What happens within my body when I have diabetes?

A Answers (1)

  • AMichael Roizen, MD, Internal Medicine, answered
    When you have diabetes—the disease that's associated with blood sugar and insulin malfunction in overweight people—you're essentially pickling yourself, basting yourself in fluid that has a high concentration of sugar.

    Because our bodies are designed to run on a relatively low level of glucose, when we overeat and indulge in a sedentary lifestyle, we're unable to process the extra glucose—thus pickling ourselves in all the excess—and our metabolic system malfunctions.

    When one of our systems, called the cannabinoid system, is turned on, hormones in the body block the ability of insulin to get muscle to use sugar, and we accumulate sugar in our bloodstream as our metabolism actually becomes less efficient.

    Eventually, especially in people with family histories of type 2 diabetes (evidence of a genetic predisposition to the disease), our pancreatic beta cells, cells that produce insulin, can't keep up because of exhaustion after years of working against the relentless insulin resistance. And that's how we become diabetic.
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