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Simple Lifestyle Choices Can Prevent Diabetes

blog diabetes

Simple lifestyle choices can help prevent lots of diseases and health conditions.

No matter how old you are, it’s important to eat healthy, move your body regularly and keep your weight in check. Let’s take a look at one ongoing health condition that affects millions of Floridians: diabetes. Your lifestyle may help you avoid it.

What is Diabetes?

If you have diabetes, your body has trouble changing your blood glucose (blood sugar) into energy. As a result, you have too much glucose in your body. That can lead to things like heart disease, blindness and problems with your kidneys and eyes, to name a few.

  • Type 1 diabetes occurs when the pancreas stops making insulin. Insulin is the hormone that helps get blood glucose into your cells for energy. Without insulin, blood sugar levels get too high. Because this is an immune system function, there’s no way to prevent Type 1 diabetes. People with this condition usually need to take insulin every day.
  • Type 2 diabetes is the more common. It can run in the family or be brought on by being overweight, not exercising enough and having high blood pressure. This means there are things you can do to help avoid it!

A simple blood test can show you and your doctor if your blood sugar is too high. Coverage for a blood sugar test depends on the plan you’re in.

  • Most individual and family plans cover an annual checkup visit for a $0 copay.
  • If you have health coverage through your job, check your benefits for the exact cost.
  • If you have a Medicare health plan, talk to your doctor about your risk for diabetes during your Annual Wellness Visit. If you need a diabetes screening, there’s no extra cost to you as part of your Medicare health plan as long as you use a network provider.

How to Know If You’re at Risk: Prediabetes

Luckily, there’s a warning sign between having healthy blood sugar and a diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes. This is called prediabetes, and it can increase your risk of heart disease and even stroke. If you have prediabetes, you should take quick action to get your blood sugar back to normal.

Take this quick, one-minute quiz to see if you’re at risk of having prediabetes.

If your risk is high:

  • See your doctor right away for a blood test'
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