March Issue, 2016
What is Diabetes ?
Diabetes is a disease in which blood glucose levels are above normal. Most of the food we eat is turned into glucose, or sugar, for our bodies to use for energy. The pancreas, an organ that lies near the stomach, makes a hormone called insulin which aids the body in using glucose. When you have diabetes, your body either doesn't make enough insulin or can't use its own insulin as well as it should. Without sufficient amounts of insulin, sugar builds up in your blood. Diabetes can cause serious health complications including heart disease, blindness, kidney failure, and lower-extremity amputations. Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States.
What are the types of DIABETES?
Type 1 diabetes, which was previously called insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) or juvenile-onset diabetes, may account for about 5% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes, which was previously called non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) or adult-onset diabetes, may account for about 90% to 95% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes.
Risk factors for type 2 diabetes include the following:
Can DIABETES can be prevented or delayed? YES
Research trials have shown that type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed.
Having a condition called pre-diabetes means you are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the next three to six years. People with pre-diabetes have blood glucose (sugar) levels that are higher than normal, but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. The CDC estimates that about 57 million adults age 20 years and older have pre-diabetes.
The following are strategies that have been studied and shown to reduce the risk of developing diabetes.
#1. Losing 10 to 15 percent of your body weight, or about 20 to 25 pounds for a 200-pound person.
#2. Reduce Carbohydrate (Sugars and starches) in diet by 50%. Reduce overall calorie intake with portion control.
#3. Increase physical activity for 30 minutes, five days a week = 150 minutes weekly.
For more information, see the Diabetes Prevention Program Fact Sheet
The National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP) performed a study (Diabetes Prevention Program Outcomes Study, (DPPOS), on people with elevated fasting glucose ( pre-diabetes). One group was instructed on lifestyle changes with nutrition and exercise, the other group was given medications to lower blood sugar. During the 10 years following the study, the medication group had 18% reduction in developing diabetes whereas the lifestyle changes group had 34% reduction in developing Diabetes.
To learn more about this study, and how to implement the lifestyle changes, read about it:
Small Steps. Big Rewards. Prevent Type 2 Diabetes,
What are the complications of DIABETES?
COMPLICATIONS OF DIABETES ARE NOT REVERSIBLE!!
What if I already have DIABETES?
If you already have diabetes, managing the disease can lower your risk of complications such as kidney failure, heart disease and stroke, blindness, and amputations of legs and feet. Here are some important steps to take to control diabetes:
For more information:
National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse
1 Information Way
Bethesda, MD 20892–3560
From the Desk of Melissa Skaff-Schultz, MS, ARNP-C.