Oakwood, NKF present diabetes prevention program

Oakwood Healthcare and the National Kidney Foundation of Michigan have partnered to offer a new, free diabetes prevention program in Taylor.

An hour-long information session is scheduled for 6 p.m. on June 18 where prospective participants can learn more about the My Choice … My Health: Diabetes Prevention Program. The 16-week program helps those at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes to adopt and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Meetings are one hour long and take place in a classroom setting, where a trained lifestyle coach helps participants make changes in their daily life including eating properly, increasing physical activity, losing a modest amount of weight, and staying motivated. After the 16 sessions, monthly one-on-one meetings will be available with lifestyle coaches if participants want additional support in maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

The classes will be held at Wayne County Community College District-Downriver Campus, 21000 Northline Road in Taylor.

“Across Michigan, diabetes is on the rise,” said Lindsey West, manager of Community Health at Oakwood Healthcare. “By bringing this new program to our community we can help those at high risk for diabetes improve their health to make sure they are not diagnosed with diabetes down the road. Prevention is key to stopping diabetes in its tracks.”

The informational session is free and open to all who are interested in preventing diabetes, and will give listeners information to help them decide whether the program is right for them.

Regular group meetings start on June 25. There is no cost to participate in the program; however, participants must qualify.

Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, causing more than 40 percent of all kidney failure cases. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed through healthy lifestyle changes. Research shows that losing a moderate amount of weight and being physically active can help delay type 2 diabetes among those who are at risk.

“Diabetes is one of the most serious health challenges in America today,” said Dr. Art Franke, senior vice president and chief science officer at the NKFM. “My Choice … My Health is a powerful answer because it provides participants with the tools to take greater control over their health and work toward living diabetes-free.”

“This program taught me how to create better eating habits,” said one program participant. “I make an attempt to exercise at least 150 minutes a week – most of the time more than that. I never thought I could be so successful at achieving my goals. I feel better than I have felt in years!”

To qualify for the program, participants must be overweight and at a high risk for developing diabetes, or overweight and diagnosed with prediabetes. In order to participate in the program, a doctor can tell if a person is at risk for diabetes with a blood test, or people can find out if they’re at risk with a screening assessment. Screening assessments will be offered at the informational session.

A combination of factors such as family history, gestational diabetes, age, weight and a lack of activity are other factors that can increase the risk for developing diabetes.

My Choice … My Health is part of the National Diabetes Prevention Program from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and is supported by the American Medical Association.

For more information or to register for the program, call 800-543-WELL or go to oakwood.org/classes.