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We all know that diabetes is a growing problem in the US but did you know that by 2050, one in three Americans could be diagnosed with the disease? According to a recent CDC study, that statistic will be a reality if more effort is not put into prevention. Currently, one in 10 Americans has diabetes and with the population living longer, the numbers are only growing. So what can we do to help put an end to type 2 diabetes? Here are two big ways we can stay healthy and lower the nation’s diabetes rate.
1. Lower Obesity Rates

Obesity is a major risk factor for developing diabetes. In the US, about 25% of adults and nearly 30% of kids are obese. If we can lower those numbers, getting the diabetes numbers down will be much easier. Some obvious, but not so simple, ways to lower obesity include lowering body weight and increasing physical activity. In fact, if you can lower your body weight by 5-7%, make healthier eating choices and exercise 150 minutes per week, “it can reduce the development of diabetes by close to 60%,” says the director of the CDC’s division of diabetes translation, Ann Albright, PhD, RD.

2. Get Screened

Even if you are not obese you can still develop diabetes, so it’s important that you get screened. You may learn that you have what’s called pre-diabetes which means your glucose levels are higher than they should be and you are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Learning this early will help you manage your diet and keep on top of your glucose levels.

Unfortunately there are some factors that cannot be affected by diet change and exercise. Some of us are just genetically predisposed to develop type 2 diabetes. If one or both of your parents had it or if a sibling has it, you are more likely to develop it yourself. Also, type 2 diabetes is more common among non-Caucasians so it’s important that you get screened early if you are in either of these categories.

Chances are the diabetes rate will continue to rise simply due to increased population numbers but it will rise much slower if we all do our part.

Exercise, eat right and get screened. It’s time to fight back!

skelly

Biomedical Engineer who earned his degree from The Johns Hopkins University & Columbia University. Named one of Forbes’ Top 30 Under 30 in 2013. Co-Founded America’s first Pure Play healthy vending company in 2003.
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