November is Diabetes Awareness month
This is a time to communicate the seriousness of diabetes and the importance of diabetes prevention and control. Nearly 24 million children and adults in the U.S. are living with diabetes. If current trends continue, one out of every three children born today will face a future with the disease.
- Diabetes kills more Americans every year than breast cancer and AIDS combined.
- It is the #1 cause of blindness in adults.
- It doubles the risk of heart attack and stroke.
- 1 in 13 of all Americans have diabetes.
- 1 in 4 of those don't know it yet.
- 1 in 5 are on their way to getting it. Having a condition called prediabetes means you are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the next three to six years. People with prediabetes have blood glucose (sugar) levels that are higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes.
*American Diabetes Association
Research shows you can prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes through a healthy lifestyle.
- Change your diet. People at high risk for type 2 diabetes can prevent or delay the disease by losing 5 to 7 percent of their body weight, or about 10 to 14 pounds for a 200-pound person. You can do that by eating healthier and being physically active for 30 minutes, five days a week.
- Increase your level of physical activity. Physical activity can help you control your weight, blood glucose, and blood pressure, as well as raise your "good" cholesterol and lower your "bad" cholesterol.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obese raises your risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes care begins with informed patients.
- Talk to your health care provider about how to manage your blood glucose (A1C), blood pressure, and cholesterol.
- Get a flu vaccine. For those with diabetes, it is important to ask for the "shot" version. Talk to your health care provider about a pneumonia (pneumococcal) shot. People with diabetes are more likely to die from pneumonia or influenza than people who do not have diabetes.
Stay Informed and share what you learn. You can join the effort to help promote National Diabetes Awareness Month in your area by using NDEP messages, tools and resources.