Diabetes is a disease in which insulin is either not produced (type 1) or insulin made by the pancreas is no longer effective (type 2). Glucose enters the blood stream as food is digested. When glucose enters the cells, it fuels them, with the energy they need to run the body. If there is no insulin, or if it is not working like it should, the glucose keeps circulating in the blood, unable to leave.
When glucose levels are consistently too high. This affects the kidneys ability to filter the blood. Waste that would ordinarily be excreted remains in the blood causing severe problems. Usually damage takes years to develop.
Often there are no symptoms of the disease until it progresses to the late stages. When symptoms do appear they include:
Stage I - The flow of blood through the kidneys increases and the kidneys get bigger. People can stay in this stage indefinitely or advance to Stage II after many years.
Stage II - Small amounts of blood protein known as albumin leak into the urine. This is called microalbuminuria.
Stage III - The loss of albumin and other proteins speeds up. Some patients develop high blood pressure. The kidneys continue to lose the ability to filter waste. Many people are first diagnosed with kidney disease at this stage.
Stage IV - In this stage large amounts of urine are passed through the kidneys and high blood pressure almost always occurs.
Stage V - The ability of the kidneys to filter waste almost stops. Kidney dialysis or transplants are treatment options.
Reducing The Risk:
Because kidney disease can take years to develop, people with diabetes can do many things to lower the risk. Tight control of blood glucose levels can prevent or reduce long term damage to the fragile blood vessels not only in the kidneys but elsewhere in the body. Check blood pressure often, and try to keep it at or under 130/85. Watch your cholesterol and and your weight. Quit smoking.
Traditional Chinese Medicine had many effective herbal treatments including pig pancreas. Chinese medicine has identified over 20 acupuncture points that can help control blood sugar symptoms. Acupuncture can help to manage cholesterol levels which reduce the cardiovascular complications of diabetes. Peripheral neuropathy can be managed with acupuncture.
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