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Our feet take a pounding. Literally. The result of hitting the ground repeatedly, wearing shoes, and sweat is often dry, callused, and rough feet. Unlike the rest of the skin, our feet do not have oil glands, and therefore, rely on sweat to stay moisturized. Athletes tend to have cracked skin due to the amount of strain they put on their feet and how much they sweat1.
Cold weather can also play a part in dry or cracked feet because moisture is hard to replenish. In the winter months there is a limited amount of humidity in the air and people also have a tendency to take hot showers. The constant switch from hot to cold is hard on the skin resulting in water loss and leaves it dry2.
For those living with Diabetes, foot care is especially crucial. Diabetics are highly susceptible to dry skin because when glucose levels are high, the skin and tissues are depleted of vital moisture3.The result is extremely dry and cracked skin. Another cause is the poor circulation suffered by diabetics. Fortunately, many products exist to help treat skin conditions of the foot.
Although a nice pedicure is always a treat for your feed, over the long-term, such indulgence may be financially burdensome. Luckily, Allegromedical.com carries numerous foot care creams, including PediFix Deep-Healing Foot Cream, Diabet-X Callus Treatment, and Pedigenix.
PediFix Deep-Healing Foot Creamis designed for those with either Diabetes or sensitive skin. It contains Urea, Lanolin, Vitamins A, D and E to soft rough heels, corns and calluses. Available for more than 120 years, PediFix consulted doctors to help develop this innovative, non-greasy formula.
Diabet-X Callus Treatment is another great product available on Allegromedical.com. Another helpful aid for people with Diabetes, it can be used on not only the feet but on the fingers and elbows as well. The formula also contains antimicrobial ingredients to guard against infection and lasts up to two hours after application.
Pedigenix is unique because it is consists of a four-part system designed to treat and then prevent dry skin. It is formulated with nature extracts of cucumber and menthol to refresh the feet, visibly healing rough, dry skin in days. There are two daily products to wash and soften your feet and two treatment products to smooth and dry them. The cleaner and lotion are the preventative products, and the exfoliant and deodorizing powder provide a complete solution to treat the dry skin. Pedigenix is diabetic-friendly and is effective against hyperkeratosis tissue, calluses and bromhidrosis4.
The product you choose can play an important role in the health of your feet. A complete regiment can offer an effective treatment to target the issues4. Rely on AllegroMedical.com for all of your health and wellness needs from skin care to diabetes and more.
1Sugar, Jenny. “5 Ways to Show Your Running Feet Some Love.” FitSugar. POPSUGAR, 9 Mar. 2012. Web. 02 Apr. 2013. <http://www.fitsugar.com/Tips-Ease-Sore-Runners-Feet-Prevent-Injury-22125091>.
2CNN Help My Dry, Winter Skin. Perf. Susan Hendricks. CNN. Cable News Network, 13 Dec. 2011. Web. 02 Apr. 2013. <http://www.cnn.com/video/>.
3Franklin, Della. “Dry Skin: Diabetes and Your Skin.” Disabled World. N.p., 13 Aug. 2007. Web. 27 Mar. 2013. <http://www.disabled-world.com/artman/publish/dry-skin.shtml>.
4 “Pedigenix Foot Care System.” Pedigenix Foot Care System. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Mar. 2013. <http://www.hygenic-news.com/Pedigenix/index.html>.
Maintaining healthy skin can be challenging for anyone, especially in the winter months, but even more so for caregivers and practitioners. Rashes, fungus, skin breakdown or the threat of skin tears are a constant battle and a true test of perseverence. Skin Care is much easier with today’s ultra-formulated medical creams and emollient-rich ointments – available to consumers and caregivers without a prescription.
Allegro’s most popular creams and ointments and are primarily barrier type or moisturizing products designed to help protect and heal skin irritations from incontinence, diaper rash, wound drainage, fistulas, feeding tube leakage, minor burns and perspiration. We also carry specialized skin products and antifungals for specific skin conditions. Browse our Shop by Condition: Skin Conditions area to find all of Allegro Medical’s top skin care and personal care products.
Top 10 Most Popular Creams and Ointments
Sween 24 Superior Moisturizing Protectant Cream– This long-acting once-a-day moisturizer soothes dry, flaky, itchy skin. Fragrance and lanolin-free. Contains 6% Dimethicone. Easily applied, readily absorbed and silky.
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Remedy Skin Repair Cream – Specially formulated for those at risk for skin breakdown. Remedy Skin Repair uses water molecules to moisturize and deliver nutrients of Olivamine to the cells. Also provides relief to dry skin and protects and relieves damage caused by frequent hand washing. Ideal as a facial moisturizer. Available in 4 oz tubes, 2 oz tubes, 32 oz pump or Remedy Skin Repair Kit
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Calmoseptine Ointment – Contains calamine, zinc oxide, menthol and lanolin to provide a multipurpose moisture barrier. Protects and heals skin irritations from feeding tube leaks, incontinence, burns, scrapes, diaper rash, wound drainage, fecal or vaginal fistulas and moisture. Temporary relief from discomfort and itching.
