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When we eat, the pancreas automatically produces the right amount of insulin to move glucose from blood into our cells. In people with diabetes, however, the pancreas either produces little or no insulin, or the cells do not respond appropriately to the insulin that is produced. Glucose builds up in the blood, overflows into the urine, and passes out of the body. Thus, the body loses its main source of fuel even though the blood contains large amounts of glucose.
  • The most common form of diabetes is type 2 diabetes.
  • About 90 to 95 percent of people with diabetes have type 2.
  • This form of diabetes is associated with older age, obesity, family history of diabetes, previous history of gestational diabetes, physical inactivity, and ethnicity.
  • About 80 percent of people with type 2 diabetes are overweight.
recommended reading
These articles provide in-depth information and are written to help you make the best healthcare decisions for you and your loved ones.
Type 1 Diabetes
Type 2 Diabetes
action sets
Action Sets are designed to help you take an active role in managing a health condition. Action Sets provide the tools and information you can use in the day-to-day management of your health conditions.
Carbohydrate counting for type 2 diabetes
Dealing with your feelings about the diet for diabetes
Giving an insulin injection to an adult with diabetes
Home blood sugar monitoring
Using a food guide for people with diabetes
Using a plate format for people with diabetes
tests & procedures

You doctor may recommend one or more of the following tests to evaluate your condition.

Blood Glucose
Glycohemoglobin (GHb)
Oral Glucose Tolerance Test
Urine Test

For other tests and diagnostic procedures use the section of this site called Medical Tests A to Z.

Coronary Artery Disease
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High Cholesterol
Preventing Heart Disease
medication center
medication assistance

This section provides you with an alphabetical listing of more than 1,000 medications, including prescription drugs and those you can purchase over-the-counter. Just "click on" your medications to learn what they are used for, how to take them, special precautions, and some of the possible side effects. You can choose your medication by brand name or generic name.

Medications A-Z

If you are having difficulty paying for your medications you may qualify for financial assistance or free medications. Visit the Medication Assistance Center to learn about available medication and insurance programs.

Don't let financial problems stop you from getting the treatment you need; there are resources and organizations that may be able to help you.

additional resources

This listing provides you with Internet sites that are sponsored by government agencies or are well-known and credible national organizations.

American Diabetes Association
Heart of Diabetes Program—American Heart Association
National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse
National Diabetes Education Program

Surfing the Internet
When looking at Internet sites, remember that the information can be sponsored by anyone. Take into account the sponsoring group or individual when gathering information or help. Be especially careful about giving out personal or financial information.

Learn more about surfing the web:

Last modified on: 30 June 2015