I thought this might be fun and informational at the same time for fellow Diabetics and people who want to know more. So, my question to you is this:
What myths have you heard (or that you know) about Diabetes? I will start with a number of myths that I found on the web
- Taking insulin can cause hypertension and hardened arteries.
Early tests lead to the suggestion that insulin may play a part in triggering processes associated with the development of hardened arteries but this has been proved to be incorrect and there is no evidence that insulin causes either hypertension or hardening of the arteries.
- Diabetes is a contagious condition.
There is no truth in this at all. It is believed however that individuals with diabetes have a genetic predisposition for the disease and that it may be set off by such things as viruses and drugs, including antibiotics. It is possible therefore that getting a common illness, or treating such illnesses with antibiotics, may lead to the onset of diabetes.
- Diabetics cannot eat candy or chocolate.
There is absolutely no reason why diabetics should not eat candy and chocolate, and indeed cakes and sweet desserts, providing they are consumed in reasonable small quantities and are only one single element of a normal and healthy diet plan.
- People with diabetes are prone to flu and colds.
There is absolutely no evidence to show that individuals with diabetes are any more likely than anyone else to catch a cold or flu. Diabetics must however try their best to avoid such illnesses (for example by having an annual flu shot) as illnesses of this nature can interfere with levels of blood sugar, and therefore make managing diabetes that much more difficult.
- Individuals with diabetes have to eat a special diabetic diet.
So called ‘Diabetic’ varieties of some foods which are often sold in health food stores are nothing more than a marketing ploy. People with diabetes should merely eat a normal balanced diet which is low in fat and which contains only moderate levels of both salt and sugar.
- Eating too much sugar can lead to diabetes.
Despite the fact that the reasons for diabetes are not entirely understood, it is known that excessive sugar consumption is not one of them. This said, consuming excessive sugar could well lead to a person gaining weight, which is certainly a factor in raising the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. It is however not the sugar but the increase in weight which you are carrying that may result in diabetes.
- People with diabetes should only eat very small quantities of carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates, which are found in a range of foods including beans, bread, cereals, pasta and rice and from which the body gets much of the glucose required for energy, are an important element of our diet, whether we are diabetic or not. Such foods also contain much of our essential fiber intake. The secret for people with diabetes is simply to ensure that carbohydrates are balanced with other food items and that your food portions are kept to a reasonable size.
So lets see what else other people know as myth.