Over 21 million adults in the U.S. have type 2 diabetes (T2D). Having T2D means that your body isn’t using the insulin hormone properly. Insulin is what helps the glucose (sugar) in our blood get turned into energy. It also has other functions. If your body is resistant to the effects of insulin, the glucose builds up in your bloodstream with nowhere to go and can lead to serious health issues, including heart disease, ketoacidosis, and death. Managing your T2D is possible, but you have to have the right information to do that successfully. Let’s review some of the most common type 2 diabetes myths and the real truth behind them.
Myth: Diabetes isn’t a serious disease.
Diabetes is a chronic condition that is serious and must be managed to avoid serious complications. Having diabetes doubles your chances of having a heart attack and causes more deaths each year than AIDS and breast cancer combined.
Myth: If you are overweight, you have diabetes.
While obesity is a risk factor, it isn’t the only one. Many people with diabetes weigh an average amount or are only slightly overweight. Sedentary lifestyles, family history, diet, and ethnicity are other factors that increase your risk as well.
Myth: Insulin will harm you.
Insulin is a hormone that is naturally produced by your pancreas. It is vital to your metabolism, and without it, your body would cease to function. With T2D, your pancreas works overtime putting out insulin to try and balance the blood sugar levels. As time goes on, your pancreas begins to lose function and produces less and less insulin. Without supplemental insulin to help balance out levels, serious complications will result.
Myth: People with T2D can’t eat sweets.
As with any person, too many sweets are never good for your body. However, with T2D, a small number of sweets and desserts can be included in any healthy meal plan. Managing your diet, exercise, and diabetes medications are crucial to keeping your blood sugar levels within the safe and healthy ranges.
Talking with your doctor is an important step to find a plan that works for you and your diabetes. By following their treatment recommendations, successful management of your diabetes is possible. Here at InQuest Medical Research, our mission is to improve healthcare for diseases like type 2 diabetes through our work in clinical research studies. To learn more about our currently enrolling studies for T2D, call (770) 903-0148, or visit our study webpage for more information.