Are we scared of Diabetes per se or ...?

I do not know if i am stirring a hornet's nest but let me make the attempt.

Type 2 Diabetes, imho, is a condition in our body where the sugar levels are higher than normal. So are we really bothered about this? There are so many chemicals such as sodium, calcium, potassium etc whose levels in the body are seldom noticed (except when really critical) and rarely do send alarm signals? So why should abnormal Sugar levels cause so much angst?

Or

Are we concerned about the potential complications of Diabetes if left unmanaged or uncontrolled?

Waiting to hear the views of the community!!


Views: 21

Tags: complications, concern, diabetes

Comment by Pastelpainter on October 22, 2010 at 12:57am
Yes, I'm scared, really scared. Mainly about the complications and the years of hard daily grind keeping my blood sugars low.
Comment by Bradford on October 22, 2010 at 4:34am
Badrirag, I'm not following your logic. It is not an "opinion" that type 2 diabetes is a condition where the blood glucose levels are higher than normal. That's a fact (if not treated, of course). In any case of diabetes (no matter what type) there is either an insulin resistance or an insulin deficiency, causing elevated glucose levels.

And then you state that there are other chemicals within the body like sodium, calcium, and potassium, which are not noticed until they are at critically low or high levels. Glucose is the same way. If it is within normal range it is not noticed. If there is too little, or in the case of most untreated diabetes, if there is too much, then symptoms present. So to me all of those levels are important. And any of those items being outside of the normal range would cause angst for me. I guess I just don't follow what point you're trying to make by referencing other items within the body that also should have a normal operating range and which do cause concern any time they are out of range in the same manner that glucose levels do.
Comment by badrirag on October 22, 2010 at 5:37am
Bradford, I'm simply making an observation that there is so much of attention on diabetes but the moot question is Are we concerned about diabetes for what it is or what it can lead to if not managed properly? While it may appear a no-brainer, the distinction is critical.
Comment by Tim on October 22, 2010 at 6:37am
The DCCT and UKPDS showed that higher than normal blood sugar levels are closely related to the microvascular complications (e.g. retinopathy, kidney disease, neuropathy). The evidence (especially in the case of the DCCT) is overwhelming.

But the evidence that other complications of diabetes (especially heart disease/cardio issues) are related to high bg's, is not so crystal clear. There's some relation, but even the best controlled diabetics still die at alarmingly high rates from those complications.

So I think it's clear that diabetes (both Type 1 and Type 2) is more than just a disease of blood sugars. The blood sugar is part of the diagnosis criteria but really there's more. In the case of Type 1 there's a predecessor autoimmune problem before the diabetes came along; in the case of Type 2 there's other biochemical issues too.

Now that doesn't mean that we shouldn't try hard to manage our bg and all our other cardio risk factors. In fact I think it means that we should try harder.

My doc told me, when I was diagnosed 30 years ago, that if I took real good care of myself that a lot of diabetics lived for 20 or 25 years after diagnosis. Well, here I am at 30 years after diagnosis. And that's not because I slacked off or waited for somebody else to cure it.
Comment by Scott on October 22, 2010 at 10:33am
@Badrirag, Your questions are really too intertwined to separate. We are concerned about what it is because of what it can do to us if not properly controlled.

PS moot = irrelevant

@Tim Yea, I was supposed to be dead twenty years ago
Comment by Bradford on October 22, 2010 at 10:45am
I have to agree with Scott.

Abnormal glucose levels concern us because of what those may lead to...it seems very to be a "chicken or the egg" question regarding which came first.

@Scott and @Tim, I'm glad you have been able to prove those initial estimates as invalid :-)
Comment by Gerri on October 22, 2010 at 1:31pm
I don't understand what you're aiming for with these questions. It's not an either/or situation. High BG causes damage. Damage is cumulative causing many potential complications.

People can die from severe imbalances of the minerals you listed, but they aren't analogous to having diabetes & mineral & electrolyte imbalances can be remedied.

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