Tag: diabetes misconceptions

Diabetes Jokes – When is Enough, Enough?

This week comedian Jimmy Kimmel made a joke referencing diabetes: “Thank you for the cookies Kelly Ripa – you are sweeter than diabetes”.

Many in the diabetes community responded to this post on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram with their objection to an insensitive comment. Many are frustrated with how diabetes a life-threatening illness, is taken so lightly. But many have also expressed how it’s just a joke and to not take things so seriously.

But when is the line crossed? When is enough, enough?

Question is: What makes diabetes so funny? What makes the threat of losing one’s life or limbs funny? What makes the thought of not waking up in the morning funny? Or what about the idea that you might not be able to afford to live?

Express your views.

How can we challenge this issue? How can things change? When is the public going to realize we need help? Or that we need a cure? Is this something that’s never going to change? What are we doing wrong?

We see diabetes talked about in the movies, on television, and it’s all the same ignorance. It’s punchlines perpetuating misconceptions about diabetes. But we don’t see cancer, MS, and other illnesses being joked about. Just diabetes, why is that? The same jokes, the same lines, and nothing ever changes.

What came we do as a community to fix this?

Do you mind the jokes? Why or why not?

**Leave your comment/view point answering these questions.

10 Things Not to Say to Someone With Diabetes

Having diabetes, it’s not unusual to come in contact with someone who is misinformed about this disease. I, for one, did not know anything about type 1 diabetes prior to being diagnosed. I try to keep this in mind when I hear ignorant comments that may be well intentioned.

While someone may just be unaware, some comments can even come off as rude or insensitive. A lot of the misinformation about diabetes comes from the media. It’s hard to tackle the misconceptions out there but I do my best to educate those around me.

I have to admit, there’s days where I’m just frustrated with diabetes that an ignorant comment is the last thing I want to hear. It’s those times where I feel blessed to have a community that understands.

 

Here is 10 Things NOT to Say to Someone With Diabetes:

 

1. Should you be eating that?

(I’m just going to continue eating because I either bolused already or I’m low).

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2. You don’t look diabetic

Okay?….

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3. It could always be worse

Gee thanks!

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4. If you diet and exercise it will go away

Sorry, but diet and exercise won’t fix my broken pancreas.

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5. Did you eat too much sugar as a kid?

(I’m just going to pretend like you didn’t just ask that).

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6. My grandma has diabetes and lost her leg

Thanks, that’s exactly what I needed to hear.

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7. How do you inject yourself? I could never do that..

It’s simple.. it’s either life or death.

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8. I heard cinnamon can cure diabetes

Really?! If that were true then I wouldn’t have diabetes right now.

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9. Do you have the bad kind?

How is there a good kind?

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10. Shouldn’t you have this disease all figured out?

If only…

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What other comments do you hear a lot? Post below.


“Diabetes Isn’t Even That Bad”

“Diabetes Isn’t Even That Bad” …

When I hear this statement it frustrates me. Not because I wish to allow someone’s opinion or thoughts to affect my life.

Not because it is the worst possible condition, because I know it’s not.

I’m extremely thankful for everyday I’m alive, the technology, advancements, and the chance to live a long life.

But because of how UNTRUE that statement actually is when you truly understand the disease.

Diabetes doesn’t seem bad until it enters your life…

Diabetes is when your body basically wages war on itself. In Type 1 Diabetes the immune system attacks the cells in the pancreas and no longer produces insulin. Now it is an everyday battle to maintain normal blood sugars that affect how we feel, our moods, and how we are able to function.

Diabetes is where children are dying from diabetic ketoacidosis because the doctors thought the child had the flu.

Diabetes is where parents are not able to sleep throughout the night, constantly checking their child’s blood sugar, being in fear of their child having a seizure or going into a coma.

Diabetes is where you wake up in the middle of the night drenched in sweat, feeling lost and confused, and having to fight to save your own life by guzzling juice or eating whatever you have nearby.

Diabetes is being dependent on an insulin that costs more than most people pay per month for mortgage. Having to find ways to make food stretch so that you don’t have to go without your insulin to stay alive.

Diabetes is constantly having your eyes, kidneys, and feet checked to see how the diabetes is affecting your body. There is always the risk of complications and the unknown is scary.

Diabetes is finding yourself exhausted all the time, fighting through some really bad days and wishing you could be healthy again.

Diabetes is where you’re constantly managing a disease that will never get better. You sometimes beat yourself up for the lows and high blood sugars, but deep down you know you’re doing the best you can.

