4 Steps to Help Control Your Diabetes
By Brent Trice, The Diabetic Shoppe, Texoma LIVING WELL Magazine
Have you ever heard the statement, “It’s just a small case of diabetes?” Taking diabetes lightly can be a costly mistake. Diabetes is the sixth leading cause of death in Texas and more than two million Texans have the disease. Failure to manage your diabetes can lead to major complications: heart disease, stroke, eye problems, nerve damage, kidney problems, and gum and tooth loss. The National Education Program for the National Institutes for Health suggests four steps to help control your diabetes.
Step 1 – LEARN about diabetes. Diabetes is a serious disease. It affects almost every part of your body. Get information, and get as much as you can find.
Step 2 – KNOW you diabetes ABC’s
- A is knowing your A1C results. This is a blood test that shows what your blood glucose (blood sugar) has been over the last three months. The A1C goal for most people with diabetes is below seven.
- B is knowing your BLOOD pressure. The goal for most people with diabetes is below 130/80.
- C is knowing your CHOLESTEROL levels. The LDL goal for most people with diabetes is less than 100. The HDL goal for most people with diabetes is above 40.
Step 3 – Manage you diabetes. Many people avoid the long-term problems of diabetes by taking good care of themselves. Work with your health care team to reach your ABC goals (A1C, Blood Pressure, Cholesterol)
Step 4 – Get routine care to avoid problems. See your health care team at least twice a year to find and treat any problems early. Ask what steps you can take to reach your goals.
To learn more about managing diabetes, I suggest the following sites:
The American Diabetes Association – www.diabetes.org
National Diabetes Education Program – www.dep.hih.gov
Texas Diabetes Council – www.dshd.state.tx.us/diabetes
Brent Trice is the area representative for The Diabetic Shoppe. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 903-771-4804. Research resources for this article are available by request.