What if you were at risk for a serious, chronic disease, but you had a chance to prevent it? Or what if you’d been diagnosed with that disease, but you could take steps to reduce its complications — or even reverse its course? Those are real questions facing people who have type 2 diabetes or are at risk for developing the disease. According to the CDC, that includes more than 100 million Americans, about 28 million who have the disease and another 84 million who are at risk for developing it (a condition called prediabetes). In total, that’s about a third of the U.S. population. Even more alarming: About 25% of people newly diagnosed with diabetes don’t know they have the disease, and about 90% of those with prediabetes are unaware of their risk.
Type 2 diabetes is a metabolic condition that develops when your body either doesn’t produce enough of a hormone called insulin or doesn’t “use” insulin effectively. In a healthy person, insulin works to help manage your body’s levels of blood sugar (or glucose), which plays an important role in your metabolism. In type 2 diabetes, your insulin activity is too low to keep your glucose levels balanced and in check. And that means your glucose levels can rise to very unhealthy levels.
When your glucose levels are not well controlled, you can be at risk for a host of serious medical problems, including:
Fortunately, there are things you can do to reduce these risks and even to prevent type 2 diabetes in the first place. The key: You must be proactive in managing your health and your lifestyle. Specifically, it’s important for you to:
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that occurs when your immune system attacks and destroys the cells that produce insulin. Most often, type 1 diabetes develops sometime between childhood and young adulthood, and it accounts for only about 5% of diabetes cases.
Currently, there’s no way to prevent type 1 diabetes. However, as with type 2 diabetes, you can reduce your risks of developing diabetes-related complications. People with type 1 diabetes must adhere to specific dietary guidelines, and they need to check their glucose levels frequently to keep them in check. They also need to use insulin on a daily basis. These steps combined with the healthy lifestyle tips outlined above can dramatically reduce the risk of complications, especially when coupled with regular medical care by healthcare providers skilled in managing diabetes.
While type 2 diabetes occurs most often in people who are overweight, you can also be at an increased risk if you:
The bottom line is simple: Regardless of your risk factors, it makes sense to play a proactive role in your health to reduce your disease risks and enjoy better overall health. The key is to stop procrastinating and get started today. At CardioKinetics, our staff has been helping people improve their health and their quality of life through simple, goal-directed, preventive, proactive health programs for over four decades.
In one recent employee health assessment group, we screened 500 employees and found that a staggering 30% were pre-diabetic and 7% had diabetic glucose levels. These employees had no idea their glucose levels were abnormal—an all-too-common issue. After referring them to their primary care providers and implementing preventive diabetes management strategies, the employees’ pre-diabetic glucose levels dropped from 30% to 12% and diabetic glucose levels dropped from 7% to 2%. These are the results that get us out of bed in the morning and drive us to keep working to produce healthier people.
Our team has programs tailored for the public as well as small and large corporations, hospitals, government agencies, educational institutions, and public safety organizations. To learn how we can help you reduce your disease risks and lead a healthier life overall, fill out our contact form or give us a call at (302) 738-6635 today.