What is type 2 diabetes? Interestingly, this is the exact question many people ask their doctor when they are first diagnosed. What many people don’t know is that type 2 is the most common classification of diabetes, accounting for 90-95% of all diabetes cases.
The mechanics of type 2 is that either the pancreas does not produce enough insulin, or cells cells cannot use or ignore, the insulin to help process the glucose. The second situation is often referred to as Insulin Resistance.
Glucose, also called blood sugar, is the fuel that your body runs on. It is how you get the energy to go about your daily activities. If your cells can’t process or use the glucose in your blood, then your blood sugar begins to increase.
Type 2 diabetics need to make sure their blood sugar doesn’t get too high or too low. Proper control is accomplished through eating right, exercising, maintaining a healthy weight and often through prescription medications. In some instances, a type 2 diabetic will require insulin injections.
Former terms include: adult onset diabetes, obesity related diabetes, non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM).
History and Facts
Diabetes Statistics:During the last 25 to 30 years. The United States, and the world, has witnessed an explosion of type 2 diabetes cases. We have compiled a fascinating overview of the recent rise in diabetes cases in our article. We also breakdown what ethnic group are most likely to get diabetes and what the most common complications are.
History of Diabetes: Despite the recent rise in diabetes, you may be surprised to learn that diabetes has been around for a very long time. There are reported cases of diabetes as far back as Ancient Greece. I have compiled a nice time line in this article. In fact, many of the natural remedies we discuss on our diabetes treatment page can be traced back to some of these historical references, including aloe vera and other alternative medicine substances.
Diabetes Belt: We take a closer look at the United States and the areas of the country where you are most likely to get diabetes. The CDC refers to this area as the “Diabetes Belt.”
If you are from the deep South, you will find this article especially disturbing.
Celebrities with Diabetes: Here is a comprehensive list of famous people with diabetes. We don’t just include actors. Our list has athletes, musicians, politicians, writers and more. Some people I am sure you will know, others may surprise you!
Causes – Type 2
There are no definitive causes of diabetes. It is not a contagious condition, unlike a cold or virus. Instead, certain ethnic groups or individual’s characteristics tend to be risk factors.
High Type 2 Diabetes risk ethnic groups include:
- African Americans
- Hispanic and Latin Americans
- American Indians
- Some Asian Americans
- Native Hawaiians
Individual characteristics increasing risk include:
- Older Americans
- Sedentary Lifestyle
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Genetic History
- Gestational Diabetes History
Signs of Diabetes: Type 2 signs typically develop much more gradually than in type 1 diabetes. Symptoms may be mild or sporadic, taking years to diagnose. Signs of type 2 can include: fatigue, increased urination, increased thirst and/or hunger, slow healing of wounds or sores. Interestingly, some people show no outward signs of diabetes or the symptoms are often confused for other conditions. Regardless, take a look at this article to get a bird’s eye view of how diabetes can manifest itself.
How is Diabetes Diagnosed:
If you want to do a routine screening or have a suspicion that something is wrong, how do you diagnose the condition? There are multiple blood test that can be done. You will want to know when to use a particular test and what the results mean. Don’t guess about this, be informed.
Diabetes Complications: A huge key to understanding why you need to work on controlling diabetes is to start with the end in mind (just like in the book 7 Habits of Highly effective People!). There is no reason diabetes can’t be self managed well, but in case you were wondering, we detail many of the possible side effects such as stroke, impotence, kidney failure, blindness, foot amputations, and heart disease, if not properly managed.
Diabetes and Itchy Skin: This article is one of the most widely read on the site. Itchy skin is a big problem for many people with diabetes. What causes this condition? What can you do about it? We go into the many reasons itchy skin is a problem and how to deal with it.
Can You Reverse Diabetes?
Reverse Diabetes Now!: Most people would say you cannot reverse Type 2 diabetes. Matt Traverso is not one of them. He has a unique way of looking at the disease that you may want to read about.
Matt focuses on diet as the key for people with type 2 diabetes to effectively “reverse” their condition. He also has a huge section on what he believes is a conspiracy to never treat or cure diabetes. Come read my review to learn more.
Whole Food Plant Based Diet: I would also give serious consideration to looking at following this type of diet You will really be surprised at how changing your diet can control, if not reverse your diabetes altogether. This is the diet I follow and lost over 35 pounds, without worrying about portion control, counting carbs or exercising. The science is very real here, so please take the time to look at the various resources I have assembled in this article to learn more about taking control of your diabetes once and for all.
Other Type 2 Information
Diabetes Treatments: We take a comprehensive look at the various methods of treating diabetes in this article. We cover the basics like monitoring your glucose levels, eating right and getting exercise. But, we don’t stop there. We also take a look at alternative remedies, the latest medications, stem cell research and everything else under the sun! Let this be your start to effectively managing and controlling your diabetes.
Type 2 Diabetes Diet Guide: The choices seem endless. If you are confused about what to eat, take a look at my Guide. I have a lot of diet information on this site, but this page will get you started sifting through all of the various diet options. This page took almost 4 years in the making, so it is a good place to figure out why there are so many choices and what the various controversies are.
Here are some additional fascinating articles on diabetes.
- Type 3 Diabetes. Who knew there was a Type 3?
- Different Types of Diabetes. We count at least 7 types!
- International Diabetes Centers. Would you believe there are three different organizations using this name?
- Diabetes Gifts. This Article is great for generating awesome gift ideas.
NIH Publication No. 12-5129, July 2012 (accessed February 2013)
American Diabetes Association, What is Gestational Diabetes (accessed February 2013).