Deniabetes: Don’t Shrug Off Your Diagnosis

By Constance Brown-Riggs, MSEd, RD, CDE, CDN

beautiful african medical doctor talking to seniot man

It’s common for people to experience a range of thoughts and feelings when faced with a diabetes diagnoses. “Diabetes runs in my family, but I don’t think I have it.” “Diabetes? That’s probably just that cake my wife made on Sunday.” Sound familiar?

November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and there’s no better time to get the information you need about this very deadly disease. If you’ve been told you have diabetes and you don’t do anything about it, you may actually have two diseases: diabetes and deniabetes. Diabetes symptoms—which you probably experienced and ignored—include thirst, frequent urination, fatigue, and blurred vision.

Symptoms of deniabetes—denial of diabetes—include a refusal to admit that you have symptoms; an unwillingness to accept a diabetes diagnosis; and a lack of attention to the medical, dietary, exercise, and other recommendations your healthcare providers offer to help you manage the disease.

Unfortunately, denying you have diabetes won’t make it go away. In fact, if you don’t cure yourself of deniabetes, your diabetes is likely to get worse. If diabetes goes uncontrolled long enough it can lead to all kinds of complications that can have devastating effects on your eyes, kidneys, limbs and heart. The good news is that deniabetes is absolutely curable and diabetes itself is manageable. Once your deniabetes is managed, you can begin to manage your diabetes much more effectively.

For the entire article, read the November/December 2017 issue of ONYX Magazine. This article was originally featured at