Conditions InDepth: Type 2 Diabetes
by Karen Schroeder Kassel, MS, RD, MEd
Insulin is a hormone normally produced by the pancreas. Insulin helps your body convert food into energy. Without insulin, glucose (sugar) from food cannot enter cells, and glucose builds up in the blood. Your body tissues become starved for energy.
Type 2 diabetes is primarily a disorder in which the cells are not responding to the high levels of insulin circulating in the body. The body becomes increasingly resistant to insulin. As type 2 diabetes progresses, the over-worked beta cells of the pancreas start to make less insulin.
Type 2 diabetes occurs because either one or both of the following conditions exist:
People older than age 45 years are at higher risk of developing this condition, but it can occur at any age—even during childhood. Being overweight or obese is the primary cause of insulin resistance, and it increases the chance of developing type 2 diabetes.
When your blood glucose level is not within the ideal range, you can experience the following problems:
What are the risk factors for type 2 diabetes?
What are the symptoms of type 2 diabetes?
How is type 2 diabetes diagnosed?
What are the treatments for type 2 diabetes?
Are there screening tests for type 2 diabetes?
What are the complications of type 2 diabetes?
How can I reduce my risk of type 2 diabetes?
What questions should I ask my doctor?
What is it like to live with type 2 diabetes?
Where can I get more information about type 2 diabetes?
Diabetes overview. National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse website. Available at: http://diabetes.niddk.nih.gov/dm/pubs/overview/index.aspx . Updated April 4, 2012. Accessed August 7, 2012.
Type 2. American Diabetes Association website. Available at: http://www.diabete... . Accessed August 7, 2012.
Last reviewed September 2014 by Kim A. Carmichael, MD, FACP
Last Updated: 9/17/2014
EBSCO Information Services is fully accredited by URAC. URAC is an independent, nonprofit health care accrediting organization dedicated to promoting health care quality through accreditation, certification and commendation.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
To send comments or feedback to our Editorial Team regarding the content please email us at email@example.com. Our Health Library Support team will respond to your email request within 2 business days.