Can you be a diabetic for
years and believe you're healthy without ever knowing you are seriously
As someone who cares for a family member who has diabetes, I've learned
a few things about the disease along the way and would like to share
them with you. I am not a doctor or a health care professional, but
encourage everyone I know to have their blood glucose (sugar) level
checked at least once if it's never been done. Glucose is most accurately
checked in the morning after fasting overnight which is the standard
method. The reason for this is to see how low your glucose level gets
each day, which is in the morning.
One doctor we know said it this way: "Diabetes is basically glucose
circulating in your bloodstream, and your body cannot neutralize it
to be rid of it."
I wrote this as it seems that no one addresses the basics of this silent,
deadly but treatable disease. I'll provide a URL at the end to read
far more detailed advice written by medical professionals later.
First, there are two basic types of diabetic patients:
1. Type 1 diabetics are born with the disease and are usually diagnosed
these days within the first few years of life, or even at birth if symptoms
appear in routine blood tests. Type 1 patients are usually on insulin
injections throughout their life, starting as a child to self-inject
as needed. Some of these patients may require an insulin pump or simply
have one for convenience.
2. Type 2 diabetics acquire it later in life. The disease can start
at most any age and even reach their mid-life years before being diagnosed
as a type 2. This type is often characterized by either insufficient
insulin production in the pancreas (like a type 1) or a condition known
as insulin resistance. We'll talk more about how doctors treat this
When talking to health care people and other diabetics, patients often
refer to themselves as a "I'm a type 1" or a "I'm a type 2" diabetic.
(Not to be confused with a "type A" personality.)
Type 1 or 2 people usually have one of two glucose problems, which indicate
the disease is present to a health care professional after diagnosis:
a. Excessive blood glucose ABOVE 100. A glucose reading will be significantly
above 100. This is the most common.
b. Low glucose levels significantly BELOW 100 which can be dangerous.
These patients can faint or pass out (crash.)
To measure glucose a spring loaded lancet device uses a one-time-use
needle. This pokes a finger very shallowly at high speed, causing a
tiny drop of blood to appear. This hurts far less than sticking a sewing
needle or pin into your finger or stepping on a tiny piece of broken
glass, because the lancet needle is sharper and moves extremely fast.
To measure the glucose level, a one-time-use test strip protrudes from
a small meter (you've probably seen many of these advertised on television.)
The end of the strip is touched to the blood droplet, and the meter
automatically displays the glucose level after a few seconds.
Most diabetics own one of these meters and usually check their sugar
at least twice a day to regulate their medication to lower their glucose
readings down to close to 100. If a doctor's office blood draw shows
you have a sugar problem, usually your physician will order a fasting
blood test so other related compounds in your blood such as A1C can
For diabetic patients who have LOW blood sugar, increasing glucose levels
to near 100 does not require medicine. Although these patients do use
insulin, they are still considered diabetic by a doctor. To increase
their glucose level up to 100 the patient simply consumes something
sweet like a small amount of orange juice to bring their sugar levels
up to normal. To control high glucose levels usually one of these three
treatment regimens is used:
1. For early stage diabetes - diet and exercise will be ordered as well
as avoiding too many sweets.
2. When diet and exercise are not enough an oral medication will be
3. When diet, exercise and oral medication cannot bring sugar levels
down, one or more daily injections of insulin will be prescribed.
Diabetes is sharply on the rise across the country yet almost no one
talks about it. Are there symptoms? Sometimes yes, sometimes no.
Here's a few examples of some symptoms:
* One patient I know of found out he was a diabetic when he ate a candy
bar at break time and his eyes began to water.
* If your sugar is high you may urinate far more than normal.
* If it rises into the 300 to 400 area, you may become very tired all
the time or taste something sweet in your mouth - even though you didn't
eat or drink anything sweet.
* You may experience strange vision or balance problems.
* If it reaches 500 glucose meters will display an error. This is because
it is out of the range of the test strips to measure it. You need to
get to an emergency room if it gets this high. You could have a life-threatening
episode like a heart attack.
There may also be NO symptoms at all, and this is why everyone should
be tested at least once. The earlier this problem is handled by a doctor
the better it will be for your longevity and avoiding other serious
DANGERS OF THIS DISEASE - An untreated diabetic who doesn't control
their glucose level can end up with organ problems and amputated toes,
feet, hands etc... This happens when sugar (glucose) creates circulation
problems in the limbs, causing tissues and organs to die. BOTH kidney's
can fail - and suddenly you're going out every day to have dialysis
and be on a transplant list. You will no longer be able to work, since
most of your time will be spent near a dialysis machine. You can also
have a heart attack, heart disease or stroke and find that fighting
off a simple cold, flu or other infection takes far longer than it should.
When a man stands up and urinates into a toilet who has high blood sugar,
it may create a layer of foam on the water more frothy and thicker than
usual. This is your body's attempt to dump sugar - but instead you are
dumping valuable proteins according to one doctor. This is very bad
for your kidneys.
I must re-iterate that ONLY a proper evaluation by your doctor can catch
this disease early before it becomes life threatening. I am not diagnosing
or treating anything. Your doctor must do that.
REMEMBER - Diabetes is a silent killer. Get tested even if it doesn't
run in your family. There are medical experts who blame the increasing
numbers of this disease on genetically engineered food, which everywhere
today. High fructose corn syrup is yet another problem, so get tested
to be sure. You probably won't find health care professionals talking
about the problems with engineered foods, aspartame or corn syrup.
All of us should be drinking more purified water (not tap water.) As
adults we often lose the thirsty-response to dehydration. Coffee, tea,
liquor, beer, sodas and other beverages act like a diuretic and put
your kidneys into overdrive, pulling water OUT of your system and dehydrate
you. Want proof of that? Some of the busiest bathrooms on Earth are
in taverns and bars.
Cinnamon bark capsules have been in alternative health news as an alternative
to treat high glucose. Our family member has tried it and found it was
ineffective in lowering glucose. Perhaps it works for some people and
This disease is often is accompanied by excessive weight gain and high
blood pressure. These are some of the symptoms of metabolic syndrome.
Again, a doctor determines this.
DON'T FORGET TO GET TESTED!
Now that you have the basics here is a link to professionally written
symptoms, treatments, etc... by doctors and more information I haven't
Now that I've written this I'm dreading all critical emails I'll get
for it. But as I've said, I'm not a doctor and just want people to be
aware of the basics of this treatable yet highly dangerous disease.