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Discovering Diabetes Commons Myths

Several accepted "facts" that may be heard or read in the press, magazines and on the Internet regarding diabetes; some of them are, in fact, myths. It is important that people with diabetes, pre-diabetes, and their loved ones have an accurate picture of the disease. Below are some diabetes myths:

Diabetes can be cured – False.
A cure for diabetes has not yet been found. However, diabetes can be treated, controlled and in some cases put in remission. Allowing them to manage their disease and lead normal lives.

People with diabetes should not exercise – False.
Exercise is important for people with diabetes, as it is for everybody else. Exercise helps manage body weight, improves cardiovascular health, improves mood, helps blood sugar control, and relieves stress. Patients should discuss exercise with their doctor.

Being overweight or obese will cause Diabetes - False.
Being overweight or obese raises the risk of becoming diabetic. They are risk factors, but do not mean that an obese person will definitely become a diabetic.

Diabetes is not serious – False.
Two thirds of patients with diabetes die prematurely from stroke or heart disease. The life expectancy of a person with diabetes is from five to ten years shorter than other people's. Diabetes is a serious disease.

If I take insulin, I will become dependent on insulin – False.
People take insulin when diet alone or diet with oral or non-insulin injectable diabetes drugs do not provide good-enough diabetes control, that's all.

Don't eat too much sugar, you will become diabetic – False.
Plenty of people eat foods that contain sugar and don't develop diabetes. A diet high in calories, which can make people gain weight, raises the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, especially if there is a history of this disease in the family.

Children can outgrow diabetes - False.
Children or Adults with type 1 diabetes will need to take insulin for the rest of their lives, unless a cure is found one day.

I have to go on insulin, this must mean my diabetes is severe – False.
Insulin helps diabetes control. It does not usually have anything to do with the severity of the disease.

Being Diabetic means I have to be on a special diet – False.
Diets that are recommended by doctors and specialized nutritionists recommend for diabetes patients are healthy ones; healthy for everybody, including people without the disease. There is no need to buy special diabetic foods because they offer no special benefit compared to the healthy things we can buy in most supermarkets.

Only children develop type 1 diabetes – False.
Type 1 diabetes can appear at any age.

Diabetics cannot eat bread, potatoes or pasta – False.  
People with diabetes can eat starchy foods. However, they must be portion controlled.

Diabetes can spread to another person - False.
Just like a broken leg is not infectious or contagious. A parent may pass on through their genes, a higher susceptibility to developing the disease.

If you have diabetes you cannot eat chocolates or sweets - False
People with diabetes can eat chocolates and sweets if they combine them with exercise or eat them as part of a
healthy meal.

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