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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 29 million Americans live with diabetes and Type 2 diabetes is the most common, making up about 90 to 95 percent of all cases.

Type 2 diabetes is very different from type 1 diabetes. A person diagnosed with type 1 doesn’t make any insulin, whereas people living with type 2 are insulin resistant, which can lead to a reduction in insulin production over time. In other words, their body doesn’t use insulin properly and also may not make enough insulin, so it’s harder for them to maintain a normal blood sugar level. Type 2 diabetes often has no symptoms, though some people experience symptoms such as including increased thirst, hunger, and urination, fatigue, blurry vision, and frequent infections. But the good news is that the disease is controllable.

This is a chronic illness requiring lifelong maintenance. You can’t remove the disease, but you can offer support, comfort, and kindness in a number of ways.

🍽 Eat right. There’s no specific diabetes diet, but you can plan meals including vegetables, whole grains, fruit, low-fat dairy, healthy fats, and lean protein sources.

🏃 Get active. Exercise 5 days a week for 30 minutes daily. Walk for 10 minutes post meals.

⏳ Monitor. Regularly check blood sugar levels; know your A1c levels. Check blood pressure, cholesterol, eyes, feet and teeth.

💊 Know your medication. Know your pills and insulin, understand how they work and take the correct doses at the right time as specified by your physician.

🚭 Reduce risk. Maintain BMI between 18.5-22.9 kg/m2. Quit smoking. See your doctor regularly for tests and follow-ups.

❤️ Cope well. Get support from your family, friends and health experts. Set realistic goals and work towards them.

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