Myths About Diabetes

Despite the wide array of information about diabetes, many people still have little or no knowledge about this condition.  And with many so-called truths going around, it is important to dispel any myths about diabetes.

Diabetes is not that serious of a disease – Diabetes is not like common colds.  It has caused more death annually compared to breast cancer and AID combined.  In fact, two out of three people suffering from diabetes die from heart disease or stroke.

Overweight and obese people will eventually develop type 2 diabetes – Excess weight is a risk factor for developing the disease.  However, there are other factors that should be considered such as family history, ethnicity, and age.  Most overweight people actually do not develop type 2 diabetes.  In contrast, many people with type 2 diabetes are at normal weight or moderately overweight.

Eating too much sugar causes diabetes – Contrary to popular belief, eating sugar does not develop into diabetes.  Type 1 diabetes is caused by genetics and factors that still baffle scientists to this day, while type 2 diabetes is caused by genetics and lifestyle factors such as being overweight.

People with diabetes should eat special diabetic foods – In fact, a simple healthy eating plan is enough for people living with diabetes.  It should be low in saturated and trans fat, moderate in salt and sugar, more whole grains, vegetables, and fruit.  Do not be mislead by diabetic or dietetic foods, as they could still raise blood sugar levels, not to mention more expensive than regular foods.

Diabetic people should only eat small amounts of starchy foods – Avoiding starchy foods like bread, potatoes, and pasta is not part of a healthy diet.  What is important is to control the portion size.  For people with diabetes, three to four servings of carbohydrates is enough.

People with diabetes are not supposed to eat sweets or chocolate – As long as they are eaten moderately and combined with exercise, sweets and desserts can be eaten by people with diabetes.

You can catch diabetes from someone else – Although the exact reason why we get diabetes is still unknown, it is certain that it is not contagious like flu or common cold.

Diabetic people are more likely to get colds and other illnesses – Having diabetes does not increase the chances of contracting other diseases.  However, people with diabetes are advised to get flu shots because any illness can make diabetes more difficult to manage.

People with type 2 diabetes who are taking insulin failed in taking care of their diabetes properly – For most people, type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease.  At first, they can keep their blood sugar levels at a healthy level.  However, as the body gradually produces less of its own insulin, even oral medications may not be enough to keep the blood sugar levels normal, which is why they may resort to taking insulin shots.

Source:  American Diabetes Association