Diabetes In A Cat Is A Treatable Disease
A diagnosis of diabetes means your cat can get treatment.
When an older cat is presented to the veterinarian with the common symptoms of drinking lots of water, urinating tons and losing weight, a diagnosis of feline diabetes can actually be good news. Its often better news than kidney failure or liver failure in many cases.
If your cat seems very thirsty, this is not normal. Get the cat to the vet.
Early intervention with diabetes, as with so many other diseases, gives your cat the best chance of a better life, and possible remission.
Daily insulin injections, along with watching what the cat eats, can help get blood sugar levels back on track and allow the cat to act normal.
Lowering Blood Glucose Levels
The bodies of people with diabetes require more fluid when blood glucose levels are high. This can lead to the kidneys attempting to excrete excess sugar through urine
Water will not raise blood glucose levels, which is why it is so beneficial to drink when people with diabetes have high blood sugar, as it enables more glucose to be flushed out of the blood.
Can Dehydration Affect Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Although dehydration can lead to serious health issues, not much research has looked at whether chronic dehydration and the associated higher blood sugar may increase the risk of prediabetes and full-blown type 2 diabetes.
There have been a variety of things dehydration has been suggested to contribute to, but not diabetes, Rizza says.
But there may be a connection, says Anna Simos, MPH, a certified diabetes care and education specialist with the Stanford Health Care Diabetes Education and Prevention Program in Palo Alto, California. Indeed, according to a previous study, which monitored healthy adults over nine years, peoples self-reported water intake was inversely associated with a risk of developing high blood sugar. This means that people who reported drinking less than ½ a liter of water per day were more at risk of elevated blood sugar than people who reported more than 1 liter.
Scientists theorize that dehydration can lead to an increase in the hormone vasopressin, which prompts the kidneys to retain water and the liver to produce blood sugar, potentially affecting the bodys ability to regulate insulin over time.
The bottom line: More research is needed to fully understand the relationship between dehydration and diabetes, but hydration likely keeps blood glucose levels a little more stable, Simos says.
RELATED: 7 Scientific Health Benefits of Water
Recommended Reading: Type 1 Diabetes Colors
What Happens If You Have Diabetes Insipidus
The main symptoms of diabetes insipidus include:
- Passing large volumes of urine. You may find that you can pass somewhere between 3 and 20 litres of urine per day.
- Passing urine frequently during the day.
- Getting up to pass urine frequently during the night.
- Feeling excessively thirsty, despite the fact that you seem to be drinking lots of fluids.
- A lack of fluid in your body . This can become a problem if you do not drink enough fluids to compensate for the amount of urine that you are passing. Severe dehydration is a medical emergency and immediate medical attention is needed.
- Symptoms of dehydration can include:
- in severe cases, collapse.
- Tiredness and reduced concentration. This may be due to lack of sleep because of repeated night-time trips to the toilet.
Poor growth and weight loss may be noticed in babies with diabetes insipidus. They may also appear irritable and difficult to settle. Older children may have problems with bedwetting at night and also incontinence of urine during the daytime. They may also have poor growth and a loss of appetite, as well as tiredness.
Can Drinking Too Much Water Dilute My Medicine
Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!
Recommended Reading: Which Factors Will Cause Hypoglycemia In A Client With Diabetes Select All That Apply.
What Are The Types Of Diabetes Insipidus
There are four types of diabetes insipidus:
- Central diabetes insipidus, the most common form, happens when the brain doesnt release enough ADH. This can be caused by damage to the pituitary gland or the hypothalamus, a section of the brain near the pituitary gland. The hypothalamus produces ADH and other hormones and controls their release. There are many possible causes of this damage, including an inherited defect in a gene, surgery or injury involving the head, tumors, and infections.
- Nephrogenic diabetes insipidus happens when there is enough ADH, but the kidneys dont respond to it properly and cant retain the water. This can be caused by a reaction to a medication, often lithium. It can also be caused by a defect in the genes, a high level of calcium in the blood , or kidney disease.
- Dipsogenic diabetes insipidus is not related to ADH, and is caused by drinking too much fluid. It occurs when the mechanism that makes a person feel thirsty is damaged, so the person feels thirsty even when fluid isnt needed. It can be caused by damage to the hypothalamus or by mental illness.
- Gestational diabetes insipidus affects pregnant women. It is caused by enzymes made by the placenta, a temporary organ that provides nourishment to the fetus. Sometimes these enzymes interfere with the kidneys ability to process ADH. Gestational diabetes insipidus usually goes away shortly after the pregnancy is over.
How To Stay Hydrated Without Overhydrating
How much water is safe to drink at a time? To put this another way, how much water is too much to drink in one hour?
> To prevent hyponatremia from developing and potentially progressing to water intoxication, its important to:
- Even during times of heavy sweating and exercise, limit fluid intake to no more 1 to 1.5 liters per hour .
