Diabetes mellitus, or simply diabetes, results from the inability of a person to produce or respond to insulin. It is a prevalent disease that affects more than 170 million people worldwide. There are three types of diabetes – Type I (insulin dependent), Type II (insulin resistance), and gestational (which occurs only during pregnancy). People with diabetes typically experience excessive thirst and have high glucose level in the blood and urine. Several factors can contribute to the development of diabetes, such as genetics, sedentary lifestyle, high blood pressure, smoking, and an elevated cholesterol level. Even though diabetes is a serious health condition, through medications, a healthy diet, regular exercise, and patient education, many diabetics are able to keep their glucose levels in control.
“I consider myself a deep thinker. I find the world around me fascinating and burst with delight when I learn something new. For this reason, I place a high value on education. When people are informed about what occurs in their bodies, they are more likely to make healthier informed choices. A problem cannot be fixed without first being identified. 1 in 3 people with diabetes do not know they have diabetes. As a SNPhA diabetes chair, my goal is help people lead healthier lives by raising awareness and providing education to under-served populations where it is most needed.”
“I am passionate about diabetes because it is a very prominent disease in our country that people do not understand fully, especially the differences between type 1 and type 2. I have family members who have been diagnosed with diabetes and I feel it is important that other family members of those with diabetes understand the disease. I think that because diabetes is popularly talked about does not mean people actually go and find out more information about it. This is why my co-chair and I have a duty to inform as many people as possible about what really goes on with diabetes.”