Insulin is the most important hormone responsible for blood glucose or blood sugar to be converted into energy. This is also needed to lower blood sugar by entering into cells and satisfying the body's energy and growth requirements. Insulin is automatically released by the pancreas every time you eat. Since almost everything you eat is broken down into glucose, insulin is vital to keep the body healthy and function normally.
However, if the pancreas does not produce insulin or very little amount is produced, it is not processed to become energy. This results in a high amount of glucose in the bloodstream. This condition is medically referred to as hyperglycemia, which is a main sign of diabetes. Diabetes affects millions of people yet many are unaware that they have it. Inability to recognize the illness at its early stage will worsen your condition and eventually lead to further complications.
How do you know if you are diabetic? Here's how to spot unusual signs and symptoms of diabetes.
- You go to the comfort room repeatedly yet feel extremely thirsty during the process. You feel that you need to urinate every so often. Too much glucose in the bloodstream overwhelms the kidney because it cannot filter all the excess glucose. This fills up the bladder and escapes into the urine. However, glucose thickens in urine and thus, the body will send signals to the brain to drink water in order to flow easily into the kidney. Urinating frequently makes you think that you are dehydrated and thus, creates a continuing cycle of drink and urinate symptoms.
- You experience abnormal weight loss. Observable weight loss could be a sign of diabetes. This is especially true when you have not made any changes in your eating habits. When insulin does not allow glucose to enter the cells, energy is not produced. Without energy, your body instinctively looks for an alternative source of energy. It resorts to breaking down muscle tissues and fats leading to significant weight loss.
- You feel extremely weak and tired without doing any physical activity. The cells' inability to produce energy makes the body weak and unable to respond to everyday physical and mental requirements.
- Your nervous system is damaged throughout time. This condition is medically referred to as neuropathy. High blood glucose in the body for prolonged periods of time damages areas of the nervous system. Nerve damage is usually manifested in physical attributes such as experiencing abnormal sensations, tingling or burning pain in hands, legs and/or feet. Cuts and bruises normally occur because the skin could not distinguish changes in pressure or temperature.
Other observable symptoms include blurry vision, cuts and bruises that take longer to heal, erectile dysfunction (for men over 50 years old) and dry and itchy skin. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is best to see a doctor immediately. There is still no known cure for diabetes and the best way to treat it is to address the symptoms in order to avoid rapid deterioration and complications.