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Diabetes: the Silent Killer-Causes, Symptoms, and Types

 Diabetes: the Silent Killer-Causes, Symptoms, and Types.  

Diabetes mellitus or diabetes is a hormone-related disease that occurs when your body either fails to produce insulin or incompetent to utilize insulin properly. Diabetes occurs when glucose or sugar in your blood is very high. Diabetes is often called the silent killer.

Before you read the causes, symptoms, and types of diabetes, you need to understand the relationship between the pancreas, insulin, and glucose. 


The pancreas is basically an organ in your digestive system located behind the stomach. The pancreas is made up of two types of cell-acinar cells also known as alpha cells and islets cells also known as beta cells. 

The pancreas produces enzymes to break down the foods you eat and release hormones like glucagon and insulin to regulate blood glucose.


Insulin is a hormone secreted by beta cells in the pancreas to control the glucose in your bloodstream. When you intake a meal, its carbohydrate component is broken down into glucose that entered into your bloodstream.


Glucose is the broken down portion carbohydrate components of the food you eat. It is the main source of energy for your body.

According to Wikipedia- ''As of 2019, an estimated 463 million people had diabetes worldwide (8.8% of the adult population), with type 2 diabetes making up about 90% of the cases. Rates are similar in women and men".

As per trends, it seems that the rates will continue to increase. Diabetes increases the risk of early death. In 2019, diabetes resulted in around 4.2 million deaths and that is the 7th leading cause of death globally. 

Causes of Diabetes

Diabetes is an assortment of metabolic disorders. It is identified by a high level of glucose over a sustained period.

The cause of type 1 diabetes is the loss of beta cells which is further caused by an autoimmune response.

Symptoms of Diabetes

Common Symptoms of diabetes-edumediawellness
Symptoms of Diabetes. Image credit-Wikipedia

The most common symptoms of different types of diabetes include the following:
  • Augmented thirst-polydipsia
  • Repeated urination-polyuria
  • Increased appetite -polyphagia
  • Undefined weight loss
  • Cardiovascular illness
  • Stroke
  • Chronic kidney disorder
  • Foot sores
  • Injury to the nerves
  • Problems to the eyes
  • Skin disease
  • Headache
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Deep breathing
  • Low level of consciousness

Types of diabetes 

There are three common types and one uncommon type of diabetes. The common and uncommon types of diabetes mellitus are described below. 

👉Type 1 diabetes 

✅Type 1 diabetes is also known as "insulin-dependent diabetes '' and '' juvenile diabetes. 'This type of diabetes occurs due to the loss of beta cells when the pancreas fails to produce adequate insulin. The loss of beta cells is caused by an autoimmune response

Although it is called "juvenile diabetes" due to the frequent onset of childhood, you might be wondering to know that most people with type 1 diabetes are adults. Therefore, type 1 diabetes can occur at any age.

Type 1 diabetes is somewhat inherited and perceived to impact the risk of diabetes. In genetically sensitive people, the attack of diabetes can be triggered by one or more environmental factors.

Other complications are its counter-reaction in low blood sugar, infections, gastroparesis, and endocrinopathy, etc.

👉Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes refers to the state in which cells fail to respond to insulin properly. This condition is called insulin resistance. With the progress of this state, a deficiency of insulin continues to develop. 

 The most common cause is excessive body weight. This type of diabetes is also referred to as "non-insulin-dependent diabetes" and "adult-onset diabetes". This type is the most widespread type of diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is defined by insulin resistance, which may be consolidated with relatively lowered insulin secretion. The faulty responsiveness of body tissues to insulin is supposed to include the insulin receptor.

There is evidence that many people have pre-diabetes conditions before they develop type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes can be reduced by a change of lifestyle that improves insulin sensitivity or reduces the production of sugar in the liver.

Several lifestyle factors and genetics are considered to be responsible for the development of type 2 diabetes, including obesity, deficiency of body movement, poor diet, and mental stress.

👉Gestational diabetes

The third type of diabetes is gestational diabetes. Without a previous history of diabetes, when pregnant women develop a condition of high blood sugar levels is called gestational diabetes. Rest assured, this diabetes will never come to you if you are a guy. 

Gestational diabetes matches type 2 diabetes in many respects. It is characterized by relatively inadequate insulin secretion and responsiveness. It can be controlled by medical supervision throughout the pregnancy.

👉Monogenic Type

"Some rare forms of diabetes result from mutations or changes in a single gene and are called monogenic. Neonatal diabetes mellitus (NDM) and maturity-onset diabetes of the young (MODY) are the two main forms of monogenic diabetes. NDM occurs in newborns and young infants. MODY is much more common than NDM and usually first occurs in adolescence or early adulthood."

Why Diabetes is the Silent Killer?

Diabetes is a complex problem that can have devastating effects on various parts of the body and can even lead to death. That is why diabetes is called a silent killer. The effects of diabetes on different parts are mentioned below.

The initial complications of diabetes due to loss in small blood vessels include damage to the eyes, kidneys, and nerves, and cardiovascular problems.

Damage to the eyes, known as diabetic retinopathy, is caused by damage to the blood vessels in the retina that can result in progressive vision loss and consequent blindness.

Furthermore, eye problems caused by diabetes include blurred vision, changes in its shape, vision changes, vision loss, glaucoma, cataracts.

Injury to the nerves referred to as diabetic neuropathy is the most usual perplexity of diabetes. Neurological problems include numbness, tingling, pain, and muscle atrophy.

Injury to the kidneys known as diabetic nephropathy includes tissue scarring, urine protein loss, and eventually chronic kidney disorder. Diabetes increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.


You need to remember that prevention is better than cure. Leading a healthy life through proper diet and exercise is the best way to stay away from diabetes.
Further Reading



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