Diabetes is a major and potentially life-threating disease caused by imbalances in insulin and glucose levels in the bloodstream. Glucose is converted from food as our primary source of energy. A lack of insulin results in high glucose levels and an inability for cells to absorb this fuel. Left unaddressed, diabetes can be fatal or lead to life threatening complications, but with proper management, patients can live long, productive lives.
Diabetes is classified into three types: Type 1 in which no insulin is produced; Type 2 is characterized by insufficient insulin production or improper function of insulin produced by the body, and Gestational Diabetes, an often temporary condition developed by women during pregnancy. Type 2 diabetes is conversely related to an unhealthy life style.
Risk factors for Type 2 diabetes include: age, being overweight, genetic predisposition, and a reduction in physical activity. Although diabetes affects all ethnic groups, statistics show that Hispanics and African American populations are exposed to an especially high risk of developing the disease. The rates of Type 2 diabetes steadily increase with age (1 of 4 seniors above the age of 65 is affected by the condition.) 79 million Americans have pre-diabetes and are at risk of developing the full condition. This is truly an epidemic across our nation.
How can Island Doctors help me manage this condition (diabetes)?
Early detection and diagnosis is key in reducing the risk and effectively treating diabetes. It is important to remember that a healthy lifestyle focusing on appropriate diet and exercise constitutes the foundation for diabetes prevention and treatment. Oral medications and insulin injections take over when these steps are insufficient to maintain healthy glucose and insulin levels.
At Island Doctors, our In-house screenings help you stay on top and help increase the quality and quantity of your years ahead. We also have clinicians that have been trained in the treatment of diabetes. Let me introduce you to Don Reed, PA-C. We treat you like family and will go beyond your expectation to meet your primary care needs. If you have an endocrinologist, we will work together to synergistically reduce your risk and help you achieve your goals: just another way Island Doctors does more than you come to expect from your doctor.