5 Major Contributors to Type 2 Diabetes

Jan 04, 2024
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More than 38 million people in the United States have diabetes, but many of them may not know that a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis is reversible — if you control these five major contributors to the disease. Read on to find out more.

Here’s a startling statistic: more than 38 million people in the United States have diabetes.

Here’s another one: 90-95% of those people have Type 2 diabetes, which occurs because of insulin resistance. Your body isn’t responding to insulin properly (or it’s not making enough), so your blood sugar levels become dangerously high.

And here’s one more startling fact you may not know: Type 2 diabetes is reversible. That’s right, if you’ve been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, you still have hope you can beat the disease so you can return to your normal life.

Here at Phillips Family Medical, we have a secret weapon when it comes to treating diabetes: our founder, Pamela Phillips, FNP-C, wrote her doctoral dissertation on metabolic syndrome, a group of five conditions that put you at higher risk for diabetes and heart disease.

Here’s more about those five major contributors to Type 2 diabetes (and what you can do to reverse them):

High blood pressure

Untreated high blood pressure (hypertension) is a major risk factor for diabetes. If you have diabetes, you should keep your blood pressure under 130/80 mmHg. (Normal blood pressure is below 120/80.) You can make lifestyle changes to help control your high blood pressure (and your diabetes).

Elevated blood sugar

High levels of blood sugar is what happens when your insulin resistance increases. If it’s left untreated, it can cause permanent damage to your kidneys, eyes, nerves, and more. This is one of the biggest factors in determining if you have diabetes.

High blood triglycerides

Triglycerides are a type of fat found in your blood. Having high levels is a sign of diabetes, but if you lower your weight and increase your exercise, you can reduce your risk of both triglycerides and diabetes. A common cause of high blood triglycerides is excess carbohydrates in your diet. To help control your diabetes, therefore, watch your carb intake.

Low levels of high-density lipoproteins (HDL)

If you have low levels of the “good” cholesterol (HDL), you’re more likely to have hardening of the arteries, which can increase your risk of diabetes. Following a healthy diet and getting regular exercise can help improve these abnormal lipid levels, leading to less risk of diabetes.

Extra fat in your midsection

Being overweight increases the chance you’ll have diabetes. Even losing 5-10% of your body weight can significantly lower your risk of developing diabetes. Managing your weight with diet and exercise is one of the best things you can do to reverse your Type 2 diabetes diagnosis.

As you can see, most of the factors we’ve mentioned are under your control to some degree: you can choose what to eat, how often to exercise, and how to lower your blood pressure. It can be done, but it’s not easy.

If you’re ready to have help in the battle, our team at Phillips Family Medical would love to support you. Just call our DeSoto, Texas, office at 972-861-1151 or book an appointment online anytime!