Diabetes Archive


Better blood sugar tracking: A benefit for heart health?

A continuous glucose monitor (CGM)—a small device placed on the arm or belly that measures blood sugar every few minutes—may help people with diabetes recognize the eating and exercise habits that hinder (or help) them control their blood sugar. CGM readouts, which are displayed on a smartphone or portable monitor, show your blood sugar values, trends, and the percentage of time that your blood sugar is in a "good control" range. Medicare covers CGMs for people who inject insulin at least three times a day or use an insulin pump to control their blood sugar.

Is metformin a wonder drug?

Metformin, a medicine prescribed to treat type 2 diabetes, also has cardiovascular benefits and is used off-label to treat other conditions. Interest is growing in its potential to help lower risks for other serious health problems and even slow aspects of aging, but which of these benefits, if any, apply to people who do not have diabetes?



Sugar: How sweet it is... or is it?

As more Americans are considered obese, including children, a study examined what effect a voluntary reduction in the sugar content of foods would have on rates of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and health care costs. But in the absence of such a change, there are ways you can reduce your sugar intake without having to give up sweet treats entirely.

Do people who have COVID-19 go on to develop other diseases?

Evidence suggests that people who recover from COVID-19 have an increased risk for developing new health problems, including heart attacks, high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, muscle inflammation, blood clots that travel to the lungs, strokes from clots or hemorrhages, or psychosis. This is in addition to permanent damage that can result from having COVID, including damage to the lungs, heart, kidneys, brain, or other organs; and debilitating fatigue, difficulty thinking, and other symptoms that make it hard to function normally at work or at home.

Should you worry about prediabetes?

Approximately 88 million Americans—more than one in three—have prediabetes, a condition in which the average amount of sugar in the blood (glucose) is high but not high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. Among people who develop prediabetes, older ones are less likely than younger ones to eventually develop full-blown diabetes. Still, they should have their glucose levels checked, as prediabetes can put them at high risk for heart attack and stroke.

Can you have a heart attack and not know it?

Silent heart attacks often go unnoticed because they don't produce any symptoms or only mild symptoms that are mistaken for something else, such as heartburn or muscle pain. They are thought to make up from 20% to 60% of heart attacks and can raise risk of a future heart attack or related problem. Both women and men are at substantial risk. Making lifestyle changes and being proactive about managing risk factors for heart disease can help prevent future heart-related problems.

Tooth loss truth: It's no longer about the tooth fairy

Older Americans are keeping their teeth longer, but the prevalence of tooth loss is higher among people with chronic disease or overall worse health. However, loss of a tooth can also result from tooth decay, periodontal infection, or accidental trauma. Aside from accidents, most people should be able to prevent tooth loss by following good oral care habits.

Extreme heat: Staying safe if you have health issues

Climate change has made life-threatening heat waves increasingly common across the globe. Anyone with health issues will have a more difficult time in extreme heat, including older people and people with diabetes, heart disease, asthma, and other conditions. Be prepared by knowing how to identify and treat heat-related illness, and how to plan for hot days.

Heart disease risk: Partnering on lifestyle change can help

For people who have risk factors for heart disease, it's important to make lifestyle changes like losing weight, getting more exercise, and eating a healthier diet. Longstanding habits are hard to change, but managing the challenge of healthy eating is easier if people have a partner who is supportive and involved in making food choices.

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