American Diabetes Alert Day

An elderly man sitting on a park bench drinking water from a sports water bottle

Raising Awareness About the Risks and Symptoms Associated With Diabetes

Do You Know Your Diabetes Risk?

According to the American Diabetes Association, 1 in 3 adults in the United States has prediabetes and is at risk for type 2 diabetes—yet 85 percent of people don’t know they have it.

American Diabetes Alert Day, observed annually on the fourth Tuesday of March, raises awareness about the risks and symptoms associated with diabetes.

There are two types of diabetes:

Type 1 Diabetes

Type 1 is a condition in which the body doesn’t make insulin. This begins mostly in children and young adults.

Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 is the most common type of diabetes and a condition in which the body doesn’t make or use insulin well. Your risk of Type 2 diabetes can be higher if you are overweight, inactive, or have a family history of diabetes.

You can start by taking the risk test from the American Diabetes Association—and encourage others in your life to take it. It is so important to know your risk so that you can make changes now to your lifestyle that can help prevent Type 2 diabetes.

What Can You Do to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes?

  • Eat healthy.
  • Lose weight.
  • Become more physically active.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Take medication—discuss this with your doctor.

What Are the Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes?

  • Feeling tired
  • Experiencing increased hunger or thirst
  • Losing weight without trying
  • Frequently urinating
  • Experiencing blurred vision

Unfortunately, these symptoms can develop slowly over time and go unnoticed—this is likely why millions of Americans are unaware that they have prediabetes. We strongly encourage you to learn more about diabetes in older people from the National Institute on Aging and discuss any symptoms or concerns with your doctor.


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