This post was sponsored as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.
If you were to look at my family tree you would see many resemblances. You would quickly notice that my sister surprisingly looks like my great-grandmother at a young age. You could also discover that most of the men on one side of the family are extremely tall. But you might also notice a few other things, not related to physical characteristics. You’d unfortunately spy several health conditions that seemingly have been passed down from generation to generation. One of those health conditions – Type 2 Diabetes.
My family. My mom and dad. Two of my grandparents. One uncle and two aunts (all on the same side of the family – four children, all four with Type 2 diabetes). And now we are starting to see the next generation. Truth be told, it makes me more than a bit nervous.
But that’s not all.
My husband and his family. Yes, my husband was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes several years ago. My father-in-law. My brother-in-law.
Both family trees merged when my daughter was born, and because of that she has grown up with a knowledge of Type 2 diabetes, making smart food choices, staying active, and taking charge of her own health.
We make it a point to talk about health issues in our family. They are discussions that we should all be having with those we love. To help this dialogue out, AstraZeneca has helped start a national movement called Diabetes Can Break Your Heart.
Diabetes Can Break Your Heart Movement
I’ve sat in on many discussions over the years with healthcare providers about Type 2 diabetes. You know what? I’ve heard all the talk about monitoring A1C results and more, but not once have I ever heard a discussion about the link between Type 2 diabetes and heart failure.
Yes, I said heart failure. Up to 50% of individuals with type 2 diabetes may develop heart failure.1,2
Why is this important? Because there is no cure for heart failure and after a heart failure diagnosis, the survival rate is only a crushing 50% at five years and 10% at 10 years.3 Those are not statistics I want any part of.
Diabetes can not only emotionally break your heart, but it can physically do it too. That’s why this is so important and I’m thankful for AstraZeneca for taking a lead in heading up this movement.
Diabetes Can Break Your Heart has a big goal – to change the trajectory of heart failure in Type 2 diabetes!
By raising awareness, sparking discussions, and creating community action with advocacy organizations, community leaders, and the public, I’m hopeful that this is an attainable goal.
They will travel across America in 2020 to educate and get communities rallying about the message. I can’t wait to see where they are traveling to.
Diabetes Heartbreaker Virtual Reality Experience and More
The big announcement about this movement was made on World Diabetes Day (Nov 14th) in the “City of Brotherly Love” and what they have planned is unlike anything I would have expected. So creative!
I’m talking about virtual reality. Yes the Diabetes Can Break Your Heart initiative will feature a Diabetes Heartbreaker immersive virtual reality experience! WHOA! Using cutting-edge technology, the VR experience will bring to life the symptoms of heart failure.
We need people to talk about this link between Type 2 diabetes and heart failure. It’s important to my family and it might just be important to yours.
I think this movement will help in a way like we haven’t seen before. Actions today can make a huge difference for us all in lowering our risk tomorrow.
Talk to your doctor to understand your risk of heart failure and what immediate actions should be taken. To learn more about the Diabetes Can Break Your Heart movement, visit diabetesheartbreak.com.
- American Diabetes Association. 10. Cardiovascular Disease and Risk Management: Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes—2019. Diabetes Care. 2019;42(suppl 1):S103-S112.
- National Institutes of Health. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Heart Failure. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health-topics/heart-failure. Last accessed September 16, 2019.
- Roger, Véronique L. Epidemiology of heart failure. Circ Res. 113(6)(2013): 646-59.