Can Substance Abuse Cause Diabetes?

Can Substance Abuse Cause Diabetes?

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a condition that causes a person’s pancreas to not produce enough insulin. This, in turn, leads to your body having too high of a glucose or sugar level.

Diabetes is a lifelong condition that does not have a cure but can be managed. This is done through a combination of diet and self-correcting glucose levels through insulin injections.

There are two different types of diabetes, type 1 and type 2:

  • Type 1 diabetes is caused by an autoimmune reaction as your body attacks its own cells. This particularly affects cells in the pancreas, causing it to be unable to make the insulin your body needs. Type 1 diabetes can go unnoticed for years as it takes a while for the autoimmune reaction to cause enough damage to lead to symptoms. But once they do appear, they can be managed. There tends to be a genetic link leading to type 1 diabetes, and it follows family lines. This means that if your parents or siblings have type 1 diabetes, you are at a higher risk of developing it.
  • Type 2 diabetes, however, is caused by your body again being unable to produce the needed insulin. Still, rather than because of an autoimmune reaction, it is the result of your body developing insulin resistance. This resistance can be developed thanks to obesity or an inactive lifestyle. There is also a genetic link that can make you more vulnerable to developing type 2 diabetes.

While there is no cure for type 2 diabetes, it is possible to reverse the impact it is having on your body through the right diet and exercise to the point where medical intervention is no longer needed.

Diabetes can be a very dangerous condition. If your glucose levels get too high, you can experience kidney failure, blindness, heart disease, stroke or nerve damage.

It should be taken seriously, and you should do what you can to prevent getting diabetes or making it worse.


Effect of Recreational Drug Use on the Body and Blood Sugar

Depending on the drug you abuse, you can experience very severe physical effects on your body which can cause serious damage.

For example, drugs such as heroin or prescription painkillers that are regularly abused can cause your body to be at a greater risk of metabolic syndrome.

Metabolic syndrome can cause cell damage and decrease the number of antioxidants in the bloodstream. This damage can make it difficult for your body to produce the insulin it needs to regulate your glucose levels.

Drug abuse can also lead you to a more sedentary lifestyle with lots of unhealthy food that is taken in excess. This is also a risk of alcohol abuse, as when you are under the influence, you are acting without thinking.

So you are more likely to overeat while drunk or high. If you regularly abuse substances, this will frequently happen, increasing your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.


Drugs Which Can Lead to Increased Risk of Diabetes

When it comes to an increased risk of diabetes, certain drugs have proven that they have a higher risk of causing type 2 diabetes than others.

These drugs include:

  • Corticosteroids, also known as steroids, are used to treat diseases caused by inflammation, such as arthritis or allergies. They can raise your glucose levels leading to diabetes. However, steroid creams and inhalers are fine.
  • Drugs that treat anxiety, depression and ADHD have a proven link to raising blood sugar.
  • Beta-blockers
  • Adrenaline is used for treating serious allergies such as nut allergies.
  • Cannabis
  • Hallucinogens such as magic mushrooms or LSD

These drugs can either cause your blood sugar to rise due to their own effects on your body or their damage to your cells, particularly in your pancreas. Or because they lead you to lay around and not exercise.

Cannabis abuse, in particular, is associated with an increased appetite or, as it’s more commonly known, the munchies. This can make it so that you are unable to make good choices about what you are doing with your body.

If this is on a regular basis, you are putting yourself at serious risk.

Any regular drug abuse is unhealthy, but if it can lead to diabetes, you are putting yourself in danger of serious lifelong health conditions.


Drinking and Diabetes

Similarly, alcohol can cause damage to your cells that can lead to high glucose levels and unhealthy eating.

Binge drinking is one of the most accessible forms of substance abuse, thanks to the UK having such a big drinking culture. It is also not uncommon for night outs to end with a takeaway.

The issue is that if this is done regularly enough, you are causing more and more damage to your pancreas. And if you have type 1 diabetes but your symptoms haven’t appeared yet, then you are potentially making the problem worse.

Substance abuse can easily take over your life and put you at risk of developing conditions such as diabetes that can leave you with serious health problems. The best thing you can do is to put a stop to your drug and alcohol abuse before it leaves you in trouble.

If you would like to get more information on how to stop abusing drugs or alcohol, please feel free to give us at Rehab Clinics Group a call, and we can help you in any way we can.

You can reach us at 0800 470 0382, and we can start you on your way to a happier and healthier life.

Dealing with your substance abuse is the best thing that you can do to prevent yourself from developing diabetes or managing the existing diabetes that you may have. It is never too late to seek help, but the sooner you do, the better and easier it will be for you.

This won’t be an easy process. It will require a commitment to a lifestyle change that will impact all areas of your life. But we can promise you that it will make your life better. Treatment for substance abuse and addiction is available to you at drug rehab.

We can help you. We just hope to hear from you soon.