Diabetes mellitus is a chronic condition in which the pancreas, a gland near the stomach, fails to make insulin or does not make enough insulin, or in which the body becomes insensitive to insulin. Insulin is a hormone that works to convert what we eat to glucose or sugar. Insulin supplies muscles and other tissues with glucose for growth and energy. Without insulin, the body's blood sugar cannot be regulated, leading to a buildup of sugar in the blood (hyperglycemia) and loss of fuel for the body. Symptoms of diabetes include excessive thirst, frequent urination, unexplained weight loss, extreme hunger, vision changes, tingling in the hands or feet, dry skin, and sores that are slow to heal.

Diabetes is a major public health problem. In 2005, ...

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