Diabetes is having people say “lose weight” or “try this diet” and it will go away. Or someone telling a parent their child’s diabetes was caused by “eating too much sugar”.

Diabetes is living with a disease that could cost you your life while politicians blame the people who have diabetes for costing the healthcare system money. As if it’s our fault that our immune system decided to attack our pancreas.

Diabetes is life-threatening, costly, and an all-consuming disease. And the more we acknowledge “the bad”, the more we can change how this disease is perceived and can help those who battle it everyday.



 

Fuller House Misinfroms Viewes With a Joke About Juvenile Diabetes

Fuller House Misinforms Viewers With a Joke About Juvenile Diabetes

(Courtesy of Netflix)

Last week season 2 of Fuller House (sequel to the original Full House) hit Netflix. A popular sitcom that many have grown up with, watched, or have heard of.

As soon as the season was released on Netflix, many of those in the diabetes community shared their thoughts of disappointment. About a comment that was made in a Halloween episode referencing “Juvenile Diabetes“.

The scene is of one of the child’s friends saying how “uncool” the Fuller House was for giving out raisins instead of candy, and for handing out Juvenile Diabetes pamphlets.

While the comment is used for comedy as a punchline; it’s a misconception that sugar causes diabetes and it feeds into the stigma many live with everyday. Juvenile Diabetes also known as (Type 1 Diabetes) is an autoimmune disease and can cause serious complications or death if not properly treated.

Sugar will NOT cause “Juvenile Diabetes”.

Childhood obesity is a real issue and raises the risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, but there is absolutely no link between obesity and Juvenile Diabetes or (Type 1 Diabetes).

Having such a lovable and relatable cast, it’s important for these influencers to understand the impact that is made. Stating that diabetes is linked to sugar and unhealthy food gives the assumption or notion that if you eat healthy you will never get diabetes. Which is very untrue!

The joke isn’t ideal for people living with diabetes or their loved ones. But it’s an optimum opportunity to educate and to set the record straight.

For just educating one person, could make a world of difference.

What I Wish Others Could Understand About Diabetes

What I Want Others To Understand About Diabetes

What I Want Others To Understand About Diabetes

Diabetes is an invisible illness. It can’t be explained in a few short words, nor can you fully understand diabetes unless you personally endure it.

I’m constantly explaining to others what it takes to take care of myself on a daily basis. That it wasn’t caused by poor eating or lack of exercise, and there isn’t a simple fix and everyday brings its own challenges.

As much as I’m tired of battling this disease every day. I’m also tired of feeling misunderstood. I’m tired of being judged and feeling like I have to explain myself. I want others to understand about diabetes and how it’s not a food disease.

Diabetes isn’t just a matter of taking insulin and watching what I eat. Our bodies are meant to work like machines, where the pancreas is a vital organ and plays a huge part in keeping our bodies functioning properly by dispersing energy to sustain life. Mine just happens not to work, so by taking insulin it keeps me alive and I have to do the work in place of my pancreas.

The big misconception surrounding diabetes is that “insulin is a cure” to which it is NOT.

I’m not a pancreas, I’m only a human trying to act as one, and everything is done with trial and error. I could do the same thing every day and still receive different results. Everything has to be considered for example: what I eat, how much insulin I take, my activity levels, stress, hormones, sickness, and the list goes on. It’s like walking a tight rope, trying to stay in between the lines, while combating factors thrown at me that I can’t always control.

Diabetes not only affects me, but millions of others, and all very differently.

I wish more people could understand diabetes for how it truly affects those that battle it every day, including the families. This disease not only takes a toll physically but mentally.

 

What I Want Others To Understand About Diabetes:

That when I’m quiet or having a bad day, it just means I’m fighting my hardest.

Even though I take the insulin that I need to stay alive, there is still many highs and lows, ups and downs. I still don’t feel great all the time. The same insulin that’s meant to keep me alive, is the same one that can take my life away. 

If I pass on eating something you offer to me, it’s not that I don’t want to eat it. But it might not be the best choice for me at the time.

When I’m feeling tired, it’s not always about how much sleep I got the night before. This “tired” doesn’t go away.

When my blood sugars are low or high, my emotions tend to be everywhere, and it has nothing to do with you. So please don’t take it personally.

That just because I’ve had diabetes for “x amount of years” doesn’t mean I’ll master this disease down to a T. Managing diabetes is an art not a science.

Diabetes is frustrating and makes me feel weak at times when I’m fighting to be strong. I’m exhausted from fighting and working as my pancreas.

