This Morning: Type 2 diabetes can be 'devastating' says expert
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Type 2 diabetes only becomes problematic if steps are not taken to lower high blood sugar levels. This also includes ignoring worrying and unusual symptoms which may arise from having elevated blood sugars including those signs found in your toes.
Having diabetes means a person is at much greater risk of developing foot problems.
This is because raised blood glucose, also known as blood sugar, can damage the sensation in the feet.
It can also affect circulation, which can lead to getting less blood supply to the feet.
Nerve damage caused by high blood sugar levels is medically referred to as diabetic neuropathy.
Diabetic neuropathy most often damages nerves in your legs and feet; a telltale sign of which can be observed on your toes, according to Doctor Prash Vas, Consultant in Diabetes and Diabetes Food Medicine at London Bridge Hospital.
Clawing of toes can signal advanced nerve damage, warned Doctor Prash.
Claw toe is a condition characterised by the toes bending into a shape similar to a claw.
Other telltale signs of blood sugar damage in feet include:
Wasting of the small muscles in the feet
Build-up of skin over pressure points of the sole
Some individuals may experience balance issues.
“Nerve damage may also cause severe pain, burning or throbbing in character which is typically worse at night,” warned Doctor Prash.
Hammer toes are also a telltale sign of blood sugar damage.
“Hammer toe and mallet toe are conditions whereby the toes become bent into unusual shapes with the toes pointing downwards,” said Diabetes.co.uk
According to the health body, hammer toe and mallet toe may be caused by toes being pressed against the end of shoes or if muscles and tendons in the toe become shorter and tighter.
Poor blood sugar control can cause the muscles to contract and the tendons to become shorter.
Following a formal diagnosis of type 2 diabetes, you’ll usually be required to make lifestyle changes to stabilise your blood sugar levels.
If you have diabetes, a healthy eating plan for you is not that different from a healthy eating plan for people without diabetes.
However, as Harvard Health points out, “you’ll want to pay special attention to your carbohydrate intake.”
That’s because carbohydrates are broken down into glucose faster than fat or protein, which can cause spikes in blood sugar.
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