All About Diabetes
If you’ve ever been curious about diabetes, or how you can leverage Cronometer to help manage your condition, you’ve come to the right place! Listen in on our conversation with Robby Barbaro of Mastering Diabetes on our latest podcast episode below or read on to discover more.
What Is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a disease in which your body either can’t produce insulin or can’t properly use the insulin it produces. Insulin is a hormone produced by your pancreas.
Insulin’s role is to regulate the amount of glucose (sugar) in the blood. Blood sugar must be carefully regulated to ensure that the body functions properly. Too much blood sugar can cause damage to organs, blood vessels, and nerves. Your body also needs insulin in order to use sugar for energy. Low blood sugar can cause headache, difficulty concentrating, blurred vision, dizziness and weakness and when severe, a loss of consciousness, seizures, coma and even death.
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease and is also known as insulin-dependent diabetes. People with type 1 diabetes aren’t able to produce their own insulin (and can’t regulate their blood sugar) because their body is attacking the pancreas. Roughly 10 per cent of people living with diabetes have type 1, insulin-dependent diabetes.
People with type 1 need to inject insulin or use an insulin pump to ensure their bodies have the right amount of insulin.
People with type 2 diabetes can’t properly use the insulin made by their bodies, or their bodies aren’t able to produce enough insulin. Roughly 90 per cent of people living with diabetes have type 2 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes can sometimes be managed with healthy eating and regular exercise alone, but may also require medications or insulin therapy.
Gestational diabetes is a condition in which an individual develops high blood glucose levels during pregnancy. Most of the time gestational diabetes symptoms go away after the birth of their baby and blood glucose levels return to normal.
What Is Pre-Diabetes?
Prediabetes is a condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but are not yet high enough to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes. Although not everyone with prediabetes will develop type 2 diabetes, many people will.
It’s important to know if you have prediabetes, because research has shown that some long-term complications associated with diabetes—such as heart disease—may begin during prediabetes.
It’s estimated that 1 in every 3 adults in the United States have pre-diabetes.
What Is Insulin Resistance?
Insulin resistance is when cells in your muscles, fat, and liver don’t respond well to insulin and can’t easily take up glucose from your blood. As a result, your pancreas makes more insulin to help glucose enter your cells. As long as your pancreas can make enough insulin to overcome your cells’ weak response to insulin, your blood glucose levels will stay in the healthy range. Prior to type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes, insulin resistance will develop.
Using Cronometer To Manage Diabetes
Using Cronometer can become an integral part of managing your condition. It can be as easy as keeping an eye on your carb intake by logging the food you eat every day.
Or if you’d like to dive a bit deeper, you can start logging biometrics like blood glucose readings. We’ve recently introduced a Dexcom integration which will import readings from Dexcom CGM devices straight into your account.
Take advantage of our Charts feature which will allow you to view your biometrics or nutrient intake over time. Gold subscribers can also create Custom Charts which will allow you to plot any two variables against each other, such as blood glucose and carb intake.