Type 2 Diabetes – Is Not Eating Anything The Key To Beating Diabetes Fast?

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You might associate cutting out all food with crackpot diets like the Cabbage Soup Diet. However, according to a research study published conducted by the Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute, fasting may be a surefire way to stop Type 2 diabetes.

Genome Collision: It’s been said Type 2 diabetes and other chronic diseases that plague Western civilization are caused by a “collision of the genome” with our modern day lifestyles. Our genes have stayed relatively unchanged since humans first burst onto the scene thousands of years ago. But our lifestyles filled with modern-day conveniences like abundant fast food and computers are brand new. Our genes haven’t had time to adapt to these new technological advances.

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The moral of the story? Your body is still worrying about surviving and eating its next meal even though there’s a McDonald’s on every other corner of your neighborhoods.

As you may imagine from a loincloth donned caveman having to hunt and forage for every meal, fasting was relatively common. Over millennia, the human body developed mechanisms to keep it going when your ancestral self wasn’t able to find food for stretches of time. Because we rarely find ourselves too long without food (and skipping lunch to finish that report doesn’t count), these mechanisms never have a chance to kick in.

This study found people who fasted for short periods of time… known as intermittent fasting:

boosted sagging HDL levels,
improved insulin sensitivity, and
reduced high triglycerides.

These three factors make up 3/5ths of what’s known as the metabolic syndrome… a cluster of symptoms often found together that raise a person’s heart disease risk substantially. Even better, there were no serious side effects to the fasting treatment.

Added to this, the participants lost significant amounts of body fat as well. Because the body doesn’t have energy coming in its forced to take body fat stored in your stomach and thighs.

Practical Use: However, fasting isn’t a magic trick that will melt away fat and cure Type 2 diabetes. It should be used as an adjunct approach to a healthy lifestyle that you already have. It may also be a way to “kick-start” a new lifestyle program to help accelerate your results.

Suddenly fasting can throw off the effects of the medications you are taking, medications which are usually dosed based on a typical day’s diet. Be sure to check in with your health care team before trying a fast.


Type 2 Diabetes – Treating a Newly Diagnosed Case of Diabetes

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Often when cases of Type 2 diabetes are first diagnosed, new diabetics are given an initial dietary consultation with a follow-up six months later. Researchers at the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom set out to discover whether a more intensive program of diet and physical activity could be of more benefit. Their results were published in the journal Lancet in July 2011.

Five hundred and ninety-three people who had been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes were included in this particular study:

ninety-nine people were given “usual care”,
248 were given a dietary regimen which included nurses checking them every month, together with dietary consultations every 3 months… referred to as a “strict” dietary regimen.
246 were given the above dietary regimen with increased physical activity.

Results showed: After 6 months the hemoglobin A1c, (HbA1c), levels increased in the group receiving the “usual care” and lowered, or improved, in those receiving the “strict” dietary regimen. The group receiving the “strict” dietary regimen along with increased physical activity also found their HbA1c level had lowered. The improved HbA1c levels continued to be seen even after the following 12 months.

Body weight and insulin resistance were also improved to a much greater extent in the intensive program groups, more than in the group of diabetics receiving “usual care”.

Conclusion reached: Researchers therefore decided intensive intervention commencing soon after diagnosis could improve blood sugar control in Type 2 diabetics.

One study will not change the usual care given to newly diagnosed diabetics, and insurance companies will not begin to pay for more care based upon this study… so newly diagnosed diabetics will need to take up the slack.

Hints for newly diagnosed diabetics:

when given a diet plan, refer to it daily. Recording your daily weight will help you to keep track of how well you are following the plan.
nurses are often available for telephone consultations at physician’s offices and insurance companies… usually patients can call and ask questions without having to wait six months for an appointment.
fitness trainers are another source of advice where diet plans are concerned. If given a copy of your diet plan, good trainers are usually happy to discuss them with you if you are their client. They will check to see if the diet plan is being followed, as well as creating and helping you to follow a regular plan of physical activity. Clients going to a gym and meeting with fitness trainers two to three times per week will obtain even more attention than the diabetics in the above study’s intervention groups.

