The Senior Digest

Health and Wellness Tips

How does diabetes affect older people?


The prevalence of diabetes in people over 75 years of age is 30.7% in men and 33.4% in women, that is, around 30% of people over 75 years of age have diabetes. In addition, of this 30% of people with diabetes, it is estimated that 10% have not yet been diagnosed and are completely unaware that they have this pathology.

If you are in this age range or know someone of advanced age with diabetes, in You count a lot , we have compiled some data so that you understand a little better how diabetes affects the elderly and know what are the main recommendations to maintain the type 2 diabetes under control.

How does diabetes affect the elderly?

As we get older, our body undergoes a series of changes at a physiological level: sleep cycles are altered and our defense barriers become a little more sensitive, among others. These changes cause some diseases to affect us differently. Likewise, in the elderly, the risk of comorbidities or diseases associated with Type 2 diabetes is higher.

In the case of type 2 diabetes, there is a clear difference between how it develops in young and older people: among the oldest, some of the symptoms go unnoticed, as they are considered part of the normal aging process, and sometimes they are even undetectable.

Why is it so important to keep a close check on diabetes at this age?

It is important to control diabetes in older people because it can greatly improve their quality of life and prevent some health problems that are directly related to the procession of the diabetes. Therefore, early detection and management of the disease are of utmost importance.

So, if you are over 75 years old and have diabetes or suspect that you might have it, you should visit your doctor to follow the appropriate recommendations, or for a proper diagnosis, if you have not yet been diagnosed.

Adopting healthy lifestyle habits are also key actions to face the disease with a positive attitude and thus achieve a better quality of life. We leave you some tips below:

  • Do physical exercise: who said that the elderly cannot exercise? Muscle mass and strength naturally decrease with age, and therefore it is highly recommended to perform physical exercise to strengthen muscles, joints and endurance in the case of older diabetic patients. Thanks to physical activity, we can lose weight, lower blood pressure and cholesterol and prevent cardiovascular diseases. Consult with your doctor what type of therapeutic exercises are the most indicated for you or your family member.
  • Drink lots of fluids: when we get older, we are more prone to dehydration since the feeling of thirst decreases. This is a key point in people with diabetes since the lack of fluids can cause imbalances in the level of glucose in the blood.
  • Maintain a healthy diet: Diet is of the utmost importance to keep blood sugar levels stable. Each person’s body is unique and has specific needs, so each person will require a type of diet tailored to their needs. To do this, your doctor will design the most appropriate meal plan for you. 


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