Diabetes is a condition in which the body reduces the utilization of ingested glucose. In short, it signifies that you have too much of glucose in your blood. The increase in blood sugar levels is caused by lack of insulin or because it is not working effectively. As we approach World Diabetes day on 14th Nov, let us pledge to control diabetes without paying heed to the myths related to it. Here, we have highlighted some of the most common myths about diabetes and the truth about them.
Myth 1: Consuming excess sugar causes diabetes
There is no direct association of diabetes with sugar. Basically, diabetes is of two types namely, Type 1 and Type 2. In Type 1 diabetes, the pancreas fully stop making insulin. Insulin is a hormone required for using glucose (sugar) found in foods to provide energy to your body. Even though research is still on to know the exact cause of this type of diabetes, researchers have highlighted that environmental factors, genetics and viruses are the reasons for causing it. However, one of the known facts about diabetes is that it is not a result of eating too many sweets.
Type 2 diabetes is caused when the body is unable to produce or use insulin properly. Usually, it affects people who are 40 years of age or older and is commonly known as insulin resistance. This type of diabetes can also occur to people who are overweight or have a family history of diabetes.
Myth 2: Taking insulin signifies you have failed
It becomes necessary to take insulin if you have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. Conversely, if you have type 2 diabetes, you may be able to initially manage it by eating healthy food and doing adequate physical activity. Usually, people start with oral medication for diabetes though they have to eventually take insulin. If you have type 2 diabetes and have started taking insulin, it signifies that you are managing it better which will help you to lower your risk of creating more complications.
Myth 3: Diabetes stops you from leading an active lifestyle
There have been many studies which have shown that regular physical activity lowers the glucose levels. So, it is essential to follow a physical fitness program which will enable you to lower your glucose levels and stay active and healthy with diabetes.
It is a myth that insulin injections cause pain. They are like any other injection and will not hurt you when you inject them. Although, it is necessary for you to practice a good injection technique which will ensure that your experience is painless. In case you are in the habit of using syringes regularly, it would be prudent to follow this simple tip:- After selecting and cleaning an injection site, firmly, but not tightly, pinch up an area about 2–3 inches wide. Inject at a ninety degree angle while the skin is pinched. Leave the needle in while you relax the pinch. Count to five slowly. Then remove the needle. Do not massage the area after the injection.
Furthermore, for those of you who are accustomed to an insulin pen, ensure that you’ll immediately inform your provider or diabetes adviser if any form of irritation or soreness is felt. They might suggest a smaller or thinner pen needle to ease your discomfort. Another benefit of smaller or finer needles is that they nullify the need for you to “pinch up” the injected region.
Myth 5: People with diabetes can’t eat anything sweet
Don’t pay any heed to the infinite rumors that are circulated. The fact about diabetes is that a piece of cake or a few cookies once in a while, should not antagonize your condition. The American Diabetes Association states that individuals with Type 2 diabetes can have sweets, but in moderation, and they need to consume sweets only as a part of a healthy meal plan. Additionally, they need to supplement this diet with sufficient exercise.
It’s imperative to understand, that while it’s alright to intake something sweet now and then, you must always remember your sugar limit and never succumb to the temptation of crossing this limit. Besides detrimental calories, sweets also comprise lots of sugar, which escalates the glucose levels in your blood beyond its permissible limit. The best time to indulge in a few sweets would be after a low carbohydrate meal, such as chicken breasts, broccoli, or a leafy salad.
There isn’t actually much of a difference between a healthy intake of food for diabetics and that for a regular person. A wholesome and healthy diet regimen for any person would include whole-grain foods, lean protein meats, vegetables, and fruits, whether diabetic or not. The reason why such a diet plan should be maintained at all times is because it’s extremely low in fat content especially saturated and trans fats, along with salt and standard sugar.
Myth 7: Diabetes cannot be prevented
This is probably the greatest myth about diabetes that has ever been conceptualized. It has been proven through various studies that problems pertaining to diabetes can be easily controlled or deferred by adhering to simple self-care convalescence plans. Such normal remedies, along with regular visits to your doctor is all that is needed for controlling blood sugar levels. In the possibility that you are a patient of Type 2 diabetes, then it’s also advisable to control your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in order to avoid future consequences, such as nerve damage and kidney disorder.
Myth 8: Diabetes affects only overweight people
Actual statistical information about diabetes suggests that there is an equal ratio of slim and obese people who are suffering from this ailment. Many individuals who have diabetes sport a pretty slender body type. So, there isn’t actually that much relevance to all the hype surrounding weight loss and its relation to diabetes. If you or any of your near and dear ones are actually overweight, then it’s better to shed those extra pounds through a healthier eating plan and some modest exercises. This is better than going on a crash diet course or torturing yourself in the gym. Eventually, diabetes doesn’t distinguish between fit and overweight people before choosing its next victim.
Myth 9: Exercising is not good for diabetes
In stark contrast to this heresay, what’s really required is a regular exercise schedule to stringently followed by those affected by this disease. Regular trips to the gym not only helps in shedding weight, it also facilitates better use of insulin. However, it should also be noted that if a diabetic hasn’t been physically active for a considerable duration, then it would be wise to seek a health expert’s opinion and suggestions before they start working out. If weight training or cardiovascular exercises isn’t your thing, or if you’re just too pressed for time, then simple walks or jogs should at least be performed, irrespective of your age.
Myth 10: People diagnosed with diabetes are doomed
This just might be the most ludicrous myth to ever emerge in the medical world. Even though it well-known that diabetes is a long-term condition that has no permanent remedy, if you manage to keep your blood sugar levels always in check, there isn’t any reason why you shouldn’t experience the same life span and be able to do the same things as any other normal person.
Your bustling, active, and spontaneous lifestyles need not be affected in the least bit, as long as you know how to manage your Type 2 diabetes. You could still go on vacations, revel at parties, and enjoy all those other fun activities that were an intrinsic part of your life before you were diagnosed with diabetes. Just follow certain simple steps such as a regular workout regimen, a healthy diet plan, and proper planning before performing any kind of task. Soon enough, you should be on your way to gaining control over your ailment along with continuing the normal grind of your daily life. It’s also necessary for the family and friends of a diabetic patient to constantly provide them with adequate support and keep a tab on their diet and other activities. All other information about diabetes and its medication can also be procured from online pharmacy stores.
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