Over/under betting waters are tricky, and losses can be devastating. Just ask the almost 30 million folks in America with Type 2 diabetes, many of whom are over- or undertreated.
The over: According to a study in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, 20% of people with Type 2 diabetes are overcontrolling their glucose levels with “intensive therapy,” risking hospitalization, even death, from hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). They’re taking one type of medication to achieve an A1C of 5.6% or under, or taking two or more types to achieve an A1C of 5.7-6.4%.
The under: Research shows only 67%-85% of oral medication doses and 60% of insulin doses are actually taken, upping the risk for neuropathy, retinopathy, and cardiovascular, kidney and digestive disease.
Betting on your health: We advocate working to reverse Type 2 diabetes using improved nutrition and regular physical activity. That can take you safely to a 5.7% A1C or lower.
If you’re taking meds for “intensive therapy” and have end-stage kidney disease, three or more chronic conditions (high blood pressure, arthritis, plus diabetes, for example) or are are 75-plus, ask your doc about setting a less-risky target for your A1C.
If you’re not following your medication regimen, tell your doctor, give lifestyle changes a try, and see a diabetes educator for help managing your disease more effectively.