Infographic: Diabetes Dictionary

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Blood glucose

Sugar in your blood – the body’s main source of energy.


Chemicals that are produced when there is a lack of insulin and the body starts to break down fats for energy.


Type of food that provides the body with energy. Carbohydrates are mainly sugars and starches that are broken down into glucose, a simple sugar that the body’s cells use as fuel.

Fast-acting insulin

This type of insulin acts quickly. It is typically given around mealtimes to help manage blood glucose levels.

Longer-acting (intermediate) insulin

This type of insulin is usually given once or twice each day to provide a constant supply of insulin.


Glucose is a type of sugar. People with diabetes have a high level of blood glucose (without insulin treatment).


The pancreas is an organ found to your stomach which produces insulin.


Insulin is a hormone which helps cells to deliver blood sugar to the cells that need it.

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Premixed insulin

A mixture of a fast-acting insulin and a longer acting insulin, usually injected before breakfast and dinner.


This a blood test to measure your blood sugar levels and work out how well controlled your diabetes is.


A device that delivers insulin via a tube that is inserted under the skin in the abdomen.


This means high blood sugar. This occurs in people with diabetes when there is a lack of insulin, so sugar is not removed from the bloodstream.


This means low blood sugar. Hypoglycaemia can be caused by taking too much insulin, not eating enough or by being more active than usual (without eating a snack or changing the insulin dose).

Type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is more common in children that type 2. Type 1 diabetes happens when your body stops making insulin, which delivers energy to the cells that need it.

Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 is more common in adults. Type 2 diabetes happens when not enough insulin is made by the body or the body can’t use insulin properly. This type can be caused by poor diet or lack of exercise.

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