Know your risk: American Diabetes Month

diabetesNearly 30 million people in the U.S. have diabetes – kids & adults. Another 86 million Americans have prediabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Prediabetes is a condition in which individuals have high blood sugar but not high enough to be classified as diabetes. People with prediabetes have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Risk Factors for Type 2 Diabetes

  • One important risk factor for diabetes is family history.
  • Most people with type 2 diabetes have a family member with the disease. If you have a mother, father, brother or sister with type 2 diabetes, you are at risk for type 2 diabetes.
  • If you have a family history of diabetes – or other risk factors that increase your chances of getting type 2 diabetes such as being overweight or obese, physically inactive, over the age of 45, or if you got diabetes during pregnancy.

Take the Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test – it’s quick and easy.

There are things you can do to help prevent or delay the onset of the disease

  • Choose foods such as fruits and vegetables, fish, chicken and turkey without the skin, dry beans and peas, whole grains, and low-fat or skim milk and cheese. Drink water instead of juices or sodas.
  • When eating a meal, fill half of your plate with fruits and vegetables, one quarter with a lean protein, such as beans, or chicken or turkey without the skin, and one quarter with a whole grain, such as brown rice or whole wheat pasta.
  • Set a goal to be active at least 30 minutes, 5 days per week. You can start slow by taking 10 minute walks, 3 times a day. Ask family members to be active with you.
  • Every day write down what you eat and drink and the number of minutes you are active. Review it every day. This will help you reach your goals.
  • Talk to your doctor about your family health history. Diabetes is a serious disease and it is important to know your risk for type 2 diabetes.
  • Lower your risk
  • Take Small Steps to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
  • Weekly cooking tips, recipes, and easy ways to be more active