Blog

written by:

You Can Kick Prediabetes to the Curb Too!

Prediabetes

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “96 million Americans have prediabetes and an even more troubling fact is that more than 8 out of 10 people do not know they have it.” Sadly I learned I was one of them. Who would’ve known that the physical and tests that I have taken every year for my health insurance plan would result with an above normal A1C result?

Nonetheless, things happen for a reason and months later, I would receive an email from my health insurance company about how I could prevent prediabetes through organizations offering prediabetes lifestyle prevention programs such as my local YMCA. I followed up immediately by contacting my physician assistant, she reviewed the paperwork, and signed the paperwork.  I fit all the criteria. I was a Latino male ,overweight based on the Body Mass Index, above normal A1C test results, older than 45 years old and while I wouldn’t consider myself sedentary, I wouldn’t consider myself to be physically active either. Once I was accepted into the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program, this was when my journey to kick prediabetes to the curb began!

One can understand that change is hard for many and I would be lying if I stated that it was easy. It was not! Nonetheless it isn’t impossible. You have to ask yourself, are you committed to your health, a better lifestyle, and to eliminate prediabetes from your life? At 55, I had to make that decision. So I enrolled at my local YMCA Program.

YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program

The program consists of sessions designed to help you lose weight, increase your physical activity, and modify how much and what you eat. Your ultimate goal is eliminating prediabetes altogether. Change is hard for many and I am no different, it is challenging yet not impossible! So here’s the game plan:

  • The first one is obvious. Contact your physician. Also contact your health insurance plan for information on prediabetes and diabetes prevention programs located near where you reside.
  • Lose weight – This is a no-brainer! But for many, this is easier said than done! Think of all those New Year’s resolutions and diets that never came to fruition. During the early sessions, a weight goal had to be set. I thought mine was very ambitious. I was skeptical at first since my goal was to achieve weight that I hadn’t been since my college years. Please note…I am 55 years old!
  • Increase physical activity – The increase in physical activity will be beneficial and help with weight loss. Once again contact your physician to determine what is right for you. It can be as simple as vigorous walking sessions to weightlifting. Try to take advantage of any opportunity that you have access to such as walking your dog, access to paths and hiking trails, join a gym, swim, jog, use a treadmill or elliptical, dance, etc. The possibilities are endless and should be tailored to your ability and needs.
  • Eating – Like many I also have a love of food. I am blessed to have a mother and wife that are wonderful cooks. I have a loving relationship with food. I was raised eating all types of cuisine because in the end…good food is good food! Eating is a cultural experience and food evokes memories of positive times. However our love of food can also be destructive. How many of us eat or think we eat in a healthy manner? Probably not too many of us. You will have to change your mindset in regards to food and portion control. Adopting healthy eating habits and monitoring your caloric intake together with the increase of physical activity will result in weight loss.

Striving for a healthier life!

While I am kicking prediabetes to the curb, my journey is far from over. I have to continue to implement what I have learned to battle prediabetes and avoid diabetes 2. As mentioned earlier, it wasn’t easy but I am happy with my progress and my health. Ultimately, your goal should be to be healthy! Are you willing to be a healthier version of yourself? If so, take the first steps by contacting your physician and health insurance company. Finally, conduct research by visiting the  National Diabetes Prevention Program , American Diabetes Association, or your local YMCA.

Resources

About Prediabetes & Type 2 Diabetes. (2022, May 29). Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/prevention/about-prediabetes.html

Lifestyle Change Programs. (2022, May 28). Retrieved from https://diabetes.org/tools-support/diabetes-prevention/lifestyle-change-programs

YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Programs. (2022, May 28). Retrieved from https://www.ymca.org/what-we-do/healthy-living/fitness/diabetes-prevention

About the author

Nelson Suarez is a community member living in south central Pennsylvania. He is passionate about sharing his story, in the hopes of helping others make lifestyle change.

Recent Posts

Diabetes can bring a variety of complications, including some challenges with one’s feet.  Nerve damage and poor circulation can lead to a …

By Ronald Bollinger   A member of the Diabetes Coalition recently mentioned a theme of Knowledge is Power.  I along with other …

Scroll to Top