5 Early Warning Signs of Diabetes

The basics of diabetes are that there are two main types. Medicine even makes it easy to remember them by giving them numbers. There is Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Sure, there are finer points of what is behind someone’s diabetes, but Type 1 and Type 2 are the main ones. Type 1 is where your immune system kills cells in your pancreas that produce insulin. Since you can no longer produce your own insulin, you have to get it by injection. Type 2 starts with your body not using the insulin your pancreas produces very well. It gets worse over time to the point you may need insulin. Here are five early signs where you need to see your doctor immediately because of potential diabetes.

1- Urinating More

You may start to wake up in the middle of the night with a full bladder. You may find yourself having to urinate more times while at work or maybe not be able to hold it until the end of a movie. Your kidneys are detecting the increased glucose in your blood, and they are trying to flush it out. Your kidneys flush things out by making urine. To accomplish that, your kidneys need more fluid intake on a daily basis to keep the pee flowing, and that leads to the second early-warning sign of diabetes.

2- Drinking More Fluids

Diabetes begins when the level of glucose (a sugar) in your blood starts to increase. Note that all your food is eventually converted to glucose, so stopping sugar consumption does not cure diabetes, though lowering your simple carbohydrate load can help. As the blood sugar goes up, your kidneys start to flush it out through the urine. As you urinate more, your body wants you to drink more fluids to maintain hydration. Over time, you may begin to intake huge amounts of liquid as your kidneys try to process all that excess glucose.

3- Weight Loss

This may be interpreted as a benefit, but if you are losing weight for no reason, you should be concerned. You may even notice how you are eating more but still losing weight. There are other serious medical conditions that can be at the root of unexplained weight loss, but diabetes is one of them. What happens is that your body normally burns carbohydrates for energy. It needs to use insulin to do this. If your body is not producing enough insulin or cannot effectively use the insulin it has, then your body will burn fat for energy. Fat being used for energy results in ketones as a byproduct. Ketoacidosis is a serious medical risk that can occur with elevated blood glucose levels in diabetes.

4- Fatigue

This is more than just being tired after a hard day of work. It is feeling tired all the time. It feels as if your normal energy levels have been taken away and replaced with the feeling that you need to just rest. Caffeine does not fix it, and sleeping longer does not fix it either. The symptoms can be mild to severe, and they can change as your blood glucose level fluctuates. Do not chalk up fatigue to stress, longer hours at work or a few fitful nights of sleep. If you notice tiredness is affecting your daily routines, get tested for diabetes or prediabetes.

5- Eating More

You might think that having elevated blood glucose levels would make it so you were less hungry so as to not make your blood glucose level any worse. However, the opposite is actually true. Since untreated diabetes results in everything you eat leading to your glucose levels in your bloodstream being too high, your body begins to burn fat. Since your body cannot adequately use the food you are eating to get the energy into your cells, your body thinks you need to eat. This is called polyphagia or hyperphagia. Depending on how high your blood glucose average is, you may feel starved all the time or just slightly more hungry than normal. Either should be checked out as soon as possible.

The great news is that prediabetes and even early Type 2 diabetes is completely reversible. Type 1 diabetes is caused by actual destruction of the islets of Langerhans cells that produce insulin in your body, so it is not reversible. Some people do not have any symptoms in the early stages, so getting routine tests for diabetes should be on your healthcare checklist.

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