There are three types of diabetes. These are Type 1, Type 2 and gestational diabetes. The last of these (gestational diabetes) only occurs in pregnant women and may be temporary.

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What Are the Three Main Types of Diabetes?

While all three of these types are similar, there is also a clear difference between them.

  • Type 1 diabetes is a condition where the immune system mistakes the cells that produce insulin for something that it needs to attack. As such, these cells are destroyed, and the pancreas cannot produce insulin.
  • Type 2 diabetes occurs when a patient is unable to produce insulin or the cells do not function in the correct way.
  • Gestational diabetes happens in pregnant women and is caused by raised glucose within the blood. The body cannot keep up with the insulin demand and the result is a temporary version of the condition.

It is important to note that while both Type 1 and Type 2 will require lifelong treatment, gestational diabetes will disappear once the woman delivers her baby. 

Keep in mind that everyone stands a chance of developing Type 2 diabetes throughout their lives, and living a healthy lifestyle can help in the prevention of the condition. However, people are born with Type 1 diabetes.

Let’s take a look at those who may be at increased risk of developing this illness:

  • For gestational diabetes, women who previously gave birth to a larger baby (over 9 lbs) could be at increased risk.
  • Women may also develop gestational diabetes if they are obese or if there is a history of diabetes in the family.
  • People who are older than 45 may be at higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
  • Those who do not partake in frequent physical activity (more than three times a week) or maintain a poor diet could develop Type 2 diabetes more easily.