Mark Your Calendars for Diabetes Alert Day
The LMH Diabetes Education Center reminds you that Tuesday, March 22, is the American Diabetes Association Alert Day. This day serves as a “wake-up call” asking the American public to take the Diabetes Risk Test to find out if they are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
Starting on Diabetes Alert Day, you can be part of the movement to Stop Diabetes and get your free Diabetes Risk Test by one of several ways:
- Visit the News and Events page at lmh.org
- Visit stopdiabetes.com
- Call 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383)
- Text JOIN to 69866 (Data and message rates apply)
Although Diabetes Alert Day is a one-day event, the Diabetes Risk Test is available year round.
What is Type 2 Diabetes?
Type 2 is the most common type of diabetes. People with this type of diabetes are either unable to produce enough insulin or their bodies are unable to use the insulin they produce.
All of the food we eat is broken down into glucose (sugars). Glucose is the fuel our bodies need to function properly and insulin plays an important role in this process because it helps transport glucose from the blood into the cells.
Because people with type 2 diabetes do not have enough insulin or are unable to produce it, they have a build up of glucose in the body. This is a problem because it leads to a variety of health complications. People with uncontrolled diabetes are at a much higher-than-average risk for many serious health conditions, including:
- Eye Problems
- Heart Disease
- Foot Complications
- Hearing Loss
- Kidney Disease
Diabetes increases your risk for many serious health problems. But according to the American Diabetes Association, with the correct treatment and recommended lifestyle changes, many people with diabetes are able to prevent or delay the onset of complications.
Who Should Worry About Type 2 Diabetes?
The following segments of the population are at greater risk for having undiagnosed diabetes:
Older Americans: As people grow older, they are at an increased risk for developing diabetes. One out of every four Americans 65 and older has diabetes.
High-risk ethnic populations: African Americans, Hispanic/Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
In addition the following people are at an increased risk for type 2 diabetes:
- People with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) and/or impaired fasting glucose (IFG)
- People with a family history of diabetes
- People who are overweight
- People who do not exercise regularly
- People with low HDL cholesterol or high triglycerides, high blood pressure
- Women who had gestational diabetes, or who have had a baby weighing nine pounds or more at birth
To better understand the serious impact of diabetes the American Cancer Society provides the following statistics:
- 25.8 million children and adults in the U.S. have diabetes.
- 7 million people have diabetes but are undiagnosed.
- Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 20–74 years.
- About 65 percent of people with diabetes have mild to severe forms of nervous system damage.