Did you know that there is currently no cure for Type 2 diabetes? Did you know that 29 million Americans have diabetes and 86 million have prediabetes according to information gathered in 2014 by the Centers for Disease Control? Do you know if you are prediabetic? Well, there are 77 million of you out there who are unaware that you are even at risk. That is a huge number and since there is no cure, then the only way to help lower the statistics is to do a little education and prevention. Those folks that do have prediabetes are not only at risk for developing Type 2 diabetes but also heart disease, stroke and other conditions.
There are several national organizations trying to help people learn their risk. The American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, the AMA, the National Council on Aging and the YMCA are just a few. They are asking folks to take a very simple “yes/no” risk test which can be found at www.ymca.net/diabetes. In fact, I just took it myself and it probably only took a minute to complete. If you are at risk, then that is your opportunity to check with your doctor and make simple lifestyle changes including healthier eating, increased physical activity and weight loss.
The lifestyle changes that can help folks that have prediabetes are really no different than what every person should be working on.
Eat your fruits and vegetables every day. (At least five servings)
Eat lean meats, fish and poultry. (Nothing fried)
Choose whole grains. (Watch out for things that say “enriched” in the ingredients)
Be moderately active at least 30 minutes per day at least 5 days a week.
Choose water over sugary beverages.
Watch for hidden sugars in all foods and do your best to cut back on the daily amount.
If you feel you need more help and guidance, the YMCA of Greater Louisville actually runs a Diabetes Prevention Program which is a 12 month group based program focused on the goals of losing 7 percent of your body weight and gradually increasing activity to 150 minutes per week and the Purdue Extension office in Floyd County offers a four-week Dining with Diabetes class that educates you on proper nutrition and allows you to watch foods be prepared and taste them.
Published in the October/November issue of Southern Indiana Fitness Source
// Julie Callaway