Families can also be helpful in maintaining dietary regimens. Sometimes just discussing your diet plan with a family member can help to clarify the plan and help with its implementation.

Start treating a new case of Type 2 diabetes early and don’t give it a chance to cause complications.


Type 2 Diabetes – The Accuracy Of Your Glucose Meter

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Monitoring blood glucose, or blood sugar levels, is at the very heart of great diabetes maintenance, whether you have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. The main instrument used to accomplish this is a glucose testing meter. But how accurate are they, and is the error percentage enough to be concerned with?

Since guidelines were first established, the International Organization of Standards (IOS) has put their own regulation in place concerning the effectiveness of these meters. Under their guidelines, these devices can be off as much as 20 percent. That would give you a 40 point difference in the extreme high and low readings that were required on a 100mg readout. For a diabetic, this is far too much of a gap.

Another guideline in place is that they are only required to be accurate 95 percent of the time. That means that 95 percent of the time they can be off as much as 20 percent, and for the remaining 5 percent of the time, it can be an even higher error rate.

Given the seriousness of what your meter can tell you, it is vital you take immaculate care of it. That means keeping it in an ideal location, especially when you are away from home. Insuring that it remains in calibration is also equally important.

But the device isn’t the only area that deserves consideration. There are outside factors that can affect the accuracy of a glucose meter. Ambient temperature and the amount of humidity are important… keep your glucose meter in the same cool, dry place as your other supplies. Your glucose meter will work best when stored between 50 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit (10 and 40 degrees Celsius). If you take your meter with you, a locked car often becomes hotter than this.

The size and the quality of blood samples can affect readings. The cleanliness of the meter and/or the strips, and how old the strips are also come into play.

Even the brand of strips themselves, can make a difference. Once you become familiar with a particular brand it is better to remain with that brand as some can be a better quality than others. Going with whichever brand is on sale can compromise accuracy.

For those who would still like additional assistance in accuracy readings, they can use the Clarke Error Grid which analyzes and displays the level of accuracy readings based on how the equipment is being managed. It will help you efficiently take all factors into account.

It is extremely important that you check for accuracy ratings when purchasing a glucose testing meter. It will involve doing substantial research and looking at as many reviews as you can get your hands on. The more experience you can rely on, the better off you will be.


Type 2 Diabetes – An Immediate Risk for Diabetics: Dizziness

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Feeling dizzy is never a good sensation. Unfortunately, both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics have to encounter this irritating, and sometimes debilitating symptom as a result of their condition. However, when diabetics take the proper measures, they greatly reduce the possibility of having to go through one of these episodes.

Whenever you are talking about dizziness, you are referring to your body’s equilibrium becoming affected. Within the body, the central nervous system is the major controlling factor of its equilibrium. This system is made up of many different parts, from the inner ears and the eyes, to skin and joints. So when you take a close look at the central nervous system of a diabetic, you can see how it can become easily affected by diabetes.

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When a diabetic becomes dizzy, it means some aspect of their central nervous system has been thrown off. This is called cellular degeneration and can be accomplished by any number of factors. Some of the most common factors are:

hyperglycemia, or high blood sugar levels, and
hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar levels.
Regardless of how the reaction is formed, the end result is it manifests into varying levels of blood sugar which is interpreted as a dizzy feeling.

With hyperglycemia, the body is not able to use glucose properly due to low insulin levels. Although the brain does not need insulin in order to use glucose, the rest of the body does. Sugar levels rapidly build in the blood which results in metabolic responses being initiated. Some of these responses directly affect balance. The only treatment is to increase insulin levels.

In a case of hypoglycemia, there is an insufficient level of glucose in the blood. This is usually as a result of not enough food, or not taking the prescribed anti-diabetes medications at the right time. One of the areas this drop in glucose registers is in the brain. The brain responds to this glucose deficit in the only way it knows how… with dizziness. Due to the extreme danger of this condition, sugar has to be introduced into the body as quickly as possible. This is done either by glucose tablets, injection, or foods rich in glucose or sugar.

Even though the dizziness may dissipate after a treatment has been rendered, it is best to notify your doctor as soon as possible.

