Skip to content

    Diabetes Health Center

    Select An Article

    How Does Diabetes Affect Your Body?

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    It can take work to get your diabetes under control, but the results are worth it.

    If you don't make the effort to get a handle on it, you could set yourself up for a host of complications. Diabetes can take a toll on nearly every organ in your body, including the:

    Recommended Related to Diabetes

    Diabetes in Men

    The rates of diabetes have dramatically increased in all states. Twenty-six million children and adults in the United States -- 8% of the population -- have diabetes. The risk for type 2 diabetes typically increases with age. In the absence of risks, testing should begin after age 45. One of the biggest jumps in type 2 diabetes was among men. The risk factors for type 2 diabetes include: being overweight or obese a sedentary lifestyle ...

    Read the Diabetes in Men article > >

    • Heart and blood vessels
    • Eyes
    • Kidneys
    • Nerves
    • Gums and teeth

    Heart and Blood Vessels

    Heart disease and blood vessel disease are common problems for many people who don’t have their diabetes under control. You're at least twice as likely to have heart problems and strokes as people who don’t have the condition.

    Blood vessel damage or nerve damage may also cause foot problems that, in rare cases, can lead to amputations. People with diabetes are ten times likelier to have their feet and legs removed than those without the disease.

    Symptoms: You might not notice warning signs until you have a heart attack or stroke. Problems with large blood vessels in your legs can cause leg cramps, changes in skin color, and less sensation.

    The good news: Many studies show that controlling your diabetes can help you avoid these problems, or stop them from getting worse if you have them.

    Eyes

    Diabetes is the leading cause of new vision loss among adults ages 20 to 74 in the U.S. It can lead to eye problems, some of which can cause blindness if not treated:

    • Glaucoma
    • Cataracts
    • Diabetic retinopathy

    Symptoms: Vision problems, sight loss, or pain in your eye if you have diabetes-related eye disease.

    The good news: Studies show that regular eye exams and timely treatment of these kinds of problems could prevent up to 90% of diabetes-related blindness.

    Kidney Disease

    Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure in adults in the U.S., accounting for almost half of new cases.

    Symptoms: You might not notice any problems with early diabetes-related kidney disease. In later stages it can make your legs and feet swell.

    The good news: Drugs that lower blood pressure (even if you don't have high blood pressure) can cut your risk of kidney failure by 33%.

    Next Article:

    Today on WebMD

    Diabetic tools
    Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
    woman flexing muscles
    10 strength training exercises.
     
    Blood sugar test
    12 practical tips.
    Tom Hanks
    Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
     
    kenneth fujioka, md
    Video
    Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
    Article
     
    Middle aged person
    Tool
    jennie brand miller
    Video
     

    Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
    Article
    type 2 diabetes
    Slideshow
     
    food fitness planner
    Tool
    feet
    Slideshow