MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Mon Health hosted the first of 24 diabetes prevention classes where participants learned life skills to avoid Type 2 diabetes (T2D).
People gathered at the Mon Health Conference Center where they were weighed to get a baseline. Andre McCarty, a dietitian, who is the diabetes coordinator, led the first hour-long class. McCarty said they have been running the program for almost seven years, and this class is their 19th.
“With one in three adults at risk of developing diabetes–one in three adults have pre-diabetes most of them don’t know it,” McCarty said. “Type 2 diabetes can be prevented and that’s the goal of this program–it’s to help with making modest behavior changes that promote some weight loss that result in decreasing the risk of developing Type 2.”
By modest behavioral changes, McCarty means participants watching how much they eat, what they eat and exercising more. One strategy they employ is to have patients write down everything they eat, so that they are aware of what exactly they’re consuming.
Another important aspect of preventing Type 2 she explained, was stress management. The goal is to teach participants strategies of prevention but to also get them to lose weight, hence the weigh-in.
“The program goal is five to sevent percent weight loss, because that moderate amount of weight loss has been shown to decrease the risk of Type 2,” McCarty said.
The group is already full, however, McCarty said there are always two or three classes throughout the year, so interested participants can sign up for those as they become available later in the year.