Myrtle Beach — Did you know every 21 seconds someone in the U.S. is diagnosed with diabetes according to the American Diabetes Association? November is Diabetes Awareness Month and the purpose of this month is to bring attention to this growing problem that affects more than 30 million people in the U.S.

Diabetes can lead to serious health complications that include stroke, blindness, kidney disease, and heart disease among others. "Consistent high blood sugar levels that diabetics experience can adversely affect blood vessels and nerves which can cause heart disease," states Interventional Cardiologist D. Bowen Truluck, MD, with Grand Strand Heart & Vascular Care. "That's one reason it is important for diabetics and those with pre-diabetes to control their blood sugar levels." In addition to keeping blood sugar levels in check, other risk factors that diabetics can control to reduce their risk of heart disease and other complications include smoking cessation, increasing physical activity and maintaining a healthy weight.

To help our communities understand more about diabetes, Grand Strand Health is hosting a seminar to help those who may be concerned about their increasing blood sugar levels. On Thursday, November 16 from 5:00 – 6:30pm,, join Diabetes Educator Crystal Cates, RD, LD, CDE, for a Diabetes Uncovered: Finding Hidden Sugars & Understanding Numbers interactive seminar. She will explain how to read a food label, prepare for added sugars and understand the purpose of an A1C. To register for this free seminar, call (843) 692-4444 or visit our calendar page. Registration is requested, but not required.