American Diabetes Month
Author: Shannon Miller Lifestyle
Diabetes in the United States of America is changing our lives. Take time to find out more about Diabetes, and how to protect yourself.
While medicine and preventative measures continue to increase, the numbers of people with diabetes and prediabetes also continues to increase.
Consider the following statistics about diabetes:
- Almost 26 million people in America have diabetes
- Approximately 7 million are not aware they have the disease
- Diabetes contributed to over 231,000 deaths in 2007
- The risk of heart attack or stroke is 2-4 times greater to a person with diabetes than without
- Diabetes is the leading cause of liver failure
- 60-70% of people with diabetes suffer from nerve damage
- 1 in 400 younger people have diabetes
So, to say that diabetes is not a problem, or just “a little sugar problem” is like brushing a huge national crisis under the rug. People with diabetes have a very difficult time with their health and with keeping blood sugars regulated. Some suffer from blindness, and some lose an extremity or limb due to the disease.
What is the difference between Type I and Type II Diabetes?
Type I diabetes is diagnosed usually early in a person’s life, especially with modern scientific measures of testing. People with Type I diabetes have to be careful about their sugar intake and must monitor their blood sugar. They are on insulin therapy for life. This type of diabetes is only 5% of American cases.
Type II diabetes occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin to regulate blood sugar. In some cases, the insulin is present, but does not function properly. The result is high blood sugar.
What are some of the symptoms of Diabetes?
- Being very thirsty
- Urinating a lot
- Sudden weight loss
- Blurry vision
Many people do not know they have diabetes or prediabetes until they are tested, at the recommendation of their doctor.
What is Prediabetes?
Your doctor may tell you that you have prediabetes because of unexplained high blood sugar level. She may tell you that you must make a lifestyle change in order to avoid diabetes type II.
What lifestyle changes should I make to avoid Prediabetes and Diabetes type II?
- Eating food that is good for you. Eat whole, natural foods, instead of sugary or fatty foods.
- Exercise. Take time to walk, swim, dance, or bike every day.
How can a woman get gestational diabetes?
Many women have trouble with blood sugar or diabetes during pregnancy. It really has nothing to do with your body before or after pregnancy, but how your hormones are regulating blood sugar during pregnancy. Sometimes, the body has a hard time staying on top of insulin regulation during pregnancy and the mother may need intervention. Eating a very controlled diet and moving every day are ways to help with gestational diabetes.
How do I get help or learn more about Diabetes and Prediabetes?
Visit the American Diabetes Association for resources and more information.