What is type 1 diabetes?
Type 1 diabetes was once known as insulin-dependent or juvenile diabetes. It usually develops in children, teens, and young adults. But it can happen at any age. Type 1 diabetes is less common than type 2. About 5% to 10% of people with diabetes have type 1.
Watch our video on type 1 diabetes
What is type 2 diabetes?
Most people with diabetes have type 2 diabetes (about 90% to 95%). Type 2 diabetes typically develops in people over age 45, but more children, teens, and young adults are developing it.
Watch our video on type 2 diabetes
What is prediabetes?
Prediabetes is a condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not high enough yet to be diagnosed as type 2 diabetes. More than 1 in 3 Americans has prediabetes, but most don’t know they have it. Having prediabetes increases your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, but importantly, represents a stage where these conditions are the most preventable.
“When we identify prediabetes, we can ask that individual to undertake some lifestyle changes that we know are very powerful to prevent the onset of diabetes,” says Dr. McDonnell.
“Those would include a mix of exercise, aerobic, and strength training exercises about 150 minutes a week, and a reduced calorie diet. And usually we’re advising people to choose a more of a plant-based diet with leaner proteins, limiting carbohydrates, and choosing high-quality carbohydrates, those that are high in fiber that come from fruits and vegetables. It takes up to 20 years for the body to have a complication related to high blood sugar. Identifying prediabetes actually extends that time to much longer, potentially even preventing any complications at all in a lifetime.”
If you’re diagnosed with diabetes, there are many ways you can manage your condition to prevent or delay complications. Your diabetes care team can help you develop a holistic treatment plan to achieve the best possible outcomes. Your plan may include:
- Eating healthy foods, reducing calories, and limiting carbohydrates
- Staying active
- Taking medications to manage your blood sugar
- Regularly monitoring your blood sugar
- Managing stress
- Getting adequate sleep
- Taking care of your mental health
Your diabetes care team may include an endocrinologist who partners with your primary care provider (PCP) and other specialists to coordinate care for any diabetes-related complications you may develop.