Diabetes ABCs

Diabetes ABCs: Z

Zumba
By Sandy O’Keefe
Program Manager, Chronic Disease Education

Z

Zumba is a Latin-inspired dance fitness program featuring exotic rhythms set to high-energy Latin and international beats. Before participants know it, they’re getting fit and their energy levels are soaring!  It’s easy to do, effective and totally exhilarating, often building a deep-rooted community among returning students. Zumba is geared to people of all fitness levels. Dance moves are shown with modifications so students can workout at their current skill and ability level.  According to www.Zumba.com, over 14 million people of all shapes, sizes and ages take weekly Zumba fitness classes all over the world. Try a class today!

Diabetes ABCs

Diabetes ABCs: Y

You

Y

You are the center of your care team.  Our mission is to empower you to take charge of your health and live well, but ultimately you are the one in control.  Decide what motivates you to make healthy changes in your life – whether it’s exercising regularly, learning to prepare healthy meals, or simply checking your blood sugar regularly.  It’s a lot to handle, but know that no one expects you to be perfect.  If you start to feel overwhelmed or think you might be suffering from diabetes burnout, talk to your health care provider.  Mass General also offers regular diabetes support groups at the main campus and regional HealthCare Centers.

(Content reviewed by MGH Diabetes Center)
Diabetes ABCs

Diabetes ABCs: X

Xylitol
X

Xylitol is a natural sugar alcohol found in the fiber of certain berries, oats, mushrooms and other fruits and vegetables. It’s as sweet as sugar but has 40% less calories than sucrose and is absorbed slower in the body which leads to fewer calories and lower blood glucose response.

Xylitol is commonly found in dental products due to positive effects on dental health and also found as a sugar alcohol in certain low calorie or low carbohydrate foods. When using as a sugar substitute the ratio is 1:1.

(Post content reviewed by MGH Nutrition Department)
Diabetes ABCs

Diabetes ABCs: W

Wound Care
By Eileen B. Wyner, NP
Bulfinch Medical Group

W

Wound care refers to the treatment of chronic skin irritations that can be common and chronic in people with poorly controlled diabetes. Chronic skin breakdown or ulcers may occur for many reasons:  trauma; blisters, corns or bunions caused by poorly fitting shoes. Treatment of these lesions requires specialized care by specifically trained personnel such as podiatrists, surgeons, and certified wound nurse specialists who work in conjunction with the patient to ensure good healing.

Diabetes ABCs

Diabetes ABCs: V

Victoza
By Eileen B. Wyner, NP
Bulfinch Medical Group

V

Victoza is a new medication in the class called glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1). This is an injectable medication used for the treatment of Type 2 Diabetes taken once a day, with or without food. It works by helping the pancreas to release the right amount of insulin when blood sugar levels are high. It also slows the emptying of the stomach and may decrease appetite and cause weight loss.

Diabetes ABCs

Diabetes ABCs: U

Ulcer (foot)

U

A foot ulcer is a deep open wound, usually on the bottom of the foot that can be  slow or difficult to heal.  If you’ve lost feeling in your feet from neuropathy you might not feel it if you have a cut or blister.  Continuing to walk on even a minor injury can irritate the skin, causing it to break down and develop into an ulcer.  This is a serious condition and immediate medical care is required to prevent the spread of infection.  The good news is by taking good care of your feet you can prevent foot ulcers from developing in the first place.  Check your feet every day for blisters, cuts and sores and call your health care provider if you notice anything that isn’t healing right.  Always wear comfortable, well-fitting shoes and avoid going barefoot.

(Content reviewed by MGH Diabetes Center)
Diabetes ABCs

Diabetes ABCs: T

Team

T

Managing diabetes can be difficult, but you don’t have to go it alone; your care  team is there to help.  Members of your team can include:  your primary care physician/endocrinologist, a Certified Diabetes Educator and a nutritionist.  Other teammates include a podiatrist to help care for your feet and an eye care provider (an optometrist or ophthalmologist) to help care for your eyes.  And don’t forget your support network of friends, family, and peers.  Everyone has an important role in helping you to live well with diabetes.

(Content reviewed by MGH Diabetes Center)