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TheStreet Open House

Health Net Joins Effort To Educate Public About Rising Diabetes Rates

With November being American Diabetes Month, Health Net, Inc. (NYSE:HNT) is providing the public with information on how to help prevent diabetes and how to help live an active lifestyle after being diagnosed with the condition.

American Diabetes Month, promoted by the American Diabetes Association (ADA), raises awareness of the increasing incidence of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. In fact, ADA statistics show that nearly 26 million American children and adults have diabetes, while another 79 million have pre-diabetes and consequently are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

“Unlike type 1, steps can be taken to reduce the risks of developing type 2 diabetes,” said Jonathan Scheff, M.D., chief medical officer for Health Net. “Prevention is significant because diabetes can cause serious medical issues, including heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, blindness, amputation and nerve damage.”

Type 1 vs. Type 2

According to the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP), type 1 – which is the more rare form of diabetes – occurs when the body produces little or no insulin, requiring daily injections of insulin. The NDEP notes that those diagnosed with type 2 diabetes produce insulin, but their bodies don’t properly use the insulin that’s produced. People with type 2 – which is the most common form of diabetes – often need to take pills or insulin.

The ADA advises that a physician should be consulted if any of the following symptoms of diabetes are noticed:

  • Frequent urination;
  • Increased thirst or hunger;
  • Unusual weight loss;
  • Blurry vision from time to time;
  • Fatigue; or
  • Tingling skin.

Prevention is Proven

The NDEP points out that techniques such as losing weight and increasing physical activity can help those with pre-diabetes prevent or delay type 2 diabetes.

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