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What is Diabetes?

What is Diabetes?


Diabetes is classically diagnosed as a failure of the body to metabolize carbohydrates properly.  Its defining symptom is a high blood-glucose level.  Type I diabetes results from insufficient insulin production by the pancreas however Type II diabetes results from in-effective use of insulin.  The pancreas generates the insulin however the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces resulting in elevated blood sugar levels.  Insulin is a hormone produced by the pancreas that allows glucose from food to enter the body’s cells where it is converted into energy needed by muscles and tissues to function.  Failure to produce insulin, or of insulin to act properly, or both, leads to raised glucose (sugar) levels in the blood clinically defined as hyperglycemia. This is associated with long-term damage to the body and failure of various organs and tissues. Diabetes affects every cell including the pancreases, liver, kidney, heart, blood vessels, eyes, nervous system and can cause damage throughout the body if left untreated.

Diabetes, including all of its complications, is a downstream of symptoms that are a result of improper diet, lifestyle, and environmental toxins interacting with our unique genetic susceptibilities. More than ever before an outlook of proper nutritionis crucial.  An unbalanced diet high in carbohydrates (sugars) is among the first steps that should be changed. A high insulin level as well as a high blood glucose level are the first signs of a problem.  As your insulin levels increase, it leads to an appetite that is out of control, increasing weight gain, inflammation and oxidative stress, and myriad downstream effects including high blood pressure; high cholesterol; low HDL; high triglycerides; thickening of the blood; and increased risk of cancer, Alzheimer’s and depression. As a result, a person with diabetes does not absorb glucose properly, and glucose stays circulating in the blood (hyperglycemia) damaging tissues over time.

Cholesterol is also affected by blood glucose. Cholesterol is a fat (lipid) which comes from diet and is also produced by the liver.  Cholesterol is a vital component of every cell in our body.  It is used by the body to produce hormones and vitamin D.  However, when there is an excess amount of “bad” cholesterol (LDL – low density lipoprotein)  present in the blood it can block the arteries and may ultimately result in heart attacks and increase the risk for diabetes, high blood pressure, thyroid disorders,, kidney and liver diseases  creating a myriad of other health problems. 

High levels of LDL cholesterol buildup in the blood become even more dangerous when it is oxidized.  Oxidized LDL can produce inflammation in the arteries that supply blood to your organs and other tissues, thus promoting the risk of cardiovascular disease known as atherosclerosis.  Once LDL becomes oxidized, it goes directly within the inner lining of any artery in the body creating havoc in your circulatory system. 

Learn More about the Symptoms of Type II Diabetes and Risk Factors