Health director shines light on diabetes awareness

Dec 20, 2010

Eating healthy can lead to lower life insurance rates

Diabetes is a serious medical condition affecting a large number of Americans. The ailment can cause a person's health and life insurance premiums to rise in addition to potentially reducing their quality of life.

More than 8 percent of Illinois residents had diabetes in 2008. Illinois Department of Public Health director Dr. Damon Arnold wants to reduce that number.

Earlier this month, Arnold urged residents to take to the streets in order to get in some exercise. Furthermore, the director promoted the consumption of fruits and vegetables.

"We must work to reduce the number of people developing diabetes in Illinois," said Arnold. "Not only are there health impacts of diabetes - increased risk for heart disease, blindness and kidney failure, there are also economic impacts due to health care costs and lower work productivity."

Research has shown that living a healthy lifestyle can help reduce one's likelihood of developing the condition. Those who think they have diabetes should consult their physician to get a formal diagnosis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends those over the age of 45 get tested for the disease.

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