World Diabetes Day
This month is Diabetes Awareness Month and November 14 is World Diabetes Day.
What is type 2 diabetes?
The food you eat is broken down into a sugar called glucose. Glucose is fuel for your body. But in order to use this fuel, your body makes insulin to process glucose. When your body doesn’t make enough or use insulin well, you have type 2 diabetes. As your body can’t use the glucose as fuel, the glucose stays in your blood. A high blood glucose level can result in physical health complications such as eye, kidney, nerve, and foot disorders. Older people with diabetes are also at higher risk for conditions including persistent pain, depression, cognitive impairment, high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke.
As people get older, their risk for type 2 diabetes increases. In Canada, about one in five people 65 years and over has diabetes.
Research has shown that regular exercise, managing your diet, and reducing your stress levels not only improves your health and quality of life, but can make a difference in preventing or delaying the onset of type 2 diabetes.
If you already have diabetes, you may find that you need to adjust how you manage your condition as the years go by. The treatment goal of an older person with diabetes is to achieve the same glycemic, blood pressure, and lipid targets as younger people with diabetes. Management of diabetes in older people should be individualized as they could be fit and healthy or vulnerable with reduced functionality. Tailoring therapy for older adults with diabetes will optimally minimize and manage any of the various health issues affecting them specifically.
Visit diabetes.ca for more information on how you can take charge and stay healthy with diabetes.
Image of insulin molecule created by Isaac Yonemoto and modified for the header image.
For more posts like these, visit the Physical Wellness page.