Debunking Common Type 2 Diabetes Myths
Many myths surrounding type 2 diabetes perpetuate negative stereotypes and impede advances in care and quality of life for people living with the disease.
Examining and explaining these myths may help people see that diabetes should be taken seriously as a potentially deadly disease.
Myth 1: Diabetes is not that serious
Diabetes is one of the most rapidly growing epidemics of this age, especially type 2 diabetes. This disease causes more deaths per year than breast cancer and AIDS combined, although it is likely to be under-reported as a cause of death because of associated complications. According to the American Diabetes Association, two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke, indicating that this epidemic needs to be stopped.
Myth 2: Diabetes only and inevitably happens to those who are overweight or obese
Being overweight is a risk factor but not the only risk factor for developing type 2 diabetes. Many overweight people never develop diabetes, and many people in a healthy weight range do develop diabetes. Other contributing factors include family history, ethnicity, and age.
Myth 3: Diabetes is caused by eating too much sugar
As previously mentioned, being overweight is a risk factor for developing diabetes, and eating a diet that includes too much sugar increases the likelihood of obesity. However, it’s not necessarily true that sugar causes diabetes. The American Diabetes Association recommends limiting sugar intake to maintain healthy blood glucose levels, which will enhance insulin efficiency.
Myth 4: Type 2 diabetics don’t need insulin therapy
Diabetes is a progressive disease, meaning that type 2 diabetics don’t always need to take insulin injections from the outset but may develop a need for it later on. Conversely, with a proper diet and exercise, some diabetics may reduce their need for insulin injections. It all depends on individual history, health, and lifestyle.
Source: American Diabetes Association