Three ways to keep track of your diabetes: National Diabetes Week 14–20 July 2013
12 July 2013This National Diabetes Week, NPS MedicineWise is reminding people with diabetes to keep track of three things — blood glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol levels — to stay healthy and prevent their risk of complications.
Almost one million Australians have type 2 diabetes and many may be at risk of developing serious complications including heart attack and stroke.
But NPS MedicineWise clinical advisor Dr Andrew Boyden says that people with diabetes who manage their blood pressure and cholesterol in concert with their blood glucose (sugar) levels, are less likely to have a stroke or heart attack than people who only lower their blood glucose levels.
“We all know that managing your diabetes means managing your blood glucose, but it’s just as important to keep track of your blood pressure and cholesterol as well,” says Dr Boyden.
“Studies have shown that lowering your blood pressure and cholesterol levels can prevent up to three times as many cardiovascular events, like heart attacks and strokes, compared with only reducing your glucose levels.
“Diabetes can affect your body and your health in different ways so having regular check-ups, maintaining a healthy lifestyle and using medicines when prescribed, can help you manage your glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol and stay in control of your health.”
To help people with diabetes manage these three pillars of good health, NPS MedicineWise has developed a suite of resources that individuals, community groups and health professionals can access for free.
- Keeping Track of your diabetes: it’s not just about glucose is a useful guide which explains why managing blood pressure and cholesterol are just as important as managing glucose levels to prevent diabetes-related complications. Find out what your glucose, blood pressure and cholesterol targets are, which health checks you can have and how often to have them, and how medicines and a healthy lifestyle can help.
- The Diabetes Health Tracker is a handy tool that people can use to record and keep track of their medicines, health checks and test results.
- The NPS MedicineWise diabetes online knowledge hub provides a wealth of up-to-date information to help you understand your diabetes and the medicines used to manage it. Visit the NPS MedicineWise online hub at www.nps.org.au/diabetes
Both the guide and Diabetes Health Tracker are available to download in English, Italian, Greek, Vietnamese and Chinese – simplified and traditional. Free copies can be ordered from the NPS MedicineWise website at www.nps.org.au/conditions/diabetes
For more information on prescription, over-the-counter and complementary medicines (herbal, ‘natural’, vitamins and minerals) from a health professional, call NPS Medicines Line on 1300 MEDICINE (1300 633 424) . Hours of operation are Monday–Friday 9am–5pm AEST (excluding public holidays).
Independent, evidence-based and not-for-profit, NPS MedicineWise enables better decisions about medicines and medical tests. We are funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.