Inflammation and Diabetes

Berries

As diabetes reaches epidemic proportions around the world, researchers are looking for more warning signs and manifestations of the disease. The medical profession is still evaluating the role of inflammation in the onset of type 2 diabetes, but the latest signs are that it could be a crucial factor in the disease.

Low-grade inflammation is a common feature in people with type 2 diabetes. Inflammation is a function of the body’s immune system, which triggers a defense response to harmful stimuli. The body reacts to injury by sending specialized blood cells to damaged areas where they attack “invaders” like bacteria and viruses and clean up dead and dying cells.

In the case of diabetes, studies suggests that inflammation may play an important role in the development and negative effects of insulin resistance, which happens when cells fail to respond normally to the presence of insulin.

Research about inflammation is often cutting edge material that still needs further investigation. But scientists are gathering data that suggests that inflammation precedes type 2 diabetes. Previous research has already linked inflammation to heart disease and obesity, which are both common in people with diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is characterized by high blood-sugar concentrations that result from defects in the body’s use or production of insulin. Normally, insulin guides glucose, the body’s basic fuel, from the bloodstream into cells. Unbalanced insulin levels, which can be caused by insulin resistance, lead to unhealthily high concentrations of blood sugar and can lead to heart disease, blindness, kidney disease and circulation problems that may require amputations.

Inflammation is an issue that people with diabetes need to take very seriously. Many people don’t have a clue what is truly going on in their bodies. It’s worth doing some research to find out what foods can help reduce inflammation in your body (e.g. foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, berries, zucchini), as well as learning the risks and warning signs of diabetes.