Recognize Diabetes Alert Day by Knowing the Signs and Taking the Test

Knowledge is the first step to managing diabetes.

by Dianna Malkowski, Physician Assistant & Nutritionist

March 25 is the American Diabetes Association Alert Day, a one-day wake-up call asking the public to take the Diabetes Risk Test. I encourage everyone to take this test to find out if they’re at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

The annual American Diabetes Association Alert Day was created to encourage the public to take the Diabetes Risk Test, share it, and start living a healthy, active lifestyle, according to the American Diabetes Association.

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 can develop slowly. Although being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes can be frightening, early intervention can help make the disease more manageable.

Strategies include a lifelong commitment to healthy eating, physical activity and blood sugar monitoring. Diabetes must carefully watch the amount of sugar, carbohydrates and calories they eat. For patients who can’t control their diabetes with diet and exercise alone, doctors may prescribe medications or insulation therapy. It’s also essential to keep skin clean, moisturized and protected.

The following symptoms of type 2 diabetes due to high blood sugar are courtesy of the Mayo Clinic:

             Increased thirst, hunger and frequent urination

             Weight loss, fatigue and/or blurred vision

             Slow-healing sores or frequent infections

             Areas of darkened skin in folds and creases

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.

Individuals with type 2 diabetes, especially those who are overweight, can have increased risk and severity of incontinence. According to The Simon Foundation for Continence, an unhealthy weight can cause incontinence from the increased weight placed on the pelvic floor muscles. The CareGiver Partnership offers more than 500 incontinence products, samples to try before buying and helpful, confidential advice. Read more about healthy eating and skin care for diabetics on our blog.

Take the fast, free and easy American Diabetes Association Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test online, or ask your Walgreen’s pharmacist for a copy of it. Although Diabetes Alert Day is a one-day event, the risk test is available year-round.

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. Call 1-800-985-1353 or ask Dianna a question online.  


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