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The Diabetes Center

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What is diabetes?

Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States. It is a disease that causes blood glucose levels to rise above what is considered the normal level. Most of the food we eat is turned into glucose, or sugar, which our bodies store and use for energy.

The pancreas makes a hormone called "insulin" that helps glucose enter the cells of our bodies. When you have diabetes, your body either doesn't make enough insulin or it can't use its own insulin as well as it should. When this happens, sugar builds up in your blood. Diabetes can cause serious health complications including heart disease, blindness, kidney failure and lower-extremity amputations. 

How can you help prevent diabetes?

Studies have shown that moderate weight loss and exercise can help prevent or possibly delay type-2 diabetes among adults at high risk of diabetes. To begin, change your eating habits; eat smaller portions and less fat. Select fewer high-fat foods and try to use less fat when cooking. Limit foods that are high in saturated fats or trans fat, some of which are:

  • Fatty cuts of meat
  • Fried Foods
  • Whole milk and dairy products made from whole milk
  • Cakes, candy, cookies, crackers and pies
  • Salad dressings.

Add more fiber to your diet by eating more whole-grain foods and a variety of fruits and vegetables daily, such as:

  • Breakfast cereals made with 100% whole grains
  • Oatmeal
  • Whole-grain rice
  • Whole-wheat bread, bagels, pita bread and tortillas
  • Dark green veggies (e.g., broccoli, spinach, brussels sprouts)
  • Orange veggies (e.g., carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, winter squash).

Most of all, stay away from foods that are high in sugar, such as:

  • Fruit-flavored drinks
  • Sodas
  • Tea or coffee sweetened with sugar.

Links

Foot.com Professional - Diabetes Section 
American Diabetes Association
National Inst. of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases
CDC Diabetes Public Health Resource
Diabetes Monitor - Monitoring Diabetes Happenings
Canadian Diabetes Assoc.



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