Friday, December 2, 2022

National Diabetes Awareness Month

The Greater Marco Family YMCA Encourages the Marco Island community residents to learn their Risks for Diabetes during National Diabetes Awareness Month

One in three Americans has prediabetes, yet few realize they are at risk

November is National Diabetes Awareness Month, and the Greater Marco Family YMCA is encouraging residents of Marco Island to learn their risks for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes and to take preventive steps to potentially reduce developing the disease. Currently, one in three Americans (79 million people) has prediabetes, a condition where a person’s blood glucose is elevated, but not high enough for them to be diagnosed with diabetes. With awareness and simple actions, people with prediabetes may prevent the onset of diabetes.

Individuals can assess their risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes by taking a simple test at and learn how lifestyle choices help determine the ultimate risk developing the disease. Several factors that could put a person at risk for type 2 diabetes include family history, age, weight and activity level, among others. If a person is at risk, a diabetes screening conducted by a physician can confirm if a person has diabetes or prediabetes.

“The Y is dedicated to improving the nation’s health and well-being, and helping residents of [Marco Island understand their risk of developing chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes is just one way we are improving the health of our community,” said Cindy Love CEO of The Greater Marco Family YMCA “Choosing to make healthy changes is the first step].”

While the nation’s obesity epidemic and the rise in type 2 diabetes is well chronicled, the number of people with prediabetes remains a growing and often underreported condition. Currently only 7 percent of those with prediabetes know they have it, and people with prediabetes are at serious risk for not only developing type 2 diabetes, but also heart disease, stroke and other conditions.

To help reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, the Y offers some basic lifestyle changes that contribute to weight loss and healthy living that can decrease the risk for type 2 diabetes. Among these are:

  • Eat fruits and vegetables every day.
  • Choose fish, lean meats, and poultry without skin.
  • Aim for whole grains with every meal.
  • Be moderately active at least 30 minutes per day five days a week.
  • Choose water to drink instead of beverages with added sugar.
  • Speak to your doctor about your diabetes risk factors, especially if you have a family history or are overweight.

To learn more about the Greater Marco Family YMCA’s Healthy Living Programs, please contact Jennifer Bristow, health and Fitness Coordinator at 239-394-YMCA (9622) ext. 222 or via email at


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