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Type 2 Diabetes and Insulin

Type 2 Diabetes and Insulin

Insulin is a hormone. It is made by an organ near the stomach called the pancreas (PAN-kree-us). Insulin helps the body use sugar from the blood for energy.

With type 2 diabetes, either the pancreas does not make enough insulin or the body does not use insulin as well as it should. Sugar builds up in the blood because the body cannot use it without the help of insulin. This causes blood sugar to stay high. Type 2 diabetes often runs in families.

Why treat diabetes?

If blood sugar stays high for a long time, people may have a higher chance of heart attacks, strokes, and amputations. They may also have a higher chance of blindness, nerve damage, and kidney damage. Keeping your blood sugar at a good level may lower your chance of these problems.

How is type 2 diabetes treated?

The first step in controlling your blood sugar is to eat a balanced diet and be more active. Even small changes can make a big difference. Most people with type 2 diabetes also use pills to help control their blood sugar.

Over time, many people need insulin to treat their diabetes. About 3 out of every 10 people with type 2 diabetes take insulin.