What every woman should know about menopause and diabetes
When people say you're sweet, it's usually meant as a compliment. But when your blood is too sweet or your blood sugar (glucose) is too high, it's a warning sign for prediabetes or diabetes.
And unless you act quickly, your body won't like it.
According to the American Diabetes Association, in 2012, 29.1 million Americans had diabetes, and more than half were women. And of the more than 29 million with diabetes, 21 million were undiagnosed.
It's not surprising that many women in perimenopause and menopause don't realize they have diabetes — the symptoms can be confused with symptoms of menopause. Frequent urination, night sweats, anxiety, mood swings, foggy thinking, dry itchy skin, and vaginal infections are common to both.
It's important to know if you have prediabetes or diabetes because diabetes is one of the most silently dangerous diseases we face. It's the No. 6 killer of women ages 45 to 54 and the No. 4 killer of women ages 55 to 65.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 1 in 10 U.S. adults has diabetes now, and if current trends continue, that figure could rise to 1 in 3 by 2050.
Why is diabetes so dangerous? Chronically high blood sugars silently damage blood vessels and nerves, and that can lead to:
Nerve damage (neuropathy) that leads to tingling and pain in feet and hands
Loss of vision
Feet infections and in some severe cases, amputation
Bone and joint problems
Skin infections and wounds that don't heal
Teeth and gum infections
There are two kinds of diabetes.
Type 1 (sometimes called insulin Continue reading