'Be Healthy, Stay Healthy' Issue 4: Yes, Beating or Managing Diabetes is Possible
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Just like Bubby said, eat healthy and stay active to ward diabetes away. Chicken soup, too — well, it can’t hurt, can it?
Diabetes is one of the fastest-growing illnesses that affect’s people’s health and quality of life. Nearly 40 million American adults have it, and one out of five of them are not diagnosed on time. It is one of the top 10 causes of death in the United States and is the number one cause of kidney failure, leg amputations, and adult blindness.
Most concerning, the number of adults diagnosed with diabetes has more than doubled since the turn of the century.
There are three main types of diabetes — Type 1, Type 2, and gestational.
Type 1 Diabetes is responsible for close to 10 percent of total diabetes diagnoses. People with type 1 diabetes have minimal or no ability to produce insulin, the hormone which directs the body’s sugar to the blood cells to be converted into energy. The result is that blood sugar levels rise after eating. While typically diagnosed in childhood, it can manifest for the first time in young and even late adulthood. While there is no cure and no known prevention, it has many different treatment options.
Type 2 Diabetes is responsible for the majority of diabetes diagnoses. Although it is typically diagnosed in adulthood, it is increasingly being recognized and diagnosed earlier. People with type 2 diabetes don’t use insulin well, causing their blood sugars to rise. It has a strong genetic component, but healthy eating, carrying a healthy weight, and being physically active can prevent it.
Gestational Diabetes develops during pregnancy. Gestational diabetes increases the risk of the baby having health problems. While it usually goes away after the baby is born, it may increase the mother’s risk for type 2 diabetes later in life.
People with diabetes need to monitor their blood sugar frequently and often need to take medicine that duplicates insulin to help keep their sugars within normal range. It is important to realize that while type 2 diabetics have many different treatment options, there are ways of preventing it in the first place. Talk to your primary care provider about early diabetes screening which usually involves some bloodwork. If picked up early, the prediabetic stage can be reversed with lifestyle changes and can avoid developing a chronic medical condition.
Individuals with Type 1 and Type 2 need regular vision screening, as well as evaluation of their feet to make sure that sensation has remained intact. Unfortunately, diabetes can lead to serious issues like heart and kidney disease as well as blindness, and nerve damage.
Eating healthy, moving your body, and encouraging your kids to do the same are all fantastic steps to prevent type 2 diabetes and the complications that come with it.