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National Diabetes Awareness Month

November is National Diabetes Awareness Month.

Most of us have heard about diabetes. There is a lot of talk and reporting on diabetes. But do you really understand what diabetes is and why you need to be aware of it?

Diabetes is a long-term disease that affects the way your body turns food into energy. As you all know you need energy to live. It’s that simple. No food, no go.

When we eat, our body takes that food and breaks it down into a useable energy, usually in the form of glucose (sugar). Your pancreas makes a hormone called insulin which allows your body to absorb that energy into the cells for use.

Diabetes occurs when your body either a) stops producing insulin -- known as Type 1 diabetes b) your body doesn’t utilize the insulin it makes correctly -- known as Type 2 diabetes. This means there is too much sugar in your bloodstream. High blood sugars lead to a host of OTHER health issues such as heart disease, kidney disease, and vision loss, as well as long term nerve issues.

New statistics suggest that as many as 1 in 3 Americans have prediabetes--high blood sugar counts but not high enough to be defined as diabetes. This increases your risk of stroke as well.

Being aware of the risks means being able to DO something about it. So how can you reduce your risk? Talk to your healthcare provider, get up and get moving, and click here to find out more information about what you can do to prevent or manage your diabetes.

Keep an eye out on our page this month as we will be talking to Mayo Regional Hospital’s Whitney Gould-Cookson, Registered Dietician (RD) about diabetes, as well as having a new Blog segment called “Ask Whitney”. You will get a chance to ask Whitney questions about diet, reading labels, and other related questions. We are so excited to be partnering with her and bringing you more helpful information on being healthy.

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