Colo. girl raises awareness on National Diabetes Month

6:52 AM, Dec 7, 2013   |    comments
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KUSA - Ellie White is a 12-year-old from Colorado with diabetes and Wolfram Syndrome. She was recently on America's Got Talent on NBC. She is working to promote awareness of diabetes and wants parents to know the symptoms.

9NEWS reporter Vida Urbonas interviewed Ellie and her mom for 9NEWS Saturday Morning.

Ellie has type 1 diabetes. There are many others who are later affected by type 2 diabetes. Here are some statistics:

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's latest report, almost 26 million people have diabetes mellitus in the United States. Over 90% of diabetes mellitus is classified as "type 2 diabetes mellitus" or "adult-onset diabetes mellitus" that is generally related to obesity and sedentary behavior. Rates of type 2 diabetes mellitus have increased greatly over the past 20 years due in large part to increasing obesity and sedentary behavior.

- CU has an Active Research Laboratory has demonstrated that exercise training improves fitness levels in people with diabetes. Improvements in fitness after exercise training have also been linked to improvements in the response to exercise of the heart and blood vessels. Even though participants who do exercise training without dietary changes do not generally lose weight, exercise training has also been shown to improve blood sugar levels for patients with type 2 diabetes, and the metabolic benefits of exercise training that improve blood glucose levels may also be related to the observed improvements in fitness levels after exercise training.

- The long-term goal of the Active Research laboratory is to understand the ways that type 2 diabetes leads to early cardiovascular abnormalities and impaired fitness levels, in order to help scientists develop treatments to improve fitness and to prevent heart attacks and strokes in patients with type 2 diabetes. 

- The Active lab is currently conducting multiple exercise research studies for adults with type 2 diabetes and for overweight adults with normal blood sugar levels. Anyone who is interested in this research can call the lab at 303-724-2255 for more information.

- Diabetes is a leading cause of cardiovascular disease and mortality. Before people with diabetes develop clinical manifestations of cardiovascular disease such as heart attacks or strokes, they demonstrate more subtle cardiovascular abnormalities that can be considered the earliest signs of cardiovascular disease. One of the measures of these early cardiovascular abnormalities is that fitness levels are about 20-30% worse in people with type 2 diabetes compared to people without diabetes. These fitness differences have been noted even when people with and without diabetes are similarly physically inactive and obese, suggesting that it is the underlying cardiovascular abnormalities in type 2 diabetes that lead to these impaired fitness levels. Fitness levels are important clinically because studies have consistently shown that lower levels of fitness predict a shorter lifespan.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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