National Diabetes Month 2021

November is National Diabetes Month!

November has been designated as National Diabetes Month since 1975. The purpose of National Diabetes Month is to bring attention and awareness to all forms of diabetes. The focus this year is on managing prediabetes and preventing type 2 diabetes.

What is Prediabetes?

Prediabetes occurs when blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be considered diabetes. However, don’t let the “pre” fool you – prediabetes is a serious health condition. Prediabetes increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes and other health concerns such as heart disease or stroke.

Today, more than 34 million American adults are living with diabetes and many more are at risk for developing diabetes. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1 in 3 U.S. adults have prediabetes, which is approximately 88 million people. Something even more shocking is more than 84% of people are unaware they have it.  

The good news is that making healthy lifestyle choices can help manage prediabetes and prevent type 2 diabetes.

Tips to Manage Prediabetes and Prevent Type 2 Diabetes

  1. It is a marathon, not a sprint. Changing aspects of your lifestyle can be challenging. It is important to remember changes do not happen overnight. Start by changing 1 habit each week such as setting your alarm to go off 10 minutes earlier to allow time to eat a nutritious breakfast.

  2. Move your body more. The CDC recommends getting at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week. Try including 30 minutes of physical activity per day for 5 days each week. This could be done all at once or broken up throughout the day. Moving your body more could look like getting your heart rate up during a brisk walk on your lunch break.  

  3. Focus on nutrition. Nutrition plays a huge role in your health. Choose foods high in fiber and low in fat and sugar. Limit sugar-sweetened beverages and opt for water instead. Focus on your meal having a source of protein, vegetables, and carbohydrates.

  4. Gradual weight loss. The CDC suggests a 5-7% weight loss to help prevent prediabetes from developing into diabetes.

  5. Build a village. Enforcing new habits can seem impossible without someone cheering you on. Make it a priority to have a support system to check in with and help push you.

  6. Vibe with vaccines. People with diabetes are at an increased risk of getting sick. Make sure to stay up to date on all your vaccinations.

Curious about your risk of prediabetes? Click here to take the prediabetes risk test.

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