National Diabetes Month

by Kim Tewalt on November 14, 2012 at 8:00 am

November is national diabetes month, and the Zanesville-Muskingum County Health Department wants to make sure you know the dangers of diabetes and who is at risk.

One out of every three people in the United States is diabetic or"pre-diabetic. When managed properly, someone with the chronic disease can usually do well, but if diabetes is left untreated, it can lead to other serious health problems.

Diabetes is a disease where the pancreas does not produce or can not produce enough insulin to break down sugar, causing blood sugar levels to increase. Type one diabetes can’t be prevented, and the exact cause is unknown.

"Some people theorize it’s due to a virus infecting the pancreas and the cells that make insulin, but that is not proven yet." said Dr. Vicki Whitacre of the Zanesville-Muskingum County Health Department.

Type two diabetes usually develops in adults. It’s a decreased functioning of insulin-producing cells. There are some steps you can take to reduce your risk for type two diabetes.

"Eating healthy, not having the overweight problem, or losing weight if you are overweight." Whitacre explained. "Trying to maintain your health as best as possible does help prevent diabetes."

Early symptoms can include excessive thirst and urination. Anyone who has these symptoms should talk to their doctor immediately.