Monday, November 7, 2011

Diabetes myths debunked.

     Diabetes is a disease that a lot of people don’t know too much about. Dr. Adriana Maldonado, medical director of Meritus Endocrine, Nutrition and Diabetes Education Center, shared with us a few myths that she frequently hears. Check them out:

#1. Taking candy off of the menu will keep my blood sugar under control.

False. Removing candy and cakes without paying attention to when you eat, how you eat, and how often you take in carbs will not help you. A quick fix like removing candy doesn’t work. It’s more important to pay attention to how many starches you have at each meal and keep them consistent and at a reasonable pace.

#2. I have elevated sugars but I don’t have diabetes yet. I should eat all my favorite foods now, because soon I won’t be able to eat any of them.

False. People with fasting hyperglycemia, or a glucose intolerance, do much better with a proper exercise and diet program. Recent studies have shown that proper diet and exercise can actually delay the onset of diabetes. There are also medications that are being used to help delay the onset of diabetes.

#3. Taking insulin means my life is over. Everyone I know that was on insulin has died, and I will too. 

False. In the past, insulin was used as a last resort. Now, we use insulin very early on to control sugars, and it’s clear that if you control sugars—especially the 2 hour after-meal sugars—to less than 140, there are studies that show those people have less of a risk of heart disease. Controlling your sugars with insulin is actually a huge improvement to your quality of life.

#4. Diabetes is a death sentence.

False. The first problem that doctors often deal with is the patients don’t think they can get better. Once that mindset has passed, the doctors can help figure out what the body needs and what the patient needs to do. It requires the patient’s help and the doctor’s advice, but patients come out with much better sugar control and better quality of life.

By Kayla Murphy

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