When I think of diabetes I still think of someone’s grandmother, somebody later in life dealing with blood glucose meters and pricking their fingers before every meal. But the face of diabetes is changing, affecting people at younger and younger ages, and affecting a higher percentage of Americans than it did a generation ago. Diabetes awareness is now more important than ever with our aging population.
Consider people like Halle Berry, Nick Jonas, or Supreme Court Justice Sonya Sotomayor: all are under 65 and all suffer from diabetes. For some it was genetic, but for millions of other sufferers, the cause of early onset diabetes is something completely controllable: diet and exercise! Many people not predisposed to get diabetes will find themselves being diagnosed due to unhealthy eating habits and a lack of exercise. The good news is that in these cases, pre-diabetics and some forms of diabetes can actually be cured simply through changes in diet and activity! The idea of being able to erase something as serious as diabetes with simple changes in lifestyle is amazing and needs to be promoted to everyone, at risk and not.
So this November, while the focus is on diabetes, pin on a diabetes awareness ribbon or draw attention to your cause with diabetes awareness products. Also why not enter a 5k run or awareness walk? You’ll kill two birds with one stone: raise funds, and raise your heart rate to help ward off diabetes. Get active, get informed, and get the word out.