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Bacitracin Zinc Ointment – 1/32 oz foilpac – Compares to Baciguent. Used topically to prevent infection in minor cuts, scrapes and burns. Ask a doctor before using this in the case of deep or puncture wounds, animal bites or serious burns. Don’t use longer than a week without talking to your doc.
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Aloe Vesta 3-n-1 Protective Ointment – An ideal barrier and ointment for routine incontinence care. This easy-to-apply petrolatum-based ointment provides an effective barrier that seals out moisture, contains protein-rich emollients and is non-sensitizing and fragrance free.
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Aloe Vesta Antifungal Ointment– Cures most superficial fungal infections with 2% Miconazole Nitrate in a petrolatum base. Ideal for treating athlete’s foot, ringworm and jock itch.
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BAZA Antifungal Cream – This anti-fungal is also a moisture barrier against urine and feces. The zinc-oxide based formula with 2% Miconazole Nitrate inhibits fungal growth and treats yeast/monilia, jock itch, ringworm and athletes foot. Another very popular antifungal moisture barrier, formulated for perineal skin irritation due to fungal infection is the Critic-Aid Clear AF.
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Sween Cream Moisturizing Body Cream – Cracked knees or elbows? Red, sore, irritated skin? Look no further. Sween Cream is known the world over for its ability to immediately restore dry, fragile skin at risk for cracking. Non-occlusive formula absorbs quickly. Won’t interfere with the adhesion of tape or ostomy appliances.
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Atrac-Tain Moisturizing Cream – Superior moisturizing relief for severely afflicted dry, scaly and cracked skin conditions. Contains 10% Urea and 4% Alpha Hydroxy Acid (lactic acid). Fragrance and preservative free. Safe for sensitive skin.
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Medseptic Skin Protectant Cream – This superior moisturizer is formulated to treat adult diaper dermatitis, denuded skin and minor burns. Contains 50% USP approved lanolin. Recommended by the Foot and Ankle Institute for diabetic patients to help hold moisture in, especially on the feet, ankles, elbows and hands.
Shop all Diabetes Skin Care
Shop by Condition: Diabetes
My Personal Favorite – Deep Healing Foot Cream – Diabetic feet, sensitive feet or not, you’re heels will love this cream. It contains mineral oil, urea, lanolin and vitamins A, D & E. Also works great on hands. I use it every night before bed. It’s non-greasy and safe for all your body parts. Get some!
Here’s wishing you clear, smooth skin throughout your life. As always, we appreciate your business and thank you for being an Allegro customer.
If you have a bedsore, diabetic ulcer or other dermal ulcer, or you are caring for someone who does, it is critical that you are receiving assistance or advice from a medical specialist. Treating pressure sores (bedsores) and dermal ulcers can be challenging as these wounds heal slowly and must be attended to carefully. Treatment plans includes everything from pressure reduction to wound cleaning/debridement, wound dressings, hydrotherapy, antibiotics, dietary supplements and muscle spasm relief. Even with the best of care, sometimes surgery is required.
Allegro’s wound care category has a variety of products designed to protect wounds and speed healing. The type of products used depends on the stage and severity of the wound. Below are our most popular wound care products for pressure sores, venous and arterial leg and foot ulcers.
Most Popular Pressure Sore and Ulcer Products
Mepilex Border Self-Adherent Absorbent Foam Dressing– This popular self-adherent foam dressing minimizes trauma to the wound and pain to the patient during dressing changes. It is designed for a wide range of exuding wounds including pressure ulcers, leg and foot ulcers and traumatic wounds.
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Promogran Prisma Matrix Wound Dressing– Appropriate for diabetic foot ulcers, venous ulcers, pressure ulcers and all chronic wounds, Promogran Prisma contains a unique combination of collagen, ORC and silver-ORC to absorb chronic wound fluid and create the optimal environment for cellular growth.
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Shop all Systagenix Wound Care (formerly Johnson & Johnson)
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Iodosorb Gel Cadexomer Iodine– Triple action kills bacteria, manages exudate and debrides the wound. Iodosorb Gel is specially formulated for use on wet, exudating ulcers, diabetic and venous ulcers, pressure sores and infected wounds.
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SAF-Clens AF No Rinse Cleanser – Intended for the cleansing of Stage I-IV pressure ulcers, stasis ulcers, diabetic ulcers, post-surgical wounds and more. Removes debris, slough and eschar without damaging healing tissue. No rinse formula.
