Stop Diabetes® From Knocking You Off Your Feet

When living with diabetes, a person can have many different foot problems and some can be serious. But if foot care is part of a health routine, you can Stop Diabetes® from knocking you off your feet.

To get moving with the steps and resources needed, see below for a selection of foot care materials.

If you are a healthcare professional and are interested in learning more about helpful tools available, please visit our Health Professionals Resource webpage.

The National Diabetes Education Program also has foot care resources available in a variety of languages including materials for Asian Americans and Pacific Islander communities. Visit for more information.

Paying for Finn: A special-needs child

Our kid is nothing like your kid.
I don’t mean that in an every-child-is-unique-as-a-snowflake way. I mean that my wife, Alysia, and I are pretty sure that Finn hails from some distant, unknown planet.

The cost of Finn
As the Howes have learned, not only is paying for a child with special needs hugely expensive, but the costs don’t end when the child becomes an adult.
Caregiver $9,555
Diapers 1,800
Out-of-pocket care 5,400
Occupational therapy 10,200
Cost of lifetime care for an autistic person $2.3 million
Behavioral therapy for children with autism $40,000 – $60,000 a year
Cost of an adult with autism living in a residential facility $50,000 – $100,000 a year
His favorite foods include dirt and discarded water balloons. He spends hours a day in a headstand. He giggles maniacally at any expression of pain or distress. Recently I caught him shattering our water glasses on the patio. While I went for the broom, he dumped a quart of milk onto our kitchen floor. I tried to scold him, but he was already engrossed in one of his favorite hobbies: smelling his right foot.
What’s wrong with this child? There are a lot of ways to answer that question.
We have some acronyms, for instance: He’s been diagnosed with CVI (cortical vision impairment), ASD (autism spectrum disorder), and DCD (developmental cognitive disability). My favorite, PDD-NOS (pervasive developmental delay not otherwise specified), is the most accurate. It’s doctor-speak for “We have no earthly idea what’s wrong with your child.”
I often find myself grasping for otherworldly metaphors to explain our experience. Imagine E.T. came to your house but never figured out how to phone home. No spaceship. No tearful departure. Just you, the other humans in the house, and E.T. He can’t really communicate, so domestic dramas take place through wild gestures and improvised sign language.
“We are not of his world,” Alysia and I tell ourselves. “And he is not of ours.” The best we can do is help our alien child negotiate the baffling planet on which he’s found himself.
A quarter of U.S. households have a member with special needs. More than 8% of kids under 15 have a disability, and half of those are deemed severe.
What we share in common with the parents of all those special-needs children is that our kids have almost nothing in common: Within the “autism spectrum” alone there is far more diversity than there is within the rest of the human population. As one clinical psychologist told me, “Saying you study autism is like saying you study the world of non-elephant animals.”
Special-needs parents do share one thing: the eviscerating cost of our children. It’s one of the awful ironies of this unchosen life. Not only do we divorce more frequently and suffer from more mental health problems, but we pay dearly for the privilege.

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Popcorn at The Movies: too many calories, fat and salt

By Armen Hareyan on January 26, 2010 – 4:00pm for eMaxHealth
Food and Health

Eating popcorn at the movies is a classic, not perhaps not a very healthy eating practice, shows the analysis from the Canadian Center for Science in The Public Interest (CSPI). Have you ever wondered how much salt, calories and fat that bag of popcorn has? It’s just too much of all of it.

The big bags of popcorn sold in movie theaters in Canada contain up to 1,440 calories, more than half of what what we are supposed to swallow in one day. These numbers of calories may be similar with those in USA, as the bags and sizes are identical. The bags of popcorn also contain up to 44 grams of saturated fat. Health Canada recommends 20 grams of saturated fat consumption per day.

The salt is too much too. There are up to 1.5 grams of salt in big bags. This is roughly the equivalent of our daily needs.

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Sugar Substitutes Facts

There’s a lot of mystery inside those little pink, blue, and yellow packets. Despite decades of use, artificial and natural sugar substitutes still provoke lingering concerns among consumers. Here’s what you need to know about the safety of sugar substitutes, what they’re in, and how to use them to your advantage.
By Jessie Shafer, Marsha McCulloch, RD, LD, and Jane Burnett, RD, LD, 2013

The Facts About Sugar Substitutes
Some of the most frequent questions we receive at Diabetic Living are about sugar substitutes. The topic is polarizing: some of you love them, some of you hate them. Some of you are concerned about their safety, and some of you want tips for how to use them more. For many people with diabetes, sugar substitutes — which include artificial and natural sweeteners — provide solutions for cutting out excess calories and carbohydrate while still being able to enjoy sweet treats.
Sugar substitutes are among the world’s most scientifically tested food products, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has deemed them “generally recognized as safe.” The one sweetener that still carries a warning on its label is aspartame (the sweetener in Equal Classic and NutraSweet) because a small group of people — about 1 in 25,000 in the United States — has a genetic condition that prevents the metabolizing of phenylalanine, an amino acid in aspartame.
While there is still a lot of testing to be done as new products enter the market, we know a lot more about sweeteners now than we did when the first sugar substitute, saccharin, was discovered more than 100 years ago.

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Five Simple Nutrition Rules for People With Diabetes

By Armen Hareyan on August 25, 2005 – 6:49am for eMaxHealth
Book by University of Pittsburgh nutritionist for people who want to lose weight and improve diabetes control

Five simple rules can help people with diabetes lower their blood sugar, lose weight and live a healthier life, according to a recently published book called ChangeOne for Diabetes.

