A family history of Type 2 Diabetes

Cathy isn’t kidding when she says she’s “above-average fitness” for her age.

The 55-year-old from the ACT has an exercise regime that would challenge someone half her age.

“I run and I do yoga and play golf, which I took up this year,” Cathy says.

Not only that but the mother of four and grandmother to a toddler is a veteran of half marathons and marathons.

Two years ago she completed the Gold Coast Marathon and recently ran the LA Marathon in the USA in March.

“I’m really fit and proud of it,” Cathy says. “I’ve always been active. Even when the kids were little I took up netball.”

So it came as a huge shock to discover she was a candidate for Type 2 diabetes after using MyHealthTest.

“It was National Diabetes Week and they were offering free tests, which is why I did it. At the time I thought, ‘Why not?’”

Cathy had another shock coming when she learnt of a genetic link to diabetes on both sides of her family.

“My Dad was up from Melbourne and staying at our place when I received the results, and he said, ‘Ah, the doctor’s always checking my blood sugar levels.’”

Cathy already knew her maternal grandmother had Type 2 diabetes and assumed that was because of a propensity to put on weight, a dreadful sweet tooth and inactive lifestyle.

“She fitted the stereotype,” Cathy says. “She was one of those lovely warm and cuddly type of women. I thought she was the only link.”

Her father delivered the news that the chronic condition had also affected his father, a man with a slim build who didn’t fit the stereotype either.

“I always thought Type 2 diabetes had to be lifestyle-related so when I got my results that I was pre-diabetic, it just didn’t make sense.”

Initially, Cathy doubted the results, so she took the test again.

“It was straightforward. I got online, ordered the test, it came in the mail, and I did it and sent it back and in a few days I got the results.

“I always thought Type 2 diabetes had to be lifestyle-related so when I got my results that I was pre-diabetic, it just didn’t make sense.”

“I also have the online option of sending them onto my GP, but I printed mine out.”

Cathy’s second results were “pretty much the same as the first”.

In consultation with her GP, she is now on a journey of prevention.

“I’m doing everything I can to prevent the condition from worsening,” Cathy says.

MyHealthTest acted as a trigger for Cathy to be more aware of her diet and not to give in, so much, to temptation.

“I do have a sweet tooth, I love chocolate bullets, and the test has made me more aware so now I go easy on the sweets,” Cathy says. “My sugar levels are high enough to keep an eye on and by being aware of that I can live my life accordingly.”

If you’d like more information about diabetes testing, visit Diabetes Australia or Diabetes NSW&ACT.

 

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