What is Diabetes?
Diabetes means that your blood sugar is too high. Your blood always has some sugar in it because the body needs sugar for energy to keep you going. But too much sugar in the blood is not good for your health.
Who's at Risk for Diabetes?
Your risk for diabetes goes up as you get older, gain too much weight, or if you do not stay active. Diabetes is more common in African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, American Indians, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Risk factors for diabetes include:
- Having high blood pressure (at or above 140/90)
- Having a family history of diabetes
- Having diabetes during pregnancy or having a baby weighing more than nine pounds at birth
- Weighing the same or more than the amount listed for your height in the chart below:
*At-Risk Weight Chart
*Body Mass Index
What Can You Do?
You can do things now to lower your risk for diabetes by:
- Keeping your weight in control
- Staying active most days of the week
- Eating low fat meals that are high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grain foods
Don't Wait for Signs
However, if you have any of these symptoms, contact your health care provider right away:
- Being very thirsty
- Urinating often
- Losing weight without trying