Diabetes FAQ

Written by Virta Physicians

Dr. Priyanka Wali, Dr. Austin Smith, Dr. Kelley Struble, and Dr. Jeff Stanley

Diabetes: The Basics

What causes high blood sugar?

Many things can cause high blood sugar, but what we eat plays the biggest and most direct role in elevating blood sugar.
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What’s the difference between type 1 and type 2 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition that results in the body’s inability to produce insulin.
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What should your fasting blood glucose be?

A fasting blood sugar should be less than 100 in order to be considered normal.
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What is diabetic ketoacidosis?

Diabetic ketoacidosis (or DKA) is a serious medical condition that can result from very high levels of ketones in the blood.
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How does Metformin treat prediabetes and type 2 diabetes?

Interestingly, the mechanism of action of metformin is not fully understood. It appears to reduce glucose production in the liver, although there is now evidence that other factors may also play a role.
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What is type 1 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is a condition where the body does not produce insulin.
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Prediabetes

What are the signs and symptoms of prediabetes?

Prediabetes is considered to be one of the most insidious precursors to diabetes because it may not have any signs or symptoms.
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What is the best diet for prediabetes?

low carbohydrate diet is the ideal diet for prediabetes.
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How do you reverse prediabetes?

Prediabetes can be reversed by following a low carbohydrate diet.
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What is the usual treatment for prediabetes?

Some providers may prescribe Metformin to patients who suffer from prediabetes.
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Can prediabetes be reversed permanently?

Prediabetes can be reversed through the dietary changes outlined here, but they must eat a low carbohydrate diet lifelong in order to keep it permanently reversed.
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Type 2 Diabetes

What causes type 2 diabetes?

Genes and environment can play a role in causing type 2 diabetes mellitus.
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What are the first warning signs of type 2 diabetes?

The most common early signs of type 2 diabetes can be fatigue and weight gain, but also surprisingly include symptoms of low blood sugar as well.
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How do I know if I have diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is diagnosed in a number of ways. These include a fasting glucose of > or = 126 mg/dL, a hemoglobin a1c of 6.5% or greater, or elevated glucose on an oral glucose tolerance test.
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What are the symptoms of type 2 diabetes?

Symptoms of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) are as varied as they are unpleasant.
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What are the symptoms of type 2 diabetes in women?

One frequent issue seen in women with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS).
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What are the symptoms of type 2 diabetes in men?

In addition to the commonly discussed symptoms, another issue discussed less frequently is erectile dysfunction.
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How can you prevent type 2 diabetes?

One of the most important first steps one can take to prevent type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is to reach out to a primary care provider.
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What foods cause type 2 diabetes?

There is scientific evidence that suggests that certain foods like refined grains and sugary beverages are associated with an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes mellitus.
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What is the best diet for type 2 diabetes?

The scientific evidence in support of a well-formulated ketogenic diet to improve the health of folks living with type 2 diabetes continues to pile up.
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Can a ketogenic diet reverse type 2 diabetes?

Insulin resistance is the hallmark of type 2 diabetes and manifests as carbohydrate intolerance.
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How do I manage my medications if I make dietary changes to improve my diabetes?

We strongly recommend that patients with type 2 diabetes consult a medical professional before making dietary changes.
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Does cinnamon help treat type 2 diabetes?

Cinnamon has been extensively studied without showing consistent results.
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Type 2 Diabetes Complications

What is diabetic neuropathy?

Elevated blood sugars can damage nerves, usually first in the legs and feet.
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What is diabetic retinopathy?

Diabetic retinopathy can develop when a patient living with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) has high blood sugars that damage the blood vessels in the retina.
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Can I reverse diabetic neuropathy, nephropathy, or retinopathy with a ketogenic diet?

We have many anecdotes of reversal of neuropathy, retinopathy, and nephropathy in people with T2D following a well-formulated ketogenic diet.
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What are diabetic foot problems?

There are many complications (problems) that can happen to the feet when a person is diagnosed with diabetes.
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What is the treatment for diabetic foot problems?

Checking your feet on a daily basis and avoiding injuries to your feet are the best way to prevent diabetic foot problems
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Gestational Diabetes

What is gestational diabetes?

Gestational diabetes is high blood glucose (sugar) in a pregnant woman who has never had diabetes before, and it only occurs when a woman is pregnant.
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What are the symptoms of gestational diabetes?

These symptoms can include feeling thirsty, feeling hungry, having a dry mouth, urinating often, and being tired.
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How do you prevent gestational diabetes?

The best prevention for gestational diabetes is a healthy lifestyle and a normal weight, normal blood pressure, and normal blood glucose levels before becoming pregnant.
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How do you treat gestational diabetes?

Lifestyle changes are always recommended to the mother when gestational diabetes is diagnosed, and these are directed by the mother’s physician.
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