November is American Diabetes Month, dedicated to highlighting the significance and impact of diabetes on those affected by this disease and their families. The CDC reports that about 37 million Americans have diabetes, while one in five people don’t even know they have it. Any Lab Test Now® is committed to spreading awareness about health conditions like diabetes and doing all we can to be your partner in wellness.

What is Diabetes?

If you or someone you know and love has been diagnosed with diabetes, undoubtedly you are trying to learn all you can about it. Diabetes is a chronic condition affecting how your body turns food into energy. Food gets digested into glucose, and typically, insulin from the pancreas helps the body use this glucose. However, in diabetics, the body either doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t use it effectively, leading to elevated blood glucose levels.

Types of Diabetes

There are different types of diabetes; that are diagnosed depending on symptoms:

  • Type 1 is when the body can’t produce insulin and is usually diagnosed in children and young adults. It’s an autoimmune condition where the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. The exact cause of this immune reaction is still unknown, although genetic and environmental factors, such as viruses, may contribute. Without proper management, type 1 diabetes can lead to higher-than-normal blood sugar levels, which can result in serious health complications.
  • Type 2, the more common type, is when your body can’t use insulin the right way or can’t produce enough. Type 2 diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the way the body processes glucose, its primary energy source. The exact cause remains unclear, but it often relates to genetics, obesity, inactivity, or a combination of these factors. Over time, uncontrolled type 2 diabetes can lead to a host of health complications, including heart disease, nerve damage, and kidney issues.
  • Prediabetes is a critical stage that often precedes diabetes. It’s when blood sugar levels are higher than they should be but not yet high enough to be officially diagnosed as diabetes. Think of it as a wake-up call. According to the CDC, more than 88 million U.S. adults have prediabetes, and a shocking 84% might not even be aware they have it. The silver lining is that prediabetes can often be reversed through lifestyle changes like diet and exercise.

Symptoms To Watch Out For

It’s a good idea to be aware of the symptoms you may experience that can be a telltale sign of diabetes:

  • Urinate a lot, often at night.
  • Are very thirsty.
  • Lose weight without trying.
  • Are very hungry.
  • Have blurry vision.
  • Have numb or tingling hands or feet.
  • Feel very tired.
  • Have very dry skin.
  • Have sores that heal slowly.
  • Have more infections than usual.

How To Handle Diabetes

If you are diagnosed with diabetes, although there are no cures for the condition, you can live a good quality of life with some lifestyle modifications and careful monitoring. That’s how Any Lab Test Now® can help. We provide a number of lab tests that help you manage diabetes, like our DIABETES MAINTENANCE PANEL. This panel consists of four tests that provide valuable information to help you and your healthcare provider monitor your diabetes treatment. Those tests include:

  • Hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) – Measures your average blood glucose levels over the past two to three months.
  • Diabetic Urinalysis) – Looks for protein in your urine, which could indicate kidney problems.
  • Complete Blood Count (CBC) – Can detect anemia, infection, bleeding disorders, and more.
  • Comprehensive Metabolic Panel (CMP) – Measures your blood glucose and provides valuable information about your kidney function, liver function, and electrolytes.

Keep in mind, along with careful monitoring, there are a number of lifestyle changes you can make that can help you manage your disease:

1. Check blood sugar: Regularly checking your blood sugar levels can ensure you’re on the right track. It’s like routinely checking your car’s fuel gauge to avoid running empty unexpectedly.

2. Healthy eating: Watch your carb intake and focus on eating more proteins, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Understanding how different foods affect your blood sugar is a journey, one well worth taking.

3. Being active: Physical activity can help lower your blood sugar. It’s not just about hitting the gym — dancing, walking, or even gardening can count.

4. Medication: If prescribed, ensure you’re taking your medication as directed.

5. Coping mechanisms: Stress can affect your blood sugar levels. So, finding healthy ways to cope can be beneficial.

6. Regular check-ups: Routine visits to your healthcare provider can help you keep tabs on your blood pressure, cholesterol level, and other metrics.

Any Lab Test Now® is Your Partner in Health

We want to help you and your family stay healthy by providing answers about your wellness. At Any Lab Test Now®, we provide tests that give you tangible results. We provide the lab testing; you own the results and can use them as you choose. Call now to schedule an appointment at a location near you.