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Diabetes – normality with restrictions

Last Updated on 8. June 2023 by eschalch

Diabetes: General clinical picture, differentiation between type I and type II diabetes, requirements for the patient

Diabetes is quite common in our country. According to estimates, about 500,000 people in Switzerland live with diabetes mellitus. Diagnosis as early as possible is enormously important, since untreated diabetes mellitus can lead to numerous consequential damages.


People with diabetes mellitus have a disorder of sugar metabolism. The sugar cannot be properly absorbed by the body’s cells and the sugar level in the blood, the blood sugar, rises excessively because of this. The reason for this is a deficiency of the body’s own hormone insulin, or a resistance of the body’s cells to it.

That is:

  • the pancreas produces no or too little insulin and/or
  • the body’s own insulin is not sufficiently effective
Body reactions

There are two forms of diabetes:

  • Type I diabetes: The pancreas no longer produces insulin.
  • Type II diabetes: the pancreas produces insulin, but the organism defends itself against it.

When insulin is absent or cannot be processed, blood glucose concentrations rise. If a certain limit is exceeded, the body reacts: the kidney begins to remove some of the sugar from the blood and excrete it in the urine.

The excess sugar must be dissolved in a lot of water; large amounts of sugar can therefore only be excreted with large amounts of urine. The water for this is withdrawn from the body. He reacts to this with thirst.

This easily explains the two main symptoms of diabetes: The thirst and the great urge to urinate. In addition, fatigue, loss of performance, protracted skin diseases and weight loss are typical features of diabetes. They disappear with a constant and correctly performed treatment.


The focus of diabetes treatment is therefore on insulin and its effect. However, how they are treated depends crucially on whether you have type I or type II diabetes.

Type I diabetics always have to inject their body with insulin because they can no longer produce insulin themselves. The therapy lasts a lifetime.

Type II diabetics must first try to lower their elevated blood glucose levels through a targeted diet, and in the case of overweight, especially through a fat-reduced diet and exercise. However, type ll diabetes is a chronic progressive disease. Therefore, the therapy may need to be adjusted with medication after some time. They need additional insulin for treatment only in part, and only after many years.

To live with diabetes, it is equally important for the patient to take active responsibility for managing the disease and to work with their doctor in a trusting manner. Together with his doctor, he will determine the best possible diabetes therapy for him. After that, it is important to be able to handle the medication and aids independently. Those who succeed in making self-control a part of their lifestyle will find that diabetics today can lead a largely unimpaired life that is “normal” in the best sense of the word.