I can’t be as spontaneous as I’d like to be. I always have to take in account my diabetes first and plan around that.

I can have sugar just like you, as long as it’s in moderation and with proper insulin dispersion.

Matter of fact, I don’t have limitations. I just have to listen to my body.

why managing diabetes is a full-time job

My A1C (average blood glucose test) does NOT define me. It does no justice to the blood, sweat, and tears I put into this.

I don’t wish to be compared to other diabetics. We all fight our own unique battle. With our own journey, obstacles to overcome, and story to tell.

Most importantly, I don’t want to be pitied. There’s far worse, but at the same time I want others to understand the severity of this disease and that it shouldn’t be minimized or feel less important.

My hopes for the future consist of a cure. A cure that will not only free me but millions of others battling everyday. Even while it is manageable, it is still life threatening.

By giving others the opportunity to understand about what I go through and why I avidly talk about it, it will help others become more aware of this disease. And therefore making coping for those battling much easier until a cure is found.


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11 Type 1 Diabetic Misconceptions

11 Type 1 Diabetic Misconceptions

I’ve had Type One Diabetes for quite some time now – 14 years to be exact – and within those amount of years I’ve become fully aware of how misunderstood Type One Diabetes actually is. I’ve heard an endless amount of diabetic misconceptions. It’s hard living in a world where you’re placed in a category with Type Two Diabetes as well. Don’t get me wrong, we all fight a hard battle – but it’s each our own. It’s two completely different diseases in my eyes.

I’m here to set the record straight…

(11) Type 1 Diabetic Misconceptions:

1. “Did you get diabetes from eating sugar or gaining weight?”

Type One occurs when your body attacks the cells in the pancreas that produces insulin. There’s no specific rhyme or reason behind why this happens. It’s possible to occur due to genetics or environmental causes, but there is no significant proof to back these theories. But what I ate or my weight was definitely not the cause. This is on the top of the list of most common diabetic misconceptions.

2.”Should you be eating that?” 

Yes, I can eat that slice of cake! The myth that diabetics can’t have sugar needs to be thrown out the window right now! I can eat sweets in moderation, along with proper insulin management.

3.”Does using needles hurt?”

Of course, they hurt but I don’t have a choice in the matter. I don’t enjoy having to poke myself several times a day. But unfortunately, I have to in order to stay alive.

4.”My Grandma has diabetes”

Okay, stop right there. Yes, there are Type One Diabetics out there that are grandmothers, which I can totally relate to. But when you finish the sentence with “well she has Type Two” – “she manages with pills” – or “she just has to diet”,  let’s not compare.

5.”Shouldn’t you have this figured out by now?”

No, I wish diabetes was that easy. It’s like trying to figure out a Rubik’s cube every day, only for something to change, and have to start all over again. I can never perfect my diabetes. I constantly need to make adjustments, and all I can do is try to manage my diabetes to the best of my ability with proper diet, insulin, and exercise.

6.”Can you have kids?” “Will they get Diabetes?”

Yes, you can have children with diabetes. You’re considered at a higher risk, but with proper control before and during pregnancy, you’re less likely of complications. Statistics show the odds may be greater with your children getting Type One, but on the other hand, there’s plenty of Type One Diabetics (such as myself) where this diagnosis doesn’t run in the family. So who’s to really say?

7.My sugars low – “Does that mean you need insulin?”

Absolutely not! That would be life threatening in this situation. When my sugar is low I need the energy from food to be able to function normally.

8.”What’s your blood sugar?” “Is that good or bad?”

Honestly, I really can’t answer this one. I’m constantly aiming for a perfect blood sugar number. Trying to keep my blood sugar in a good range is like walking a tightrope, hoping not to fall. I live in a different normal of what’s “good or bad” with my blood sugars, compared to non-diabetics. I have to maintain a good control while being able to function every day.

9.”Let me give you some advice.”

Are you a Diabetic? Are you a physician? If not, just please stop! Just because you can talk the talk – doesn’t mean you can walk the walk.

10.”It could be worse.”

Of course, it could be. I’m thankful that I have a disease that can be managed and can still live a long life. But please don’t make light of the struggle that I go through. It’s not the best situation, but I’m making the best out of it.

11.”I heard there’s a cure.”

There is no cure, however, there continues to be research conducted in order to find a cure. Currently, there are future prospects, but all we can do right now is keep fighting and pray for a cure in the near future.

What’s are some diabetic misconceptions that you despise? Please share! ***