How Diabetes affects Daily Life

How Diabetes affects Daily Life

Diabetes is a prevalent illness that is preventable for many people. In adults, type 2 diabetes accounts for around 90% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. The remainder of diabetes is related to type 1 diabetes, which is usually diagnosed during childhood.

How many people have diabetes?

Around 29 million Americans are living with diabetes, and of these, 8 million are unaware of their condition and not yet diagnosed. For adults aged 20 years and older, approximately 1 in every 10 people have diabetes, and for those older than 65 years, the numbers rise to more than 1 in 5. In 2012 alone, 1.7 million new cases of diabetes was diagnosed in the U.S.

Dietary Changes

Learning you have the life-changing diagnosis of diabetes means you will have to adjust your diet. This is one of the biggest challenges for many people. A change in diet involves eating foods that will not cause severe elevations in your glucose blood level. Dietary changes also affect family meal times, since you have to modify your food choices. This means you must eat smaller, healthier meals. It is often hard for family members to adjust, especially if they prefer high-carbohydrate foods that you must now give up.

To adjust to dietary changes, try out new tasty diabetic-friendly recipes. Introduce your family to healthy meals gradually, allowing them to eat things you cannot. Remember, growing children require many more calories than adults, so they can handle the carbs easier than you can. When dining out, choose restaurants that have diabetic meals, so you can enjoy the company of your dinner companions.


Once you have a diagnosis of diabetes, you will need to exercise regularly to regulate your blood sugar. This may be something that you are not used to doing. Start out with something low-impact and easy, such as swimming and walking. Gradually work yourself up to aerobic activities, such as jogging cycling, and dancing. Since excess weight is a major cause of diabetes, you may be able to regulate your glucose levels just by getting more physical activity.

Anyone who does not have an established exercise routine will have a hard time getting started. Choose an exercise you enjoy, and stick with it. It’s easier to exercise if you have a friend or family member do it with you. In addition, exercise at the same time each day, as a routine will make it easier for you.

Physical Symptoms

Diabetes causes many physical symptoms, such as fatigue, thirst, and excessive urination. Many people with this disease have trouble getting a good night’s rest. Women with diabetes often report a loss of interest in sex, and they may experience decreased vaginal lubrication. In addition, women with high levels of glucose often experience yeast infections, which cause vaginal irritation and itching.

Employment Issues

Diabetics can perform most any job that someone without the disease can do, but a few jobs may be restricted due to the type of work involved. Because you may have to administer self-injections of insulin or other medications, it may be awkward for both you and your colleagues. This can be made easier by finding a discrete, private place to administer your injections. Another problem that often arises for diabetics in the workplace is lost time from work. This can cause problems with employment. To avoid lost work days, keep your glucose under control.

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