Choosing the topic of diabetes for the present blog post is timely, given that Tuesday, March 25th, is Diabetes Alert Day. The American Diabetes Association reports that as of January 2011, approximately 10.9 million adults over the age of 65 have diabetes! If left untreated, diabetes can result in serious health consquences such as heart disease, blindness, amputation of lower limbs, and kidney disease. Did you know that people with diabetes are two to four times more likely to have a stroke (diabetes.org)? Given the magnitude of such conditions, it is important to be familiar with the symptoms of diabetes which include:
Are you at risk of developing diabetes? Family history, your age, weight, gender, and ethnicity all play a role. You can take the diabetes risk test on the American Diabetes Association's website to determine your risk. The test is NOT for diagnostic purposes, but to serve as a prompt to have a discussion with your doctor. Any of the above symptoms should be reported to your doctor as well.
If you are diagnosed with diabetes it is NOT all doom and gloom! Choosing to be more active, not smoking, limiting your alcohol consumption, watching your diet, and taking your medication correctly, can help you stay healthy. Seek support from family, friends, and healthcare professionals. The American Diabetes Association's website is a wonderful resource and has many useful tools.
You can also learn more about diabetes prevention by booking a group or personal class with me. Are you located in a state other than Connecticut? This class is now available via videoconferencing through Senior Learning Network. Learn more about diabetes and how to stay healthy!