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Diabetes: Awareness, Management & Prevention

Diabetes: Awareness, Management & Prevention

Did you know that on average, around 1 in 10 Americans have diabetes? The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) also says around 1 in 3 Americans have prediabetes, and many don’t know they have it.

March is recognized as American Diabetes Alert Month. Since many of us have been staying home more and exercising less due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s especially important to spread the word about the risks of diabetes!

The good news is according to the CDC’s 2020 National Diabetes Statistics Report, overall diabetes cases among those older than 20 years old have actually decreased over the last decade. However, the number of cases among people younger than 20 years has remained steady.

Despite these numbers, there are many steps you can take to prevent, slow or maintain diabetes. About 75 percent of diabetes risk in the United States can be attributed to excess body weight. Other factors include:

  • Having a parent or sibling with diabetes.
  • Being physically active less than 3 times a week.
  • Having gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy) or giving birth to a baby who weighed more than 9 pounds.
  • Having polycystic ovary syndrome.

Race and ethnicity can also be a factor. African Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans, American Indians, Pacific Islanders, and some Asian Americans are at higher risk for diabetes.

Management & Prevention

Modest weight loss and exercise can delay and even prevent diabetes. In fact, studies have shown that lifestyle modification was more effective than medication used to treat diabetes and prediabetes!

Valley Health's Diabetes Management Program includes a 12-month program recognized by the CDC. Our team can help individuals who are at risk make lasting changes to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes and lower their risk of heart disease.

The program includes coaching from health professionals to help individuals develop skills to lose weight, be more physically active, manage stress and stay motivated. It is offered at the following locations across the Valley Health service area:

The Diabetes Prevention Program is now also being offered virtually. Click here to learn about the next virtual session!