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Normlgel Hydrogel Dressing – Provides a moist environment for the wound, optimum for healing. Normlgel may be used on granulating and open wounds such as pressure ulcers, venous and arterial leg ulcers, diabetic ulcers, burns and open surgical wounds. Another popular hydrogel is the SilvaSorb Hydrogel with antimicrobial silver protection.
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3M Tegaderm Transparent Film Dressing – This all-in-one sterile, transparent dressing frames the wound and delivers first aid all in one. Used for acute wounds, surgical sites and chronic wounds including Stage I and II pressure ulcers, Tegaderm protects at-risk skin or can be used as a primary or secondary dressing. Breathable yet waterproof.
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Silvercel Antimicribial Alginate Dressing– Great for pressure ulcers, diabetic ulcers and surgical wounds, Silvercel combines silver and alginate into one unique dressing, providing both antimicrobial action and enhanced exudate management.
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Want more? See all these pressure sore/diabetic ulcer products and more in Shop by Condition: Dermal Ulcers. We also recommend the following categories: Bedridden, Diabetic Shoes, Diabetic Socks, Pressure Reduction, Foot Care, Hospital Discharge Favorites and Skin Care
AllegroMedical.com has been selling diabetic supplies online for more than a decade – offering huge savings to thousands of customers every day. In fact, many people find our prices for diabetic supplies much lower than their insurance deductibles or co-pays. Do the math! Maybe we can save you some money.
At AllegroMedical.com you’ll find the ‘latest greatest’ along side the ‘tried and true’ brand name glucose meters, test strips, syringes and lancets – value priced and ready for delivery to your home or office. We also offer diabetic products designed to help you manage the side effects of diabetes, including nutrition drinks and supplements, skin care formulas, diabetic shoes and special diabetic socks.
Allegro’s Most Popular Best Selling Diabetic Supplies
Monoject Insulin Syringe – One step peel-away packaging and tri-beveled, consistently sharp needles make this our most popular insulin syringe. 28 gauge x 1/2″ with a clear, non-glare barrel construction for precise medication measurement.
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One Touch Ultra Blue Test Strips – Fastdraw design automatically draws blood into the strip. And you only need a speck of blood! Fast results in just 5 seconds. For use with any LifeScan “Ultra” glucose meter. Twice as accurate as DoubleSure technology!
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FreeStyle Lite Blood Glucose Monitoring System – No coding! Small and discreet, the FreeStyle Lite also offers the world’s smallest blood sample size, a backlight and a test strip port light. Testing has never been easier. If you already have the meter, get your Freestyle Lite Test Strips here! Sign up for our Auto Re-Order program and get $1.99 shipping for life.
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Sharps Disposal by Mail System – The ideal disposal solution for your needles, syringes and other small quantities of bio hazardous waste. A complete system for use by facilities or individuals at home. When the sharps container is full, just mail it away for destruction in the pre-paid postage return box! Includes a sharps container, government-approved mailback box, protective liner and a 4-part simplified tracking form. The cost of destruction and mailing is included in the price of the product.
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Medseptic Skin Protectant Cream– One of the most popular products on our site! The Medseptic Skin Protectant is a superior moisturizer and protectant made with natural lanolin. It is recommended for diabetic patients to help hold moisture in the skin, especially on the feet, ankles, elbows and hands. I rub it on my feet every night and it’s heaven. Also formulated to treat adult diaper dermatitis, denuded skin and minor burns.
Shop all Diabetic Skin Care
SensiFoot Over-the-Calf Support Socks – Made by Jobst, these diabetic socks are super comfortable with a smooth toe seam and extra padding in the foot, heel and toe. They wick away moisture with the acrylic yarns and have an antibacterial, antifungal finish. One Allegro customer says “they’re the best socks I’ve ever owned”. Time to stock up on socks!
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Curity Alcohol Prep Pads – Protection from infection for less than a penny per 2-ply prep pad. 70% isopropyl alcohol prepares the site for insertion or incision. Curity’s alcohol prep pads are individually sealed in air-tight, poly-lined foils to minimize the chance of drying out. Non-sterile.
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Apex 1209 Men’s Ambulator Stretcher – Velcro Chukka Boot – Designed to specifically promote the healing process of an injured or wounded foot and limit stress at the areas of the foot most susceptible to pain. Sold in left or right singles only.
Shop all Diabetic Shoes
Resource Arginaid Drink Mixes – This Arginine-intensive, great tasting drink mix is specially formulated to promote healing in those recovering from burns, surgery or wounds. Great for the dietary management of diabetic foot ulcers.
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OneTouch Logbook – Writing your test results in a logbook and comparing them over time can show you and your doctor if your diabetes management program is working for you. It’s also a great way to see how daily events like meals and exercise impact your blood glucose. The OneTouch logbook is concise and easy to use – only about the size of a checkbook.
