Escaping Diabetes: “Knowledge Is Power”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that more than 100 million U.S. adults are now living with diabetes or prediabetes. The report finds that 9.4 percent of the U.S. population have diabetes. Another 25 percent, are prediabetic, a condition that if not treated often leads to Type-2 diabetes within five years. It is often just a matter of dietary modifications that do not have to interfere with your love of food or enjoyment of life. It’s a matter of knowing what to eat in moderation and what can be substituted for some of your favorite sugar-laden or high-carbohydrate foods.
Diabetes was the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S. in 2015. It is a serious disease that may often be managed through physical activity, diet, and the appropriate use of insulin and other medications to control blood sugar levels. People with diabetes are at increased risk of serious health complications, including premature death, vision loss, heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, and amputation of toes, feet, or legs.
“We always like to say knowledge is power and you have to kind of demystify and decompress peoples’ notions and anxieties so they don’t make decisions based on fiction or what someone else said,” Dr. Alexander Salerno, Administrative Head of Salerno Medical Associates (SMA), said of the importance of educating patients on the two greatest assaults on public health— diabetes and obesity.
One way to do it is through small classroom appointments, which is HIPAA-compliant. We take five to seven patients into a classroom setting for a 50-minute session on their shared disease state. Diabetes is one of the most common subjects. This shared approach is also used for other diseases and disorders.
Our certified health educator is a big part of our preventative approach, educating on low-calorie, low-sugar and Mediterranean diets, low-sodium diets and custom tailored meal plans for healthy choices with an accent on flavorful and tasty foods. There are sacrifices that have to be made to switch to a healthy diet foe those who have been eating—often overeating— processed high-sugar and high-sodium foods for years, but that doesn’t mean you have to abandon enjoyable meals.
We have the physicians, technology and programs to keep you a step ahead of the potential ravages of diabetes:
- One of the first places that the signs of diabetes appear is in the eye. We have RetinaVue, a diagnostic test and screen for diabetic eye. We transmit a picture of the back of the eyeball to a HIPAA-secure line to a board-certified ophthalmologist who can tell if there is a diabetic eye issue. It takes about 10 minutes. HIPAA-secure means nobody gets access to your medical information or health history unless you anoint them to do so.
- We do fittings for inserts and diabetic shoes that are DME (Durable Medical Equipment) certified. The feet are often the source of pain and discomfort for diabetics, and regular footwear often leaves pressure wounds. Patients may actually choose from a wide selection of shoies for men and women in our office. They may be measured for custom fittings, which we forward to the manufacturer. There are also custom-made inserts available.
- We’ll outfit you with seven-day continuous home sugar monitors that stay on the patient 24 hours a day. The device tracks whatever you do, and literally monitors your sugar every several minutes. It promotes a better understanding of the patient’s diabetic needs and how to treat and diagnose.
- We will screen and diagnose prediabetes, a pre-diagnosis of diabetes, if you will, and basically an early warning sign that if you don’t do something soon, you’re going to cross the line into Type-2 diabetes. There is almost always a direct relationship to weight, waistline and lifestyle changes to get blood glucose back to normal levels.
Call us at (973)672-8573 or make an appointment online!