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Diabetes continues to be a problem for Americans and managing diabetes once you have developed it is not easy.  According to the American Diabetes Association over one third of all Americans will develop type 2 diabetes by the year 2050 unless radical changes are made in our lifestyle and eating habits.  Over 57 million people have pre-diabetes or metabolic syndrome with a very high risk of developing diabetes and over 24 million children and adults already live with type 1 diabetes.  The difficulty lies not only in managing your blood sugar to prevent serious, life-threatening side effects, but keeping your health insurance to cover you if any serious complications arise.  If you have diabetes and you aren’t paying attention to your glucose levels every day, you could be setting yourself up for severe problems.  Not getting to the doctor and the high cost of medical services shouldn’t be an excuse. 

For those who don’t have diabetes, of either type, it sounds like an easy process: eat the right foods, check your blood sugar and use insulin, if necessary.  But it’s not easy!  There are so many things that can affect your blood sugar.  If your pancreas is working just fine, your body handles daily, small changes without any active intervention from you.  Stress, lack of sleep, skipping a workout, a little too much salt, and obviously the wrong amount of sugar in your diet can interfere with balanced blood sugar.  What if you have a stressful job or get a poor night’s sleep from stress or a sick child?  Most of us deal with these little surprises every day and just plow ahead.  If you have diabetes the small change in blood sugar caused by these little “inconveniences” can be enough to raise your blood sugar consistently.  Over time, the imbalances can cause nerve damage leading to blindness and amputations.  Insurance companies see people who do not manage their blood sugar well as high risk, making it difficult to get health insurance or raising the chances of losing it.  As if the disease and the stress of trying to manage it isn’t bad enough, now you don’t have health insurance either.  Talk about piling on the stress and making matters worse!

There is an alternative to expensive doctors’ visits for monitoring your diabetes.  ANY LAB TEST NOW® can fill the gap between doctor’s appointments by providing quick, inexpensive testing to track blood sugar levels and diabetes maintenance.  Heart disease is a serious complication of diabetes and maintaining your blood sugar level over time can reduce this risk.  The Diabetes Maintenance Panel looks at your Hemoglobin A1c which is a measure of your average blood sugar for the last 2-3 months.  In combination with a Complete Blood Count (CBC) test, a fasting glucose serum test and a Diabetic Urinalysis to look at kidney function, diabetics can utilize the information to make adjustments to their diet and/or activity level.  Watching for stressful situations, which no one can avoid completely, and then making changes to account for fluctuations in glucose levels can mean the difference between saving your sight and limbs and being eligible for health insurance if things do get out of whack due to large surprises.

Diabetes is not a disease to be taken lightly.  It requires serious attention, EVERY DAY, and can’t be ignored.  Don’t be another statistic, get tested and get your facts straight so that you are the one in control…not your diabetes!