Diabetes: The well-disguised dangers for women over 50.
Don’t assume that all those changes in your body are simply age-related, then forget about them!

*This blog post is purely educational and is in no way providing any medical advice. 

As we age, we often notice many changes that happen to our bodies. It is easy to assume that what we go through and what we are feeling is due to aging and not any underlying issues. At every stage of our life, our cells require ample amounts of energy to survive and function properly. When your blood sugar is high (hyperglycemia) and your cells do not create enough insulin to convert it into energy, many health issues can result - including diabetes. Unfortunately diabetes is one of those issues that tends to be well disguised for women over the age of 50.

There are two types of diabetes:

Type 1 diabetes: is an autoimmune condition in which the body doesn’t make any insulin at all as it attacks the insulin-producing cells required to send energy to the rest of the body. 

Type 2 diabetes: when your blood pressure remains too high for a long period of time, your cells become almost resistant to insulin and therefore cannot use the glucose your body stores. Before being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, many are unknowingly in the pre-diabetes state as there are usually no symptoms. 

Here are the tell-tale signs of diabetes to look out for:

Vaginal itching/pain as well as having yeast infections often. 

If you’ve noticed that you seem to have yeast infections one after the other without any real relief, this could be a sign that there could be another issue. You may also notice oral thrush as well, which is a yeast build up within your mouth that leaves behind sometimes painful white patches in your mouth.

A lower sex drive/libido caused by a lack of blood flow to the genital area. You may also notice dryness of the area as well or pain during intercourse. 

Poly-Cystic-Ovary-Syndrome (PCOS) is also often found and diagnosed in women before or while they are diagnosed with diabetes because it is often due to an increased amount of insulin in the body.

PCOS is a condition that affects 1 in 10 women in Canada yet many haven’t been properly diagnosed. Acne, irregular and painful periods, fertility issues, and excessive facial hair are all signs of PCOS. 

Other common signs in both men and women include:

  • Urinary tract infections and increased frequency of urination

  • Unexplained weight fluctuation

  • Excessive thirst or hunger

  • Irritability and fatigue

  • Slow-healing wounds

We recommend that if you have any of these symptoms, it is important to speak with your doctor or health practitioner about your concerns.