What is diabetes?

By By Averi Haugesag, Contributing Writer
POSTED: 9:38 AM PDT June 18, 2012    UPDATED: 10:06 AM PDT November 1, 2013 
Diabetes_monitor

Diabetes mellitus, better known as “diabetes,” is a disease that affect’s your body’s ability to utilize or produce insulin.

 

Insulin is a hormone made in the pancreas. It allows sugar from the food we eat to get into the cells of our body where it is necessary for energy. According to the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi, when an individual has diabetes, his or her body is either not making enough insulin, or not using it well. As a result, glucose (often referred to as “blood sugar”) builds up in his or her blood.

 

According to the Mayo Clinic, glucose is an important source of energy for cells in the human body, especially in the brain. However, excessively high blood sugar levels can, and often will, lead to serious health issues.

 

According to the American Diabetes Association 8.3 percent of people in the United States have been diagnosed with diabetes.