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Living With Diabetes – Tips from Kettering Health Network

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This post is part of a larger piece on diabetes and health presented in collaboration with the Kettering Health Network Joslin Diabetes Center. Click here to read it from the beginning.

Understanding Diabetes and Blood Sugar

KHN Diabetes insulin cartoon
(Top) The flow of glucose into the cell in a healthy person. (Bottom) The flow of glucose into a cell in a person with pre-diabetes. Illustrations via Kettering Health Network.

The cartoons to the left illustrate the underlying effects of pre-diabetes. The figure with the key (insulin) is allowing glucose (blood sugar) into a cell. The cell uses this glucose as energy. In the second image, representing individuals with pre-diabetes, the “door” cannot open as wide. This causes a glucose deficiency in the cells and an excess of glucose in the blood stream. This can cause your cells to become fatigued and create irritation in arteries, leading to an increase in arterial
plaque. This elevates the risk of heart problems.
“You want the inside of your arteries to be smooth like the inside of your cheek,” said Studer. “When the inside of your arteries gets rough… eventually your body is going to read that as an injury and form a clot. That is how you develop heart attacks and strokes.”

Continue reading about the dangers of diabetes.

Written by Bethany Village

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