Small Steps can Prevent Diabetes!

Have you been diagnosed with prediabetes? Do you have a family history of diabetes that you fear may impact you in the future? Often times, doctors like to ‘watch’ patients who have risk factors for diabetes, including being overweight and having slightly elevated blood sugars, because there hasn’t been a place for these patients to learn more on how to stay well…until now!

The Wellness Neighborhood of Tahoe Forest Health System is proud to offer Prevent T2, part of the CDC-recognized National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) that has been shown to help at-risk adults cut their risk for developing type 2 diabetes by 58%. Beginning in April, a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist will be leading the Prevent T2 lifestyle change program here in the Truckee community.

This program is unique in that it targets people who do not have diabetes, and who even may not have been told by a doctor that they have prediabetes. Did you know that roughly one in three American adults has prediabetes, and many don’t know it? People with higher-than-normal blood glucose (sugar) levels are 5-15 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those with normal blood glucose levels. In fact, many people with prediabetes can be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes within 5 years.

The Prevent T2 program offers a proven approach to preventing or delaying the onset of type 2 diabetes through modest lifestyle changes made with the support of a coach and one’s peers. Participants will learn how to eat healthy, add physical activity to their routine, manage stress, stay motivated, and solve problems that can get in the way of healthy changes. The group will meet for a year — weekly for the first 6 months, then once or twice a month for the second 6 months to maintain healthy lifestyle changes. The program’s group setting provides a supportive environment with people who are facing similar challenges and trying to make the same changes. Together participants celebrate their successes and find ways to overcome obstacles.

To find out if you are at risk for, or may have, prediabetes, take the risk test (available in English and Spanish) at doihaveprediabetes.org or visit your Primary Care Physician to get the appropriate screening blood tests. You do not need a referral from you medical provider to participate in the Prevent T2 program, but you do need to qualify based on eligibility criteria (overweight and elevated blood sugars or a previous diagnosis of gestational diabetes) or a score of 5 or higher on the risk test linked above. To learn more about the Tahoe Forest Prevent T2 program, contact the Center for Health at 530-587-3769.