Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin to function properly, or the body’s cells don’t react to insulin. This is known as insulin resistance.
What causes Type 2 diabetes?
For those living with Type 2 diabetes, your body breaks down the carbohydrates from your food and turns it into glucose. The pancreas will respond to this by releasing insulin, however because of your body’s insulin resilience, your blood glucose levels will continue to rise.
Subsequently, your body will release more insulin. For those with Type 2 diabetes, this may cause the pancreas to overwork meaning your body will makes less insulin, therefore increasing your higher blood glucose levels even more.
Managing Type 2 diabetes
With the right care and guidance, the effects of Type 2 diabetes and high blood glucose levels can be managed and sometimes even reversed.
The main ways of treating Type 2 diabetes is by eating a healthy, balanced diet, doing more exercise and losing weight.
You are more at risk of Type 2 diabetes if you are:
- Over the age of 40 and are overweight
- Are Black African, Caribbean or South Asian
- Have a parent, brother or sister with diabetes
- Have ever had high blood pressure, a heart attack or stroke
- Are a woman who has had polycystic ovaries, gestational diabetes or a baby weighing over 10 pounds
Key facts about Type 2 diabetes
- Eating a healthy, balanced diet is an important part of managing your diabetes. The right food choices can help you maintain your long-term health.
- Eating healthily and increased physical activity may be sufficient treatment, in the beginning, to manage your diabetes.
- Type 2 is harder to diagnose and people can have the condition for up to 10 years before being diagnosed. Talk to your GP if you are concerned.
- Not all people with Type 2 are overweight.
- People of South Asian origin are at a greater risk. This risk increases from the age of 25 and not from the age of 40.
- If you are planning to have a baby, it is vital that you speak to your diabetes care team who will help you to achieve this goal in a healthy way.
Essex Diabetic Eye Screening Programme:
Connect Well (for Mid Essex)
- Connect Well Essex is an online self-care, self-referral tool that offers a variety of activities and services.
- View the services they have to offer here: https://connectwellessex.org.uk/
British Nutrition Foundation
- Essex Connects provide a range of Social Prescribing initiatives across the county. They can refer people to a range of local, non-medical support.
- View their website here: essexconnects.org.uk/
ACE Lifestyle: My Weight Matters
- A free weight management programme for adults which follows NHS guidance and is evidence based.
- Focuses on healthy eating, portion control and helping you to be more active.
- View their programmes here: https://acemyweightmatters.org/home/
Patient Education Sessions
North East Essex Diabetes Service (NEEDS) offer Type 2 education courses in a variety of community settings and times.
Our courses include:
- Conservations Maps (for those diagnosed within the 6 months)
- Type 2 Patient Conferences
- DESMOND (A full day of diabetes education for those who have been diagnosed for over 6 months)
- Type 2 insulin group (Carbohydrate awareness and insulin awareness)
For information on support and available courses, click here.
Did you know?
“About 90% of people with diabetes have Type 2 diabetes.” (Diabetes UK)