- Drink according to your thirst. If youre not thirsty at all, dont force yourself to down water or fluids.
- Aim to balance what youre drinking with what youre sweating. Drink the right amount of water in proportion to how much sodium youre consuming and how much water youre losing . Remember that water is not the only fluid that can cause an electrolyte imbalance: herbal tea, sports drinks, juice, etc. can also deplete sodium levels.
- Eat a balanced diet that includes water-rich foods and also some sources of real sea salt.
- Treat any underlying health conditions like intestinal inflammation, diabetes, kidney disease or renal failure.
- Get help for mental disorders that might put you at risk.
- Take care of your adrenal glands and normalize cortisol levels.
How much water should you drink a day?
- Under-sink filter
- Whole-house water filter
Choose the option that works best with your familys lifestyle and that will be easiest to use consistently.
Proper Hydration In Babies & Children:
Recommended Reading: Do I Need To Check Blood Sugar While Taking Metformin
What Are The Signs That Youre Drinking Too Much Water
The color of your urine. One of the best ways to determine if youre drinking enough water is to monitor the color of your urine. It usually ranges from pale yellow to tea-colored due to the combination of the pigment urochrome and the water level in your body. If the pee is often clear, that’s a sure sign you’re drinking too much water in a short span.
Too many bathroom trips. Another sign is if you’re relieving yourself more than usual. On average, you should urinate six to eight times a day. Going up to 10 times is normal for water-drinking high achievers or people who regularly drink caffeine or alcohol.
Drinking water even when youre not thirsty. A third way to avoid drinking too much water is to be aware of when your body needs it. The body can fight against dehydration by letting you know when you need to drink some water. Thirst is the bodys response to dehydration and should be your guiding cue.
Nausea or vomiting. The symptoms of overhydration can look like those of dehydration. When you have too much water in the body, the kidneys can’t remove the excess liquid. It starts collecting in the body, leading to nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Discoloration of the hands, feet, and lips. When youre overhydrated, you will notice some swelling or discoloration of your feet, hands, and lips. When the cells swell, the skin will also swell.
Are Diabetes Insipidus And Diabetes Mellitus The Same
Diabetes insipidus is not the same as diabetes mellitus. Although both conditions can increase thirst, intake of liquids, and urination, they are not related.
- In diabetes mellitus, the level of glucose in your blood, also called blood sugar, is too high. Your kidneys try to remove the extra glucose by passing it in your urine.
- In diabetes insipidus, your blood glucose levels are normal, but your kidneys cant properly concentrate urine.
Recommended Reading: Is Macaroni And Cheese Good For Diabetics
The Link Between Water And Hyperglycemia
Roussel notes that recent research indicates an association between the hormone vasopressin, which regulates water in the body, and diabetes.
Despite the known influence of water intake on vasopressin secretion, no study has investigated a possible association between drinking water and risk of high blood sugar, he says.
Participants in the new study were offered health examinations every three years, including a self-administered questionnaire asking how much water, wine, beer-cider, and sweet drinks they drank a day. Blood sugar levels were measured at the study’s onset and about nine years later.
Over the course of the study, 565 people developed hyperglycemia.
The next step, according to Roussel, should be a study of people who say they don’t drink a lot of water, half of whom agree to increase their intake over a certain period. That would help confirm that drinking more water helps stave off high blood sugar, he says.
James R Gavin III, MD, PhD, clinical professor of medicine at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, tells WebMD that more basic research into the link between drinking water and hyperglycemia is needed.
“Not drinking enough water could be similar to what we see in people who consume a lot of cholesterol,” says Gavin, who is also chair of the Partnership for a Healthier America, an initiative to fight childhood obesity.
“Insufficient fluid intake may also influence susceptibility to diabetes,” Gavin says.
Home Monitoring Is Possible
Home monitoring devices are available for pets, just like human diabetics use.
These cut down on vet visits and are great for the cat who is anxious at the vets office.
Some cats wont let you prick their ear for a drop of blood. Home monitoring is certainly not for everyone, or every cat. But its worth discussing with your vet.
You May Like: Average Metformin Dosage
Was Your Pet Food Recalled
Most experts recommend a diet with about 7% carb content:
- Fancy Feast Chunky Chicken or Turkey is a good food for a diabetic cat.
- Friskies and 9Lives have some options too.
Some of these regular cat foods are probably better than the prescription diets.
If your cat is addicted to dry foods, there are probably decent dry diets out there but we still wish you could convert your cat to a wet diet.
Certain manufactured foods contain high levels of humectants, which cause spikes in blood sugar. Its best to avoid them.
Almost Every Process In Your Body Relies On Water
Water actually does far more for our bodies than we realize. Water aids your digestion, lubricates joints, helps flush waste products and performs a host of other important tasks in your body. Not being properly hydrated will significantly reduce your physical capacity and brain function.
