RadioMD: The Dr. Leigh Vinocur Show

Diabetes & Men: How Does it Affect Your Health?

November 7, 20149 min
More than 29 million Americans have diabetes, and one in four people don't know they have it.There are two types of diabetes, type 1 and type 2. Usually type one emerges in children and young adults and occurs when your body doesn't produce enough insulin, which is a hormone that helps convert sugar and starches into energy. Type 2 diabetes occurs when your body produces too much insulin and therefore can't use insulin properly.According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 29 million Americans have diabetes, and one in four people don't know they have it.Diabetes is a silent health threat that has been dramatically on the rise in the past few years. Diabetes complicates heart disease, kidney disease and impotence in men.What are the symptoms?Increased thirsts, gaining weight or losing weight, fatigue, blurred vision, extreme hunger, excessive urination, increase of belly fat (arms, legs are normal size but around chest and belly are thicker), and erectile dysfunction.Is there a way you can prevent diabetes?Whether diabetes runs in your family or not, it's important to get annual physicals and blood tests. Certain blood tests like Hemoglobin A1C (HA1C) testing (how high your sugars have been over a long period of time). Another test is a fasting plasma glucose test (FPG) determines if you have prediabetes that measures your blood glucose levels after you haven't eaten or drank in the past eight hours. If your blood glucose level is 126 mg/dL or above means you may have diabetes.What about lifestyle changes?If you have diabetes, especially for type 2 diabetes, the biggest lifestyle change you can make is weight control with diet and exercise. Other lifestyle changes you can make is learning how to manage your stress levels, keep up with your foot, dental and eye care, avoid alcohol and smoking, and also monitor your cholesterol and blood pressure.What else do you need to know about diabetes and men's health?Dr. Thomas Tobin discuss the symptoms associated with both type one and type two diabetes, and if there are ways to help prevent your chances of type 2 diabetes.

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