Anyone with diabetes or who cares for someone with diabetes knows that this condition comes with a high cost. Not just financially, but mentally and physically also.

Celebrity chef, Charles Mattocks (@cmattocks1), also known as "The Poor Chef," joined this weeks Diabetic Connect Twitter chat to discuss the cost of diabetes and how you can raise awareness for increased public knowledge and understanding of diabetes. Mattocks is the best selling author of The Budget-Friendly Fresh and Local Diabetes Cookbook and has appeared on CNN, the Today Show, Anderson Cooper, as well as many other well-known shows. He has been an advocate for diabetes ever since being diagnosed as a type 2 diabetic several years ago.

Jewels Doskicz (@She_Sugar) also returned as our moderator. She is mother to a type 1 diabetic and with diagnosed type 1 diabetes herself.

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Question 1

First, we wanted to understand what everyone considers "the cost of diabetes" to be.

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Everyone agreed that diabetes is not only tough on the wallet, but takes a toll on every aspect of your life.

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But, Ally (@verylightnosuga) reminded everyone to try to keep a positive attitude even when things are tough:

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Question 2

Since diabetes is so expensive, we thought it would be a good idea for everyone to share how they keep some costs down by asking, "What are some affordable grocery staples in your diabetes pantry?"

Everyone had great suggestions for diabetes-friendly foods they like to keep on hand.

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Some people's stock sounded so good that Chris Clem (@Brizeater) might have been a little jealous, saying, "I wish this represented my 'betes pantry."

Question 3

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Socioeconomic status can have a great effect on diabetes management. Jenn C (@jennmamabear) pointed out that it can affect what you eat:

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and Steve Hall (@kitekid) reminded us that it can make it difficult to afford all of the supplies necessary for caring for diabetes:

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Other problems that people pointed out were:

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Our expert Charles Mattocks reminded us that some of the things you can do to manage your diabetes don't have to cost anything, like drinking plenty of water and walking regularly.

Question 4

Our next question addressed diabetes awareness.

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Mattocks started by sharing one of the ways that he is trying to raise awareness for diabetes.

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Mattocks shared some more great knowledge saying, "We need to create a plan that when someone walks out of a doctor's office they can head to another place and get real answers, not rely on the Net or a doctor that only has a few moments for them. We need to force the hands. We won't have change unless we make change."

Question 5

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Cherise/LADA (@sweetercherise) made a great point that, "we need a proactive healthcare system, not a reactive one. ppl need more than tools they need assistance & a team."

Question 6

Our final question asked how to cope with all of these challenges the diabetic community faces.

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Mattocks gave his wise closing words saying, "We have to support and push those making change, [those] writing the blogs, those creating simple change. We have to stand up."

Thank you to all of our participants for another successful and educational Diabetic Connect Twitter chat. Join us next week for another Twitter chat on Tuesday, February 17 at 9:00 p.m. ET, #DCDE.

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