Know when to call your doctor. Make sure you are aware of the point you should consider your blood sugar levels to be dangerously high or dangerously low. Ask about the normal range for you, and request guidelines as to when you should call. It’s possible your doctor may even need to examine you to verify the exact cause of the attack.


Type 2 Diabetes – Triglyceride Control in Diabetes

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People with Type 2 diabetes usually have a concomitant problem in their blood cholesterol level. Diabetic dyslipidemia, a common abnormality in the blood lipid (fat) concentration, is usually seen as an increased triglyceride level.

What is the significance of an increased blood fat level in Type 2 diabetes? The John Hopkins Point-of-Care Information Technology (POC-IT) Center explains that diabetic dyslipidemia may result in the faster development of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease. In fact, one of the most common causes of death in people with Type 2 diabetes is cardiovascular disease; the most important consequence of untreated increased lipid levels in diabetes. Another common result of diabetic dyslipidemia is acute pancreatitis; the sudden inflammation of the pancreatic tissues.

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How is diabetic dyslipidemia diagnosed? The best way to diagnose this problem is through having a blood test called a lipid panel. A lipid panel, also known as a lipid profile, checks the level of fats in your blood: total cholesterol, triglycerides (the major form of fat in our bodies), as well as your LDL (low-density lipoprotein, and HDL.(high-density lipoprotein). These fats can narrow or constrict the blood flow in your blood vessels.

What are the usual signs and symptoms of this problem? In most cases, there are no signs and symptoms associated with increased lipid levels. However, in overt cases:

a yellow appearance of your hand creases may be observed.
xanthomas, soft, yellow, slightly raised bumps on your skin may develop, and
pancreatitis may occur. Pancreatitis usually leads to nausea, vomiting and even severe abdominal pain.
What are the available clinical treatment options available? Diabetic dyslipidemia is treated in order to prevent cardiovascular problems. It is also controlled to avoid the development of acute pancreatitis.

lifestyle modification is the first line of treatment for this problem. To lower the blood fat levels, a 35 percent decrease in the total dietary fat is needed. As well, saturated fats must be decreased to less than seven percent, and cholesterol must never exceed 200mg per day.

weight control can also effectively lower triglyceride levels.

exercise improves blood sugar control as well as your triglyceride level.

treatment with statin medications may also help lower blood cholesterol levels and it is usually the drug of choice for diabetics with high cholesterol levels.
What are the other pointers for the management of diabetic dyslipidemia? In case lipid levels do not respond to the initial dose of statin drugs, your doctor may increase the dosage. However, caution must be exercised with statin drugs as they may increase your risk of developing myositis, which is inflammation of the muscles.

Also, your blood sugar may increase because of your statin medication.

It should be emphasized, a weight loss of between 5 and 19 percent is essential for the management of diabetic dyslipidemia to order to improve the blood lipid levels in overweight and obese people with Type 2 diabetes.


Treatment Steps for Diabetes

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The onset of diabetes is recognized when a patient has an overly high blood sugar level. This means that his or her body does not produce enough insulin to maintain a healthy amount of sugar in the blood. The cells in the pancreas of a person with diabetes gradually wear out and their capacity to produce insulin gradually and continuously falls. Eventually he or she will not have enough insulin to maintain normal blood sugar and the sugar will start to rise. Doctors and patients have many resources available to help people with diabetes maintain healthy sugar levels. The most powerful tool is a combination of diet and exercise. It requires education, motivation, and teamwork on the part of the doctor and patient.

When a person without diabetes exercises and loses weight, his or her body requires less insulin to maintain sugar levels. This holds true for people with diabetes as well: while they have a decreased capacity to produce insulin, they may frequently be able to use diet and exercise to reduce their requirements for it and their sugars will come back down to normal. By maintaining a healthy lifestyle, they will decrease the amount of insulin their bodies need to maintain normal blood sugars. If they can lower their insulin requirement sufficiently, their limited capacity to produce insulin may be sufficient to maintain normal sugar levels. This is analogous to a person who experiences a pay cut, and compensates by cutting down on expenses (for example, purchasing fewer luxuries and taking fewer vacations) but can still pay for his necessities without borrowing any money.