Shop all Diabetic Accessories
To see everything at once, and sort by best selling, price or product name, shop all Diabetic Supplies
Shop by Condition: Diabetes
Let Allegro help you manage your diabetes and the cost of your supplies. We appreciate your business and thank you for being an Allegro customer! Oh, and if there is a special product you enjoy, that we don’t offer, please let us know.
Rashy, itching, peeling, bumpy, burning, red, dry, scaly, scabby skin. If you have any of these, you can bet there is a product to soothe or heal it. Proper skin care can mean the difference between a good day and a very painful one. Here are links to products that we hope will bring you blissfully fast healing relief from eczema, fungal infections, diaper dermatitis, sunburns and more:
Remedies for Common Skin Problems
Eczema is very common and there are several medical grade and OTC skin care eczema remedies on the market. Eczema is a family of skin conditions but is generally described as inflammation or dermatitis of the upper layers of the skin. It can be found in adults or children and it is not contagious. Eczema is characterized by itchy, red, dry skin on the face, hands, feet, elbows, knees or arms.
Fungal Infections – Most superficial fungal infections such as athlete’s foot, jock itch, yeast infections and ringworm can be cured with topical antifungal medication placed directly on the affected area. Fungal infections are very common and grow best in warm moist environments so be careful and stay dry! Symptoms range from peeling, scaling redness to itching and burning and/or blisters and sores. Check with your doc if you’re not sure what you have.
See all Antifungals
Diaper Dermatitis (Diaper Rash) or other itchy skin irritations caused by moisture can be soothed, prevented and even cured with the help of incontinence washes, perineal cleansers and moisture barrier creams.
Diabetic Skin Care is important for people with diabetes because of the potential for a variety of skin conditions . Awareness is also key because reduced circulation and nerve sensitivity can make it hard to identify skin problems as they arise. Moisturizers are also important for those with diabetes because high blood glucose results in loss of fluid in the body. Dehydration can quickly lead to dry skin which can crack and invite nasty germs in, causing infections. Out of control infections can result in terrible problems including amputation. All preventable with daily skin care!
See all Diabetic Skin Care Products
See all Diabetic Supplies
Dry Skin prevention and correction can be managed with daily moisturizers. Rub lotion into damp skin after every bath or shower to seal in moisture and ensure great looking skin all year long.
Sunburns need fast pain relief, cooling medicine and sealed-in moisture. Have plenty of sunburn remedies on hand this summer.
See all Burn Care Products
There are 100’s of medical grade and Over-the-Counter (OTC) lotions, creams, ointments, sprays, powders and foams to relieve or cure just about any skin problem you have. Remember to read the labels and check with your doctor if you have any questions about what, when and how to use any of these products.
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See all OTC Ointments, Lotions, Creams & Powders
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See Shop by Condition: Skin Condition
Thanks for your business. We appreciate it.
Happy Heart Month! What a blessing that just a few simple changes in your lifestyle can improve your chances of living a longer, healthier life. The beauty is, anyone can make these changes, the steps are not expensive and even modest improvements will make a big difference.
The American Heart Association (AMA) calls them “The Simple 7”. Seven things you can do to reduce your chances of dying of heart disease, stroke, or other cardiac related incident. Take it slow – start with 1 or 2. Even small changes in lifestyle can make a big difference.
7 Steps to a Long and Healthy Life
Get Active– The AMA suggests at least 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise – or a combination of both. When you break it down, that is only about 22 minutes per day of moderate exercise. The simplest solution is to start walking. Join AMA’s Start Walking Program to develop your walking plan. If you are mobility-challenged or just not the outdoorsy type, there are plenty of great ways to get your heart pumping at home.
Browse Allegro’s Fitness category for hundreds of Exercise/Fitness Products to fit any level of fitness or ability. Sorted into helpful sub-categories. Get instruction from books, DVDs and videos to make your home workouts even more fun!
Control Cholesterol– Cholesterol is in your bloodstream and your cells. It is soft and waxy. Too much of the ‘bad’ cholesterol, the LDL, is a bad thing. It clogs arteries and puts you at major risk for coronary disease. 75% of cholesterol is produced by the body and the rest comes from the foods you eat. Many people inherit the genes that make too much cholesterol so you might not be able to control it without medication.
The AMA says “It’s important for all people to know their cholesterol level.” Cholesterol is measured in milligrams per deciliter of blood. A cholesterol level of 200mg/dL or higher puts you in a high risk category and you need to take action.
Monitor your cholesterol at home with the CholesTrak – FDA approved Total Cholesterol Device.
Cholesterol can be controlled by prescribed medication, diet and/or lifestyle changes. The AME recommends you schedule a screening, eat foods low in cholesterol and saturated fat, skip the trans fats, maintain a healthy weight and stay active.
