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Glossary

Acetone: Chemical substance produced during breakdown of body fat.

Acidosis: Abnormal state; too much acid in the blood. Can be a serious complication of insulin dependent diabetes.

Albumin: Blood protein that may appear in urine when kidneys are damaged.

Alpha cells: Glucagon-producing cells of the Islets of Langerhans.

Amino acids: Individual food units that combine to make Arteriosclerosis or Atherosclerosis: Thickening and rigidification of artery walls. See Chapter 12.

Athlete's foot: Fungus infection of feet.

Beta cells: Insulin-producing cells of the Islets of Langerhans. Details are in Chapter 1.

Biguanide: A kind of oral hypoglycemic drug. Details are in Chapter 9.

Callus: Hard skin thickening due to friction or pressure. Calluses on the feet are discussed in Chapter 11.

Calorie: Unit used to express heat or energy value of food. Calories are discussed in Chapter 6.

Carbohydrate: One of three major food substances. Carbohydrates in the diet are discussed in Chapter 6. Carbohydrates are the major component of the diabetic Starch/Bread List.

Cataract: Clouding of lens of eye. See Chapter 12.

Cell: Unit of body structure.

Cholesterol: Fatty substance normally present in blood. See Chapter 6.

Claudication: Pains in calf muscles due to decrease in blood supply. See Chapter 12.

Coma: Loss of consciousness.

Coronary insufficiency: Impaired blood supply to heart. See Chapter 12.

Crystalline insulin: Regular insulin. See Chapter 8.

Cystitis: Inflammation of the urinary bladder.

Diabetologist: A physician who specializes in treating people with diabetes.

Diastix: Test for sugar in urine.

Dietitian: A professional who advises people with special health needs on the types and amounts of foods to eat.

Fat: One of three major food substances. Fats in the diet are discussed in Chapter 6. Fats are the major component of the diabetic Fat List.

Fiber: Indigestible part of fruit, vegetables, cereals, and grains.

Food exchange: Foods grouped together due to similarities in nutritional vale. Food exchanges are discussed in detail in Chapter 6.

Fructose: Carbohydrate sugar found in fruits and candy. Fruit exchanges are listed in Chapter 6.

Gangrene: Death of tissue, usually due to loss of blood supply.

Glomerulus: Microscopic part of kidney that filters blood.

Glucagon: Hormone produced by alpha cells to release glycogen stored in liver and muscles. Glucagon injections are used to treat serious insulin reactions in persons with diabetes.

Glucose: Basic sugar used to fuel body cells. Details are in Chapter 1.

Glucose tolerance test: Test for detecting diabetes.

Glycogen: Form in which most carbohydrate is stored in the body.

Glycosuria: Sugar in urine.

Glycosylated Hemoglobin Test: A blood test that measures a person's average blood glucose over the past 2-3 months.

Gram: Metric unit of weight.

Heredity: Inheritance of traits from ancestors; major cause of diabetes. See Chapter 1.

Hormone: Chemical substance produced in body glands and circulated in blood.

Hyperglycemia: High concentration of sugar in blood (hyper = high).

Hypoglycemia: Low concentration of sugar in blood (hypo = low). See Chapter 8 for how to avoid and how to treat hypoglycemia.

Impotence: Inability to sustain an erection.

Insulin: Hormone produced by beta cells to facilitate entry of glucose into body cells. Details are in Chapter 8.

Insulin reaction: Release of certain hormones (catecholamines) in response to hypoglycemia. Treating and avoiding reactions is discussed in Chapter 8.

Islets of Langerhans: Clusters of alpha, beta, delta, and polypeptide cells throughout the pancreas.

Ketonuria: Ketone in urine.

Keto-Stix: Test for ketone (acetone) in urine.

KetoDiastix: Test for both ketone and sugar in urine.

Kidney threshold: Level at which sugar "spills" over into urine. Explained in Chapter 1.

Kussmaul breathing: Deep, rapid breathing seen in diabetic acidosis.

Lactose: Milk sugar.

Lente Insulin: Intermediate-acting insulin. See Chapter 8.

Meal plan : Guide to food exchanges allowed for each meal and snack. Details are in Chapter 6.

Metabolism: Conversion of food substances to energy.

Monilia: Fungus infection (candida) common in diabetes, frequently in the vagina.

Nephropathy: Degenerative kidney disease that may occur in long-term diabetes. See Chapter 12.

Neuropathy: Disorder of nerves causing loss of sensation and reflexes and/or burning or stabbing pain, especially at night. See Chapter 12.

NPH insulin: Intermediate-acting insulin. See Chapter 8.

Oral hypoglycemia agents: Oral drugs that lower blood sugar by increasing insulin and/or increasing insulin effectiveness. Details are in Chapter 9.

Pancreas: Gland deep in abdomen, behind stomach, that produces hormones (glucagon) and digestive enzymes.

Polydipsia: Excessive thirst.

Polyphagia: Excessive hunger.

Polyuria: Excessive urination.

Post-prandial: After a meal.

Protein: One of the three major food substances; food used to build body tissues.

Pruritus: Itching.

Regular insulin: Fast-acting insulin. See Chapter 8.

Retinopathy: Disorders of retina (nerve tissue in the eye) seen in diabetes. See Chapter 12.

Saccharin: Artificial sweetener.

Semi-lente insulin: Rapid-acting insulin. See Chapter 8.

Sorbitol: Artificial sweetener.

Sucrose: Ordinary table sugar; breaks down to glucose and fructose.

Sulfonylureas: Oral hypoglycemic drug. Details are in Chapter 9.

Tes-Tape: Test for sugar in urine.

Ultralente insulin: Long-acting insulin. See Chapter 8.