Diabetes is a huge issue in the African-American community. Out of all adults 20 years or older, over 13 percent have diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association. Not only is the risk almost double than that of whites, but it’s also more likely that life-threatening complications occur. So, proper education on diabetes is not just helpful, but essential.
Here are seven common myths about diabetes:
1. Myth: “It’s not even that serious.”
Truth: As the 7th leading cause of death in the U.S., diabetes is definitely serious. It can be controlled, but its severity shouldn’t be challenged.
2. Myth: “You get diabetes from eating too much sugar.”
Truth: Although excessive sugar in your diet can cause you to gain weight, it’s not sugar alone that causes diabetes. Being overweight does increase the risk for type 2 diabetes, though. (Type 1 diabetes is caused by genetics and unknown factors.)
3. Myth: “If you have diabetes, you can’t really exercise.”
Truth: It’s a myth that if you can’t exercise with diabetes because of low blood sugar caused by insulin. You may not even be on insulin — metformin and sitagliptin are both common oral medications that don’t lower your blood sugar. And, exercise can help you control your weight and symptoms.