Have you ever heard the saying, “timing is everything?” Well, it is, and wouldn’t you know that my day to write a blog post landed on World Diabetes Day (WDD).
You see, I recently received the official diagnosis that I in fact have type 1 diabetes.
It is not something many outside of my personal circle know about, and not something I’ve ever really discussed publicly, but if my story can encourage or help just one person, why not share!?
I am the proud mom of three precious little boys. With each pregnancy I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. For the sake of transparency and complete honesty, when I received this diagnosis with my first son, I was shocked… and frustrated. I did not possess many, if any, of the risk factors. My doctors encouraged me that this was just during pregnancy and that with adequate control I would most likely not see any lasting effects.
During my third pregnancy, things were very different than before and my body was not responding the way it had in the past. Something further was happening in my body. Through multiple doctors’ visits and tests, it was confirmed that I in fact had developed slow-onset type 1 diabetes. Over the course of 6 months, I went from fully diet controlled with no issues, to 100% insulin dependent. It was a slow progression and one that was challenging to process.
Day to day through this journey I have felt many different emotions regarding my type 1 diagnosis. Confused, frustrated, exhausted, worried, encouraged, and often times… thankful. As a believer in Christ, I know that God is able and will work all things together for our good for those who trust in Him. I believe this and am seeing evidence of this daily. His good is not always my definition of good. I have a tendency (actually an expectation!) to want perfection in all areas and can be prideful. If type 1 diabetes won’t humble you in this area… I don’t know what will! I have been on the end of striving for perfection with my diabetes and doing everything exactly right, only to find a reading that is mind boggling… Type 1 diabetes isn’t exactly known for it’s rhyme and reason :) . But guess what… there is freedom from these thoughts and expectations. Perfection isn't a requirement!
As a dietitian, I have been so thankful for the baseline understanding of the process my body is going through. I have a new understanding, level of respect and deep passion to help those who come in my office who maybe have a diabetes diagnosis of their own. I have been given a new ability to relate, encourage, teach and guide each of these individuals.
When we are in health situations that we probably (definitely) wouldn’t have picked for ourselves, we can make an effort to learn and grow, and even in the hard, there is always something to be thankful for. Everyday isn’t easy, but our health and well-being is always worth it!
So let me say, Happy World Diabetes Day!
World Diabetes Day was created in 1991 with the intention to draw “attention to issues of paramount importance to the diabetes world and keep diabetes firmly in the public and political spotlight.” As a dietitian, professionally, I have always had a genuine passion and interest in educating and creating awareness for those with diabetes, now, even more so. I am always so encouraged and motivated by those who empower themselves through learning and creating lifestyle choices that will serve them and their health for years to come. I want to share a few statistics regarding diabetes and where to look for reputable sources you can utilize to obtain more information for yourself or loved ones.
A Few statistics from the World Health Organization (WHO) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
It is estimated that 422 million people worldwide have diabetes, with about 30 million here in the US.
90% of people with pre-diabetes do not know they have it.
There are 2 major types of diabetes: Type 1 diabetes and Type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is characterized by the body’s lack of insulin production. Type 2 diabetes is characterized by the body’s ineffective use of insulin.
A third common type is Gestational Diabetes. Gestational diabetes is first seen in a pregnant woman who did not have diabetes before she was pregnant.
People with diabetes can live long and healthy lives when their diabetes is detected and well-managed. Diet, lifestyle, medication, routine physical exams, and other preventative measures can be used in combination to manage effects.
Type 2 diabetes accounts for approximately 90-95% of all diagnosed cases.
Type 1 diabetes accounts for approximately 5% of diagnosed cases.
Early diagnosis is key, so know your fasting glucose numbers by getting regular screenings from your doctor. There is no shame in a diagnosis of diabetes. Targeted lifestyle changes really help your health outcomes.
Are you wanting more information? There are several great resources to check out:
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- The World Health Organization (WHO)
- International Diabetes Federation (IDF)
- The American Diabetes Association (ADA)
- The National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP)
- JDRF for Type 1 Diabetes
As a note: Your insurance may cover visits with a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). If you are wanting to prevent diabetes, have a diagnosis of prediabetes or are a person with diabetes, give us a call at 888-422-8070. We have offices in Plano, Rockwall and Lubbock, Texas along with virtual counseling options.
No information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.