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Nov 12
Blog: Could You Have Diabetes and Don’t Know It?

November is National Diabetes Month, a condition that is prevalent in our region. Did you know that one in four people with diabetes in the U.S. don’t know they have the disease? They don’t realize it until the disease starts causing health problems over time, such as heart disease, nerve damage, eye problems, and kidney disease. 

According to The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Health Information Center, diabetes is a disease that occurs when your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high. Some of the symptoms include: diabetes awareness month

  • increased thirst and urination
  • increased hunger
  • fatigue
  • blurred vision
  • numbness or tingling in the feet or hands
  • sores that do not heal
  • unexplained weight loss

There are two types of diabetes.Type 1 diabetes occurs when your immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. This may be caused by genes and environmental factors, such as viruses, that might trigger the disease. People with type 1 diabetes need to take insulin every day to stay alive.

Type 2 diabetes—the most common form of diabetes—is caused by several factors, including lifestyle and genes. It is a disease that occurs when your blood glucose (blood sugar) is too high. Blood glucose is your main source of energy and comes mainly from the food you eat.

There are several risk factors for type 2 diabetes that you can control. If any of the below applies to you, talk with your doctor about ways you can take action to delay or prevent type 2 diabetes. You are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes if you:

  • are overweight or obese
  • are age 45 or older
  • have a family history of diabetes
  • are African American, Alaska Native, American Indian, Asian American, Hispanic/Latino, Native Hawaiian, or Pacific Islander
  • have high blood pressure
  • have a low level of HDL (“good”) cholesterol, or a high level of triglycerides
  • have a history of gestational diabetes or gave birth to a baby weighing 9 pounds or more
  • are not physically active
  • have a history of heart disease or stroke
  • have depression  
  • have polycystic ovary syndrome, also called PCOS
  • have acanthosis nigricans—dark, thick, and velvety skin around your neck or armpits

You can take steps to help prevent or delay type 2 diabetes by losing weight if you are overweight, eating fewer calories, and being more physically active. Talk with your health care provider about any concerns you may have or ask for a referral to meet with one of our endocrinologists. 

Our expert team provides comprehensive diabetes management services, including education and nutrition counseling to help you understand your condition and develop a diabetes management plan that meets your needs. We also offer virtual Diabetes Education and Nutrition classes and support groups.

Saratoga Hospital Medical Group – Endocrinology & Diabetes provides advanced diagnostic and medical treatment for diabetes, thyroid diseases, osteoporosis, and other conditions that can affect the endocrine system. Learn more at SaratogaHospital.org. 
 


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