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Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes

  • Dr. Abhishtita Mudunuri Dr. Abhishtita Mudunuri
  • 4 Min Read
  • Fact Checked

Diabetes, a disease that mainly occurs when the blood glucose (sugar) is too high. Blood glucose is the main source of energy from the food you consume. Insulin is a hormone secreted by the pancreas which helps glucose from food get into the cells to be utilized for energy production. Too much glucose in the blood causes severe health issues. There are different types of diabetes such as Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes, Prediabetes, and other types. The two main types are Type 1 and Type 2. Often it is observed that patients get confused between the two. So, here we have briefed the difference between Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. 

Type 1 Diabetes

One of the major differences between these two types of diabetes is that Type 1 is an autoimmune disorder that often shows up early in life. In type 1 diabetes, the immune system begins to attack and destroy the insulin-producing cells. Hence, the immune system destroys the cells which means your body fails to produce insulin to regulate blood glucose levels. Type 1 diabetes is mainly diagnosed in children and young adults. 

Symptoms of Type 1 Diabetes

Increased thirst 

Frequent urination

– Abrupt weight loss

– Fatigue

– Weakness

– Blurred vision

Diagnosing Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is mainly diagnosed with the help of a blood test called HbA1c and Fasting Insulin levels. HbA1c measures the blood sugar level over the past three months.

How to manage Type 1 diabetes?

There are different ways to manage type 1 and type 2 diabetes. In the below space, let us have a look at the ways to manage type 1 diabetes:

– Monitor the blood sugar: the patient must maintain a healthy blood sugar level. There are various ways to monitor the sugar level either via self-monitoring glucose devices such as glucometer or via continuous monitoring devices. 

– Take insulin: As in type 1 diabetes, the body does not produce insulin, so external insulin must be taken. The type of insulin, dose, and regimen will be decided by your treating doctor.

– Maintain a balanced diet: You must have a close watch on the carbohydrates as excess carbohydrate intake causes increase in the glucose. By taking the proper amount of insulin and keeping carbohydrates under control will help in managing type 1 diabetes.

Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes often occurs due to lifestyle issues. In type 2 diabetes, the body still produces insulin but cells are resistant to the action of insulin. Hence, the pancreas can’t keep up with high blood sugar levels. This type of diabetes occurs due to a poor diet,  lack of physical activity, sleep deprivation and increased stress levels. If you are affected with type 2 diabetes, then you might not need supplemental insulin at an earlier stage. 

Type 2 diabetes is a dietary disease so if your diet is high in carbohydrates but low in fiber you are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes. 

Symptoms of Type 2 diabetes:

– Excessive thirst

– Fatigue

– Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet

– Frequent urination

– Blurry vision

– Increased hunger

– Slow healing wounds

– Frequent infections such as Urinary tract infection, yeast infection

How to manage Type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is mainly associated with dietary habits and to manage the same you do not need to take insulin as the patient body still produces insulin. Let us have a look at the ways to manage Type 2 diabetes:

– Diet: A combination of carbohydrate restriction with Intermittent fasting will help control your blood sugar levels as well as in some situations reverse your diabetes. Restrict your carbohydrate intake to <30% . Carbohydrates are essentially found in various grains like rice, wheat ,oats, ragi etc. Practice intermittent fasting under the guidance of a nutritionist. It’s basically an extension of your overnight fast wherein you fast for 14-16 hours. 

– Exercise: Staying active is very helpful and there are so many ways to get exercise. You must incorporate various types of exercise in your daily schedule. 30-40 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise is helpful. You can select brisk walking ,  jogging or cycling. You must include your upper body exercise for 20 minutes. This ensures that the muscles take up the excess glucose in the blood resulting in reversing the insulin resistance and better sugar control. 

– Weight loss: In type 2 diabetes, eating healthy food results in weight loss. Losing weight is less about the number and more about  taking care of the body and reducing the strain.

–  Intermittent fasting: This is an extension of the overnight fasting up to 14-16 hours when combined with carbohydrate restriction will not just control but can also reverse the diabetes in some circumstances. 

– Adequate sleep: It is highly recommended that you must sleep 6-7 hours daily. Sleep ensures repair and rejuvenation of the body . Listen to calm music and follow a sleep routine to ensure you get good quality sleep . 

Carbohydrate Restriction: For managing Type 2 diabetes, restricting the carbohydrate intake to <30% of your diet will help control your elevated sugar levels.

– Stress: Keep your stress levels under control as it is highly important for controlling diabetes. Stress increases the steroid hormone level causing further elevation in the blood glucose level. Practicing yoga and meditation will help reduce your stress levels.

Can type 1 and type 2 diabetes be cured or prevented?

There is no permanent cure for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can be reversed in some cases if you follow the above mentioned lifestyle changes. 

Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes can lead to long-term complications if you are unable to manage them properly. The complications include cardiovascular disease, kidney failure, eye problems, nerve damage, high blood pressure, etc.  

Conclusion:

Diabetes is a serious condition that cannot be cured but there are various measures to manage type 1 and type 2 diabetes. This blog explains the difference between type 1 and type 2 diabetes, so this will help understand the conditions. If you are confused about the details, you must have a look at the blog and get a clear glimpse on the difference between type 1 and type 2 diabetes. 

Having an active lifestyle incorporating the recommended dietary changes you can work towards reversing Type 2 Diabetes. At MFine, you can get in touch with the best diabetologists. MFine even offers a Diabetes Care plan which includes monthly Diabetologist consultations, weekly Dietician consultant, round the clock health coach availability, weekly wellness sessions, 2 blood tests at the start and end of program at home along with diet planning and monitoring by health coaches. This plan offers the best guide in a hassle-free manner. 

  • Dr. Abhishtita Mudunuri
  • Written by

    Dr. Abhishtita Mudunuri

I have 10 years of clinical experience in treating lifestyle disorders like diabetes, hypertension, etc. and infectious diseases like tuberculosis, viral illness, HIV. The primary focus of my practice has been to reduce the progression of chronic lifestyle disorders through nutrition and exercise. Towards this end I completed my certification in Diabetes care from the International Diabetes Federation and my certification in Nutrition from Stanford University. I have worked previously in several multispecialty tertiary care hospitals like Columbia Asia, Apollo hospitals and Sunshine Hospitals, in various departments of Emergency care, Critical care , Inpatient and Outpatient care; which has further widened my experience in dealing with critical and emergency complications secondary to Diabetes . At Columbia Asia Hospitals I worked as a Part Time Consultant and Medical Coordinator. I have always been compassionate towards patients; understanding their individual needs in achieving reversal of their Diabetes.

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