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How Is Type 2 Diabetes Caused


Type 2 Diabetes Diagnosis And Tests

Understanding Type 2 Diabetes

Your doctor can test your blood for signs of type 2 diabetes. Usually, theyâll test you on 2 days to confirm the diagnosis. But if your blood glucose is very high or you have many symptoms, one test may be all you need.

  • A1c. It’s like an average of your blood glucose over the past 2 or 3 months.
  • Fasting plasma glucose. This is also known as a fasting blood sugar test. It measures your blood sugar on an empty stomach. You won’t be able to eat or drink anything except water for 8 hours before the test.
  • Oral glucose tolerance test . This checks your blood glucose before and 2 hours after you drink something sweet to see how your body handles the sugar.

Diet Weight Control And Physical Activity

  • Diet. What you eat is absolutely central to your blood glucose control, as well as your general health. Please read our separate leaflet called Type 2 Diabetes Diet for more information. Your practice nurse or dietician can give you more information and support.
  • Lose weight if you are overweight. Getting to a perfect weight is unrealistic for many people. However, losing some weight if you are obese or overweight will help to reduce your blood glucose and blood pressure levels . Recent evidence from Professor Taylor, Newcastle University, has shown that weight loss alone can put diabetes into drug-free remission in at least a third of patients.
  • Do some physical activity regularly. If you are able, a minimum of 30 minutes’ brisk walking at least five times a week is advised. Anything more vigorous and more often is even better – for example, swimming, cycling, jogging, dancing. Ideally, you should do an activity that gets you at least mildly out of breath and mildly sweaty. You can spread the activity over the day – for example, two fifteen-minute spells per day of brisk walking, cycling, dancing, etc. Regular physical activity also reduces your risk of having a heart attack or stroke.

What Are The Treatments For Type 2 Diabetes

Treatment for type 2 diabetes involves managing your blood sugar levels. Many people are able to do this by living a healthy lifestyle. Some people may also need to take medicine.:

  • A healthy lifestyle includes following a healthy eating plan and getting regular physical activity. You need to learn how to balance what you eat and drink with physical activity and diabetes medicine, if you take any.
  • Medicines for diabetes include oral medicines, insulin, and other injectable medicines. Over time, some people will need to take more than one type of medicine to control their diabetes.
  • You will need to check your blood sugar regularly. Your health care provider will tell you how often you need to do it.
  • It’s also important to keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels close to the targets your provider sets for you. Make sure to get your screening tests regularly.

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Type 2 Diabetes Treatment

The overarching goal of type 2 diabetes is to achieve normoglycemia as well as to minimize other risk factors contributing to the disease and other comorbid disease processes.


Comorbid diseases are a group of diseases that tend to occur together in the same person at the same time. This is frequently because they have the same risk factors.

For example in this discussion, being overweight with an unhealthy diet and low levels of physical activity are risk factors for the comorbid conditions diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, congestive heart failure, stroke, and more.

The holistic treatment for type 2 diabetes involves a combination of lifestyle changes.

Risk Factors For Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

Type 2 diabetes is believed to have a strong genetic link, meaning that it tends to run in families. If you have a parent, brother, or sister who has it, your chances rise. Several genes may be related to type 2 diabetes. Ask your doctor about a diabetes test if you have any of the following risk factors:

  • Polycystic ovary syndrome
  • Being of an ethnicity thatâs at higher risk: African Americans, Native Americans, Hispanic Americans, and Asian Americans are more likely to get type 2 diabetes than non-Hispanic whites.
  • You’re over 45 years of age. Older age is a significant risk factor for type 2 diabetes. The risk of type 2 diabetes begins to rise significantly around age 45 and rises considerably after age 65.
  • Youâve had an organ transplant. After an organ transplant, you need to take drugs for the rest of your life so your body doesnât reject the donor organ. These drugs help organ transplants succeed, but many of them, such as tacrolimus or steroids, can cause diabetes or make it worse.

A proper diet and healthy lifestyle habits, along with medication, if you need it, can help you manage type 2 diabetes the same way you manage other areas of your life. Be sure to seek the latest information on this condition as you become your own health advocate.

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Type 2 Diabetes In Children And Teens

Childhood obesity rates are rising, and so are the rates of type 2 diabetes in youth. More than 75% of children with type 2 diabetes have a close relative who has it, too. But its not always because family members are related it can also be because they share certain habits that can increase their risk. Parents can help prevent or delay type 2 diabetes by developing a plan for the whole family:

  • Drinking more water and fewer sugary drinks
  • Eating more fruits and vegetables
  • Making favorite foods healthier
  • Making physical activity more fun

Healthy changes become habits more easily when everyone makes them together. Find out how to take charge family style with these healthy tips.

Being Overweight Or Obese

You’re more likely to develop type 2 diabetes if you’re overweight or obese with a body mass index of 30 or more.

Fat around your tummy particularly increases your risk. This is because it releases chemicals that can upset the body’s cardiovascular and metabolic systems.

This increases your risk of developing a number of serious conditions, including coronary heart disease, stroke and some types of cancer.


