Diabetes is a condition in which blood sugar levels are higher than normal. Diabetes is often described by the following terms:
- Type 1 diabetes, which needs to be treated with insulin all of a person's life. This usually begins in childhood or early adult hood. Type 1 diabetes is sometimes called 'insulin dependent diabetes'.
- Type 2 diabetes, which occurs most often in adults. Type 2 diabetes may be treated by diet or tablets or with insulin. Type 2 diabetes used to be called 'mature onset diabetes' and if treated by diet or tablets alone, 'non-insulin dependent diabetes'.
- Gestational diabetes, which may need insulin for treatment if diet and activity do not control it.
- Impaired glucose tolerance, which is managed by healthy eating and an active lifestyle. In this condition, blood sugars are raised, but not high enough to be classed as diabetes.