Diabetes and Prediabetes on the Rise
November is National Diabetes Month and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), diabetes is on the rise at an alarming rate. Over the last 20 years the numbers of Americans with diabetes has more than tripled due to aging and being overweight. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that there are about 30 million Americans who have diabetes and another 84 million with prediabetes. In other words, 1 out of every 10 Americans has diabetes and 1 out of every 3 Americans has prediabetes. Without making proper healthy lifestyle changes, most people with prediabetes will develop type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes is High Risk for Other Serious Diseases
Diabetes is a disease that affects every part of the body and if left untreated can put you at high risk for heart disease, strokes, blindness, kidney failure and even amputations of toes, feet or legs. Recent research also shows that people with diabetes are at a higher risk for neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
Diabetes is a very Expensive Disease
Medical expenses are twice as high for diabetics as they are for people without diabetes, especially as diabetes leads to so many other medical conditions and diseases.
Prediabetes is a condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not yet high enough to be diabetes. People with prediabetes are also at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
Preventing Prediabetes from Developing into Full Type 2 Diabetes
Important lifestyle changes can prevent or delay prediabetes from developing into type 2 diabetes such as:
- Maintaining proper weight and losing weight if overweight or obese
- Eating a healthy diet
- Cut down or completely eliminate sugar.
- Avoid alcoholic beverages. Alcohol is one of the highest risk factors for contracting diabetes. Substitute grape juice for wine.
- Eat lighter meals more often rather than very heavy meals.
- Eat whole grain wheat, rye or spelt bread rather than white bread.
- Eat whole brown, red or black rice instead of white rice.
- Eat lots of green and yellow vegetables and fresh fruits.
- Eat less meat, especially processed meat but eat more fish, especially salmon.
- Do more physical activity and exercise, Get up and start moving. Avoid sitting too long in front of the computer or TV.
The National Diabetes Prevention Program
Lifestyle Change Program
The CDC understands that it is not easy to make lifestyle changes on your own and for this reason they offer a Lifestyle Change Program. Here you will join a lively group of people like yourself who want to make lifestyle changes to prevent major health problems like diabetes. The group will be under the guidance of a specially trained coach. There are hundreds of programs operating all over the country in both English and Spanish. Click here to find out where you can find a program in your area. The CDC also has a list of providers who offer online programs.
- The program will teach you how to eat healthy without having to give up all of your favorite foods.
- You will learn how to become more physically active even it you feel you do not have time to set aside for exercising.
- You will learn how to deal with stress.
- You will learn how to eat healthy foods when you are eating out.
- You will learn how to be motivated and how to get back to your healthy dietary plan if you go off of it.
Click here to see all the topics that will be covered in the program
The Need for Short or Long-term Skilled Rehabilitation and Nursing Care
If you or your loved one have diabetes and also need to go to a short or long-term skilled nursing care facility, make sure you will be able to choose a facility where you will get a healthy nutritious diet that is tailored to you or your loved one’s needs. Ask to see the menus.
The Van Duyn Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing in Syracuse, New York allows residents to choose what they want to eat from two main choices on a menu and they also will make special meals to take into account any medical needs of a resident. They also have a lot of other good amenities and a fantastic recreational program.
Diabetes is such a bad disease that you should do everything you can to avoid getting it.