Using lessons learned from a study of overweight adults with Type 2 diabetes, nutritionist Pat Harper, M.S., R.D., presents a sensible and realistic program for people who want to lose weight and improve diabetes control.

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We all have things – big or little – that bring us hope every day. Share yours!

It took seven years until daddy and I finally got the news, we were expecting… We were over the moon happy. When daddy found out you were a boy he couldn’t wait to do all the stuff daddy and sons do… We had you November 10, 2009… You were perfect in every way.. You were hitting every milestone on time until about 18 month… You started losing skills like pointing to body parts, talking, and playing with other children… We thought it was because we were having another baby.. So we waited until you were 2 and a half.. We started early intervention… Thats the first time Autism was brought up… I was shocked and couldn’t believe it but we went ahead and made an appointment with a specialist.. November 30, 2012 we were told you had Autism Spectrum disorder.. All I wanted to do was cry but I held it in and stayed strong for you and daddy… I came home and decided I wouldn’t let it define you and I would be your voice until you could speak for yourself.. Its been 5 months since you were diagnosed and we’ve learned to handle meltdowns, routines, stares from other people, not being able to get your hair cut without a fight, sometimes not wanting to eat, staying dressed, sensory issues, and not saying I love you.. I wouldn’t change you for anything.. You are still perfect in every way and will always be… You are a blessing to me and I will love you forever… I’m ready to face your world with you…. My sweet baby boy…

Jamie Fosnock

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How High Blood Sugar Levels Affect Lungs and Heart

By Denise Reynolds RD on April 22, 2013 – 8:59am for eMaxHealth
Heart Disease Symptoms Diabetes Care Current News

One complication of diabetes is heart disease, as patients with chronically high blood sugar are at greater risk for high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke. Recent research has uncovered a new reason to keep blood sugar in check. The damaging effects can impede our ability to breathe properly and pump blood through the body.

Researchers with the University of Washington and Boston University have discovered that elastin, a type of protein found in organs such as the heart and lungs that help the tissue stretch and retract, is the source for an electrical property known as ferroelectricity, the ability of a molecule to switch charges from positive to negative. When exposed to sugar, some of the proteins can no longer perform their function, leading to a hardening of those tissues and ultimately the degrading of an artery or ligament.

“This finding is important because it tells us the origin of the ferroelectric switching phenomenon and also suggests it’s not an isolated occurrence in one type of tissue as we thought,” said co-corresponding author Jiangyu Li, a UW associate professor of mechanical engineering. “This could be associated with aging and diabetes, which I think gives more importance to the phenomenon.”

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Diabetes treatment more than doubled in eleven years

By Kathleen Blanchard RN on January 9, 2011 – 6:58pm for eMaxHealth
Diabetes Care

Survey findings show diabetes treatment has more than doubled in the United states since 1996.
In a report from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), 19 million people reported being treated for diabetes, compared to 9 million over the 11 year period, also resulting in huge increases in health dollar spending.

Total prescription drugs costs for diabetes treatment quadrupled, found in the survey. The cost of treating diabetes rose from $4 billion to $19 billion. For patients, the out of pocket cost spending for diabetes drugs increased from $495 in 1996 to $1,048 a year in 2007.

Other findings include an increase in people treated who are over 65 years old. The survey found a spike from 4.3 million to 8 million, and in the age 45 to 64 age group diabetes care jumped from 3.6 million to 8.9 million people. In the 18 to 44 year-old group, the increase went from 1.2 million to 2.4 million.

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How Asperger’s Complicates One Teen’s Search for the Perfect College

Jordan, Debbie, and Todd Schmidt. Courtesy of the Schmidt family
Jordan Schmidt, 17, is a high school junior set to graduate in 2014. He was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome when he was five years old. His parents, Debbie, 48, and Todd, 46, are in the midst of helping him find the right college. The family lives in Cherry Hill, New Jersey.

What kind of college we’re looking for.
Jordan: I don’t want it to be too big. It’s a social thing—if there are too many people, then I might be a little overwhelmed, or it might be too big of an experience. I also really want the school to have decent enough weather, small enough class sizes and a good film department with screenwriting.
Debbie: We’re going to fine tune our search to find schools that are close in proximity [to our home] and have what he wants. And eventually, it’s going to get to a point where it becomes a financial decision too.
Todd: That said, if he falls in love with a college that’s four hours away, but it’s the place where he has the best opportunity and where he feels the most comfortable—an it makes sense financially—then we’re going to give it a shot.

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The One Test You Must Ask Your Doctor For

By Timothy Boyer on April 18, 2013 – 11:30am for eMaxHealth
Lower Cholesterol Health on TV Current News

On the Dr. Oz Show, health experts tell viewers that being on statin drugs is one of the biggest flaws in medicine for treating high cholesterol and that the latest cholesterol test you need is one that your doctor should be evaluating your cholesterol levels with rather than traditional HDL/LDL cholesterol tests.

“Are the traditional cholesterol tests that we do even relevant?” asks Dr. Oz as he introduces doctors Stephen Sinatra and Jonny Bowden authors of the controversial book “The Great Cholesterol Myth: Why Lowering Your Cholesterol Won’t Prevent Heart Disease – And The Statin-Free Plan That Will,” who both say that cholesterol is not that cause of heart disease and that people with high cholesterol live longer than people with low cholesterol.

“Everything that the medical community believes about cholesterol is wrong,” states Dr. Bowden.

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