Diabetes Myths (An Intern’s Perspective)Posted on November 8th, 2017
More than 30 million Americans have been diagnosed with diabetes, and 1.5 million more Americans are diagnosed every year. Despite the prevalence of diabetes, myths about it still exist, so let’s take a look at a few and clear the air!
MYTH #1 You can’t eat carbohydrates if you have diabetes.
Actually, you can! It’s all about moderation. Be aware of the amount of carbs per serving as discussed in your diabetes education class, and pair your carbs with a good source of protein at meals and snacks. If you haven’t had diabetes education with a Registered Dietitian, now is a great time to schedule that appointment with a Reasor’s Registered Dietitian!
MYTH #2 Eating sugar causes diabetes.
This is not quite true, either. The cause of diabetes is very complex; it can be a mixture of genetics, lifestyle, and other factors. It is vital for those with diabetes and those without to approach added and refined sugars in moderation in their diet. A healthy well-balanced diet should primarily consist of quality carbohydrates from sources like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and dairy.
MYTH #3 Being Overweight or Obese cases diabetes.
While being overweight or obese is certainly a risk factor for diabetes, it is not likely the only cause for a diagnosis. While a healthy weight for each body size is an important factor for reducing your risk for several different health conditions, it is not the end all be all in determining whether or not you will be diagnosed with diabetes.
MYTH #4 You can’t exercise if you have diabetes.
Physical activity is important for everyone, and it especially important for those with diabetes. Light to moderate physical activity such as walking, gardening, or biking can help you better control blood sugars and weight. Keep in mind that you and your doctor may need to adjust your medications or insulin as you begin your workout routine. If you have neuropathy or other complications of diabetes it can make physical activity a challenge, so you should definitely discuss what level of physical activity is safe for you with your doctor.
MYTH #5 Diabetes is not a serious disease.
While it can be managed, and the progression slowed in most cases, diabetes is still a disease that should be taken seriously. Taking steps to change your lifestyle, diabetes education, routine exams, checking your blood sugar, and management of your prescription medications are all important in the maintenance of your diabetes. Take control of your diabetes instead of letting it control you!
About the Bloggers:
Stacey Vang is dietetic intern with the University of Oklahoma.
Reviewed by Heather Steele, RD/LD, a Reasor’s Registered Dietitian and board eligible Certified Specialist in Pediatrics. In her free time Heather enjoys cycling and cooking. Heather offices out of the Reasor’s off 71st & Lynn Lane and also covers the 101st & Elm location for all of your food & nutrition needs!
Information included does not constitute medical advice and should only be used as a general recommendation for a healthy diet. Reasor’s Registered Dietitian’s opinions and recommendations are of their own; they are not paid to endorse any products.