November is Diabetes Awareness Month
By Laura Stepp, MA, RD/LD, CDE at Lexington Medical Center
Are you at risk of developing diabetes? According to the American Diabetes Association’s most recent statistics:
~Diabetes affects nearly 30 million children and adults in the United States. That’s nearly ten percent of the population.
~Another 86 million Americans have prediabetes and are at risk for developing Type 2 diabetes.
~Recent estimates project that as many as 1 in 3 American adults will have diabetes by 2050 unless we take steps to stop diabetes®.
~African-Americans and Hispanics are almost twice as likely to have diabetes as non-Hispanic whites.
Are YOU at risk?
• Age: Over 40 years old. Traditionally, insulin resistance increases with age.
• Sex: Men have a higher risk of being undiagnosed with pre-diabetes or diabetes than women. That’s likely from not going to the doctor on a regular basis.
• If you are a woman, did you have gestational diabetes during pregnancy? If so, this increases your risk of developing diabetes.
• Race/Ethnicity: Asian, African-American, Hispanic, East Indian or Native Americans are at great risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes than Caucasians.
• Family History: Do your grandparents, parents, or siblings have Type 2 diabetes? If so, the American Diabetes Association states you have a 50% greater risk of developing diabetes
• Activity Level: Leading a sedentary lifestyle (regardless of the other risk factors) increases the risk for developing Type 2 diabetes
• BMI >30: Although people with normal BMI’s can develop diabetes, being overweight or obese can increase your risk of developing diabetes at a younger age.
While you can not change your age, sex, race/ethnicity or family history you CAN change or control your weight/BMI and how active you are. Taking a quote from the November/December, 2015 issue of Diabetes Self Management magazine: Remember, over 40 and overweight – Request a Hgb A1c test every year to measure your blood sugar control.
Stop Diabetes® is a registered trademark of the American Diabetes Association advocacy program to bring awareness to diabetes and diabetes research.
Join Lexington Medical Center for a FREE diabetes health fair inside the Lexington Medical Park 1 Auditorium on the hospital campus in West Columbia. The event will be Tuesday, November 10, 2015 from Noon – 4:00 p.m. All community members are invited to attend.