From Goderich, Ontario, Canada:
My son has recently gained quite a bit of weight, and information I have found concerning diabetes shows people usually lose weight before diagnosis. However, he does have frequent thirst and urination, and diabetes runs in my husband's family. What are the other signs of diabetes? Is there something else that correlates to this?
See symptoms of diabetes. Certainly, increased urination and increased thirst are typical of diabetes. But they are not specific for diabetes.
In someone with type 1 diabetes, because of the lack of insulin and the associated inability to use glucose sugar for energy, then body fat is "burned" for energy, and with that often comes weight loss. However, seemingly contradictory, just as you noted, we are seeing more diabetes in people who are too heavy. That is more often type 2 diabetes, which is not associated with absolute deficient amounts of insulin, but rather a relative resistance to the effect of insulin and relative decreases in insulin quantity and action, compared to somebody's metabolic needs. Body fat inhibits in some ways, the effect of insulin. So fat people are more often insulin, and the treatment for them is, in fact, to lose weight. Can some people with type 1 be chunky? Sure. Can some people with type 2s be thin. Yes, but generally not.
Other typical symptoms of diabetes then tend to hinge on the effects of not having enough energy or relative to fluctuating blood glucose levels and include: fatigue, blurring of vision, poor wound healing, increase infections (especially yeast infections), and some others.
Original posting 24 Jul 2003
Posted to Diagnosis and Symptoms
Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:45
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