See all Home Test Kits
Eat Better– If you haven’t heard it already, you must be living under a rock. Stop with the fast food, trans-fat laden crap and get healthy. Eat a diet of vegetables, fruits, unrefined whole-grains, fish (at least twice a week), lean meats, poultry (without skin), fat-free/low fat dairy. Aim for less than 1500 mgs of salt per day and less than 300 mgs of cholesterol. Stay away from foods with partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. If you do all this, you’ll be fine.
Even your best intentions may need a little supplemental help from time to time. See Allegro’s large selection of Vitamins and Herbal Supplements. I take a multi-vitamin, glucosamine and an Omega-3 tablet every day.
See all Dietary Supplements
Manage Blood Pressure – The AMA says that high blood pressure is the single most significant risk factor for heart disease. The scary thing is, you can’t feel high blood pressure. That’s why they call it “the silent killer”. Blood pressure is exactly that – the pressure of your blood on your veins. If it gets too high, over time it will stretch your veins and cause microscopic tears. When the body heals these tears it creates scar tissue which can form clots, blockages, blood clots and weakened arteries leading to stroke, heart attack, kidney failure and heart failure.
Normal blood pressure is less than 120 mm Hg systolic AND less than 80 mm Hg diastolic. High blood pressure (hypertension) is a reading of more than 140 over 80 (140/80).
Another scary fact about blood pressure: One in three adults have it, yet 21% don’t even know it. And of those with high blood pressure, 69% are receiving treatment, yet, only 45% have it controlled. Having your blood pressure checked only once in a while is dangerous. It took years to diagnose my high blood pressure because it was only tested periodically.
Take your own blood pressure. It’s easy! – I highly recommend the wrist models.
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If you have high blood pressure, please read I’m off my Blood Pressure Meds. By the way, I am still monitoring my blood pressure at home and it remains normal without medication. I still see my chiropractor about 3 times a month and check in with my physician every 4 months.
Lose Weight – Are you overweight/obese? If your body mass index (BMI) is 25.0 kg/m2 or higher, then you are among the 145 million overweight or obese Americans. Calculate your BMI by multiplying your weight in pounds by 703, then dividing that number by your height in inches and then dividing again by your height in inches.
Reduce your risk for heart disease by losing weight and keeping it off. My approach to weight loss is summed up in How to Not Gain Weight in 65 Days or Less and The Secret to Making Resolutions Work.
See Weight Loss Products Please be careful if you use synthetic weight loss supplements! Consult your physician. My body prefers all-natural foods and supplements. See FucoTHIN. For tried and true weight-loss advice, read Eating for Life by Bill Phillips.
Obesity is a major, independent risk factor for heart disease. And if you have a lot of belly fat you’re at even higher risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. Get rid of it.
Reduce Blood Sugar – Diabetes is controllable and treatable, but even so, adults with diabetes are two to four times more likely to have heart disease or stroke than adults without diabetes.
The AMA says that controlling glucose levels can slow the progression of long-term complications. Often, many small changes add up to surprising improvements in diabetes control, including less need for medication.
What is Diabetes?
How to Tell if you have Diabetes
Diagnosed Diabetic? See our Diabetes Care Medical Supplies
Stop Smoking – Smoking is the most preventable cause of premature death in the U.S. It increases the risk of heart disease, decreases your tolerance or physical activity, increases the tendency for blood to clot. It decreases HDL (good) cholesterol. It creates a higher risk for peripheral artery disease and aortic aneurysms. Ick.
Quiting cigarettes is hard, even for adolescents. How do you do it? Here’s a 5-Step Process to Stop Smoking. Don’t feel bad if you slip. It’s very common. Just try again… and again… until it works. Don’t give up. Look to your local resources through hospitals and hotlines for help.
Education Center for Heart Smarts
Are you a rehab specialist or physical/personal trainer? Learn more about cardiac health and rehab, see The ABCDE’S of Cardiac Rehabilitation, Yoga for Cardiac Rehab, Cardiovascular Disease and Women, Heathy Hearts, Healthy Women and Major Cardiac Risk Factor Screening.
See all Healthy Learning books, CDs and DVDs
Anyone can learn more about health, nutrition and fitness with the Health & Fitness in Plain English book.
How prevalent are heart problems? Read Staggering Heart Facts.
Are you at Risk for Heart Disease?
Did you know that heart attack and stroke symptoms for men and women may differ? Read Heart Attacke & Stroke Warning Signs.
We hope you will take this to heart and make the changes in your life that will see you through a long, healthy life. Read more about the The Simple 7 on the American Heart Association’s website.
And as always, we thank you for your business – from the bottom of our hearts. (sorry, had to).
Allegro is well-known for its low, low prices on diabetes supplies and is a reliable source for hundreds of customers who want a no-hassle, automatic delivery of their test strips right to their doorstep. We know how important your testing is, and also how expensive it can get. That’s why we keep our prices as low as possible.
