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Around the Diabetes Rumor Mill – Debunking Commonly Held Beliefs

1)    Sweets are completely forbidden for Diabetic Patients

No need to panic! As long as a healthy diet and exercise is the rule and not the exception in your typical day, enjoying the occasional treat here and there will not wreak havoc on your current condition. Limitations might be the word to describe it best. However, sugary treats must be preceded by a low carbohydrate meal. Because there is no nutritional benefit to the great majority of desserts, it should not pervade the healthy diet and exercise regimen by becoming the norm. Proper management of diabetes should always by practiced.

2)    Consuming high quantities of sugar causes diabetes

Not per se. Research has shown diabetes arises as a result of several variables, namely, gene profile, environmental and behavioral factors. Also, high glucose levels are not necessarily indicative of the refined sugary products available for purchase at the grocery store. A real risk factor for diabetes type 2 is obesity and sedentarism, so exercise and a healthy balanced diet should greatly benefit those with diabetes and those trying to prevent it.

3)    People with diabetes must eat a special diet.

This depends on what you consider ‘special diet’. Well, we can say that in order to lead a truly healthy life, diet certainly plays an important role. After all, a balanced diet benefits everyone, not just diabetics. Foods high in fiber, low in fat, lean protein and taking it easy on the candy bars which offer no nutritional benefit are all contributors to a healthy diet.

4)    Diabetes is contagious.

This one is preposterous. Rest assured, diabetes is NOT infectious. However, there are genetic factors that increase your likelihood of one day developing diabetes.

5)    Insulin is required only by diabetics.

Every human being requires insulin. Insulin is responsible to transporting circulating blood sugar to our cells in order to be broken down for energy. Diabetics have a deficiency in amount or effectiveness of insulin, a hormone we absolutely need in order to carry out a normal functioning metabolism.

6)    People who are obese can develop diabetes

Absolutely not true. Diabetes type 1 for example is strongly linked to genetic components and is usually found in young people, even the leaner ones. In diabetes type 1, the disease is autoimmune. Excess weight is not a causal factor in diabetes type 1. Even in diabetes type 2 where there is resistance to insulin, does not confine itself to an overweight person, rather, it can affect any person with any body type. Granted, we find obesity prevalent among diabetes type 2 patients, but it is not limited to an overweight condition.

7)    Chances of contracting the flu are higher with diabetes.

This is also not true. Most likely, this myth came about from the fact that if a diabetic person DID contract the flu, it would definitely be more difficult to manage. So, being diabetic does not increase your chances of contagion but it does make it more difficult to recover.

8)    Women who are diabetic should avoid pregnancy

For most women, pregnancy is a joy and a blessing. Thankfully, their ability to give birth does not diminish, nor does their outlook during and after pregnancy as long as diabetes is being properly managed and fought. Follow your doctor’s advice on keeping blood glucose in check as this is crucial to a healthy pregnancy.

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