Diabetes Awareness and Prevention

Diabetes is a condition in which the body cannot properly use or store glucose (sugar). Sugar provides the energy for the body's cells. Insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, helps sugar get into the body's cells. In diabetes, either the body does not make enough insulin, or the insulin that is made cannot be used as well as it should. This causes sugar to build up in the blood.

How do you know you are at risk?

  • Take the test on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website to see what your level of risk is. If you are at risk, go to your health care provider and ask to be tested. After you are tested, you and your doctor will be able to make decisions about your next steps.

Diabetes is an epidemic that is significantly affecting the health and future of the U.S. One in nine U.S. adults have diabetes. CDC estimates that if the current trends continue, as many as one in three Americans could develop diabetes in their lifetime. Diabetes can lead to other serious health problems such as heart disease, stroke, kidney problems, foot and skin problems, nerve damage, depression, and eye problems and blindness. Depending upon your age, weight, gender, family history, activity level, and other health problems, you could be at risk for developing this chronic disease.

Best Practices: Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website

According to the ADA, there is research to show that Type 2 diabetes can be prevented if people make changes in their diet and increase their level of physical activity. Doing 30 minutes a day of moderate physical activity together with a 5-10% reduction in body weight can reduce the occurrence of diabetes.

If you have been recently diagnosed with diabetes or have had it for a while, you are not alone. Talking with your health care provider about eating properly, losing weight, and exercising can help you manage your diabetes and its consequences. By working with your health care provider and other members of the health care team to control your blood sugar you can reduce the risk of complications. A combination of healthy weight, healthy eating, physical activity, and blood sugar monitoring can help you help yourself when it comes to managing this chronic disease.

How We Can Help:

Health Plus provides many opportunities for faculty/staff to have their weight checked. Health Plus provides weight checks anytime during its hours of operation as well as at Know Your Numbers events throughout the year. In addition, because too much abdominal fat can put you at a high risk for Type 2 diabetes, Health Plus is encouraging faculty/staff to know their waist size. Knowing your risk is the first step to taking action.

Additional Information:

American Diabetes Association

Vanderbilt Diabetes

Health Plus Diabetes Prevention Program

Keywords: Blood Sugar, Sugar, Diabetes Risk, Blood Glucose, High Sugar