A real public health problem, type 2 diabetes is a pathology mainly linked to lifestyle. It concerns 90% of people with diabetes in France. Type 2 diabetes is caused by a breakdown in the blood carbohydrate balance which induces numerous metabolic consequences such as insulin resistance and hyperglycemia. In an advanced stage, this disease can be the cause of severe complications such as cardiovascular disorders, vision problems, or liver or kidney damage. Let’s find out more about it in this article “Risk Factors For Diabetes Type 2”.
What is Type 2 Diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes mellitus is also called non-insulin-dependent diabetes” or “insulin-resistant”, or “middle age, diabetes mellitus,” and “acquired diabetes mellitus” is dependent on the presence of chronic, excess blood sugar (hyperglycemia).
Type 2 diabetes is defined as a blood sugar level greater than 1.26 g / l (7 mmol / l) after fasting for 8 hours during two different examinations or greater than 2 g / l (or 11.1 mmol / l ) two hours after the controlled ingestion of sugar.
In this disease, there are two types of abnormalities:
- The secretion of insulin by the pancreas is altered.
- The effects of insulin on the tissues are modified: we speak of insulin resistance.
Type 2 diabetes is considered to be a real “epidemic”: in Europe, it is estimated that there are more than 21 million types 2 diabetics and in France more than 2 million, or 3% of French people. Some territories are more affected than others: the overseas departments and the north-eastern quarter of France are the regions with the most diabetics. The progression of this disease is linked to the transformation of the way of life and the extension of life expectancy.
Diabetes usually begins between the ages of 40 and 50, but the average age of diagnosis is between 60 and 65. But because type 2 diabetes is symptomless at the onset of the disease, more than a third of people with the disease are considered to be unaware of their disease.
Causes of type 2 Diabetes?
According to epidemiological studies, type 2 diabetes occurs mostly after the age of 40, but it can affect younger people as well, including adolescents and children. In addition, it is not uncommon for this type of diabetes to appear accidentally.
In the event of obesity or a sedentary lifestyle, energy expenditure is very low compared to energy intake. The basic metabolic balance is therefore upset. In the presence of a surplus of sugar in the blood, the body mobilizes its insulin-secreting cells and tries somehow to stabilize the increasingly increasing blood sugar. But the cells, faced with too much insulin secretion, end up becoming insensitive to it. This is called insulin resistance. This insulin resistance induced by hyperinsulinemia can no longer compensate for the high levels of sugar in the blood, which in turn causes hyperglycemia.
Risk Factors For Diabetes Type 2
There are two major factors that can increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Unlike type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes is linked to predominantly environmental risk factors rather than genetics.
- Lack of physical activity
- Poor eating habits (eating foods too rich in sugar, salt and fat)
- Poor lifestyle (exposure to pollution, pesticides and chemicals)
Such factors can lead to weight gain and increased blood sugar.
Gestational diabetes (developing during the pregnancy ) may be indicative of pre-existing diabetes, or predispose the mother and child to develop type 2 diabetes Women who suffered from diabetes during pregnancy have a 7 times risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the years following childbirth.
To know! According to recent studies, other environmental factors may be involved in diabetes including intestinal flora.
- Family history
- Presence of “obesity genes”
- Genetic mutations
To know ! Predisposition genes are genes associated with an increased risk of developing the disease.
To know ! The metabolic syndrome groups together all the morphological, physiological and biochemical disorders of carbohydrate, lipid and vascular origin, associated with overweight and genetic factors. These disorders interact synergistically with each other and can sometimes be irreversible. The prevalence of this syndrome is increasing in young people. The metabolic syndrome is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
The peculiarity of type 2 diabetes is that you can be a victim without even knowing it. However, some symptoms are revealing:
- Polydipsia (intense and repeated thirst)
- Polyuria (excessive urge to urinate)
- Polyphagia (extreme hunger) and abnormal weight loss
- Fatigue and loss of muscle tone
Other problems can arise with prolonged hyperglycemia:
- Recurrent infections (skin, gums, genitals)
- Slow healing
- Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
- Vision disturbances (poor blood supply to the retina)
The diagnostic test is based on a blood test on an empty stomach (min 8 hours). This will allow you to measure the levels of sugar in the blood ( glycemia ). When the blood sugar level is greater than or equal to 1.26 g / L , the diagnosis of diabetes is confirmed.
The doctor then proceeds to several additional examinations:
- Weight and height measurement
- Calculation of BMI (Body Mass Index)
- Cardiovascular examination (pulse, blood pressure, etc.)
- Neurological examination (rarer)
It is sometimes necessary to have recourse to a biological assessment:
- (HbA1c) assay
- Cholesterolemia (cholesterol level in the blood)
- Kidney function analysis
Finally, depending on the stage of progression of the disease, the healthcare professional may decide to do ophthalmological examinations.
To know ! As soon as glucose is present in the blood, it attaches itself in small quantities to hemoglobin. This bond gives rise to glycated hemoglobin. Glycated hemoglobin (HbA1C) is a biomarker that provides information on blood sugar balance over the previous two to three months.
A healthy lifestyle… the solution!
The standard treatment for type 2 diabetes is based on a healthy lifestyle. The latter is based on a double need: a balanced diet and regular physical activity . The objective is to better regulate the levels of sugars in the blood and promote weight loss.
These lifestyle habits are sufficient to stabilize blood sugar . However, adopting such a lifestyle requires personal effort and a certain will on the part of the patient. The priority is therefore to accept the change to promote a better quality of life. This will help reduce food intake and lose weight.
To know ! Many studies have demonstrated the beneficial effect of regular physical activity associated with appropriate food hygiene on the remission of the metabolic syndrome>.
There are different strategies for correcting the risk associated with type 2 diabetes . The main therapeutic route is to restore sensitivity to insulin to regulate blood sugar.
As a first-line treatment, oral anti-diabetics are used. Several families of drugs are available:
- Biguanides: Metformin
- Sulfonamides: Glipizide, Gliclazide and Glibenclamide
- Glinides: Repaglinide
- Alphaglucosidase inhibitors: Glucor
- Incretinotransmitters: Sitagliptin and Vildagliptin
Subsequently, insulin supplementation may become necessary.
Different ranges of insulin products for the treatment of diabetes are available in pharmacies.
- Fast analogues
- Rapid human insulin
- Intermediate-acting human insulins
- Long-acting human insulins
- Slow insulin analogues
Type 2 diabetes is still arousing the interest of researchers. Several types of research are in progress. They aim to detect the complexity of the mechanisms associated with metabolic syndrome. In addition, recent studies have been able to highlight the beneficial effects of bariatric surgeries such as By-Pass, Sleeve, or Roux-en-y on the remission of type 2 diabetes. very promising therapeutic avenues.
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