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About Diabetes 

Diabetes is a disease in which a person is unable to process sugar because their body does not produce enough of the hormone insulin. There are two main types of diabetes; Type I, which is congenital (meaning you are born with it) and chronic (meaning you will have it your whole life), and Type II, which anyone can develop. 


Diet and lifestyle choices contribute dramatically to an increased risk of developing Type II diabetes, and prevalence is rising exponentially. According to the World Health Organization, the prevalence of diabetes globally has risen by almost 400% in only the last 40 years–from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million in 2014. This increase correlates with the rise of sugar in our diets, as well as increasingly sedentary lifestyles that result from desk-based jobs. This sedentary lifestyle has only gotten worse since COVID. 


Type II Diabetes is more than just having to manage your sugar levels. It is also a major cause of blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, and stroke. It also doubles the risk of many forms of cancer, some forms of dementia, hearing loss, and other common diseases. According to the Diabetes Research Institute, diabetes was the seventh leading cause of death in the United States in 2017, killing 83,564 people that year. 


Historically, people over the age of 45 have been most at risk of developing Type II diabetes. However, more and more young people now are being diagnosed with this disease. Whatever age you are, it’s important to remember that diet and lifestyle choices throughout your life build up to contribute to your personal risk factor. The goal of Diabeaters is to equip young people with the knowledge and skills that they need to make healthy decisions throughout their life, dramatically lowering their lifetime risk of developing diabetes.

Diabeaters insulin test
blood sugar

Type I 

  • Congenital and chronic 

  • Body is unable to process sugar because the pancreas does not produce enough insulin

  • 6 percent of people with diabetes have Type I diabetes

  • Usually diagnosed as a child 

  • Managed by injecting insulin directly into the body

Type II

  • Non-congenital 

  • Body produces insulin but cells become unable to respond to it, resulting in an inability to process sugar 

  • Lifestyle choices raise risk of developing Type II 

  • Family history of Type II also raises risk. According to the University of California, San Francisco, 80-90% of people with Type II diabetes have other family members with diabetes, and10-15% of children of a diabetic parent will develop diabetes

diabeaters insulin bottle
diabeaters blood sugar rising

Diabetic Shock

Diabetic shock, also known as insulin shock or hypoglycemic shock, occurs when a diabetic person’s blood sugar levels drop dangerously low. This can happen when a diabetic person is more physically active than usual, does not eat regularly, eats more or less than usual, takes more or less of their insulin medication than usual or takes it at a different time of day, or drinks excessive alcohol. 


Early symptoms of diabetic shock include sudden changes in mood, dizziness, shakiness, hunger and sweating. If left untreated, diabetic shock can cause loss of consciousness, seizures, and even coma. 


A person experiencing diabetic shock needs to eat a fast-acting source of sugar (like candy or fruit juice) immediately, followed by a longer-acting sugar source (like bread). If the person is unconscious, they require an injection of glucagon. People with Type I diabetes should carry glucagon with them as a part of their blood sugar testing kit. Ideally, Type I’s should manage their blood sugar levels to prevent hypoglycaemia before it becomes severe. 


Hyperglycemia is the opposite of hypoglycemia, and refers to elevated blood sugar levels. Over a prolonged period, high blood sugar levels can cause damage to the eyes (leading to blindness), kidneys, nerves and blood vessels/circulation (leading to slow wound healing and rapidly spreading infections, which can require limb amputation). If a diabetic person has hyperglycemia, they should take their insulin and refrain from consuming any more sugar. 

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