Young diabetics forgetting to monitor blood sugar

It seems that young people with diabetes could be putting their health under yet more strain, as new figures show they are struggling to monitor their blood sugar levels.

Diabetes among young Australians, a report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), revealed that in 2010, there were 31,300 young adults registered with the National Diabetes Services Scheme.

The majority (79 per cent) had Type 1 diabetes, meaning that keeping an eye on blood sugar levels was highly important.

Susana Senes, a spokesperson for AIHW said: "The good news is that on average, enough blood glucose testing strips were bought for children with Type 1 diabetes aged zero to 11 years to meet recommended daily testing levels."

However, the report showed that there is still room for improvement, as people between the ages of 19 and 24 with either Type 1 or 2 diabetes bought fewer testing strips than other age groups.

There were around 15,500 hospitalisations among young Australians in 2009-10, with the highest rate among those between the ages of zero and 11. Most of the treatments involved stabilising the diabetes, being diagnosed with the condition or issuing an insulin pump.

There are all sorts of complications that can arise from not treating diabetes properly, the AIHW warned, including ketoacidosis, nerve damage, foot ulcers, eye and kidney disease. Carefully managing the condition is essential, which means keeping an eye on everyday diet choices.

Figures from Diabetes Australia show that as many as 280 Australians develop diabetes every day and by 2031, it is estimated that 3.3 million people will have Type 2 diabetes. However, up to 60 per cent of cases can be prevented by maintaining a healthy lifestyle and controlling blood glucose levels.

Diabetes is currently the sixth most common cause of death in Australia, making it important that action is taken to combat the condition.

Naturally Sweet Stevia, SweetLeaf Stevia and Naturally Sweet Xylitol are all appropriate for diabetics because they does not raise blood sugar levels. If in doubt, please ask your doctor.

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