Unfortunately, diabetes is a progressive disease. This means that as time goes on, a person with diabetes will have less and less capacity to produce insulin naturally. Even with the adoption of a healthy lifestyle, a diabetic’s sugar levels will likely start to elevate again after a time. Just as there is a limit to how much you can cut down on expenses and still have the bare necessities of living, diet and exercise alone cannot work indefinitely for every person with diabetes. If a patient has been eating and exercising appropriately but experiences a rise in sugar levels, his or her doctor may next offer medications that lower his or her body’s need for insulin. Patients must still maintain the healthy living habits that they have previously implemented in order to keep insulin requirements as low as possible.

While a combination of diet, exercise, and medications may work for a long time in many patients, it may not work indefinitely for every person with diabetes. When the patient is doing a great job with diet and exercise and is appropriately taking medications but the blood sugar levels continue to rise, an insulin regimen will be an appropriate next step. While it seems to be a very logical solution-taking insulin because the body cannot produce it naturally-patients and their physicians will resist using it because it requires injections, may lead to hypoglycemia (low sugars), and some people think it causes weight gain. (For more information about the relationships between insulin and hypoglycemia/weight gain, please see my other articles on these topics.)

Many patients would prefer having sugar levels higher than those recommended by the American Diabetes Association and the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists if the elevated levels do not cause overt symptoms and it means they can avoid self-injecting. However, mild elevations in blood sugar levels may increase the risk of visual impairment, kidney damage, heart attacks, strokes, and foot complications that may lead to amputations. Individuals with slightly elevated levels also face a much higher risk of sugar level spikes during unrelated illness. The patient and the doctor must work together to balance the inconvenience and risk of using insulin against the threat of these complications, and develop a system that is appropriate for the individual.

Many people with diabetes are able to follow the diet and exercise recommendations prescribed by their physician; however, others have difficulty following through with making and keeping healthy lifestyle habits. Because these patients are unable or unwilling to adopt the diet and exercise plan recommended by their doctor, they are depriving themselves of the first and most powerful tool to treat their diabetes. In order to help them with the diet portion of their regimen, my daughter Tova Searleman and I have established a website to provide a free 24/7 resource to help patients acquire appropriate cooking skills and gain practical information about this disease. People with diabetes will be able to use the site to learn basic information about diabetes, be informed about the latest developments in diabetes care and research, learn how to shop for nutritious foods, read nutrition labels, and watch videos in which Tova provides step-by-step demonstrations on how to prepare delicious meals that are appropriate for people with diabetes and their families. Please visit our site, and let us know how we can further serve you.


Type 2 Diabetes – When Is The Best Time For Diabetics To Take Their Blood Pressure Drugs?

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Heart and blood vessel disease is frequently a problem for anyone with Type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure (B/P) can be the result. According to the American Diabetes Association, as many as two-thirds of diabetics have high blood pressure. Researchers at the University of Vigo in Spain set out to determine whether the traditional method of taking all medications in the morning were necessarily the way to get the best possible results. Their work was published in the June 2011 issue of the journal Diabetes Care.

Four hundred forty-eight people with high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes were included in the study. Some were assigned to continue taking all their anti-hypertensive drugs in the morning while the rest were assigned to take one or more of their anti-hypertensive drugs at bedtime. Blood pressure was measured at the start of the study and at intervals for about 5 years. At the end of the study the group taking one or more blood pressure drugs at bedtime had fewer cases of heart attacks, death due to heart attacks, and strokes. They also had better controlled B/P both at night and during the day. It was therefore concluded taking at least one anti-hypertensive medication at night rather than during the day, improved blood pressure control and reduced the risk of heart attacks and strokes in Type 2 diabetics.

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The American Diabetes Association and the National Institute of Health recommend a blood pressure of below 130/80 to prevent strokes, eye disease, heart disease and kidney disease in diabetics. The top number, the systolic, is the force of the blood against the walls of the arteries when the heart is beating. The bottom number, the diastolic, is the force of the blood against the arterial walls between heartbeats. Both are measured in millimeters of mercury.

