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November is Diabetes Month

Did you know about the Proclamation of the National Diabetes Month? A number of presidents over the years, made official proclamations determining the month of November as the Diabetes Awareness Month. Our editorial staff compiled two proclamations for you to read.

After you read these proclamations, you will wonder why we still do not have a cure for a disease that is devastating our households. How can we mobilize our government to take action and not just proclaim?

The answer starts with EDUCATION!

The more you know, the more you let your friends and family learn about diabetes, more impact you will make. People hear about diabetes and they know it exists. But they do not know how hard is to live with it nor how they can better care for themselves. Good care can prevent someone from becoming a diabetic, and if you already are one, you can prevent complications.

You will see from the two proclamations below that 23 years have passed. Yes a number of new drugs and technology are today in the market. But the number of diabetics doubled in that same period of time. So start educating others TODAY. Tell someone about what diabetes is, how hard is to live with it and how they can avoid becoming one if they care for themselves by eating right and exercising.

Big changes happen one person at a time!

Proclamation - National Diabetes Month, 1983
By the President of the United States of America - Ronald Reagan

Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease that now threatens the lives of approximately 11 million Americans. Although careful treatment can control many of the short-term metabolic effects of diabetes, the disease is also associated with serious long-term complications that affect the eyes, kidneys, nerves, and blood vessels of the heart, brain, and extremities. In addition to its devastating toll in terms of human suffering, the cost of medical care for diabetic patients and associated losses due to disability and premature mortality now exceed $10 billion annually in the United States alone.

Fortunately, the outlook for clinical advances related to the diagnosis, treatment, cure, and, ultimately, the prevention of diabetes and its complications has never been as promising as it is today. Recent research advances have included the synthetic production of purified human insulin to ensure adequate supplies of this essential hormone, the development of improved methods for insulin administration, new technologies for monitoring critical blood sugar levels, new therapies for the treatment of diabetes-related kidney, eye, and cardiovascular diseases, and improved clinical capabilities for reducing the increased prenatal morbidity and mortality ssociated with diabetic pregnancies.

In addition, remarkable advances have also been made in developing procedures that permit the successful transplantation of insulin-producing cells into diabetic animals without the need for chronic suppression of the immune system. As these and related studies are extended to humans, they may lead directly to the development of a cure for some of the most serious types of diabetes and to a means to prevent, arrest, or reverse the long-term complications of this disease.

Recent advances in basic biomedical research are providing new insights into the multiple causes of diabetes. We anticipate that these studies will help to identify individuals at risk for developing diabetes so that we may ultimately develop approaches that will prevent the disease and its complications altogether. Basic and clinical research advances have significantly reduced diabetes-related morbidity and mortality and have measurably improved the quality of life for people with diabetes. Nevertheless, much remains to be done before the cure and prevention of diabetes and its complications become a reality. Toward this goal, the Federal government, in cooperation with the private sector, will continue in the same determined spirit to lead the way toward eliminating diabetes as a major public health problem both for current and future generations.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, in accordance with Senate Joint Resolution 121, do hereby proclaim the month of November, 1983, as National Diabetes Month, and I call upon all government agencies and the people of the United States to observe this month with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 3rd day of November, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and eighth.

Ronald Reagan

Proclamation - National Diabetes Month, 2005
By the President of the United States of America - George W. Bush

Americans of all ages and backgrounds live with diabetes. Nearly 21 million of our citizens have this disease, and researchers estimate that more than 6 million of these individuals have not been diagnosed and are unaware they have it. National Diabetes Month is an opportunity to educate citizens about diabetes and what they can do to help prevent and treat this disease. Type 1 diabetes, once known as juvenile diabetes, destroys insulin-producing cells and usually strikes children and teenagers. Nearly 95 percent of all diabetics suffer from type 2 diabetes, a condition in which the body fails to produce or to use insulin properly. Type 2 diabetes typically occurs in inactive or obese adults or individuals with a family history of the disease and now increasingly appears in inactive or overweight children. Because of a lack of insulin, diabetics face potential blindness, nontraumatic amputations, kidney disease, and increased risk of heart disease and stroke.

Studies have shown that minor weight loss and daily exercise can help prevent and reduce the effects of diabetes. I encourage all Americans to follow the new dietary guidelines released by the Department of Health and Human Services earlier this year that emphasize the importance of nutritious foods and regular physical activity. In addition to taking steps toward a healthier lifestyle, Americans should consult their doctors for preventive screenings to detect diabetes in its earliest stages. Under the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003, these screenings are now covered for Medicare beneficiaries. These simple tests can save lives and help prevent this potentially life-threatening illness.

My Administration remains committed to fighting diabetes through research and prevention, and we will continue to support the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and others in their efforts to combat this disease. This year, the NIH dedicated more than $1 billion to diabetes research. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the NIH are also sponsoring the National Diabetes Education Program, which has helped to inform more than 180 million Americans in the last 3 years about healthy choices and the risk factors of diabetes.

During National Diabetes Month and throughout the year, we pay tribute to the doctors, nurses, scientists, researchers, and all those dedicated to the fight against diabetes. I urge the millions of Americans living with this disease and all citizens to lead healthy lives and to motivate others to do the same. By working together to prevent this disease, we can improve the quality of life for more Americans.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim November 2005 as National Diabetes Month. I call upon all Americans to learn more about the risk factors and symptoms associated with diabetes and to observe this month with appropriate programs and activities. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this second day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand five, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirtieth.

George W. Bush

Sources: University of Texas Archives and White House

Adapted by Editorial Staff, November 2006
Last update, July 2008


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