes for the same include the following:

High Blood Glucose Levels:

You can have serious complications if you are unable to control the levels of blood glucose.

Lipid Disorders

According to the American Diabetes Association, a diabetic patient suffers from bad levels of cholesterol as well as the high-low density of lipoprotein. This, in turn, increases the chances of you getting several types of disorders including those related to the heart and kidney. These complications could ultimately cause death.

High Blood Pressure

If you are a diabetes patient, there are 70 percent chances that you will have high blood pressure issues. This, in turn, causes complications leading to the even death of the patient concerned.


If you are a diabetes patient and are into smoking, you might need to quit the habit at the earliest possible time. The reason being that being diabetic, smoking multiplies the complications involved, thereby leading to death and other concerns.

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How Long Can You Live With Diabetes

It is not very uncommon to hear that diabetes will shorten the expected life of the concerned patient. But the question is: How much?

There are different opinions about the subject. As per a few types of research conducted, diabetes can shorten life by 8.5 years in a 50-year old individual. On the other hand, Diabetes UK estimates that the expected life span of type 1 diabetic patient is reduced by more than 20 years while a type 2 diabetes patient lives 10 years shorter as compared to the healthier counterparts.

Besides, the University of Pittsburg has estimated through various studies that people who are born after 1965 and are suffering from type 1 diabetes have a life expectancy of somewhere around 69 years.

Having said the above, we should not forget that with proper diabetes care and management, it is very much possible to extend the total life of a diabetes patient. In the following paragraphs, we shall dive into and analyze the causes and conditions which lead to deaths in the patients who suffer from the condition.

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