The Increasing Cost Of Diabetes In America

                                  Emily Zoeller, EP-C,CHWC                                      Wellness Coordinator & Health Coach

Diabetes – it affects more than 30 million people in America, with 84 million additional people who are prediabetic. This is a costly problem that is growing at an alarming rate. From 2012 to 2017, the cost per year for a diagnosed diabetic in America rose, about 133.5% rise in cost over the 5 years.

Not only is it expensive for the person diagnosed with the condition, but also for the insurance plan, and costly on the person health. For those with Diabetes, they cost the insurance plan 2.3 times more than someone without diabetes.

Even though costs have risen for this disease it itself, there is also other factors to consider – Associated conditions like neuropathy, amputation, liver disease, vision issues, and more.

In 2017, 4,110 people a day were diagnosed with Diabetes, and watching your diet and exercise can significantly help to avoid prediabetes, and therefore diabetes. So, what can be done to help now?

Physical Activity: Get out and get active! Haven’t exercised in a while? Some exercise is better than none. Start small, gradually working your way up in time and intensity.

Be Mindful of your Nutrition: Watching your sugar and carbohydrate intake. Watching your daily intake of sugar can be harder than you think. When looking at nutrition labels, use this tip to get some perspective: for every 4g of sugar in a product, that will be one teaspoon of sugar. Try switching out simple carbohydrates for complex carbohydrates.

Know Your Numbers: Stay connected with your physician. Having a relationship with your physician can be very important. Knowing your Glucose and A1C values are essential.

Eye Bet You Didn’t See This Coming

Jamal Mack
Wellness Coordinator

Along with beginning the transition from summer to fall something else to look out for in August is National Eye Exam Month. That’s right, this month is exclusively focused on the health of the body part commonly thought of as “the windows to the soul”. If that doesn’t make your eyes pop with excitement, check out these stats:

  • 80% of vision problems worldwide are avoidable or even curable
  • The average blink lasts for about 1/10th of a second
  • Newborns don’t produce tears. They make crying sounds, but the tears don’t start flowing until they are about 4-13 weeks old.
  • Even if no one in the past few generations of your family had blue or green eyes, these recessive traits can still appear in later generations
  • Out of all the muscles in your body, the muscles that control your eyes are the most active

Unlike most body parts the eyes have limited protection from outside forces, this means we are required to do more on our behalf to take care of them. Somethings you can do is wear sun glasses that block 99% to 100% of UVA and UVB rays if you are outdoors and wear safety glasses if you are in a hazardous environment. If you are constantly looking at a computer or phone screen look away every 20 minutes to rest your eyes. Another useful tip that some people overlook is making sure your prescription for your contacts or glasses are up to date.

Keep in mind though, we can still protect our eyes on the inside as well. Our daily diet has a direct effect on our eyes and all their internal working parts. Some things you can do to improve your eye health from the inside is eat foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids acids, zinc, vitamins C and E. Below are some common foods that qualify

  • Spinach, Kale, Collard Greens
  • Salmon and tuna
  • Eggs, nuts, beans, and other non meat protein sources
  • Oranges and other citrus fruits
  • Oysters

Experts recommend that you should have a routine eye exam at least once a year, maybe more depending on your age. Stores such as Sears, Target, Lens Crafters, and America’s Best all have great deals on eye exams and eye care products. Often times, a free eye exam will be given with the purchase or intended purchase of a certain eye care product. So if you can’t clearly remember the last time you got your facial headlights examined take advantage of the spirit of the month and get them checked out! Eye hope you enjoyed using those reading lens in taking time to look at this blog. HAPPY NATIONAL EYE EXAM MONTH!!!