By Renee Quinn
If you could reduce your risk of becoming diabetic by 58%, wouldn’t you? A collaboration between the Center for Disease Control (CDC), YMCA of the USA, and community partners are doing this thanks to the Diabetes Prevention Program at local Ys.
According to the CDC, 10.2% of Pierce county adults are diabetic and with more people dying of diabetes than breast and lung cancer combined, communities are taking action.
After struggling to find a plan that worked, YMCA member Mark Hurst joined the Y and the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program. “The YMCA staff is energetic, positive, knowledgeable, and very good at listening to what my needs are,” said Mark. “Joining the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Group was the best decision I have made to improve my fitness, reduce my weight, to do the things necessary to prevent the onset of diabetes in my life. Thanks to the multi-pronged approach of the Diabetes Prevention Group, I am committed to permanently change my behavior, to battle diabetes armed with skills, knowledge, abilities and support to succeed.”
The one year program runs for 16 weekly sessions then monthly as a small group in a supportive environment. The goals of the group are to reduce body weight by 7%, increase physical activity to 150 minutes per week, and learn how to reduce risks for becoming diabetic. YMCA membership is not needed to participate.
Research by the National Institutes of Health has shown that programs like the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program can reduce the number of new cases of type 2 diabetes by 58%, and 71% in adults over the age of 60.