Jennifer Detherage is among the growing number of Americans living with diabetes. A condition where the body can't properly process blood sugar.
Jennifer Detherage says "Sometimes I think I wonder if people didn't know like I didn't know and they are finding out that they have it. " Despite a family history of diabetes, Jennifer says the diagnosis of type 2 diabetes came as a shock.
An alarming report says 29 million Americans now have diabetes, and like Jennifer about 25 percent of people are walking around with the disease and don't even know they have it.
Jennifer Detherage says "I felt devastated, oh my gosh, this is a whole life change, you have to change how you eat, you have to change everything."
In addition to making a lifestyle change,like taking regular walks in a local Dalton park, and taking medication, Jennifer says she is also in the process of getting a diabetic guide dog.
Jennifer Detherage says "They can detect about 40 minutes before a meter can tell you that you are going high or low and they will alert you and won't leave you along until you do a check."
Diabetes is not only extremely dangerous it can lead to blindness, heart disease, kidney failure, or amputation. It is also deadly, more than 71,000 people a year die from diabetes.
Jennifer hopes to have her dog by September, but it won't be cheap, it costs 25 thousand dollars, and she'll have three years to pay for it, so she's currently working on fundraise's. It's an effort she says that is well worth it when it comes to her fight against diabetes.