Pomerene Hospital Blog
What YOU Need To Know About Diabetes
It’s November – the season for turkey, stuffing, ham, pumpkin pie, Christmas cookies, you name it! Oh and also – Diabetes Awareness Month. There are three primary types of diabetes, but let’s talk a little about Type 2 Diabetes, diabetes prevention, and why this matters for our community and our health.
Type 2 Diabetes (formerly known as adult-onset diabetes) is commonly diagnosed around the age of 20+. It is the most common type of diabetes affecting 90% of persons with diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can develop over a course of 5-10 years due to lifestyle habits, eating patterns, activity status, and family history. There are a multitude of other factors that can put a person at risk for developing diabetes, which is why spreading diabetes awareness and prevention is so crucial.
What is the big deal?
As a country, we did not just abruptly change our eating habits and our activity habits. We evolved into a different generation, a different culture, and “busier people.” We became a more diverse community with different ethnic risk factors being introduced to our families. As a mixed generation we focus our priorities on different areas than our health and families. We learned to eat differently and exercise less due to busy lives, convenience, and technology.
So really – what is the big deal? The big deal is that due to our overwhelming lifestyle changes, type 2 diabetes is becoming more prevalent. As a country and specifically for Holmes County as a community – we have to commit to making a change.
We have all heard the lecture – eat less starchy foods, exercise more, control your blood pressure, stop smoking. In reality, preventing type 2 diabetes is not a matter of doing more of one thing or less of another. It is simply a matter of living a well-balanced life. Living a healthy lifestyle is not just about our habits at home; it includes our habits at work, at home, at family dinners, and social events, etc. Living a healthy lifestyle is all day, every day.
How do we make a change?
We all know how it feels to come home after a long day, to not want to cook and collapse on the couch. Then, take into account an eight hour day at a desk or in one seat and activity is limited. Then add on a long commute, or children’s activities after work and school, and really, who has time for cooking?
Unfortunately, the statistics do not lie and for our own health, the health of our families and our children, we can no longer continue to use “busy” as an excuse. So what can you do instead?
- 1)Plan ahead – Purchase a new planner or calendar and plan out your week/month. Know your busiest days and prepare for them
- 2)Schedule it – Take the next step and plan for your busy days. Start meal planning and develop an exercise schedule. Write your meals and times for activity on the calendar and then commit to it.
- 3)Make a commitment – You guessed it; now commit to your planning and scheduling. Developing new lifestyle habits is not an easy task. Commit to changing your current patterns and offer yourself a reward at certain milestone points.
- 4)Ask for help – If you already struggle with eating habits and activity you may struggle with change. So seek help! Look online, visit your local library, call your local dietician and diabetes nurse, join a medical fitness center, subscribe to magazines, and enlist a partner or friend who has already made changes or can be your coach.
- 5)Identify obstacles – Every goal in life has certain obstacles. Making a goal to develop a healthier lifestyle is no different. Grab a pen and paper and list out every obstacle you will have to committing to your lifestyle change. Then, start with 2-3 obstacles and find ways to eliminate or reduce them.
Living healthy may not always be easy, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming either. Start today; start with baby steps, start with one area of your life and work towards a bigger goal – but start today. Live happier, feel better, and protect your future. If you want to read some more reasons why – take a look at the statistics below:
- 1 out of 3 US adults has pre-diabetes – of those adults, only 11% know they have it
- 1.4 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes every year
- In 2012, 86 million Americans had pre-diabetes; that is up from 79 million in 2010
- Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death; more than HIV and AIDS combined
- $245 billion dollars in medical costs related to diabetes on average yearly
So what now?
The best way to protect yourself is through education and prevention.
- 1.Educate yourself and learn the risks and symptoms – Find out more at American Diabetes Association - http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/
- 2.Talk with your doctor – have annual preventative screenings and routine bloodwork
- 3.Change your eating – Find out more at Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics http://www.eatright.org/
- 4.Learn more about activity - https://www.choosemyplate.gov/physical-activity
How can Pomerene Help you?
Pomerene Hospital Diabetes Education Program:Jennifer Kaiser, BSN, RN – Diabetes Education Coordinator -330-674-1015 extension 1023 firstname.lastname@example.org
Dima Hassan, MS, RDN, LD – Clinical Dietician – 330-674-1015 extension 1123
Pomerene Kinetics Medical Fitness Center
Contact a Membership Representative - 330-674-4488