With more than 25 million children and adults diagnosed with it, diabetes is quickly becoming an epidemic in this country. November is national diabetes awareness month. During this time, healthcare providers and community advocates will be sounding the alarm about the dangers of this disease and how you can prevent it.
Diabetes prevention is a cause that motivates me to empower those inflicted with this disease. Like most people, I have been personally impacted by it. I have several family members who have been diagnosed as either diabetic or pre-diabetic. Since statistics indicate that every 10 seconds two people develop diabetes, we are all impacted in some way or another.
I’m especially disturbed when people lose limbs, or even worse, lose their life due to complications from diabetes. These kinds of severe consequences disturb me because diabetes is so preventable, and in many cases, reversible.
I believe one of the reasons diabetes is on the rise is because it is becoming common place. So many people are being diagnosed that many have become desensitized to it. It’s often down played in some cultures and referred to as “having a little sugar.” Making those kinds of references to diabetes often minimizes the severity of this potentially deadly disease.
Yet on the other end of the spectrum, I’m beginning to see people use it as the ultimate motivation to take control of their health. Sometimes when people hear the words, “you have diabetes” or “you have pre-diabetes” it’s scares them straight.
So, I want to focus on a few reasons why I believe you should be concerned about diabetes and pre-diabetes.
1. Diabetes causes more deaths a year than breast cancer and AIDS combined. Two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke.
2. In the U.S. 7 million people have diabetes and don’t even realize it, and 79 million people have pre-diabetes.
3. Being overweight is a risk factor for developing this disease, but other risk factors such as family history, ethnicity and age also play a role. Unfortunately, too many people disregard the other risk factors for diabetes, and think that weight is the only risk factor for Type 2 diabetes. Many people with Type 2 diabetes are at a normal weight or only moderately overweight.
Now that I’ve given you some of the scary facts, here’s the good news.
Just because you have pre-diabetes it doesn’t mean you will automatically get diabetes. With a good health and lifestyle plan that incorporates nutrient dense whole foods and exercise you can return glucose levels to normal ranges.
In many cases, diabetes can be reversed.There is evidence that indicates Type 2 diabetes can be reversed by following a plant based diet. At a minimum, by reducing red meat consumption. I wrote a blog a few months ago discussing the link between the consumption of red meat and diabetes.
If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with diabetes, or is at risk of getting it, there is hope. Despite how overwhelmed you may feel, there are resources and people to help. Many hospitals offer free classes to people with diabetes. Those classes provide an education about the disease and how you can manage it. You can also visit www.diabetes.org to get more information.
As a Health Coach, educating people about diabetes is a very important part of my practice. It’s my desire and intent to work with this specific population of people because I know this situation can be prevented and reversed. If you or someone you know would like to schedule a health consultation with me, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Schedule your consultation before November 30th and it’s COMPLIMENTARY. Location is not a factor, so book your session now. I also offer a workshop on “Reversing Diabetes” that I’d love to offer as a lunch n’ learn option for your organization. This month is a great time to do that. Let’s work together to STOP DIABETES!