Five Surprising Diabetes Symptoms in Women

Diabetes Lifestyle

Woman Sleeping
Diabetes is a medical condition where the level of blood sugar (also known as glucose) in a person’s body is too high.

Glucose is naturally present in the body, which uses it as an energy source. However, if the amount of glucose is too high or too low, a person can start developing symptoms of diabetes. Women who contract diabetes are at greater risk than men of developing complications1. Being aware of your body and understanding the symptoms can help you to get diagnosed earlier, avoiding potential health problems later in life.

Of course, the hectic lifestyle associated with modern life may cause you to dismiss early signs, so pay attention to these common symptoms:

1. Frequent Urination

Many women think frequent trips to the bathroom are a natural part of aging. However, the need to urinate more than what is your norm may be a sign that you have diabetes. Waking up with frequent trips to the bathroom and producing more urine than usual is a common symptom of high blood sugar. When blood glucose levels are high, your kidneys respond by pulling out more water to dilute it.

2. Extreme Thirst

Everyone knows that water is important for overall health and that you should drink water even before you’re thirsty. However, if you find that your thirst isn’t quenched no matter how much you drink, your body may be trying to tell you something. Coupled with frequent urination, if you’re constantly thirsty, it’s probably time to consult with a medical professional.

3. Losing Weight

Losing weight without diet or exercise may seem like a dream come true. But insufficient insulin means your cells aren’t getting the glucose they need, and the body burns fat and muscle instead. If you haven’t changed your diet or exercise habits but are still losing weight, you may be eliminating your calories when you urinate. One or two pounds of weight loss can usually be explained by normal changes in body function. However, if you are continuously losing weight without effort, schedule an appointment with your physician right away.

4. Flaky Skin

Many women are constantly fighting dry skin, especially in winter months when indoor air tends to be dry. However, flaky skin that does not get better with lotions and covers a large area of your body may be a sign of diabetes

5. Always Feeling Tired

A woman’s work is never done: it’s more than just a saying. With all your responsibilities, it may seem as though there’s no time to rest. However, if you’re getting between seven and eight hours of sleep regularly but still feel exhausted, there may be a larger issue. Fatigue can be another hallmark of diabetes.

In Conclusion …

If you have a history of diabetes, are noticing the risk factors mentioned above, or have been told you have pre-diabetes, it is important pay attention to your body. Together, adopting healthy eating habits, exercising regularly and getting adequate rest can help decrease your chance of developing type 2 diabetes. It’s important to be aware of the symptoms of diabetes and to consult with your doctor. If you already have diabetes, watching your symptoms and keeping the disease under control may allow you to avoid serious health complications later in life.

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1Gebel, E. How Diabetes Differs for Men and Women. American Diabetes Association Diabetes Forecast. October 2011. Accessed April 10, 2015.