March 2013 Edition - Health Matters

The latest news on the health and wellness issues that matter most • March 2013 Health Matters

With obesity and sedentary lifestyles now the norm in the U.S., type 2 diabetes has become a major medical issue, particularly for older Americans. Carbohydrate-laden diets fueled by fast food, an absence of regular exercise and a lack of education, as well as awareness, are all contributing to what has become an issue of epidemic proportions. Diabetes Alert Day on March 26 is designed to bring the type 2 diabetes issue front and center. The event will generate increased awareness of the problem and encourage the public to learn about the dietary and lifestyle habits that help prevent or delay diabetes.

with their healthcare providers to get assistance, guidance and coaching. Basi- cally, it’s about maintaining a healthier diet and exercising.The Diabetes Alert

Day on March 26 will raise awareness in the community about the issues surrounding diabetes.” Diabetes damages the small vessels in the body and reduces blood flow. Complica- tions can include irreversible neuropathy that causes painful burning or tingling in the hands and feet, kidney disease, diminished vision, circulatory problems and amputa- tions. The good news is that for most people it’s not too late to avoid developing diabetes. “It’s absolutely possible to lower sugar lev- els,” said Henrichsen. “It involves getting fa- miliar with the glycemic index and eating a low carb diet. People don’t realize that with

“Type 2 diabetes develops over time,” said Karen Henrichsen, DO, medical director for Diabetes Education, NCH Healthcare Group. “Obesity and a lack of exercise are two of the biggest contributors. Unfortu- nately, there are no episodes that serve as pre- cursors. It develops gradually in the older and obese populations. People become unable to metabolize sugar. They start getting thirstier, experiencing changes in vision as their sugar elevates, and urinatingmore frequently.Many people don’t notice these symptoms until they become a big problem and start impact- ing their lifestyle.” “We’re diagnosing new cases of diabetes

some fast foods, they’re eating more than 100 grams of carbs in just one meal. We want to decrease cookies and breads in the diet and increase proteins and green vegetables. We also need to move and exercise every day. At least walk every day, do something enjoyable to move the body. People can make changes. They can lose weight. But they have to be committed to a healthy lifestyle.”

every day, discovering patients who are pre-diabetics and working to prevent them from becoming diabetics by providing education on what they can do to prevent the disease fromoccurring,” addedDoreen Cassarino,MSN, FNP-BC, BC-ADM, the only Advanced Certified Nurse Practitioner in diabetes care in Collier County. “People can get their blood sugar under control by working

For more information call the von Arx Diabetes and Nutrition Health Center at (239) 624-3450.

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