Medications for lowering blood pressure include:

angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors,
angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB’s),
beta blockers, and
calcium channel blockers.

A hormone called angiotensin is a hormone that narrows the blood vessels, causing your B/P to increase. ACE inhibitors prevent the hormone from being manufactured by the body. ARB’s keep angiotensin from doing its job of narrowing blood vessels. Diuretics cause the kidneys to put more water into the urine, causing blood pressure to drop because the blood vessels have less fluid to carry. Beta blockers cause the heart to beat less forcefully and more slowly. Calcium channel blockers keep calcium away from the heart and blood vessels, allowing them to relax.

If you are on more than one type of anti-hypertensive drug and your blood pressure is above 130/80, check with your doctor as to whether you should take one or more of your medications at bedtime.


Type 2 Diabetes – Driving Precautions When You Have Diabetes!

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Diabetes can have an impact on your ability to drive safely in several ways. It puts you at risk of low blood sugar or hypoglycemia, which affects your concentration and may impair your judgement and even lead to loss of consciousness. Or, your eyesight can be affected often due to high blood sugar levels distorting your lens, or because of damage to the retina, or cataracts.

Many diabetics though can drive safely and regularly. However, a small portion of the diabetic population may have an impairment in their driving ability because of their low or high blood sugar level and the presence of diabetes complications.

According to the John Hopkins POC-IT: Point of Care Information Technology Center, 0.4 to 3 percent of life-threatening motor vehicle accidents are caused directly by medical problems and complications. The most common condition responsible for motor vehicle accidents is epilepsy. The next most common cause of accidents is insulin-treated diabetes, which comprises 18 percent of cases. Acute myocardial infarction is present in 8 percent of cases.

In the United States, people with Type 1 diabetes have a 31 percent risk of being admitted to hospital due to accidents triggered by hypoglycemia. In Type 2 diabetes only 8 percent end up having this problem. In a survey conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it was mentioned diabetic drivers have 1.44 times more “at-fault accidents” compared to drivers without this health problem. You see, cognitive dysfunction associated with acute and chronic alterations in blood sugar levels usually alters the ability of a driver with diabetes.

What causes the increased risk for accidents when diabetics are at the wheel?

Diabetics with unstable blood sugar levels have increased metabolic demands on their body, this leads to:

an increased heart rate,
greater epinephrine release, and
more autonomic symptoms,

making them more prone to road accidents.

Points to consider while driving:

always be aware of your blood sugar level. In most cases, mild hypoglycemia may go undetected. Check your blood sugar level before you drive and every 2 hours when on a long trip. Your driving ability will be impaired if your blood sugar goes below 72mg/dL (4mmol/L).

keep glucose tables or a rapid acting glucose drink in the glove box of your car.

if symptoms of hypoglycemia occur, pull over and stop driving. Don’t resume driving until your blood sugar is over 99mg/dL (5.5mmol/L). Your thinking and judgement may take up to an hour to return to normal.

alcohol in the previous 12 hours increases the risk of hypoglycemia.

the risk of hypoglycemia is increased after playing sport.

try to avoid driving if you have made major changes to your insulin regime.

Motor vehicle accidents directly caused by diabetes is relatively rare, says John Hopkins POC-IT: Point of Care Information Technology Center. However, blood sugar level awareness is still necessary to avoid possible accidents from occurring. The more cautious you become in monitoring your blood sugar level and by being aware about the possible symptoms of hyperglycemia or hypoglycemia, the safer it will be for you.


Diabetes – A Threat Throughout the World

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Around the world today, the threat of diabetes and obesity is very worrying. What is the solution on the threat that this alarming? and is there any proven treatment for diabetes in the market today?

Whether you believe it or not, the number of diabetics in the world is increasing every year. According to the International Diabetes Federation statistics, people with diabetes worldwide is currently about 285 million people. And this number is increasing. The figure is expected to hit the 438 million people in 2030 to clarify.

In Malaysia, it is a sudden increase in diabetes, from 1.4 million in 2006 to 1.8 million in 2010 and that number will increase to 2.5 million people by 2030.

