Type 2 diabetes is a chronic medical condition that occurs when the body's cells can't respond to insulin as they should, leading to an accumulation of sugar in the bloodstream. This long-term condition can cause several symptoms and potentially lead to serious complications. It is important to understand the development of type 2 diabetes and how it can be managed. There are certain risk factors that can increase your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, such as age, heredity, and lifestyle choices.
Being overweight or obese, having a high body mass index (BMI), and being physically inactive are all associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Additionally, having prediabetes, where blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, can also increase your risk. If you have prediabetes, making lifestyle changes such as losing a small amount of weight if you are overweight and getting regular physical activity may reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The CDC-led National Diabetes Prevention Program offers lifestyle change programs that can help you make these changes and keep them sustained.
Through this program, you can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by up to 58% (71% if you are 60 or older). If you have already been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, it is important to talk to your doctor about developing a treatment plan that fits your lifestyle. Controlling blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and quitting smoking if you smoke are all important ways to manage type 2 diabetes. Additionally, medications such as metformin may be prescribed to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes in people with prediabetes.
It is important to understand the development of type 2 diabetes and how it can be managed in order to reduce the risk of serious complications. If you are at risk for type 2 diabetes, talk to your doctor about ways to reduce your risk and manage the condition if it develops.