blondu

Q:

Would it be good for me to get massages? I'm 26, and was diagnosed as type 1 three years ago. In my country, the information about living with diabetes is only basic, and they said to me that my body made it from stress. Now I'm trying to find stress relief, like relaxation massage. Someone told me it is not quite good for diabetics. Thank you very much.

Patty Bonsignore

A:

Type 1 diabetes is not caused by stress, but by an autoimmune process in which the body attacks its own cells. How this autoimmune process starts, no one knows, although there are lots of theories, including that it may be caused by a viral infection. Specifically, in type 1 diabetes, the body does not recognize the cells in the pancreas that make insulin (called beta cells) and attacks these cells. Over time, enough cells have been destroyed that the body is no longer able to produce insulin and, thus,t type 1 diabetes develops. This can take several years and, although stress does not cause type 1 diabetes, stressors may affect how quickly the autoimmune process occurs. Activities you can do are generally not restricted just because you have type 1 diabetes, and this includes having a massage. However, you will need to be aware of how certain activities affect your blood glucose levels. Because massage affects the muscles and energy use, you will need to treat it like physical activity and check your blood glucose before and after the massage. For some, massage could make the blood glucose go lower, for others it may go higher, and for others it may not affect it, so checking your blood glucose is the best way to prevent any problems.

December 5, 2012 at 1:48 am

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