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Tuesday, November 1, 2016
This National Diabetes Month, connect with your community for better health
NIH statement from Dr. Griffin P. Rodgers, Director, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
For many millions of Americans, diabetes is a lifelong burden. But it does not have to be a lifelong barrier to better health. This National Diabetes Month, the National Institutes of Health encourages people with diabetes and those who care for them to find the support they need, and for all people to gain understanding and offer support to those with this challenging disease.
Diabetes takes multiple forms. In type 1 diabetes, the body does not make insulin. In type 2 diabetes, the most common type, the body does not make enough insulin or it does not use insulin well. Both types can lead to heart, kidney, nerve, and eye diseases.
But people are not powerless when it comes to management of diabetes. Research led by NIH has shown that working to control blood glucose, or blood sugar, can have a lifelong effect on health, dramatically lowering the risk of many complications of diabetes.
NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases remains at the forefront of pivotal research to prevent, treat and, one day, cure all types of diabetes, for everyone.
For example, the ongoing Glycemia Reduction Approaches in Diabetes: A Comparative Effectiveness study (GRADE) is recruiting 5,000 people with type 2 diabetes to compare four diabetes drugs as an addition to the common first-line medication metformin to determine which drug is best and for whom. For people with type 1 diabetes, Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet screens more than 16,000 people with a family history of type 1 annually to find ways to delay or prevent the disease.
As President Barack Obama states in his Proclamation, if you have diabetes, or care for someone with the disease, you are not alone. Building a support network can help you stay healthy. And supporting a person with diabetes can start small. Ask your loved one to show you how he or she is managing the disease. What goals have been set? What gets in the way of reaching goals? How can you help?
For people with diabetes, managing the disease is a balancing act, and your needs can change over time. Caring for your health is a matter of trying and learning what works best for you. Family, friends, health care professionals, and communities all belong on your team.
More information on diabetes is available through the NIDDK and the National Diabetes Education Program, a joint program of NIH and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The NIDDK, part of the NIH, conducts and supports basic and clinical research and research training on some of the most common, severe, and disabling conditions affecting Americans. The Institute’s research interests include: diabetes and other endocrine and metabolic diseases; digestive diseases, nutrition, and obesity; and kidney, urologic, and hematologic diseases. For more information, visit www.niddk.nih.gov.
About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.
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