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LETTER: Understanding the risks of diabetes

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To the Editor:

There are an estimated 387 million people worldwide suffering from diabetes and this number is expected to increase to 600 million by 2035. Diabetes has reached global epidemic proportions. The good news is diabetes is preventable through education, awareness, and early intervention.

Since the 1980s, Lions have made concerted efforts to stem the growing tide of diabetes — through awareness building events, screening activities, and donations to LCIF's grant programs, which support the development of comprehensive healthcare systems.

As National Diabetes Month draws to a close, we encourage all to remain aware of the effect of diabetes on the health of South Dakotans. Symptoms of undiagnosed diabetes include hunger, weight loss, frequent urination, excessive thirst and slow healing of sores or infections. Those who have had a weight gain or a change in activity are at risk for developing diabetes and should discuss risk with their health care provider.

Robyn Tyler, RN, MS, CDE

Lions District 5SE Diabetes Awareness Chair

Sioux Falls