I always thought diabetes would happen to somebody else

by Mark Benson on November 4, 2012

I always thought diabetes would happen to somebody else

Despite the fact that the vast majority of us are fully aware of the risks of diabetes it seems that the majority of us still think that “diabetes will happen to somebody else”. It is this blissful ignorance towards this medical condition which is helping to fuel the fire of concern around the world and increase the number of sufferers. So why do we automatically assume that diabetes is something which will happen to somebody else when statistically in excess of 30% of us will have a direct experience with this condition in the future.

We will now take a look at the reasons why many was automatically assume that diabetes will not impact upon our lives and is something other people develop.

Blissful ignorance

There are very few newspapers, very few news websites and very few media outlets around the world which do not carry at least one story per day about the threat of diabetes and the experiences of individuals. It is not a subject which has been buried under a pile of other medical conditions, it is not something which governments around the world have avoided discussing and is most certainly not a condition which has gone unnoticed. So why do the vast majority of us automatically assume it will not happen to us?


Even though many of us may be fully aware that we are potentially overweight, do not have the healthiest of diets or perhaps we do not exercise enough, in our own little bubble we may feel relatively healthy and relatively happy. However, if we take a step back and look at our individual situations is this really the case?


Hand on heart, how many of us can honestly say that we have the healthiest of diets and to bring it down to a more basic level, how many of us enjoy our “five a day”. A healthy diet does not mean eating “healthy” foods all of the time and in many cases it simply means eating certain types of food in moderation. Perhaps the main problem with regards to a healthy diet is the fact that many of us will focus upon a small number of our “favourite” foods often eating them to excess when the mood takes us.


Exercise is a subject which many was avoid discussing and avoid considering with regards to our lifestyle and overall health. Those who have manual employment positions will likely exercise more during the day than they probably realise although this will depend upon the type of job they have. It is perhaps those who have a so-called “desk job” who are perhaps most at risk of a lack of exercise impacting upon their overall health. However, walking to work where possible, taking a short brisk walk at lunchtime or during breaks or even taking short breaks away from your desk when possible can improve your exercise regime.

General health

Obesity is one of the major problems around the world and will continue to cause major medical issues in the short, medium and longer term. There is a direct link between obesity and diabetes for example, as well as an array of other medical conditions, and again, hand on heart how many of us truly believe that our weight is healthy and does not pose a direct threat to our health in the medium to longer term?

It is also very easy to live your life day by day, visiting your doctor infrequently and let’s face it how many of us in our older years undergo regular health checks? In the back of our minds we may well be slightly concerned about the likes of diabetes, and other medical conditions, but until they start impacting us on a day by day basis very often these thoughts stay at the back of our minds. Until our regular routines are impacted by ailments or illnesses the vast majority was will do nothing to improve our general health and indeed to check whether we are healthy.

Head in the sand syndrome

Official figures from governments around the world show a worsening scenario with regards to diabetes and indeed it has been linked to millions upon millions of deaths around the globe. As well as heart attacks, strokes and amputations there are many more conditions which are directly linked to diabetes. There is every chance that even reading this article will start to ring some alarm bells in your mind, make you think about your overall health and indeed potentially make you more aware of diabetes going forward. But what will you do about it once you have moved on to the next article?

The chances are that within 24 hours you will have forgotten the content of this article, life will be back at full speed and other things will very quickly clog up your mind and your thoughts. Until you see the next headline grabbing article about diabetes you will put this to the back of your mind and assume that it only happens to “somebody else”. There are differing opinions as to the extent to which diabetes is impacting the worldwide population but at least one in three people will be impacted by the condition in the years ahead.

It is not too late

While some people put their head in the sand and assume it will not happen to them others will look at their lifestyle, their exercise regimes and their dietary habits and assume it is too late for them to avoid developing the condition in the future. The fact is that it is never too late to assist with reducing your chances of developing diabetes, with diabetes type II especially more prevalent around the world, and even if you were to develop the condition in later years, a healthy lifestyle and regular exercise will assist in fighting the side-effects and potential problems going forward.

So, rather than burying your head in the sand and assuming the diabetes will not impact on you or your family you should sit back and take a long hard look at your lifestyle and your general health. Maybe a visit to your local doctor should be on the cards to see everything is in order and even if the worst came to the worst and you were diagnosed with diabetes, at least you would be aware and able to take the relevant medication and tweak various parts of your everyday life. It is those who suffer from diabetes and are unaware that the condition is eating away at their overall health that are most at risk of developing potentially fatal side-effects. Ignorance can be bliss but ignorance can be fatal where medical conditions are concerned!

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the DiabetesForum.com Community and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please see your doctor before making any changes to your diabetes management plan.

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