What is Diabetes?
Diabetes mellitus (aka diabetes) is a serious and complex condition that causes high blood sugar.
In healthy individuals, the hormone insulin (produced in the pancreas) moves sugar from the blood into your cells to be stored or used for energy. With diabetes, your body either doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t effectively use the insulin it does make which means sugar remains in the bloodstream. This inefficiency to correctly clear/store and utilise blood sugars affects the entire body.
If complications develop, diabetes can have a significant impact on quality of life and can reduce life expectancy.
Who is Affected by Diabetes?
Three things you need to know about diabetes:
- Diabetes does not discriminate, anyone can develop diabetes throughout their life. Support is available to all Australians living with diabetes.
- Diabetes is not one condition. There are several different types of diabetes however all types are complex and serious. The three most common types of diabetes are type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes.
- All types of diabetes are complex and require daily management.
Why See an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD)?
Your Dietitian can help you manage your blood sugar by assessing your current diet and providing high-quality education to help you make appropriate food choices that will enable you to keep your blood sugar within healthy ranges.
Diabetes can be managed well, however the potential complications are the same for type 1 and type 2 diabetes including heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, limb amputation, depression, anxiety and blindness.
At Community Therapy our Dietitians understand that a diagnosis of diabetes may impact your mood as well as behaviours. We understand the impact of your diagnosis and can help you get back to a healthy life including going out engaging with family and friends, getting things done at work or doing the things you enjoy.
You may be feeling overwhelmed, frustrated, disappointed, sad/tearful, particularly if you have not felt supported by your current health care provider.
We can show you how to reduce the impact diabetes may be having on your life currently by providing high quality evidence-based resources and education. The best part is, as a mobile service we can come to you in the comfort of your own home.
How Often Should People with Diabetes see a Dietitian?
A minimum of one annual visit is recommended for those with well-controlled diabetes, however, you may require more intensive support, especially if you have just been diagnosed and are needing to make significant changes to your eating habits.
How diabetes is managed is dependent on the type of diabetes and each individual. It’s important to regularly consult your health care team.
For all types of diabetes, keeping blood glucose levels in a healthy range will help prevent both short-term and long-term complications. The ranges will vary depending on the individual and an individual’s circumstances. Your Dietitian will work in partnership with your GP, CDE and any other health professionals involved in your care.
Where Can I Find More Information About Diabetes?
If you have been diagnosed with diabetes you are eligible to register with the NDSS. It is FREE to register and provides subsidised products, education and support to people with diabetes. If you require support to do this, talk to our dietitians or your General Practitioner.
Other useful links:
- NDSS Helpline 1800 637 700
- NDSS Diabetes Infoline on 1300 136 588
- Website: www.diabetesnsw.com.au
Please contact us or call us on 1300 031 935 if you would like the assistance of our wonderful Dietitians.