Measuring your waist is a quick way of assessing your diabetes risk. This is a measure of abdominal obesity, which is a particularly high-risk form of obesity.

Women have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes if their waist measures 80cm or more.

Asian men with a waist size of 89cm or more have a higher risk, as do white or black men with a waist size of 94cm or more.

Exercising regularly and reducing your body weight by about 5% could reduce your risk of getting diabetes by more than 50%.

Read about measuring your waist size


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Modern Development Of Genetics And Heredity

In the 1930s, work by Fisher and others resulted in a combination of Mendelian and biometric schools into the . The modern synthesis bridged the gap between experimental geneticists and naturalists and between both and palaeontologists, stating that:

  • All evolutionary phenomena can be explained in a way consistent with known genetic mechanisms and the observational evidence of naturalists.
  • Evolution is gradual: small genetic changes, recombination ordered by . Discontinuities amongst species are explained as originating gradually through geographical separation and extinction .
  • is overwhelmingly the main mechanism of change even slight advantages are important when continued. The object of selection is the in its surrounding environment. The role of is equivocal though strongly supported initially by , it was downgraded later as results from ecological genetics were obtained.
  • The primacy of population thinking: the genetic diversity carried in natural populations is a key factor in evolution. The strength of natural selection in the wild was greater than expected the effect of ecological factors such as niche occupation and the significance of barriers to gene flow are all important.
  • however caused a backlash of what is now called in the when he emphasised ideas on the . This movement affected agricultural research and led to food shortages in the 1960s and seriously affected the USSR.

    Type 2 Diabetes In Children

    Type 2 Diabetes Signs & Symptoms (& Why They Occur) & Associated Conditions

    Type 2 diabetes in children is a growing issue. According to the American Diabetes Association , around 193,000 Americans under age 20 have type 1 or type 2 diabetes.

    One 2016 study found that the incidence of type 2 diabetes in youth has increased to about 5,000 new cases per year. Another study from 2017 also showed a significant increase, particularly in minority races and ethnic groups.


    If your child has been diagnosed with diabetes, their doctor will need to determine if its type 1 or type 2 before suggesting a specific treatment.

    In the same way that lifestyle choices can help adults manage or even reverse their type 2 diabetes diagnosis, you can help lower your childs risk by encouraging them to eat well and to be physically active every day.

    report the following statistics about diabetes in the United States:

    • Over 30 million people have diabetes. Thats around 10 percent of the population.
    • 1 in 4 people has no idea they have diabetes.
    • Prediabetes affects 84.1 million adults, and 90 percent of them are unaware of it.
    • Non-Hispanic Black, Hispanic, and Native American adults are to have diabetes as non-Hispanic white adults.

    The ADA reports the following statistics:

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    When Should I See My Doctor

    If you have any of the symptoms above, you should make an appointment with your doctor to discuss them since they might indicate undiagnosed type 2 diabetes.

    Your doctor will look at your symptoms, review any risk factors you have for type 2 diabetes and they will recommend you be tested if needed.

    Even if you dont have symptoms, all Australians should be screened for type 2 diabetes, every 3 years, starting at 40 years of age. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should start screening at age 18. Your GP should carry out this screening. It may involve reviewing your risk factors only, or you may need a blood test.

    Video provided by Diabetes Victoria.

    Type 2 diabetes can also affect your mental health and can make you more vulnerable to anxiety or depression. SANE Australia and Diabetes Australia have produced a guide to good mental health for people affected by diabetes.


    How Is Type 2 Diabetes Treated

    Type 2 diabetes can initially be managed by lifestyle changes. Behavioral changes such as becoming more active and eating a healthier diet can help to control blood sugar as well as to lose or manage weight if overweight or obese. When these changes are not enough to manage type 2 diabetes, your doctor may prescribe medication or insulin therapy.

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    What Are The First Symptoms Of Type 2 Diabetes

    Many people with type 2 diabetes do not experience any symptoms at first and it may go undiagnosed for years. If they do have symptoms, these may include:

    • being very thirsty
    • having cuts that heal slowly

    Over time, diabetes can lead to complications, which can then cause other symptoms.

    Blood glucose testing is important for detecting pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes before complications arise.


    Signs And Symptoms Of Type 2 Diabetes

    Causes of Type 2 Diabetes

    The symptoms of type 2 diabetes can be so mild that you don’t notice them. About 8 million people who have it don’t know it. Symptoms include:

    • Being very thirsty
    • Weight loss without trying
    • Getting more infections

    If you have dark rashes around your neck or armpits, see your doctor. These are called acanthosis nigricans, and they can be signs that your body is becoming resistant to insulin.

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    Will I Need Medication Or Insulin For Type 2 Diabetes

    Some people take medication to manage diabetes, along with diet and exercise. Your healthcare provider may recommend oral diabetes medications. These are pills or liquids that you take by mouth. For example, a medicine called metformin helps control the amount of glucose your liver produces.