Most patients with type 2 diabetes due to failure of the pancreas to produce sufficient insulin, while type 1 diabetes patient’s pancreas is not working directly. Patients with type 2 diabetes often have blood lipid levels and cholesterol levels and increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

This is the underlying cause of many deaths of type 2 diabetes. There are two types of risk factors of type 2 diabetes, it is risk factors remain and may change.

Risk factors remained, the genetic factors, age and ethnicity, while risk factors may change, involves weight loss and physical activity. In Malaysia, the most ethnic with diabetes were Indians followed by Malays and Chinese.

Other factors that cause diabetes are weight loss and physical activity. If a person’s weight is growing up obese, the higher the risk of diabetes and a person who is disabled also face the same risk.

The impact of diabetes on a patient is very large and offered many complications. It is the sixth disease that causes death and at the same time reduce the life expectancy of five Hing sufferer to 10 years.

Diabetics are also at risk of cardiovascular disease between two and four times in addition to experience nerve damage, amputation, blindness and kidney failure.

Looking at the number of people living with diabetes today and the expected future, a warning is very worrying and needs attention. Once we assume that the disease involves only the rich only, but now the scenarios has changed since it also occurs in people who live outside the city.

Within a decade, more rural communities suffering from diabetes. The increase in the number of diabetes patients are associated with obesity, so it is called diabesiti.

Most patients cannot control blood glucose levels as normal extent of this disease causes blood glucose levels rise. Although the treatment of existing diabetes, over 60 percent of patients with type 2 diabetes do not achieve good blood glucose control.

Some treatments for diabetes cause a person to experience weight gain and is often associated with the risk of hypoglycemia. It is a condition of the blood glucose level is below normal levels can cause serious signs of coma.

Therefore it is important for us to control our diet and take foods and fruits as recommended by nutritionists as well as adopt a healthy lifestyle to avoid the diabetes.


Does Having Type 2 Diabetes Affect Your Sleep?

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Do you have Type 2 diabetes and find yourself not sleeping well at night? When was the last time you slept like a baby for more than six hours straight?

Sleeping problems are one of the most often neglected problems in Type 2 diabetes. However, as stated in an article published by Medscape Education Internal Medicine, sleep disturbances are one of the most common symptoms seen in people with this form of diabetes. In fact, as mentioned in a study conducted in the St. Boniface General Hospital, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada and published by Sleep Medicine in September 2001, adults with Type 2 diabetes had a higher chance of developing insomnia, morning sleepiness and drowsiness, compared to adults with a normal blood sugar level.

What are the reasons for sleep issues and disturbances in Type 2 diabetics?

1. Peripheral neuropathy: Peripheral neuropathy is the most common form of diabetes-related nerve damage. Your peripheral nerves allow you to feel something as rough or smooth, cold or hot, sharp or dull. If you have peripheral neuropathy, those feelings are diminished. Damage to the nerve endings in both your upper and lower extremities, is a common disorder in people with Type 2 diabetes according to the study published by Sleep Disorder. Who could possibly sleep in the face of nagging pain and discomfort in their legs? Peripheral neuropathy can be so disturbing it can really affect your sleep.

2. Having Type 2 diabetes can increase your chances of developing sleep apnea: According to a study conducted in the MedStar Research Institute, Hyattsville, Maryland, the results of which were published in the 2003 issue of Diabetes Care, obesity-related Type 2 diabetes is a large risk factor in the development of sleep apnea. If you wake up feeling tired, snore and are overweight, you could have undiagnosed sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is seen as abnormal breathing pauses and abnormal low breathing during sleep. As analyzed by the researchers of this particular study, this type of sleeping disorder in the case of Type 2 diabetes may be a centrally located problem, meaning inside the brain, instead of an obstructive symptom caused by obesity. However, further investigation is warranted to establish this fact.

3. Unstable blood sugar levels can cause sleep disturbances: A study conducted in the Rambam Medical Center and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel and published in the Journal of Pediatrics in 2003 states unstable blood sugar levels can play a role in sleep pattern disturbance in diabetics. Also, a rapid increase in blood sugar levels usually results in waking up from a restful sleep. However, further research and clinical studies are necessary to further prove this finding.