In recognition of American Diabetes Month we’re offering you discounted prices on our diabetes supplies. Order today!!
Top 10 Lowest Priced, Most Popular Diabetic Test Strips
One Touch Ultra Test Strips – According to one Allegro customer, our price on the One Touch Ultra “makes daily checking affordable.” That’s what we like to hear. Rock bottom prices.
Freestyle Test Strips – Box of 100. Works with the Freestyle Blood Glucose Monitoring System. Affordable and easy to use. Need fewer strips? Try the Freestyle Test Strips Box of 50.
FreeStyle Lite– New! No Coding Required. Use with the FreeStyle Lite meter featuring the world’s smallest blood sample size.
Bayer’s CONTOUR Test Strips(formerly Ascensia) – No coding and a 5 second test time. Use with Bayer Contour Meter. Super price.
Accu-Check Compact Test Strips – “Never Handle Test Strips” for use with the Compact and Compact Plus Blood Glucose Meters. Discounts galore.
Accu-Chek Aviva Test Strips – Completely touchable strip and wide-mouth dosing area makes it easy to test right the first time. Larger, wider strip makes it easy to use for all ages. Great price!
Accu-Chek Active Test Strips – Designed for people on the go! Quick and accurate results. Test from palm, forearm, upper arm, thigh or calf. Apply blood to test strip in or out of the meter. Easy and inexpensive.
Accu-Chek Comfort Curve Test Strips– Use with Accu-Chek Advantage, Complete and Voicemate. Unique curved target area fits your finger for easier blood application.
Bayer BREEZE2 Test Strips – The easy-to-use 10-test disc means you only have to load every 10 tests. Simple wins every time.
Invacare TRUEread Test Strips– Use with TRUEread or TrackEASE blood glucose monitors. Large strips for easy handling. Easy-open flip top. True value.
See all Diabetes Test Strips
See all Diabetes Supplies
Shop by Condition in our Diabetes Store
Do you use a test strip or meter that you don’t see at AllegroMedical.com? Please let us know (reply below) and we will try to stock it for you!
More on Diabetes:
What is Diabetes and What’s the Difference Between Typ 1 and Type 2?
How to Tell if you have Diabetes
Take care and thanks for being an Allegro customer. -v
My parents used to tell great grandma to “stay out of the sugar!” whenever we left her house. I wasn’t sure why they said it, but everyone got a kick out of it. Great-grandma, I came to find out had ‘the sugar diabetes’ (pronounced dia-BEE-tuzz by my family) so she wasn’t allowed to eat a lot of sugar (horrors). Anyhoo, years passed before I understood why. It’s pretty confusing so I thought I’d do you a quick little lesson, in layman’s terms, on what diabetes is, and what the different types mean.
What is diabetes?
When you eat carbohydrates (mainly sugars and starches), your body digests the food and the glucose (sugar) is sucked from your small intestine into your bloodstream. The glucose goes into your bloodstream so it can be delivered to cells throughout your body. The cells then convert the glucose to energy and you get to live a little longer.
When the glucose enters your bloodstream, your blood sugar (aka blood glucose) levels rise, triggering the production and release of a hormone called insulin. Insulin is made by beta cells scattered throughout your pancreas and, among other things, it tightly controls the level of sugar in your blood stream at any given time. It does this by telling your muscle and fat cells to pull the glucose (sugar) from the blood into the cells, out of the bloodstream.
It stands to reason, then, that if your body is unable to produce insulin, or can’t produce enough insulin, or can’t properly use the insulin, then you will have too much sugar in your blood and that’s a bad thing. When you have elevated levels of glucose (sugar) in your blood you are said to have hyperglycemia or you are “hyperglycemic” (low blood sugar is hypoglycemia). If the sugar in your blood tests out at consistently high or above average levels, then you are diagnosed with a certain type of diabetes. Diabetes is a chronic disease meaning that once diagnosed it lasts a lifetime, although it can be controlled.
What is Type 1 Diabetes?
You have type 1 diabetes (aka insulin dependent diabetes or juvenile onset diabetes) when your pancreas cannot produce insulin at all. This happens when your body’s immune system malfunctions and mistakenly manufactures antibodies (proteins in the blood that are part of the immune system) that attack the beta cells in its own pancreas, rendering it incapable of producing insulin. Any time your immune system attacks your own body tissues it is called an autoimmune disease. That’s what type 1 diabetes is. This tendency to produce abnormal antibodies is beleved to be, in part, genetic, although it is not fully understood.
Type 1 diabetes is the least common, and it is found primarily in young, lean people under the age of 30. Screening for certain types of antibodies is encouraged for individuals who have a parent or sibling with type 1 diabetes.
What is Type 2 Diabetes?
