- What's the difference between blood sugar and blood glucose, and why does my doctor keep talking about it? Answer: They're the same thing. It's your body's main source of energy, and the central problem in diabetes is that your body can't regulate and use it properly on its own, so you'll have to keep it controlled with food choices, exercise, and possibly medications.
- Is insulin something I have in my body already, or is it a medication? Answer: It's both. If your body isn't making enough of the hormone insulin on its own, you'll have to take it in the form of medication.
- What is an A1C? Answer: It's a common blood test that shows how high or low your blood sugar has been on average in the past few months. It's also called a hemoglobin A1C test.
- What is hyperglycemia and how is related to hypertension? Answer: The first one means excessively high blood sugar, and the second means high blood pressure. Many people with diabetes also have high blood pressure.
- What is medical nutrition therapy? Answer: It's an individualized meal and snack plan that can help you control your blood sugar.
- Should I be worried about neuropathy, retinopathy, and nephropathy? Answer: Yes. Neuropathy is nerve damage, retinopathy is damage to the retina, and nephropathy is damage to the kidneys, and these are just some of the many complications diabetes can cause.
Most physicians don't have the time to tell you all the information you need to know. The person who will probably help you the most is a diabetes educator, a certified health professional whose mission is to help you understand and cope with the changes in your life.