    You can also take insulin to help your body use sugar more efficiently. Insulin comes in the following forms:


    • Injectable insulin is a shot you give yourself. Most people inject insulin into a fleshy part of their body such as their belly. Injectable insulin is available in a vial or an insulin pen.
    • Inhaled insulin is inhaled through your mouth. It is only available in a rapid-acting form.
    • Insulin pumps deliver insulin continuously, similar to how a healthy pancreas would. Pumps release insulin into your body through a tiny cannula . Pumps connect to a computerized device that lets you control the dose and frequency of insulin.

    Medications For Type 2 Diabetes

    In some cases, lifestyle changes are enough to keep type 2 diabetes under control. If not, there are several medications that may help. Some of these medications include:

    • Metformin.This can lower your blood glucose levels and improve how your body responds to insulin. Its the first-line treatment for most people with type 2 diabetes.
    • Sulfonylureas. These are oral medications that help your body make more insulin.
    • Meglitinides. These are fast-acting, short-duration medications that stimulate your pancreas to release more insulin.
    • Thiazolidinediones. These make your body more sensitive to insulin.
    • Dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitors. These are milder medications that help reduce blood glucose levels.
    • Glucagon-like peptide-1 agonists. These slow digestion and improve blood glucose levels.
    • Sodium-glucose Cotransporter-2 Inhibitors. These help your kidneys remove sugar in your body through urine.

    Each type of medication listed above can cause side effects. It may take some time for you and your doctor to find the best medication or combination of medications to treat your diabetes.

    If your blood pressure or cholesterol levels are also not ideal, you may need medications to address those needs as well.

    If your body is unable to make enough insulin, you may need insulin therapy. You may only need a long-acting injection you can take at night, or you may need to take insulin several times per day.

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    Who Develops Type 2 Diabetes

    Type 2 diabetes used to be known as maturity-onset, or non-insulin-dependent diabetes. Type 2 diabetes develops mainly in people older than the age of 40 . Over 462 million people are living with diabetes in the world, which is estimated to be 1 in 11 of the world’s adult population. It is estimated that by 2030, that figure will have risen to 540 million people. Type 2 diabetes is now becoming far more common in children and in young people.

    The number of people with type 2 diabetes is increasing in the UK, as it is more common in people who are overweight or obese. It also tends to run in families. Type 2 diabetes is around five times more common in South Asian and African-Caribbean people . It is estimated that there are around 750,000 people in the UK with type 2 diabetes who have not yet been diagnosed with the condition.

    Keep Your Blood Pressure Down

    Obesity can cause type 2 diabetes

    It is very important to have your blood pressure checked regularly. The combination of high blood pressure and diabetes is a particularly high risk factor for complications. Even mildly raised blood pressure should be treated if you have type 2 diabetes. Medication, often with two or even three different medicines, may be needed to keep your blood pressure down but remember weight loss and exercise can really help with this too.

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    Living With Type 2 Diabetes

    Having type 2 diabetes can bring up lots of questions about your lifestyle, but were here with the answers. From nutritional advice and recipes to help you know what to eat when you have type 2 diabetes, tips about diabetes and alcohol and keeping active and staying fit were here to support you.


    Weve also got more information for different age groups, such as young people and older people, as well as practical school advice for parents of children with diabetes.

    Type 2 diabetes is also associated with other health conditions, such as thyroid disease and dental problems. Its important to be aware of these, so make sure to read our information about diabetes related conditions.

    Can Type 2 Diabetes Be Cured

    Type 2 diabetes cannot be cured, but people with the condition may be able to manage their type 2 diabetes through lifestyle changes and, if needed, diabetes medications to control blood sugar levels.

    Its also emerging that some people who are overweight or obese can put their type 2 diabetes into remission by losing a substantial amount of weight, especially early in their diagnosis. Their blood sugar measurements return to healthy levels below the diabetes range. Its not a permanent solution, and diabetes could come back, so it needs to be maintained. However, many people were still in remission 2 years later. This should only be tried under the supervision of your doctor.

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    Tips For Aging Well With Type 2 Diabetes

    • Lean on your medical team, which may consist of an endocrinologist, a podiatrist, an RDE and a CDE, and other specialty health professionals. In many cases, your primary care physician will be your main healthcare provider for diabetes care.
    • Stick to your medication regimen, and be open to potential medication adjustments.
    • Take insulin if your doctor says you need it.

    Everyday Health editors attend the AADEs annual meeting to connect with certified diabetes educators, registered dietitians, and people like you, who are looking for ways to better manage blood sugar, diet, medication, and more. Check out information on this years meeting in Houston.

    The ADA is considered the leading nonprofit for type 1 and type 2 diabetes education. The ADA’s free yearlong program Living With Diabetes offers top-of-the-line resources for anyone new to living with diabetes. Youll get access to their newsletter, expert Q& A session, and online support system, among other perks.

    One of our favorite features from the AHA is a go-to resource for preventing heart disease: Know Diabetes by Heart. The ADA-supported initiative lays out a step-by-step guide for keeping your heart healthy while living with diabetes.

    For more on the association between diabetes and heart disease, check out our article “Heart Disease The Diabetes Connection.”

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