Of the people who have diabetes, 90% have type 2 and it occurs later in life. It is sometimes called non-insulin dependent or adult onset diabetes and it is characterized by the fact that you can still produce insulin. The problem is, you don’t produce enough, or your body doesn’t correctly use the insulin it produces. Your body’s cells may be insulin resistant. This is the primary problem in type 2 diabetes. Insulin resistance is when your cells don’t respond normally to a given amount of insulin, meaning that higher levels of insulin are needed in order for insulin to have its effects. In type 2 diabetes, there is also a steady decline of beta cells (they produce the insulin in the pancreas), which causes less insulin to be produced, thus contributing to worsening glucose control.
How Insulin Resistance Leads to Type 2 Diabetes
Insulin resistance precedes type 2 diabetes, sometimes by years. In fact, your blood glucose and insulin levels may be normal for years and then, bam! you become insulin resistant. At this point, you will often see an association of high insulin levels, abdominal obesity, cholesterol issues and/or high blood pressure. When you have all these issues, you have metabolic syndrome. Insulin resistance has a strong genetic factor and can also be caused by some medications, but it is often seen in people who have metabolic syndrome, are obese, pregnant, severely ill, stressed or using steroids.
Here’s how it works: One of insulin’s jobs is to tell your muscle and fat cells to pull glucose from your blood so it can be used by the cell. This is one way that insulin “controls” your blood sugar levels. Insulin basically attaches itself to the surface of the fat and muscle cells, knocks on the cell’s door and says “okee dokee, open up”. The cells hear the knock and says “come on in you beautiful sugar baby” (it lets the glucose in, thereby removing it from the blood stream). Then the cell uses the glucose to provide energy to the body. With insulin resistance, the muscles don’t even hear the knock and so the pancreas is notified to make more insulin, which increases the levels of insulin in the blood that causes a louder knock. The resistance continues over time and as long as the pancreas can create enough insulin to open the cells doors, then you’re okay. Once the pancreas can no longer keep up, the blood glucose levels begin to rise – at first only after meals when your glucose levels are highest but eventually when you’re fasting too. At this point, you have type 2 diabetes.
How can you tell if you have diabetes?
Diabetes is a very serious disease and any diabetes-like symptoms need immediate professional medical advice for diagnosis and treatment. It is ultimately diagnosed by testing the amount of glucose (sugar) in your blood after fasting overnight for at least 8 hours. It is easily determined with a single draw of blood which is analyzed by a lab, or it can be done in your doctor’s office using a glucose meter.
Normal fasting blood glucose levels are less than 100 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl). Fasting blood glucose levels of more than 126 mg/dl on two or more tests on different days indicates diabetes. A blood glucose level of 200 mg/dl or higher, taken randomly at any time of day, also indicates diabetes.
A fasting blood glucose level that stays above 100, but below 126 is known as impaired fasting glucose (IFG). While these patients do not have the diagnosis of diabetes, it is important that it be addressed so that diabetes may be delayed or prevented.
The American Diabetes Assocation’s How to Tell if You Have Pre-Diabetes can give you more information and also can link you to a test to help you determine if you are at increased risk for diabetes or pre-diabetes.
Symptoms noticed by patients at the onset of diabetes range from no symptoms at all to extreme thirst, extreme fatigue, frequent urination, rapid weight loss, difficulty losing weight (common in the pre-diabetic stage), eye pain or blurry vision, foot pain, dry mouth, dry skin, sweaty spells, weakness, hearing loss, ringing in the ears, bladder infections, tingling in the legs, gum disease, vomiting/upset stomach, extreme hunger, headaches and dizziness.
So you see, it can get quite difficult to diagnose this on your own.
Unless you are familiar with how diabetes works, you may want to read What is Diabetes and the Difference Between Type 1 and Type 2? to help you digest the follwing information.
An explanation of the most common symptoms:
High amounts of glucose in the urine causes frequent urination, which leads to dehydration. Dehydration causes excessive thirst, so you drink more water, which adds to the frequency of urination…and so around it goes.
Insulin resistance, which often leads to diabetes, promotes fat storage because glucose cannot properly enter the cells to be used as energy. The body keeps producing more insulin to try to get those cells to open up and since insulin is a hormone that likes to store fat, this can lead to weight gain, which leads to obesity, which worsens insulin resistance, which accelerates the development of Pre-Diabetes, which, left unchecked can lead to type 2 diabetes. On the other hand, obesity can be what initiates the insulin resistance in the first place. Another chicken/egg situation. This diabetes is tricky stuff.
Diabetics experience weight loss, despite their increased appetite, when the body is no longer producing any, or not enough, insulin. This lack of insulin keeps the sugar in your blood instead of letting it into the cells where it can be converted to energy. If your blood sugar is very high, you urinate a lot and that causes weight loss, plus a muscle breakdown can occur, causing unhealthy weight loss. Many patients find out they have diabetes when they have experienced unexplained weight loss.
