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November is American Diabetes Month

Author: Anonym/Wednesday, November 5, 2014/Categories: Health

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More than 29 million Americans, or about 9 percent of the U.S. population, have diabetes.  It is estimated that one in every 4 people with diabetes does not even know they have the disease.  Diabetes is a very serious, often frustrating and sometimes debilitating disease.  It has been directly linked to heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease- and often causes isolation due to complications such as loss of limbs or depression.  People with diabetes are nearly 2 times more likely to die from heart disease or stroke than a person without diabetes. 

Research shows 35% of Americans age 20 and older have pre-diabetes. Half of these are 60 and older.  Of those diagnosed as pre-diabetic, 15- 30% will develop Type 2 diabetes within 5 years.  The good news is, with modest weight loss of 5- 7% of body weight and moderate physical activity of 2½ hours a week, people age 20 and older can delay Type 2 diabetes by 58%, and those 60 and older can delay it by 71%.

The Niagara County Department of Health Nursing Division has 2 free programs that address diabetes, and offered throughout the county. For those who have diabetes, the Diabetes Self-Management Program (DSMP) has proven very effective in increasing confidence in people’s self-management of their disease.  Other benefits of the program are improved generalized health, improvement in the feeling of well being, and improvement in socialization. Participants who have taken this workshop stated they had much better understanding and control of their diabetes, and were feeling much better about their overall health.  If you have diabetes, come join us and see for yourself! Our other successful program is the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), which targets those at risk for developing the disease.  The DPP has proven to be very effective, with past workshop participants measuring an average weight loss of 17 pounds, just by adopting simple lifestyle changes learned from our program. 

The following could indicate a high risk for diabetes:

  • Age 45 or older
  • Family history of diabetes (mother, father, sister, aunt, uncle)
  • Overweight or obese
  • African American, American Indian, Asian-American or Hispanic/Latin 
  • Having had gestational diabetes
  • Having a baby that weighed more than 9 pounds at birth
  • Having polycystic ovarian syndrome
  • Being physically active less than three times per week 

For more information about the 2 programs, or to attend a workshop, contact the Niagara County Department of Health Nursing Division at 716-278-1900.


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