November is Diabetes Awareness Month!
Eleven million Canadians are living with diabetes or prediabetes.
What is Diabetes?
It’s a chronic disease where the body cannot make enough insulin or cannot use insulin properly. Insulin is a hormone that helps to control blood sugars. A high amount of sugar in the blood over a long period of time can damage organs, blood vessels and nerves.
Are you at risk?
Not much is known about definite risk factors for Type 1 Diabetes but there are quite a few risk factors for developing Type 2 Diabetes. Some we can have some control over, but some we cannot:
• A parent, brother, or sister living with or who had diabetes.
• Being a member of high-risk group (Aboriginal, Hispanic, South Asian, Asian, African descent)
• Given birth to a baby weighing more than 4kg or 9lb
• Had gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy)
• Prediabetes diagnosis
• High blood pressure
• High cholesterol or high blood fats
• Extra weight around abdomen, overweight
• Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) diagnosis
• Acanthosis nigricans diagnosis
• Obstructive sleep apnea diagnosis
• Diagnosed psychiatric disorders: schizophrenia, depression
If you are over 40 years old or have any of the above risk factors, talk to your doctor.
Take the Diabetes Canada test.
Don’t have a doctor? Find one here: www.albertafindadoctor.ca
Our PCN health care providers offer education through classes and workshops that are open to the public; a referral from a family doctor is not needed to register for these classes.