thtigger2000

Q:

I have a problem with constantly getting sick. I am a type one diabetic and was wondering what I could do to help myself stay out of the hospital? I constantly check my sugars and I do have a pump but don't know what I am doing wrong.

Patty Bonsignore

A:

It is true that people with diabetes do have a tendency to get sick more easily than people who do not have diabetes. This is due to the effect blood glucose levels have on our immune system and on microorganisms. When blood glucose levels run high, our immune system does not work as well to fight infection. This effect is directly related to blood glucose control. In other words, the higher your blood glucose levels, the less well your immune system will be able to fight off infections. In addition to problems with immune function, high blood glucose levels provide an environment that allows microorganisms to grow more easily. So when a person with diabetes does become ill, the illnesses have a tendency to be more severe and last longer. Getting a yearly flu shot, getting vaccinated against pneumococcal pneumonia and checking your feet daily are just a few of the ways you can prevent infections. Another way to prevent infections is to keep your blood glucose levels in target. Getting plenty of rest and eating a healthy diet will also help. There are no specific vitamins we recommend for diabetes, but taking a multi-vitamin daily may also help.