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National Diabetes Awareness Month – Are you at risk?

Not only is November men’s health month, but it is also National Diabetes Awareness Month. There are currently 29.1 million people who have diabetes and another 8.1 million people who are unaware of their condition. The American Diabetes Associations uses November to help spread awareness and raise funds to help find a cure. Here is what you need to know.

Facts

  • Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in the U.S.
  • Insulin is naturally produced in the body and is used for energy.
  • Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disorder in which the body no longer makes insulin.
  • Type 2 diabetes begins with insulin resistance where the body cannot use insulin to produce energy.
  • Pre-diabetes is when blood sugar levels are higher than normal and is a sign of type 2 diabetes.
  • 37% of adults (20+ years old) in the U.S have  pre-diabetes.
  • Having diabetes increases the risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and kidney disease.

Risk of Developing Diabetes

  • 45 years or older
  • Family history of diabetes
  • Physical inactivity
  • Obesity
  • Diagnosed with gestational diabetes
  • High blood pressure

Symptoms of Diabetes

  • Unquenchable thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Being tired all of the time
  • Blurry eyesight
  • Losing weight without trying
  • Dry skin and mouth
  • Fruity odor to the breath
  • Headache
  • Shaking, and weakness
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Slow healing
  • Hunger
  • Pain or numbness in the hands or feet

It is important to understand your risk of developing diabetes. Even if you have the signs and symptoms that are listed above it does not automatically mean you have diabetes. These signs and symptoms may be caused by other medical conditions.  If you have any concerns it is important to get them looked at by your doctor. This November do your part and help spread awareness, it could help find a cure, save a life, and extend support.

Found out if you are at risk for type 2 diabetes by taking a simple risk test provided by the American Diabetes Association. Follow the link below.

American Diabetes Association Risk Test

caption-arrow  Feature photo by Victor

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