Diabetes Month October 31, 2017 WHEREAS, the incidence of diabetes has increased dramatically in the United States over the past 25 years, and Alaskans are at increasing odds to either be diagnosed with Type I or II diabetes or to be identified as pre-diabetic. Diabetes affects 30.3 million people nationwide, which is 9.4 percent of the U.S. population; and WHEREAS, diabetes is a serious disease with potentially life-threatening complications, such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney disease, and lower extremity amputations. Over 40,000 Alaskans are affected by diabetes; and WHEREAS, there is no known cure for diabetes, and it is the seventh leading cause of death by disease in the United States. It has many faces, affecting people of all ages and all ethnic backgrounds. Often, because the symptoms may be slight initially, many Alaskans may experience damage to their heart, eyes, kidneys, and limbs without being aware of their disease; and WHEREAS, the frequency of diabetes among young people is rising along with the increasing numbers of youth who are overweight and/or physically inactive; and WHEREAS, an increase in community awareness of risk factors and symptoms related to diabetes can greatly improve the likelihood that Alaskans will get the attention they need before suffering the devastating complications of the disease; and WHEREAS, during Diabetes Month, the American Diabetes Association, the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, and healthcare providers encourage Alaskans to join them in making healthy choices and eating well throughout the month. More information about preventing obesity and diabetes is available online at http://dhss.alaska.gov/dph/PlayEveryDay/pages/default.aspx and www.diabetes.org, or by calling 1-800-DIABETES. NOW THEREFORE, I, Bill Walker, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF ALASKA, do hereby proclaim November 2017 as: Diabetes Month in Alaska, and encourage all Alaskans to make healthy life choice, to take responsibility for their own good health, and to become educated about and help stop the spread of diabetes in Alaska.