Diabetes is associated with a wide variety of health risks and potential complications, including some that are quite serious. People often think of complications as the main concerns for diabetics, including potential vision problems such as cataracts, glaucoma, and retinopathy which can lead to blindness. Toe, foot or leg amputation are associated with diabetes due to nerve damage and poor circulation. Yet as serious as these complications are, there’s more to consider.

Diabetics are at an increased risk for development of cancer, kidney disease, cognitive decline and the development of Alzheimer’s disease. They’re also at risk for cardiovascular disease, which is the leading cause of mortality among diabetics. Diabetics have a higher risk for developing virtually all diseases compared to those who don’t have diabetes.

These risks to health and potential complications are the result of diabetes’ widespread disruption of almost all aspects of human physiology. Diabetes is much more than a blood sugar or insulin problem. It is a complex disease that is often overlooked and inadequately managed. Early on, diabetes often has no symptoms, or very mild ones that may appear to be the result of other health conditions or attributed to aging in general, or for women, menopause.

Most diabetics have type 2 diabetes, in which the pancreas fails to produce enough insulin, or the body is unable to use insulin property. Insulin resistance results. Lifestyle choices – especially diet – are the biggest cause of the development of type 2 diabetes. The consumption of processed foods and foods that are high in calories and low in nutritional value can directly contribute to diabetes, and especially in combination with little or no physical activity.

Being overweight and leading a sedentary lifestyle put you at risk for developing type 2 diabetes, as can other factors such as smoking. Although age and genetics may also contribute to your risk for its development, excess weight and failure to maintain an active lifestyle are without a doubt the biggest controllable factors, along with smoking.

The conventional approach to type 2 diabetes in traditional medicine is to prescribe the patient medication for regulating blood sugar. As a diabetic medication may be vital to your health and the prevention of serious health complications and diseases, but it is not an ideal solution. Many individuals experience side effects from the medication. You may feel worse taking your medicine than when you do not. As a diabetic, you probably know it is in your best interest to minimize your need for medication. Yet this is difficult to do when nothing is being done to address the root causes of your blood sugar issue or your insulin resistance.

An alternative choice to consider for safe, effective support and management of diabetes is functional neurology. A functional neurologist will focus on helping you heal. Comprehensive assessment of your condition through testing and a very thorough analysis of all aspects of your health is the first step. One the disease’s causes and effects on your entire body are identified, it’s possible for the practitioner to develop a customized plan that can actually help you begin to reverse the course of the disease. Working together in partnership, you can begin to make the necessary lifestyle changes that will best support your health in the short term and achieve optimal wellness in the long term, too.