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Volume 72, Issue 62, Wednesday, November 15, 2006

News

Center leads diabetes battle

Free blood sugar testing is available today in an effort 
to raise awareness of disease

by JENNIFER EARLY
The Daily Cougar

The University Health Center is offering free diabetes screenings from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today.

The eighth annual event will allow faculty, students and staff to have their blood sugar checked and receive information about diabetes. Ideally, blood sugar level tests should be taken during fasting (no food for eight to twelve hours) or non-fasting (two hours since last meal) periods.

Chief Nurse Laura Moore said 113 students, faculty and staff were tested for diabetes during the 2006 spring semester.

More than 20 million U.S. children and adults have diabetes.

"(The Health Center) generally has a wide age group of people who come to get tested. The ages range from 18-year-olds to people in their 60ís," Moore said.

Of the 20.8 million people with diabetes, an estimated 14.6 million have been diagnosed, but 6.2 million people are unaware they have the disease, according to the American Diabetes Association.

People who are overweight, practice poor eating habits and have a family history of diabetes are at a greater risk for developing Type 2 diabetes, the most common form of diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association.

Diabetes symptoms are different from other illnesses with specific symptoms because people do not associate them with a potential illness.

However, if you are experiencing frequent urination, excessive thirst, extreme hunger, unusual weight loss, increased fatigue, irritability or blurred vision, you may have diabetes, Moore said.

According to the American Diabetes Associationís Web site, eating healthy and regular exercise can help prevent or delay the on-set of type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes, the body either cannot produce enough blood sugar controlling insulin or does not respond to it correctly. The disease, even in its early stages, increases the risk for heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, eye complications and other complications over time.

More information on diabetes or the free screenings is available at the University Health Center, (713) 743-5155.

Specific information on diabetes can be found on the American Diabetes Association Web site at www.diabetes.org.
 

 Send comments to dcnews@mail.uh.edu

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