When your body doesn’t make enough insulin or when your body prevents the insulin you do produce from working properly, you have diabetes.
When you have diabetes you need to take steps to help your body keep the insulin/glucose balance.
Keeping your blood glucose (blood sugar) levels as close to the normal range as possible is recommended. It’s important to monitor your blood glucose numbers and know your goals. Diabetes experts recommend that people with diabetes keep their blood glucose levels between 90 and 130 mg/dL before a meal and less than 180 mg/dL two hours after a meal.
Your personal goals may need to be adjusted to match your situation. You and your diabetes-care team will determine your blood glucose goals.
Type 1 diabetes
People with type 1 diabetes do not produce insulin and must take it on a daily basis. Previously called juvenile diabetes, this form of the disease usually affects children and young adults. People with type 1 diabetes must have insulin delivered by injection or a pump.
Type 2 diabetes
In type 2 diabetes, the body makes some insulin but not enough. Or, the body prevents the insulin produced from working properly. Type 2 diabetes is more common in overweight and older adults, but it is also becoming more common in young people and adolescents – even children. Some groups, such as African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders are at higher risk for developing type 2 diabetes than others.
Type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease
At first, some people with diabetes can manage their diabetes with meal planning and physical activity, but most will need to take medication. Diabetes pills can help some people manage their diabetes for a while. However, over time, pills may not remain effective. Eventually, most people with type 2 diabetes may need to take insulin to maintain blood glucose control. Your health care provider will help you develop a diabetes-care plan that is right for you.