Diabetes: Smart Choices Today for a Healthier Tomorrow
Last year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that more than one in ten Americans have been diagnosed with diabetes and one in three Americans has prediabetes – or heightened blood glucose levels that can lead to diabetes down the road – and might not even know it. Diabetes, which can lead to life-threatening challenges like heart disease, vision loss, and kidney disease, is reaching epidemic levels in the U.S.
But the good news is diabetes is preventable and manageable. That’s why this National Diabetes Month, Steward Health Care is highlighting the importance of prevention and early detection. Simple steps you take today to protect yourself can help ensure a healthier tomorrow.
Diabetes is a condition in which your body does not make or use enough insulin, which allows you to use sugar in your blood as energy. When the body does not produce enough insulin or use it correctly, too much blood sugar stays in your blood stream, leading to serious health complications. In 2019, according to the World Health Organization, 1.5 million people died from diabetes-related complications worldwide.
So, what are the warning signs? Traditionally, there are the three “Ps” of diabetes: Polyuria (having to urinate frequently); Polydipsia (increased thirst); and Polyphagia (increased appetite).
Every person, however, has a unique set of risk factors. Some factors are in your control, like living a sedentary or active lifestyle. However, others cannot be controlled, such as a family history of diabetes. Regardless of the cause, if diabetes is identified and properly managed, you can still live a long and healthy life.
In the fight against diabetes, the best defenses are a healthy lifestyle and early detection through screenings. That’s why it’s so critical to consult with a doctor regularly, both on how to live a lifestyle that includes physical activity and a balanced diet, as well as getting screened early and regularly – particularly if you’re at higher risk of getting diabetes.
Steward is here to support you along your journey. Start a conversation with your local doctor today by using our DoctorFinder or calling 800-488-5959.