American Diabetes Association Alert Day®

Tuesday, March 28 is American Diabetes Association Alert Day®, and with millions of Americans at risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, we urge you to take action to prevent the disease. Currently, diabetes affects nearly 29 million people; another 86 million Americans have prediabetes, yet only about 10 percent are aware of it. 

 

Prediabetes is a condition in which individuals have blood glucose (sugar) levels that are higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes. People with prediabetes are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke. 14,605 residents of Berrien County have been diagnosed with diabetes, according to the CDC's website

 

Understanding your risk is the first step in preventing diabetes. Several factors including family history, age, weight and physical activity level can contribute to developing type 2 diabetes. Learn your risk for type 2 diabetes by taking the diabetes risk test at ymca.net/diabetes.

 

For those at risk for diabetes, the next step is to make the necessary changes to help prevent the disease. Programs like the YMCA's Diabetes Prevention Program can help. Facilitated by a trained Lifestyle Coach, the yearlong program provides a supportive environment where participants work together in a small group to learn about behavior changes that can improve overall health. The goal of the program is to help adults at risk for diabetes reduce their body weight by 5 to 7 percent and increase their physical activity to 150 minutes per week. Studies have shown that programs like the YMCA's Diabetes Prevention Program can prevent or delay new cases of type 2 diabetes in adults by 58 percent and by as much as 71 percent in those over age 60.

 

To learn more about the Benton Harbor-St. Joseph YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program, call the Welcome Center at 269-428-9622.