America's Diabetes Challenge and Tim McGraw urge people with type 2 diabetes to work with their doctor to set and reach their A1C goal

(BPT) - Did you know there are nearly 30 million people living with diabetes in the United States, and most have type 2 diabetes? If current trends continue, about one in three American adults will have diabetes by 2050.

Award-winning artist Tim McGraw has been touched by type 2 diabetes personally, as he has friends and family with the disease. A strong believer in making healthy choices, McGraw has teamed up with Merck and the American Diabetes Association on America’s Diabetes Challenge, which encourages people with type 2 diabetes to make a pledge to work with their doctor to get to their A1C (average blood glucose over 2-3 months) goal or help a loved one with diabetes do the same. Through the program, people with type 2 diabetes can also learn if they are at risk of low blood glucose, known as hypoglycemia, and how to help reduce that risk.

“While touring the country, I have seen first-hand the impact diabetes has on people from all walks of life. That is why I am encouraging people with type 2 diabetes to work with their doctor to set and reach their individual A1C goal,” says McGraw. “Through my work on the program, I have learned that about one-third of adults living with diabetes are not at their A1C goal. Together, let’s change that statistic.”

The A1C goal for many adults with diabetes is less than 7 percent. However, a higher or lower goal may be appropriate for some people, which is why the American Diabetes Association suggests patients work with their doctor to come up with an individualized diabetes management plan that is right for them. High blood glucose levels over time can put people with diabetes at risk for many serious health problems, including heart disease, blindness, kidney failure, lower limb amputations, stroke and nerve problems.

“I accepted America’s Diabetes Challenge and have pledged to work with my doctor to get to my A1C goal,” says Jeremy Dickstein, a patient with type 2 diabetes. “I send my numbers weekly to my diabetes nurse so I can make sure I stay on track. Diabetes requires an ongoing management plan, which is why it is important to keep your appointments and talk to your doctor about your progress, even when you are not feeling sick.”

While many diabetes patients are aware of the importance of controlling high blood glucose, they may not know blood glucose can also go too low (hypoglycemia).

Hypoglycemia can make you feel:

* Shaky

* Dizzy

* Sweaty

* Faint

* Hungry

Hypoglycemia can be caused by:

* Skipping meals

* Excessive exercise

* Certain medicines

People with diabetes should be sure to tell their doctor if they experience any signs or symptoms of high blood glucose or low blood glucose. Changes to their meal plan, physical activity or diabetes medicine may need to be discussed.

To join McGraw in pledging and for more information about type 2 diabetes, including important questions to ask your doctor, visit You can also join the America’s Diabetes Challenge Facebook community at



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