Diabetes: Acanthosis nigricans is an early warning sign of prediabetes – symptoms

Type 2 diabetes can be a 'devastating diagnosis' says expert

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Elevated blood sugar levels, which may otherwise be known as impaired fasting glucose, can be determined via a blood test but, preceding a medical check-up, signs of acanthosis nigricans could be what sends you to the doctor in the first place. Appearing on the skin, experts at the American Academy of Dermatology Association pointed out the warning signs of acanthosis nigricans. For example, patches or a band of skin may look dark and “velvety” at the back of the neck, on the armpits, or groin.

This skin condition, however, could be indicative of numerous health conditions, the NHS pointed out.

Examples of other health conditions that could lead to acanthosis nigricans include:

  • Obesity
  • Cushing’s syndrome
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome
  • Underactive thyroid.

It is for this reason that acanthosis nigricans should be looked at by a doctor to investigate the root cause.

Furthermore, any suspicion of high blood sugar should also be attended to by a medical professional.

The Mayo Clinic highlighted “classic” symptoms of type 2 diabetes, such as:

  • Increased thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Increased hunger
  • Fatigue
  • Blurred vision
  • Numbness or tingling in the feet or hands
  • Frequent infections
  • Slow-healing sores
  • Unintended weight loss.

The charity Diabetes UK said you are more at risk of developing type 2 diabetes if you have high blood pressure.

Therefore, in order to reduce your blood pressure and diabetes risk, you must exercise on a regular basis.

Diabetes UK assured: “Type 2 diabetes can be prevented.” This even applies if you have prediabetes.

In fact, a diagnosis of prediabetes is an opportunity to turn your lifestyle around.

For instance, in addition to exercising more regularly, diabetes can be prevented if you eat a healthy diet and if you lose weight if you are overweight.

People are able to get support to lead a healthier lifestyle if they ask for it.

The charity encouraged you to ask your doctor about a weight-loss programme or group in your area, or for contact details of a registered dietician or exercise specialist.

Healthy diet tips

Diabetes UK advise to drink beverages that do not contain “added sugar”.

The charity elaborated: “We know there is a link between having full sugar fizzy and energy drinks, and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.”

Therefore, when it comes to tea and coffee, opt for no sugar, and “plain water” is the best drink for you.

If you would like to add a bit of flavour to your water, you could add a slice of lemon or lime.

To decrease your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, it can also help to reduce your consumption of red and processed meats.

Examples include: bacon, ham, sausages, pork, beef, and lamb, which have all been associated with an increased risk of high blood sugars.

If you already have diabetes, adhering to healthier lifestyle measures will also help your condition.

High blood sugars can be stabilised via medication, if needed, a healthy diet and exercise.

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