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Type 2 Diabetes


Updated February 15, 2014

insulin from food

If your body stops responding correctly to insulin, type 2 diabetes may develop.

Image: © A.D.A.M.

Definition: Type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease characterized by high levels of sugar in the blood. Type 2 diabetes develops when your body does not respond correctly to insulin (a hormone released by the pancreas). The most common form of diabetes is type 2 diabetes.

Being overweight, especially when paired with abdominal obesity, increases your chances of developing type 2 diabetes. Other factors, such as family history, low activity level and poor diet, can also significantly increase your risk.

Type 2 diabetes usually develops gradually and may not have any noticeable symptoms. The presence, severity and number of symptoms varies from person to person. Symptoms that may be experienced include, but aren't limited to:


  • Blurred vision
  • Fatigue
  • Slow-healing infections
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
Talk to your doctor if you regularly experience any of these symptoms. She may order a blood test called an oral glucose tolerance test to screen you for insulin resistance, prediabetes and diabetes.


Also Known As: noninsulin-dependent diabetes, adult-onset diabetes

Alternate Spellings: diabetes - type 2

Examples: My mother was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes five years ago; she takes a drug called Metformin to regulate her blood sugar.

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