Some untreated diabetes patients complain of nausea and vomiting. The nausea and vomiting could be because of a condition called gastroparesis, which is caused by high blood sugars that can, over time, damage the vagus nerve which controls the movement of food through the digestive tract. When this nerve is damaged, food moves slowly or stops moving through the digestive tract. Nerve damage also leads to problems of the feet.
If fatigue is paired with any of the other classic diabetes symptoms, you need to schedule a diabetes screening test. The reason diabetics experience fatigue is because their glucose is just floating around in their system instead of being converted to energy. Without enough insulin, the cells don’t allow the glucose in, so you feel drained all the time. This fatigue can only be alleviated by returning the blood sugar to its normal levels.
Diabetics are prone to all kinds of infections, but women with diabetes, in particular, often notice frequent urinary tract infections. According to an article on DiabetesInControl.com, women with diabetes are two to three times more likely to have bacteria in their bladdres than women without diabetes (not true for men). Poor circulation in diabetics reduces the ability of infection-fighting white blood cells to get where they need to go. When they get there, they are less likely to ingest the offending bacteria and kill them than normal white blood cells. Many people with diabetes also have bladder dysfunctions that contract poorly, allowing urine to remain in static pools where bacteria can grow.
Diabetics also have more skin problems and other infections that often lead to a diagnosis. There are too many to list but if you’d like to read more, see the American Diabetes Assocation’s “Skin Complications” sections.
And last but not least, an early symptom of eye problems relating to diabetes is blurred vision. High blood sugar changes the shape and flexibility of the lens of the eye, distorting the ability to focus which causes blurred vision. Other symptoms include double vision, cloudy vision, floating spots and curtain-like shadows in the eye.
If you have any of these concerns, please see your doctor and get a simple blood test. Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to some really hairy complications including high blood pressure, heart attacks and heart failure, blindness, kidney failure, coma, nerve damage and amputation. Not to mention death.
The good news is, if diabetes is caught in its early stages, and it is still considered mild, your doctor may start treatment by having you drop excess body fat, lower your blood pressure and cholesterol through diet and exercise. If your diabetes is more complicated, or at a more advanced stage, you will be treated with oral medications or insulin injections.
From what I can tell by the repeat sales of our blood glucose testing supplies, people pretty much stick to the same meters and test strips, time after time. Hey, whatever works, right? So I won’t bore you with a listing of those, (but you should still check out our low, low prices). Instead, I’ll turn you on to some super buys on products you might have missed in the 267 diabetic products at AllegroMedical.com.
Boost Glucose Control (formerly Boost Diabetic) – This is our most popular diabetic product, it’s selling for 32% below list price, it will help manage your glucose levels, it’s ready to drink, made by Nestle and has an average customer rating of 5 out of 5 stars. May I take your order?
Comfy Feet Diabetic Crew Socks (pk. of 3) – Where else can you get 3 pairs of socks for 7 bucks? Besides these are the most comfortable socks you may ever wear, diabetic or otherwise. They’re such a good deal you can get one of every color.
AccelWell Travel Pouch – Keep your insulin cool and safe for up to 13 hours in 100 degree heat, plus keep all your supplies organized for travel. $14.95 but with mixed reviews. You might opt for the $19.95 Micro-Cooler instead. See all Accessories.
OneTouch Logbook – Use this little book to see how your meals and exercise impact your blood glucose over time. Stock up, they’re $1.95!
TriDERMA Intense Fast Healing Cream – I’m torn on this one because one customer says she wouldn’t recommend it to her worst enemy, but Harry from Milwaukee says that it works better than anything he’s ever used to heal foot and leg sores. Hey, the name says it’s intense! You decide… for $13.95 it might be worth a try. Or, check out the rest of our Skin Care Creams & Moisturizers.
Transportable Sharps Needle Disposal Container – 2 gallon – For $7.95 you can use this container for months. See more Sharps/Needle Disposal products.
Aetrex Worldwide Shoes & Sandals – Really neat ones, made for sensitive feet. 49 styles to choose from in regular, wide and extra-wide sizes – at the lowest prices on the web. Aetrex shoes are very popular and a great find for hard-to-fit feet. Highly recommended!
See more bargains in Test Strips, Control Solution, Diabetic Nutrition, Insulin Products, Lancets, Meters & Test Kits and Needles & Syringes.
If you’re buying your consumable diabetic supplies from Allegro, save both time and money and have them automatically sent to you on a convenient time schedule? See the Allegro Auto-ReOrder Program. It’s a piece of cake – sugar free, of course.
If you’re not buying your supplies from Allegro…shame on you. No seriously, if you’re not, PLEASE leave a comment below, tell me why and I’ll see what I can do about it.
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