The truth about diabetes

Statistics on diabetes just keep getting scarier. It is now estimated that by the year 2050, one out of 3 people in the United States will suffer from some type of diabetes.

Here’s what’s scary about it: Type 2 diabetes is the most preventable type of diabetes (in most cases). Today children as young as 5 are being diagnosed with diabetes type 2, which until a few years ago was only diagnosed in adults. Diabetes type 2 can be prevented through exercise and a nutritious diet. Yet I still hear hesitation from people “I don’t like to exercise” someone said to me a few weeks ago “I prefer to diet” said someone who is extremely heavy. Did you know that 30 minutes of walking daily can lower your risk of contracting diabetes according to the American Diabetes Association? Unfortunately, many of us think that exercise means doing something we don’t enjoy and is not fun because we “have to do it” and many of us believe that diet means doing something crazy like the “cabbage soup” diet for a week or a month and then go back to eating the same junk food we’ve been eating as long as we do the diet over and over again. We deprive ourselves from good food and eat junk food instead and we consider this “good health.” It baffles me that people would choose eating junk food for a sense of temporary comfort or “feeling good” over feeling great about ourselves.

I used to think that diabetes wasn’t serious until I got pregnant with my daughter and was diagnosed with insulin intolerance. In other words, my sugar levels were high, but not high enough to be considered gestational diabetes and just because I’m the type of person who researches things, I started to research diabetes and here is what I found out:

1- Type 2 diabetes is the most preventable condition.

2- Type 1 diabetes should be separated in its own category because it’s the most serious type of diabetes. Type one requires insulin, type 2 can be controlled by diet and exercise (in most cases). Exercise is beneficial for both types of diabetes.

3- Eating lots of sugar will not cause diabetes although it is not recommended that you eat a lot of sugar, what causes diabetes is poor diet and lack of exercise.

4- Both types of diabetes ARE serious.

Did you know that type 2 diabetes is the major cause of blindness in adults and that it’s a lot more serious than we give it credit? I should know, my aunt died after falling into a comma related to type 2 diabetes, she literally ate herself to death.

The American Diabetes Association states that these are the complications from diabetes:


Heart disease and stroke

• In 2004, heart disease was noted on 68% of diabetes-related death certificates among people aged 65 years or older.
• In 2004, stroke was noted on 16% of diabetes-related death certificates among people aged 65 years or older.
• Adults with diabetes have heart disease death rates about 2 to 4 times higher than adults without diabetes.
• The risk for stroke is 2 to 4 times higher among people with diabetes.

High blood pressure

• In 2003–2004, 75% of adults with self-reported diabetes had blood pressure greater than or equal to 130/80 mmHg, or used prescription medications for hypertension.


• Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 20–74 years.
• Diabetic retinopathy causes 12,000 to 24,000 new cases of blindness each year.

Kidney disease

• Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, accounting for 44% of new cases in 2005.
• In 2005, 46,739 people with diabetes began treatment for end-stage kidney disease in the United States and Puerto Rico.
• In 2005, a total of 178,689 people with end-stage kidney disease due to diabetes were living on chronic dialysis or with a kidney transplant in the United States and Puerto Rico.

Nervous system disease (Neuropathy)

• About 60% to 70% of people with diabetes have mild to severe forms of nervous system damage.


• More than 60% of nontraumatic lower-limb amputations occur in people with diabetes.
• In 2004, about 71,000 nontraumatic lower-limb amputations were performed in people with diabetes.
If these statistics don’t scare you enough to make you commit to changing your lifestyle, getting fit and in shape, maybe this will: The cost of having diabetes is way higher than the cost of one of the Beachbody programs. A person with diabetes is estimated to spend 2.3 times more in medical expenses than what a person without diabetes spends. Can you really afford diabetes?

Forget the cost to your pocket, think of the cost to your life. “Obesity can lead to an earlier death” according to a new report from George Town University. According to this report, someone with a body bass index of 30 or higher is considered obese.

There is proof all over the internet, books, medical journals, etc. about the costs of lack of exercise and good nutrition on our health and pockets. What are you going to do about it? In May of this year my body mas index was 47%, thanks to the Beachbody programs and a yummy nutritious diet, it is now 18%. I am 42 years old and on my way to being in the best shape of my life. If I could do it, so can you!

American Diabetes Association:

Report from Georgetown University: