Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Are you at risk for Diabetes?

November is American Diabetes Month, a time to bring greater awareness and attention to the seriousness of diabetes, its deadly complications, and the importance of proper diabetes control.

As a Registered Nurse, I have personally seen the high prevalence of this disease amongst the population and the dangerous toll it takes. I feel obligated to take this opportunity to raise awareness about diabetes and its serious complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness and amputations during the month of November.

What is Diabetes? Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin. Insulin is a hormone that is needed to convert sugar, starches and other food into energy needed for daily life.

Why is Diabetes so dangerous? Diabetes is associated with increased risk for a number of serious and life threatening diseases such as Heart Disease, Stroke, High Blood Pressure, Blindness, Kidney Disease (Dialysis sometimes), Neurapathy, Amputations, Dental Disease and more.

Some Statistics: (from American Diabetes Association)

  • 23.6 million Children and Adults in the United States who have Diabetes. ( 8% of population).
  • 5.7 million people are unaware that they have the disease. (1 out of 4 people)

What you should do: If you are over 45 and/or have risk factors such as race (African American, Latino have higher prevalence), overweight, family history, have high blood pressure and /or high cholesterol then GET TESTED. Diabetes testing involves a simple fasting glucose tolerance test.

Free Diabetes Health Guide

Free Diabetes Risk Calculator

Lean more from American Diabetes Association

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