Did you know that diabetes can cause heart disease, kidney disease, and blindness?

Diabetes is a disease when your blood glucose levels are above normal. Most of the food we eat turns into glucose (sugar) for our bodies to use for energy. The pancreas, an organ that lies near the stomach, makes a hormone called insulin to help glucose get into the cells of our bodies. When you have diabetes, your body either doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t use its own insulin as well as it should. This causes sugar to build up in your blood.  When your blood sugar is controlled, you feel better – you can have more energy, less sick days, and delay diabetes problems.

Be sure to:

  • See your Primary Care Provider (PCP) every 3 to 6 months. Call to make an appointment today.
  • Get a hemoglobin A1C blood test every 3 to 6 months. This test measures how well you’re managing your diabetes.
  • Take a urine protein test. This is a simple urine test that your doctor will order at least once a year to look for early signs of kidney disease. If you have active kidney disease, make sure you see your kidney specialist (nephrologist) at least once per year.
  • Maintain a healthy blood pressure. Take medications as prescribed and keep your blood pressure under 140/90.
  • Get an eye exam. This is more than a routine exam. Be sure to tell your eye care professional (optometrist or ophthalmologist) you need a retinal eye exam for diabetes. You do not need authorization or a referral to obtain this service from a participating eye professional.
  • Make healthy food choices. Ask your doctor to help you choose a meal plan.
  • Be active. Try exercising for 30 minutes a day. Always talk to your doctor before trying or starting an exercise routine.

If you have been diagnosed with Diabetes and would like to speak with one of our health coaches or become involved in our interactive texting educational program, please call 410-949-1525 and press option #1 –  M-F from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

For more information, click here to download the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse publication, Your Guide to Diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2.  

Source: National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention & Health Promotion – Take Charge of your diabetes