According to Healthfinder.gov, more than 30 million Americans have diabetes, and even more are at risk for developing it. Since November is American Diabetes Month, we wanted to devote some time to discussing the disease and ways you can help combat it in the greater Bethesda area and across the nation.
What You Need to Know About Diabetes
This disease comes in two forms: type 1 and type 2. Type 1, where the body cannot produce insulin, is more commonly found in children and young adults. It is much less common, but just as serious as type 2.
Insulin resistance, or when insulin is not properly used in the human body, is how type 2 manifests. It is important to correctly manage type 2 diabetes, as unchecked high glucose levels can eventually cause nerve, heart, kidney, and eye damage.
Type 2 Diabetes Prevention
84 million people – that’s how many American adults are at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes right now. Even in the face of those odds, there’s a silver lining. The risk of developing type 2 diabetes can be more than halved by staying at a healthy weight, getting physically active, quitting smoking, and gaining control of high blood pressure.
The sponsor of American Diabetes Month, the American Diabetes Association, has a Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test. This is a good tool to reference and use to speak with your doctor about your concerns.
Raising Awareness for American Diabetes Month in Bethesda and D.C.
Encourage your family and friends to get active and eat healthy with you, especially as the holidays descend upon Bethesda and D.C. You can also help raise awareness by collaborating with your employer to implement healthy changes at work. Asking the local gym to teach a fitness class, organizing walks with your coworkers, and hosting cooking demonstrations are all great ways to bring healthy changes to your workplace.
The American Inn of Bethesda is committed to working with our partners in the community, including the NIH and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, to help raise awareness about diabetes.