What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is a metabolic disorder causing the dysfunctional metabolism of sugar. In every body, the presence of sugar (from the diet, absorbed into the blood stream) triggers the release of insulin. Insulin is our storage hormone and informs the cells that there is sugar available to create and use energy from.
Type 1 diabetes (also known as Juvenile Diabetes) occurs when there is not enough insulin produced to respond to the increase of sugar in the body. The cells get hungry, the liver starts converting fats to a usable form of energy to keep the vital organs alive.
Type 2 diabetes (often referred to adult onset Diabetes) arises from the cells not responding to insulin – this is known as insulin resistance. In both cases there is a buildup of excess sugar in the blood leading to disease progression and complications (including but not limited to diabetic retinopathy, neuropathy, kidney disease, hypertension, hyperlipidemia).
Common symptoms of Diabetes:
- Polyuria, nocturia (having to pee a lot, peeing a lot at night)
- Increased thirst
- Unexplained weight loss
- Increase in appetite
- Changes in vision
- Urinary tract infections, or frequent yeast infections
- Itchy, dry skin
- Numbness or tingling in hands or the feet
Labs and Diabetes screening:
The naturopaths at The Wellness Suite run blood work on patients in order to diagnose and mange those with suspected insulin resistance, monitor blood-glucose and insulin levels in patients with diagnosed diabetes and related conditions like Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.
Testing includes: glucose and insulin levels, glucose tolerance testing, HbA1C (an average measure of glucose/sugar attached to hemoglobin in order to assess how well the diabetes is controlled), cholesterol and other parameters of health.