Recent studies have shown that there may be a link between menopause and diabetes. Women who are either peri-menopausal or are in the full stages of menopause may experience symptoms that are quite common, but since there may be a connection between menopause and diabetes, here are some things you should know.
Though some of the symptoms associated with menopause may loom larger than others, all women will nonetheless experience it at some stage in their life. Along with hot flashes and emotional swings, there is the possible problem of weight gain and interrupted sleep.
What is the connection between menopause and diabetes? It seems that because there are hormonal changes in the body during menopause, there are also changes in the blood sugar level. On the face of it, we know a great deal about the symptoms associated with menopause, but what has recently come to the forefront is that the hormonal changes that occur during menopause may lead to diabetes.
Most of us who are menopausal have difficulty getting a good night’s sleep. Studies assert that because we are deprived of sleep, blood sugar levels rise. The possible weight gain during menopause may also have a significant effect on the blood sugar level. This in turn may cause the onset of diabetes.
A four-year study was conducted among post-menopausal women to measure their blood flow and the functionality of vessels and arteries. These women were checked every six months and submitted to blood tests. While none of the women in this study had diabetes prior to testing, the study concluded some did develop diabetes during the four-year period, evidenced by the fact that the blood vessels and arteries had undergone a dramatic shift in blood flow.
Though the results may have shown a direct link between menopause and diabetes, the researchers cannot say with certainty that cell dysfunction is the root cause of diabetes in menopausal women, or if it is a result of having diabetes in the first place. Again, the women in this test study did not have diabetes to begin with, so the argument that diabetes caused the cell dysfunction is a moot point.
The conclusion they are leaning toward, however, is that the dysfunction of the cells that line blood vessels may contribute to diabetes.
While the studies suggest that menopause may cause diabetes, the jury is still out. To ascertain whether or not you may be a candidate for diabetes, have blood tests every six months to check the blood sugar levels. Maintain a healthy diet and exercise program, and if any of the symptoms associated with diabetes are present, consult with your doctor.