November is National Diabetes Month with today, November 14, being World Diabetes Day.  I am a Type 2 diabetic.  I consider myself one of the fortunate ones because I do not have to take insulin injections.  I watch my diet and take one pill in the evening. Before I was diagnosed ten years ago, I never had any symptoms of diabetes, or if I did, I didn't give them much thought.  My physician discovered it during routine blood work when I had strep throat.
Since being diagnosed with diabetes, my life has definitely changed.  My fingertips get sore from poking them with needles for blood testing.  I now read food labels for carbs and sugar content.  I watch my intake of processed foods such as bacon and hot dogs. Bacon is a once in a while treat. I drink a lot of water, I mean a lot!  Water and green tea have become my beverage of choice.  How I miss sweetened iced tea.  French fries are also a rare treat, however, I do eat sweet potato fries.  Cereal?  Nope.  You won't find any in my cupboard.  Each diabetic has a different "trigger" to blood sugar spikes.  I've found that mine include saltine crackers, barbecue sauce (I use locally produced honey instead), and beef. Admittedly, I do grill up a juicy ribeye steak or have a burger once in a while.  I'm not saying I don't cheat on my diet, but I try very hard to be careful.  Some days it's very difficult to be good.
One of my diabetes side effects is a sudden drop in my blood sugar levels. I can usually tell when that happens because my eyes get blurry, my stomach becomes unsettled and I feel very shaky.  I know then I need to raise my sugar level by drinking Pepsi or eating a spoonful of peanut butter.  Having a drop like that is very hard on my body and for a day or two afterward, I feel like I've been run over by a truck.
Diabetes is no laughing matter, friends.  It can lead to heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney disease and limb amputation.  Please check out Diabetes.org for more information and if you suspect you or a loved one may have diabetes, contact your physician.
I am a face of diabetes.