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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Insulin, blood sugar levels and type 2 diabetes - how are they all linked?

    What is the relationship between blood sugar levels and type 2 diabetes? How do I control the levels?
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    Kate Marsh

    Credentialled Diabetes Educator (CDE), Diabetes Educator, Dietitian

    Kate works with clients with type 1 and gestational diabetes, PCOS, and those following a plant-based (vegetarian or vegan) diet. As a diabetes educator, she … View Profile

    Insulin is a hormone produced by the body which helps to control blood glucose levels. In type 2 diabetes the bodys insulin doesn't work effectively to take glucose from the blood into muscles and cells (this is known as insulin resistance) so glucose builds up in the bloodstream.  Insulin resistance occurs well before the diagnosis of diabetes but initially the body is able to produce extra insulin to overcome this resistance and blood glucose levels remain normal. Over time the body's insulin production can't keep up and eventually the amount of insulin being produced is not enough to overcome the resistance and glucose levels rise, resulting in diabetes.  Eating a healthy diet, regular exercise and losing weight if you are overweight can all improve insulin resistance and help control blood glucose levels from day to day.  Getting adequate sleep and managing stress can also play a role.  A Credentialled Diabetes Educator, Accredited Practising Dietitian and Accredited Exercise Physiologist can provide you with more individualised advice to help you in making appropriate lifestyle changes and controlling your blood glucose levels.

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