WHAT IS DIABETES
People with diabetes either don’t make enough insulin (Type 1 diabetes) or can’t use insulin properly (Type 2 diabetes). Insulin allows blood sugar (glucose) to enter cells, where it can be used for energy.
When the body doesn’t have enough insulin or can’t use it effectively, blood sugar builds up in the blood. High blood sugar levels can lead to heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure and amputation of toes, feet, or legs, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
According to the CDC, people who have one or more of the following risk factors should talk to their doctor about getting their blood sugar tested:
- Being overweight.
- Being 45 years or older.
- Having a family history of Type 2 diabetes.
- Being physically active less than three times a week.
- Ever having gestational diabetes or giving birth to a baby who weighed more than 9 pounds.
Race and ethnicity are also factors: African Americans, Hispanics and Latinos, American Indians, Pacific Islanders, and some Asian Americans are at higher risk than Caucasians.
MANAGING DIABETES EDUCATION