According to Harvard University, adequate water intake is vital for a variety of daily functions within our body:
- carries nutrients and oxygen to cells throughout your body
- flushes bacteria from your bladder
- aids in the digestion of meals
- prevents constipation
- protects your organs and tissues from a variety of potential damage
- regulates your body temperature
- maintains your bodys electrolyte/sodium levels
Water has been pinpointed in many studies as an important part of losing weight, but researchers still arent clear how its accelerating your weight-loss efforts.
Theories behind water consumption and weight-loss include:
- Drinking more water means youre likely drinking less soda and other sugar-laden beverages
- Drinking more water might boost your metabolism and cause you to burn more calories
- Drinking more water might help reduce cravings for not-so-healthy foods
- Drinking more water in place of diet soda may reduce insulin resistance
Regardless, it is clear in study after study that those who drink more water tend to lose more weight, in contrast, to study participants drinking less water.
Drinking enough water impacts so many aspects of our daily health. But how much water is enough?
Also Check: Is Greek Yogurt Good For Diabetics
Water To Prevent High Levels Of Blood Sugar
One study suggests that routinely drinking water might prevent the onset of hyperglycemia. Hyperglycemia, which is sometimes called pre-diabetes, occurs when your blood sugar is higher than it should be. Over time, hyperglycemia can lead to the same types of health problems as diabetes.
In a 2011 paper, researchers reported results from a nine-year study of 3,615 people between the ages of 31 and 65. All of the participants started the study with normal blood sugar levels. Over time, 565 study participants began showing elevated blood sugar levels. Of those with high blood sugar, 202 eventually developed diabetes.
Researchers learned that the people who developed hyperglycemia reported drinking less water than people whose blood surge stayed in the normal range. They concluded that there is a link between chronic dehydration and developing high blood sugar. This doesnt mean that everyone who forgets to drink water will get pre-diabetes, but it does suggest that drinking water is very important for overall health.
If you have questions about how much water you should be drinking to manage diabetes, talk to your doctor.
How Much Water Is Too Much
Several factors can affect how well someone is able to excrete excess water from their body in order to prevent hyponatremia/water intoxication. For example, as mentioned above, being under a lot of stress and/or having existing medical conditions both take a toll on the kidneys and nervous system, which can increase the likelihood that water intoxication symptoms might occur.
So how much water is too much to drink within a short period?
- In 2014, The Daily Mail reported that a 17-year-old high school football player died from water intoxication after drinking four gallons of fluids to stop cramps during practice.
- A 2002 investigation of several military cases of water intoxication and three deaths that have occurred as a result of overhydration and cerebral edema found that all cases were associated with more than five liters of water being consumed during a period of a few hours.
- In 2007, Scientific America published an article that mentioned a 28-year-old women who died after competing in a water-drinking contest in which she consumed an estimated six liters of water in three hours. The same article pointed out a 2005 study that was published in the New England Journal of Medicine that states one sixth of marathon runners develop some degree of hyponatremia, or dilution of the blood caused by drinking too much water.
- Helping to regulate the amount of water in and around your cells.
- Controlling blood volume.
- Allowing your muscles and nerves to work properly.
Recommended Reading: What Colors Represent Diabetes
Dehydration During Severe Stomach Virus & Vomiting
Theres no quicker way to become dehydrated than when you get a nasty stomach virus or flu and find yourself vomiting every last bit of water from your body.
A bout of sick-day puking in a person with type 1 diabetes can become a true crisis if it isnt handled quickly.
A stomach bug can quickly and easily spike your blood sugar from 100 mg/dL to over 250 mg/dL because of the immediate dehydration it creates. If you cant keep fluids down, your dehydration will escalate your ketone levels so severely that you could find yourself in DKA diabetic ketoacidosis.
And with DKA comes very stubborn high blood sugars that extra insulin doses at home will not budge.
Tip: Dont wait. If you have a stomach virus or flu that leaves you unable to consume water or food, you should visit the nearest emergency department to receive intravenous fluids.
Gong sooner than later means a much shorter visit just a few hours strung up and then theyll send you back home once your blood sugars and hydration levels are restabilized.
If you wait, and try to tough it out at home, your eventual trip to the ER will be much longer because theyll be treating DKA, not just dehydration.
What Happens When You Drink Too Much Water
When you drink too much water, you may experience water poisoning, intoxication, or a disruption of brain function. This happens when there’s too much water in the cells , causing them to swell. When the cells in the brain swell they cause pressure in the brain. You may start experiencing things like confusion, drowsiness, and headaches. If this pressure increases it could cause conditions like hypertension and bradycardia .
Sodium is the electrolyte most affected by overhydration, leading to a condition called hyponatremia. Sodium is a crucial element that helps keep the balance of fluids in and out of cells. When its levels drop due to a high amount of water in the body, fluids get inside the cells. Then the cells swell, putting you at risk of having seizures, going into a coma, or even dying.
Also Check: Glipizide Metformin Warnings