Diabetes Awareness Month

2017 is coming to an end, but this message still rings true for this and every year. November is Diabetes Awareness Month and these simple suggestions can help you prevent prediabetes and Type 2 diabetes and manage all diabetes types-Type 1, Type 2, gestational and MODY, maturity-onset diabetes of the young.

For families living with all types of diabetes, the holidays can be challenging. Rich side dishes and desserts can wreak havoc on your waistline and glucose levels. Alcohol packs of calories and pounds-especially cocktails with sugar. Speaking with a registered dietitian and with your endocrinologist can help you stay safe and keep your glucose levels within normal limits during these festive times.

For families of Type 1 diabetic patients, well-meaning friends and family frequently offer advice and suggestions that can be dangerous. Far too many people don’t really understand the difference between Type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune disorder that requires insulin injection, and Type 2 diabetes, a disease managed with oral meds, insulin or both.   But that doesn’t stop them from giving unsolicited advice. Eliminating carbohydrates for anyone on a basal insulin dose can be deadly. Eating food that doesn’t have a nutrition label can be challenging when calculating bolus insulin doses. Hypoglycemia can be especially dangerous if you skip meals, or inject too much insulin.Shaming Type 1 adults and kids because of a ‘bad” glucose level does more harm than good. Focusing on healthy meals with a balance of complex carbohydrates, good fats and lots of vegetables are the keys to sound nutrition. And yes, you can eat dessert like everyone else.  Moderation is the key for everyone at the dinner table.

And during the holidays, get outside. Physical activity is recommended and beneficial to everyone. For Type 1 patients, just remember to check your glucose levels before you exercise and keep a snack by your side.

 

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