My journey with T2D has been a slow, but steady one. I had to learn the hard way how to control this disease. I had never really thought much about Diabetes.
But I’m healthy. How could this happen to me? I thought that I ate well, and I drank moderately. Why me? Perhaps you are wondering the same thing. I did not take the prediabetic diagnosis seriously. I did not believe that I should have to deal with T2D. Why would I have T2D? It’s all in the genes, and all around me. My mother and one of my brothers have it. My grandmother had it.
Yet here I am. Either I change my life or deal with some serious consequences.
Although long-term complications of diabetes develop gradually, they can eventually be disabling or even life-threatening. Some of the potential complications of diabetes include:
Heart and blood vessel disease. Diabetes dramatically increases the risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and narrowing of blood vessels (atherosclerosis).
Nerve damage (neuropathy). Excess sugar can cause tingling, numbness, burning or pain that usually begins at the tips of the toes or fingers and gradually spreads upward. Eventually, you may lose all sense of feeling in the affected limbs.
Damage to the nerves that control digestion can cause problems with nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or constipation. For men, erectile dysfunction may be an issue.
Kidney damage. Diabetes can sometimes lead to kidney failure or irreversible end-stage kidney disease, which may require dialysis or a kidney transplant.
Eye damage. Diabetes increases the risk of serious eye diseases, such as cataracts and glaucoma, and may damage the blood vessels of the retina, potentially leading to blindness.
Slow healing. Left untreated, cuts and blisters can become serious infections, which may heal poorly. Severe damage might require toe, foot or leg amputation.
Hearing impairment. Hearing problems are more common in people with diabetes.
Skin conditions. Diabetes may leave you more susceptible to skin problems, including bacterial and fungal infections.
Sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is common in people with type 2 diabetes. Obesity may be the main contributing factor to both conditions. Treating sleep apnea may lower your blood pressure and make you feel more rested, but it's not clear whether it helps improve blood sugar control.
Alzheimer's disease. Type 2 diabetes seems to increase the risk of Alzheimer's disease, though it's not clear why. The worse your blood sugar control, the greater the risk appears to be. The Mayo Clinic has a lot of great information that has helped me.
I tried to hide from this disease! I had adopted a “see no T2D, hear no T2D, speak no T2D”. I ignored it, but slowly, my condition worsened, and a year later I was diagnosed with T2D. I did not know that Type 2 diabetes develops when the body becomes resistant to insulin or when the pancreas is unable to produce enough insulin. Exactly why this happens is unknown, although genetics and environmental factors, such as being overweight and inactive, seem to be contributing factors. Type 2 Diabetes - Symptoms and causes
My friends and family were skeptical. I’m of normal weight (okay, I had 15 pounds to lose), I’m physically fit and very active. Controlling this degenerative disease.
After a few months, I made a commitment to eat low-carb and cut out all sugar. Some people tried to sabotage my commitment. My mother was the hardest person to say no to. I always ate the food that she set before me, and now she took my refusal to eat the sweets as an insult. At that point, I started bringing my own healthy treats like hummus and avocado. It became an adventure to eat healthy tasty foods.
Slowly but surely, I am changing my diet, my mind, and my life!