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Doctor Blog--Ten Things to Know About Diabetes

Posted Jul 07 2008 7:12pm





Of all the entries I've written, the one onDiabetes and Insulin Pumps has

generated the most comments. 



To follow is more information about Diabetes and ten things a diabetic

needs to know to prevent injury to organs and to live a full and

healthy life. 



1.  There aremultiple oral medications now available that can be used to

control sugar levels.  Insulin is not a necessity in adult onset diabetes.



2. Insulin is not, as is thought by many lay people, a choice of "last

resort".  In certain cases, it isideal and recommended.  When used

in the proper setting and in the proper pattern, it can be the best

thing for a diabetic.



3.  The ultimate goal is to control sugar levels and keep themas close

to the normal range
as possible.  The lower the sugars, the less chance

of end organ damage (end organ being the heart, eyes, kidneys, blood

vessels, nerves, etc.).



4.  Diabetics that do the besteat and exercise in a regular pattern.

This poses a challenge for those who prefer a random, spontaneous

existence but can really make the difference between well controlled

or poorly controlled diabetes.



5.  Adiabetic diet is the best diet for everyone actually.  Because our

society in general has developed a taste for rich, fatty foods, it seems

like a sacrifice to cut back on sugar, fat, and salt.  But, truth be told,

if everyone were on the balance of foods that diabetics should follow,

we would all be healthier and closer to our ideal weight.



6.  Remember portion control.  The trick is not onlywhatto eat but

alsohow muchto eat.  A quick reference is that theclosed fistis a

close approximate serving size for an entree for the owner of the

fist.



7.  Alwayscarry something that has sugar in itwith you if you are diabetic. 

This might sound contradictory to the diet of low sugar but, it is very

important if you are being treated for diabetes because you might

have a too low blood sugar and need access to food instantly.  If you

have nothing to eat, you might lose consciousness before you get help.



8.  See aneye doctor(MD Ophthalmologist) regularly (at least

once per year) to prevent permanent eye damage.  Treatment for

diabetic side effects to the eyes has come a long way in the last

20 years and preventive treatment is much better than salvage

treatment.



9.  Ask your doctor or their nurse for information if you don't know.

One of the biggest mistakes diabetics make is assuming that what

is happening to them is just something they have to put up with.

Ask.



10. Be prepared tocheck your sugars daily, possibly several times

per day while you are becoming familiar with the treatment of

diabetes.  Learn how to operate a glucometer and write your

sugars down along with the time you checked the sugar.  When

you are still learning how to care for yourself as a diabetic, it can

also be extremely helpful towrite down what you ate at a particular

meal
so you can compare your intake with the sugar level that

follows.

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