In recognition of National Diabetes Education Week, we are sharing some important information about this disease state that affects nearly 23.6 million Americans.
What is Diabetes?
- Diabetes is associated with high levels of sugar in the blood
- There are two classifications of diabetes
- Type I – your body doesn’t produce insulin
- Type 2 – your body doesn’t use insulin properly or is resistant to the effects of insulin
- Type 2 diabetes is much more prevalent and is typically diagnosed as an adult
- Diabetes increases your risk of heart disease, kidney failure and blindness
What are some of the risk factors for diabetes?
- Age > 45
- Physical inactivity
- High carbohydrate diet
What can people do to prevent diabetes?
- Increase physical activity – at least 150 minutes/week of moderate-intense aerobic exercise
- Well-balanced diet
- Limit alcohol consumption
- Maintain a healthy weight
Screening for diabetes should begin for all adults at the age of 45 unless they have pre-existing risk factors such as obesity. If risk factors exist, screening should begin after the age of 18.
Diabetes is a treatable condition, but early identification and treatment is important to prevent serious complications. If you have not been tested for diabetes, talk to your physician to see if screening is appropriate for you.