10 facts you need to know about diabetes and Covid 19

10 facts you need to know about diabetes and Covid 19

Contracting Covid 19, especially when you have diabetes can be dangerous. Your blood glucose levels can trigger other complications in your body. Covid 19 in itself damages your body with long-lasting after-effects. Combine it with diabetes, and complications increase.

The curiosity about knowing how diabetes worsens the symptoms of Covid 19 has increased among medical researchers and the common public.

Moreover, the rumors about diabetes worsening Covid 19 symptoms contribute to creating the covid related stress.  To clear the air regarding Covid 19 and Diabetes, here are ten facts Diahome wants you to know:
1. Diabetes does not increase infection risk:


Every disease is concerning, especially one like diabetes. When your blood glucose levels are high, your immunity fails to fight most diseases. Many researchers claimed that due to this, diabetic patients are more likely to contract Covid 19.

However, even after multiple attempts, there is not enough data to prove that diabetes increases the chances of contracting the deadly virus.

According to reports, doctors claim that people without diabetes are just as vulnerable to the virus as people who have diabetes. Severe diabetes may create additional complications if you get affected by Covid 19.

Although it may be complicated, with careful measures and following Covid related precautions, you can overcome this situation without severe damage.

 2. Uncontrolled diabetes increases the risk for severe symptoms:

Diabetes is known to complicate other existing diseases. It does the same for Covid 19. Although it may not increase infection rates among the public, what it does is further complicate the symptoms of Covid 19.

Diabetes is one of the most common comorbidities among COVID-19 infected people, according to studies. Maintain normal blood glucose levels and build immunity! 

10 facts you need to know about diabetes and Covid 19
3. Management of covid symptoms with steroids  increases blood glucose: 


Steroids have become increasingly popular to help battle Covid 19 in severe cases. Covid 19 weakens one’s immune system along with one body strength. To help regain the energy needed to fight the virus, steroids are being used widely. 

However, steroids increase blood glucose levels seriously. As a result of the use of steroids, our bodies become insulin resistant. This means that our bodies still produce insulin, but it isn’t as effective as it previously was, causing blood sugar levels to rise.

10 facts you need to know about diabetes and Covid 19
4. Insulin is the best form of treatment for managing  high BG during Covid:
10 facts you need to know about diabetes and Covid 19

To manage insulin resistance, the best way to manage blood glucose levels is by regulating insulin doses. To avoid hypoglycemia or high glucose levels, insulin is the answer. Consult your diabetologists and start insulin doses as per their recommendation.

 5. Symptoms of covid 19 that cause hypoglycemia: 

Covid 19 has brought along rigorous lockdown worldwide. This has affected necessities required by the public like healthcare, food, medicines, good mental health, and more. In a study conducted by the National Library of Medicine, 146 patients with type 2 diabetes were observed for symptoms of hypoglycemia. Moreover, covid 19 symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, loss of taste or smell can make a person eat less than required, this can increase his chances of developing hypoglycemic symptoms

This research conducted in the Covid 19 lockdown has proved that the risk of hypoglycemia in T2DM patients is especially high among those using SU, insulin, or HCQ, especially those with comorbidities.

Blood sugar measurement
6. Covid infection and hyperglycemia:

Covid 19 is not the first pandemic that has affected so many lives. Previously, similar acute illnesses like influenza or viral gastroenteritis brought along similar situations too. Even in those times, the recovered patients further developed hyperglycemia. This happened due to the sudden loss of insulin-producing cells in the body, exposing it to type 1 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes, the patient may have either already had mild hyperglycemia symptoms without a diagnosis. Steroids during covid recovery might have increased these symptoms.

7. Mucormycosis : 


It is a fungal infection that can attack a person with diabetes more often than others. Recent studies have shown that in India, the spike in ‘black fungus’ cases or mucormycosis could be arising due to diabetes. Diabetes affects the body by damaging the pancreatic cells that produce insulin. This is currently attributed to high steroid doses and uncontrolled blood glucose, which lowers immunity levels

Medication used for diabetes also lowers the body’s immune system. Due to this, mucormycosis is more likely to affect people who have diabetes.

8. Good nutrition is important in the recovery from covid: 

A proper diet is important even if you don’t suffer from any illness. Dietitians recommend following a healthy covid diet filled with nutrition, adequate energy, protein, good fats, and essential micronutrients. If you contract the novel coronavirus infection, your body takes up a lot of energy, draining you entirely. 

To regain strength and continue fighting against the virus, a proper covid diet is crucial. Dietitians recommend intaking sufficient protein and fiber in your diet for good nutrition

10 facts you need to know about diabetes and Covid 19
9. Stress and anxiety can worsen symptoms during covid infection: 


Of course, the pandemic comes with a lot of stress for the infected and those around them. Covid related stress might be tough to get rid of, but it is necessary to do so. Your body functions as per your thoughts.

This means your brain is able to increase or reduce panic if you contract the virus. Symptoms of covid and anxiety are somewhat similar to one another. They include:

  • Appetite fluctuations
  • Low energy
  • Sleeping problems
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Physical reactions like headache, body ache.
10. Diabetes related covid-19 complications can be prevented: 


Prevention of serious complications of covid with well controlled blood sugar is definitely possible. Numerous patients of Covid 19 who have diabetes have cured themselves. This is possible by regulating your body’s symptoms and maintaining a healthy covid diet.

Allow your mind to be free of covid related stress and anxiety. Normal blood glucose levels can be regulated by monitoring the fluctuations by taking the HBA1C test, appropriate medication, and giving your body the required nutrition.

Your mental health matters just as much as your physical health. A healthy brain will help you win your battle against Covid 19 more effectively. Covid 19 is curable, be it symptomatic or asymptomatic. Taking appropriate measures, following a proper covid diet, and keeping your blood glucose levels under control will help ensure a healthy and speedy recovery. Get expert advice at your home through the Diahome app. Diahome offers doctor consultations, dietitian consultations, lab services and pharmacy services and more , without you having to step out of your home.

Author: Sripriya Ravi, MSc, M.Phil, MS, Dietitian/Diabetes Educator, Diahome