INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WANE) On American Diabetes Alert Day, which is March 25, state health officials encouraged Hoosiers to determine their risk of diabetes in hopes of preventing the disease.
Diabetes is a group of diseases resulting in high levels of blood glucose (a form of sugar) due to defects in insulin production, action, or both. Of the 26 million Americans living with diabetes, 540,000 are Hoosiers, with an additional 280,000 Hoosiers considered pre-diabetic. Pre-diabetes often goes undiagnosed or is termed “borderline” or “just a touch of sugar.” People with pre-diabetes have a blood sugar level higher than normal, but not high enough for a diagnosis of diabetes.
In the next 40 years the number of Americans with diabetes may double or even triple if changes to diet and exercise are not made, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
People with pre-diabetes who reduce their weight by five percent to seven percent and increase their physical activity to 150 minutes a week (approximately 22 minutes a day) may prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes by up to 58 percent, according to the National Diabetes Prevention Program. A free diabetes risk test is available on the American Diabetes Association website at http://www.diabetes.org/are-you-at-risk/diabetes-risk-test/.
“Nutrition and exercise have a huge impact on an individual’s risk for getting diabetes, as well as for managing it effectively,” said State Health Commissioner William VanNess, M.D. “With approximately 30 percent of Hoosiers being obese, now is the time to make those healthy changes. March is a great time to start since there is a lot of good information available surrounding nutrition and diabetes.”
Tips and videos about eating and cooking more nutritious meals can be found on the Fruits & Veggies More Matters website at http://www.fruitsandveggiesmorematters.org/. Hoosiers can also visit the INShape Indiana website at www.INShapeIndiana.org to find resources for healthful eating and getting more exercise.
For more information about National Nutrition Month, visit the American Academy of Nutrition and Diatetics at http://www.eatright.org/NNM/.