ST. CLOUD -- November is American Diabetes Month and about 15,000 kids are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes each year.

LeAnne Troxel is the Diabetes Educator at the CentraCare Diabetes Center. She says diabetes affects your blood sugar in two ways.

"The reason your blood sugar is too high is either one of two reasons. The person is not making insulin or the insulin isn't working right," says Troxel.

Diabetes is commonly thought to be a genetic disorder but Troxel says anyone can be affected by the disease at anytime.

"Type 1 diabetes occurs mostly in kids and young adults, and Type 2 diabetes use to just be known in adults but now even children can have type 2 diabetes," says Troxel.

Troxel says there many factors that play into diabetes but your weight has a large part to do with it.

"The heavier the person is the more likely they can get diabetes, and a lack of physical activity increases the risk," says Troxel.

Because diabetes can occur at stage in life many people are unaware of the symptoms.

"A person might feel tired a lot and people getting older think that's normal when in reality they are getting tired because high blood sugar is causing them not to have enough energy," says Troxel.

According to the American Diabetes Association about 30 million people in the U.S. have diabetes and only a quarter of them are aware of it.

Troxel says this month is a great time to educate yourself on diabetes because chances are someone you know has the disease.


Diabetes Educator LeAnne Troxel talks about the importance of managing diabetes. (Photo: Alex Svejkovsky, WJON News).