Diabetes Myths: Busted!

Every year researchers learn more about diabetes and GMC’s Diabetes and Nutrition Education Center (DNEC) puts those best practices to use in educating the community. 

GMC’s annual event, Gwinnett Takes on Diabetes will be held Saturday, November 7, 2015, and is free of charge. However, registration is required. 

Visit gwinnettmedicalcenter.org/classes to learn more and to register for this event.

In the meantime, here are some common myths about diabetes, and the true facts:

Myth: Diabetes is all about what you eat.
Fact: People with diabetes do need to adhere to a healthy diet, but they also need to follow any prescribed medication regimen and get regular exercise.

Myth: Eating sugar causes diabetes – and people with diabetes should never eat sugar.
Fact: Diabetes is not caused by eating sugar. It’s a condition in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin, which can cause high blood glucose, or blood sugar, levels if not managed effectively. Also, contrary to popular belief, people with diabetes can enjoy sweets and other foods containing sugar as part of a healthy meal plan. But there has to be balance and moderation.

Myth: People with diabetes have to follow a strict diet and can’t eat the same things everyone else does.
Fact: A diabetes diet is pretty much the same as any diet that’s good for you. This means including plenty of vegetables and healthy portions of whole grains, low-fat meats and fish and small amounts of fresh fruit. No single eating plan is perfect for everyone with diabetes, because every person’s body responds differently to various foods. Frequent blood glucose monitoring can help people understand how their bodies react to certain foods so they can make more-educated food choices.

Myth: If you’re predisposed to diabetes, there’s nothing you can do to prevent or delay its onset.
Fact: While some people are predisposed to diabetes, a healthy lifestyle that includes exercise three or four times a week, a healthy diet and maintaining an appropriate weight may help put off the development of Type 2 diabetes, and possibly help avoid it altogether.

Myth: Living with diabetes is hard work.
Fact: Although effective diabetes management requires effort, the right attitude can turn it into something positive. It’s an opportunity to improve your health.

Myth: If you haven’t always managed your diabetes effectively, getting it under control now won’t do any good.

Fact: This is absolutely false. Those living with diabetes can have days or even longer periods when they struggle to maintain their balance, but that doesn’t mean they should stop trying. It’s the long-term commitment that counts. Even people who have started to develop complications can reverse those trends by improving their lifestyles. It’s never too late to get back to it.


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