Diabetes Joshua Herron

Ebony

Page 55, March 2000, No. 5, Volume 55

Edward M. Hawthorne

Diabetes: AFRO-Americans—Health & hygiene

This article by Hawthorne basically talks about how people have a tendency to take diabetes for granted. Diabetes can be a very serious disease. It effects more than 16 million Americans. Of these 16 million, 3 million are Blacks. Diabetes is the seventh-leading killer in America, and is the number one cause for blindness, kidney ailment and non-traumatic amputations in Blacks. One in four Black women over 55 and one in four Black between the ages 65 and 74 are affected by this disease.

Diabetes is defined as the body’s inability to produce insulin. There are two major types of diabetes: insulin dependant, and non-insulin dependant. Non-insulin dependant is the most common in adults. African-Americans over 45, persons overweight, and those who have a history of this disease in their family are most at risk. Hawthorne then explains that doctors do not know why Blacks are more susceptible to this disease. They feel that heredity and diet have a great deal to do with it.

The author then talks about how anyone over 45 should be tested at least once every three years. African-Americans should begin earlier and more frequently. These people should take care of themselves and watch out for the warning signs such as excessive thirst, extreme hunger and irritability, and unexplained weight loss.

I feel that the author did a good job of explaining the causes and ways to prevent the disease. I felt that that he could do a better job of explaining or giving more reasons that African-Americans are more susceptible to diabetes. Hopefully in the future science can understand the reasons why this happens and come up with ways to prevent or help the effects of diabetes.