Understanding risk for Type 2 Diabetes

LAURIUM — March 27th is recognized as American Diabetes Association Alert Day, health experts across the Keweenaw are encouraging people to take a simple and anonymous, one-minute test to find out if you are at risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes. According to the organization, nearly six percent of the American population has diabetes.

One in three American adults is at risk for developing type 2 diabetes, a serious disease that can lead to complications like kidney failure, heart disease, stroke, blindness, and even amputations.

“Diabetes affects the foot in many many ways especially with circulation and neuropathy that it often causes. Which means that they’re becoming numb on the feet. They can’t feel certain things that might be in the shoe perhaps a nail, a piece of glass, a piece of metal. It can be very debilitating and sometimes fatal for some patients,” said Dr. Daniel Reminga, a Houghton-based podiatric surgeon.

Reminga deals with these issues on a regular basis and says that nervous system damage affects about 60 to 70 percent of people with diabetes and is a major complication that may cause diabetics to lose feeling in their feet or hands.

While Reminga offers footwear specific to diabetic patients, Aspirus Keweenaw is encouraging people to take a simple and anonymous, one-minute test to find out if you are at risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes and says that the first step is learning your risk factor. You can access the test HERE.

Although the American Diabetes Association says many are at risk, the disease can often times be prevented simply by maintaining a proper diet and monitoring sugar levels in the blood.

“Watch what you eat. Take the medications if you’ve been prescribed medications. Get lots of exercise. Walking is one of the best exercise for diabetics. If you’re not on a medication, often just walking will help prevent you from getting on a medication,” said Reminga.

For more information about diabetes care at Aspirus Keweenaw, call (906) 337-6560.