How diabetes affects men vs. women

How diabetes affects men vs. women

Diabetes — particularly Type 2 diabetes — has a widespread effect across the body. Hence, it can impact men and women differently. In this type of diabetes, the body’s cells become less responsive to the hormone insulin, which regulates one’s blood sugar levels. To overcome this, a higher dose of insulin is typically needed. However, rising insulin levels can result in damage to the kidney, heart, nerves, and eyes. Here’s how Type 2 diabetes impacts men and women differently.

Type 2 Diabetes in Men

Overweight men are much more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than women. A BMI calculator for men can help you ascertain what your body mass index is. Being overweight is considered to be one of the primary risk factors for diabetes. With respect to sexual health, for men, proper blood flow and good nerve activity in the penis are essential to maintain an erection. When blood sugar is constantly high, this can damage those areas in the body that are sensitive. Hence, men with diabetes are about three times as likely to experience erectile dysfunction when compared to the general population.

Being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes has also shown to double the risk of having low testosterone. Once this male hormone drops, it can result in muscle loss, depression, low energy, sexual problems like erectile dysfunction, and low libido. Finally, diabetes can impact the nerves that control one’s bladder, which can result in urological issues, in the form of an overactive bladder and urinary tract infections. Urine retention which results in infrequent or incomplete urination is also a result of high blood sugar. Kidney damage is a long-term impact of Type 2 diabetes that is unmanaged.

Type 2 Diabetes in Women

Although it is more prevalent in men, once a woman develops Type 2 diabetes, she has a much higher likelihood of developing complications from this condition. Complications include heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and anxiety or depression. Type 2 diabetes also impacts the sexual health of women. It has been linked to uncomfortable or painful coitus due to vaginal dryness, difficulty with sexual arousal or experiencing an orgasm, low sexual satisfaction, and an overall reduced sex drive in women.

Experiencing poor circulation from high blood sugar also makes it tough for the female body to ward off infections. Type 2 diabetes can also increase the risk of contracting yeast infections and urinary tract infections in women. On top of this, pregnant women run the risk of experiencing miscarriage, high blood pressure, cesarean delivery.

The Bottom Line

Diabetes affects a variety of systems in the body and, hence, impacts women and men differently. Why manage your health through a healthy diet and exercise but leave out managing your finances with a good health insurance policy? Type 2 diabetes is among the most prevalent lifestyle conditions today and those who have it in their family run the risk of paying exorbitant medical bills. Here is where health insurance can come in handy. With the right insurer, your inpatient and outpatient costs of managing type 2 diabetes will be covered by your insurance provider. Make sure to compare plans to find the best policy for you and your loved ones.

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