Diabetes Misconceptions and Clarifications

misconceptionDiabetes is a very serious illness that oftentimes comes with stereotypes about poor eating habits and being overweight. Diabetes affects nearly 10 percent of the US population. However, the misconceptions about this disease can make it even more difficult for patients.


Roughly 1/3 of the people that have diabetes are not aware that they have this disease. This means that there are many people that are making poor decisions about their health. Here are some common misconceptions about diabetes.


Diabetes is caused by too much sugar or obesity. Diabetes is commonly associated with poor eating habits and obesity. However, it is not so simple. There are many types of diabetes and the most commonly known ones are Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is caused by genetic factors. Gestational diabetes is more likely to be caused by changes in hormones during pregnancy. Diabetes can also be temporarily or permanently caused by medications and surgery. The majority of people that have Type 2 diabetes are only slightly overweight or are of normal weight. While high sugar consumption can lead to obesity, it does not necessarily cause diabetes.


Diabetic people are more likely to get the flu. Diabetes does not make a patient more likely to get viral infections such as influenza. However, they are more likely to develop serious complications which may result in hospitalization.


Diabetes patients must maintain a strict diet. When some diabetes patients first begin treatment for diabetes, they might believe that they will never be able to eat sweets or carbohydrates again. However, controlling diabetes does not require a diet that is much different from a standard healthy diet.


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