Long Island Heart & Vascular
Cardiovascular Disease Specialists & Endovascular Specialists located in Westbury, South Richmond Hill, and Ridgewood, NY
Diabetes is a serious condition that can impact the health of your heart, kidneys, nerves, eyes, and just about every other system in your body. Fortunately, the most common form of diabetes, Type 2, is also preventable. Hima Yalamanchili, MD, is a board-certified internal medicine specialist who serves the New York City community at Long Island Heart & Vascular in Westbury and Ridgewood, New York. She’s an expert in diabetic care and practical strategies for managing diabetes and even preventing the disease in the first place. Schedule an appointment today by calling the office or booking your visit online.
Diabetes Prevention Q & A
What is diabetes?
Diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the way your body is able to metabolize sugar (glucose). Glucose provides the energy your cells need to function normally. Insulin is a hormone that’s produced by your pancreas and regulates the movement of glucose into your cells.
In Type 1 diabetes, your pancreas produces so little insulin that you must take insulin replacement. In Type 2 diabetes, the most common form, your pancreas is still producing insulin, but not enough, or your cells have become resistant to its effect.
This causes blood sugar levels to rise to an unhealthy level and prevents your cells from obtaining the energy they need despite all the glucose floating around in your bloodstream.
What causes diabetes?
The cause is related to the type of diabetes you have. Type 1 diabetes, for instance, is likely due to a flaw in your immune system, which mistakenly destroys the insulin-producing cells in your pancreas.
Type 2 diabetes may be related to genetics, since you’re more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes if a parent or sibling has/had it.
Other factors that increase your risk of Type 2 diabetes include:
- Being overweight, which is a primary risk factor for Type 2 diabetes
- Excess abdominal fat with a waist circumference above 40 inches in men and more than 35 inches in women
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Age, more common in adults over 45 but increasing significantly in younger adults, teens, and children
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) in women, characterized by irregular menstrual periods, excess hair growth and obesity
How can I prevent Type 2 diabetes?
While there isn’t anything you can do about genetic factors, there is much you can do to greatly decrease your risks and even prevent Type 2 diabetes from affecting your health.
Your Long Island Heart & Vascular specialist creates a customized plan that typically includes increasing your fiber intake and otherwise improving your nutrition with a diet that includes whole grains, lean proteins, and fresh fruits and vegetables.
Weight loss is often key to preventing diabetes. Increased physical activity/routine exercise helps control your weight, uses glucose as energy, and makes your cells more sensitive to insulin. It’s also essential to check your blood sugar periodically to ensure your levels aren’t persistently above normal.
Schedule a visit with Dr. Yalamanchili to find out more about preventing diabetes. Call the office or book your appointment online.