Kim Lyons was on WHO-TV, Channel 13, Des Moines, IA, today… And she was sharing some exercises with people to help relieve the pain of Neuropathy, and went on to simply address “Diabetes” in general terms, as a “complication of Obesity.” I am very appalled that this would be said to people on tv, or even at some seminar where they are supposed to get help and encouragement with their disease… So I wrote an e-mail to her. Here it is:
- Diabetes is NOT a complication of obesity. Yes, I repeat: Diabetes is NOT a complication of obesity. Simply put, if it were, ALL obese people in our world would have Diabetes, but only a small percentage of all obese people go on to develop Diabetes. MOST obese people will go on to live their lives, and will NEVER develop Diabetes. (http://www.phlaunt.com/diabetes/14046739.php; http://diabetes.about.com/b/2007/08/29/why-arent-all-obese-people-diabetic.htm) The problem with Diabetes is an issue with hormones, adinopectin in the fat, and issues with leptin and insulin. These are GENETIC issues... Which we, as people, cannot control, and which can be triggered by a huge number of things (obesity being only one of them), even including medications, pesticides (like Agent Orange) and other illnesses. To add more to the issue, when you state things like "Diabetes is a complication of Obesity," you create more stigma for those who were NEVER overweight and went on to develop Type 2 Diabetes, anyway! (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/24716880/; http://www.tudiabetes.org/group/thintype2diabetics) And for those who developed Type 1 Diabetes, instead, which is an autoimmune way of getting Diabetes. Every day, many, many children with Diabetes get bullied in school because the media wrongly portrays Diabetes as being all caused by obesity.
- Diabetes is not just a "general" concept, either. Diabetes has a HUGE host of Types, and variables. Diabetes can affect EVERYONE, from children, teenagers, and those in their golden years. We ALL develop complications, and many of us (such as Type 1) Diabetics CANNOT and WILL NOT have their symptoms magically 'disappear' from simply watching one's diet, and exercising. So, even though we ALL can benefit from the wonderful exercises you will share to help deal with the pain of neuropathy, or simply to get fit, not all of us are in the same place. Not all of us will be able to shed blood pressure medications, or insulin.