Make Preventing or Delaying Type 2 Diabetes a Priority

Have you thought about your goals and resolutions for the new year? This year, put healthy living at the top of your list. Wondering where to begin? Follow these tips:

First, learn your risk. Could you have prediabetes? If so, you would be 1 in 3 adults who has this serious health condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal, but not yet high enough for a type 2 diabetes diagnosis. The good news is you can frequently reverse prediabetes with healthy lifestyle changes. Knowing whether you are at risk is the first step to keeping your health in check. Take a one-minute risk test at cdc.gov/diabetes/risktest to find out where you stand. Your doctor can also run a blood test to see if you have prediabetes.

Then act. If you find out you have prediabetes or have a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, start taking steps to improve your health. Make an action plan of specific ways you can eat healthier and exercise more. Here are some ideas:

  • Eat healthier: Choose non-starchy vegetables, fruits, and lean proteins over processed foods, trans fats, sugary drinks, and alcohol. Do not try to do too much at once – plan what you think you will be able to follow.
  • Exercise more: Find an activity that you enjoy and set a goal that works for you. Gradually work up to being active at a moderate intensity for at least 30 minutes, 5 days a week.

Making a change is not easy, but you do not have to do it alone. UofL Health offers nutritional counseling and a lifestyle change program to help you learn the skills needed to lose weight, become more physically active, and manage stress. This program is proven to help cut type 2 diabetes risk in half. With the help of a lifestyle coach and the support of other program participants from your community, you can not only lower your risk for type 2 diabetes, but also improve your overall health.

Talk with your primary care provider about diabetes and nutritional counseling options or call 502-588-4499 to get more information about our lifestyle change program. Focus on your health in 2021 and enjoy special moments with your loved ones all year long by taking action today to prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. New year, healthier you!

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Article by:

Beth Ackerman, R.D.

Beth Ackerman is a registered dietitian and a certified diabetes educator at the UofL Physicians – Diabetes and Obesity Center. Beth is on the team of educators of the ADA-approved diabetes education team at UofL Physicians. She has counseled people with diabetes for more than 25 years. Ackerman serves as the Diabetes Prevention Program Workgroup co-chair for the Kentucky Diabetes Network and volunteers at Camp Hendon, a diabetes camp for children.

All posts by Beth Ackerman, R.D.
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