by Dianna Malkowski, Physician Assistant & Nutritionist
On American Diabetes Association Alert Day March 26, the Association is encouraging the public to take the diabetes risk test on Facebook and share the test with loved ones. Everyone should be aware of the risk factors for type 2 diabetes and social media can help spread awareness.
The tagline for this year’s 25th Annual American Diabetes Association Alert Day is “Take it. Share it.” The Association hopes that by making the diabetes risk test easier to take and hosting it on a friendly platform like Facebook, it’s adding motivational incentives to learn and share important information on type 2 diabetes.
Engaging the public through social media can be an effective way to increase awareness of pre-diabetes and teach preventive behaviors like healthy eating, physical activity and weight loss. At The CareGiver Partnership, we’ve found that by developing communities on all the major social media platforms, we’re able to increase awareness of health issues affecting seniors, as well as provide support and educational resources for caregivers.
People who may be at risk for type 2 diabetes include those who are over the age of 45, overweight, lead sedentary lifestyles and have a family history of the disease. Symptoms include increased hunger, thirst or urination; weight loss or fatigue; blurred vision; frequent infections or slow-healing sores; or areas of darkened skin in body creases.
Symptoms can develop very slowly, and although being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes can be frightening, early intervention can help make the disease more manageable. Strategies for managing type 2 diabetes include a lifelong commitment to healthy eating, physical activity and blood sugar monitoring. For patients who can’t control their diabetes with diet and exercise alone, doctors may prescribe medications or insulation therapy.
Type 2 diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the way a body metabolizes its main source of fuel: sugar, also known as glucose. Although there is no cure, the condition is manageable and even preventable in some cases. The American Diabetes Association Alert Day is a way to increase public awareness of diabetes risks.
Dianna Malkowski is a Board Certified Physician Assistant and Mayo Clinic trained nutritionist specializing in diabetes, cancer, wound healing, therapeutic diets and nutrition support. She serves on the board of professional advisers for The CareGiver Partnership and enjoys working with patients and caregivers alike.
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