Definition

Type 2 diabetes, once known as adult-onset or noninsulin-dependent diabetes, is a chronic condition that affects the way your body metabolizes sugar (glucose), your body’s main source of fuel.

When you have type 2 diabetes, your body is resistant to the effects of insulin — a hormone that regulates the movement of sugar into your cells — or your body doesn’t produce enough insulin to maintain a normal glucose level. Untreated, the consequences of type 2 diabetes can be life-threatening.

There’s no cure for type 2 diabetes, but you can manage — or even prevent — the condition. Start by eating healthy foods, exercising and maintaining a healthy weight. If diet and exercise aren’t enough, you may need diabetes medications or insulin therapy to manage your blood sugar.