Diabetes is an epidemic sweeping through our community and most of us are unaware until it is too late. It has maimed most of our family members and become evident that preventative measures don’t seem to be crossing our minds. November is Diabetes Awareness Month and it is time we take sure measures to ensure this epidemic doesn’t effect the next generation.
Almost 26 million children and adults (8.3% of the U.S. population) in the USA have diabetes, and about 79 million Americans have pre-diabetes and are at risk for developing the disease, government statistics show. One in three Americans may develop diabetes by 2050 if something isn’t done to reverse the trend, government statistics suggest. —USA Today
When you have diabetes, the body is either not making enough or using the hormone called insulin correctly. If the problem arises, insulin, which helps glucose get into our cells where it can be used for energy, creates a build up of sugar in the blood. This damages nerves and blood vessels.
There are two major forms of diabetes: Type 1 and Type 2. Type 2 accounting for 90 to 95% of diabetes cases. African, Mexican and Native Americans are disproportionately diagnosed with the disease, having an increased risk of developing the Type 2 disease. Diabetes, which can be mostly driven by weight gain, also tends to run in the family. If it is not maintained or prevented, it could lead to heart disease, stoke, amputation, blindness and kidney failure.
Enter Dr. Mary Washington, a Houston nephrologist, who struts a petite frame but packs a mighty message. With powerful words, she cuts deep in her music and art by emphasizing her disappointment in a community that continues to be victimized by diabetes. She is completely fed up with the death she sees at the hand of unhealthy eating and a lack of exercise. While her message can be harsh at times, it comes from a place of love and sadness. Her created character, Rapper MD, wants to spread an important message though her music, poetry and speaking.
Rapper MD will be the first to tell you a healthy diet and workout regimen can help prevent and maintain diabetes. Don’t worry, you don’t have to lose excessive weight all at once, but there are small steps you can take to get started:
- A bowl of fruit a day
- Leave a bottle of water by your bed at night
- Add fresh vegetables to your diet
These and many other helpful tips can be found on the Rapper MD’s site, www.rappermd.com. On the site you will find helpful videos, speaking engagement information and more literature on how you can stop diabetes in it’s tracks.
This Thanksgiving, limit your shares of Grandma’s pie, try a little less gravy, more vegetables and lots of water. You will still be able to enjoy your food, family and a long healthy life.