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Diabetes

November is Diabetes Awareness Month.

Diabetes is a condition that occurs when the body is not able to produce insulin. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 30.3 million people in the United States have been diagnosed with diabetes.

The two most common types of diabetes are:

  • Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body makes little or no insulin. There is no cure for this type, but it can be controlled with insulin shots or pump, changes in eating habits, and exercise. This type is often diagnosed in children, teenagers, and young adults.
  • Type 2 diabetes develops when the body does not make or use insulin. There is no cure for this type, but it can be reversed or controlled through medication, changes in eating habits, weight loss, and exercise. Type 2 diabetes occurs more often in adults, but it can develop in children and teens as well.

Nerve damage, glaucoma, stroke, and kidney disease are some of the complications that can occur as a result of diabetes. Lifestyle improvements such as healthy eating, increased physical activity, and weight loss will help reduce these risks. If you think you may be diabetic, contact your physician.

Additional health and wellness information

If you're a Highmark member, you have access to a secure, members-only website that provides information about diabetes. To access your Highmark member website, select the service region noted on your member ID card. After logging in, select the "Health & Wellness" tab and type "diabetes" in the search field.