Diabetes affects nearly 30 million Americans – adults and children. It is a lifelong disease marked by high levels of sugar in the blood. While there is no cure, many of the complications associated with diabetes can be prevented.
Diabetes can be diagnosed with fasting sugar blood tests or with a hemoglobin A1c blood test. These tests measure the percentage of blood sugar attached to hemoglobin, which is the oxygen-carrying protein in red blood cells. Your urine also will likely be tested.
Treatment for type 1 diabetes involves insulin injections or the use of an insulin pump, frequent blood sugar checks and carbohydrate counting. Treatment of type 2 diabetes primarily involves monitoring of your blood sugar, along with diabetes medications, insulin or both. Monitoring is the best way to make sure that your blood sugar level remains within a targeted range. An important part of managing any type of diabetes is maintaining a healthy weight through a healthy diet, which includes fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and exercising daily.
In addition, bariatric surgery has recently been recognized as being helpful in some people with type 2 diabetes.