Diabetes Myths

Friday, November 13, 2015
Diabetes Myths

There are a lot of myths out there about diabetes – it's time to set the record straight.

Myth: It’s possible to have “just a touch” or a “little bit” of diabetes.
Fact:  There is no such thing.  Everybody with diabetes runs the risk of serious complications.

Myth:  Diabetes is caused by eating too much sugar.
Fact:  Type 1 diabetes is caused by genetics and unknown factors that trigger its onset. Type 2 diabetes is caused by genetics and life style factors.  Being overweight increases your risk for developing Type 2 diabetes and a diet high in calories from any source contributes to weight gain.

Myth:  Diabetes is not a serious disease.
Fact:  Diabetes is a growing epidemic with a devastating physical, emotional, and financial toll on our country.  It kills more Americans each year then AIDS and breast cancer combined.        

  • 1 in 11 Americans has diabetes… 1 in 4 adults has diabetes and doesn’t know it… And 1 in 3 adults are at risk of developing diabetes.
  • Every 19 seconds somebody is diagnosed with diabetes.  In the next 24 hours, 4,660 new cases of diabetes will be diagnosed.  That’s more than 3 friends, coworkers, family members, or neighbors every minute of every day.
  • Recent estimates project that 1 in 3 American adults will have diabetes by 2050 unless we take steps to stop diabetes.

Myth:  Gestational diabetes doesn’t need to be taken seriously because it will go away after a woman gives birth.
Fact:  Gestational diabetes puts both the mother and baby at a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life.

Myth:  People with Type 2 diabetes that need to use insulin are in “serious trouble”.
Fact:  Type 2 diabetes is a progressive disease, and most people with it eventually need insulin.  By using insulin to keep their diabetes in good control, people with Type 2 diabetes can often avoid complications and lead a healthy life!

Myth:  People with diabetes need to follow a special diet.
Fact:  People with diabetes benefit from the same healthy diet that is good for everyone else: Plenty of whole grains and fruit and vegetables, with limited amounts of fat and refined sugar.

Written by Beth Ries, RN CDE
Last modified on Friday, November 13, 2015