Live Your Life Well Lifestyle Change Diabetes Prevention Education

Do you think you may be at risk, have questions and want to learn more, or change your lifestyle? Please email Mica Lill at MLill@vfymca.org or call 386.425.5210 to reserve your spot today in our virtual 12 week series to create a new lifestyle to have a healthier life.

Over the 12 week time frame, the series will meet every Wednesday at 6:00 pm via Zoom and last one hour.

The series will start on Wednesday, January 20, 2021.

You can also see if you are more at risk for Prediabetes by taking the assessment here

Prevention of diabetes is critical. The time to act is NOW! Once you have diabetes, it can put you at higher risk for many other health problems. Uncontrolled diabetes over time can lead to:

  • Heart and Blood Vessel disease: You are at 2-4 times increased risk for heart attack and stroke. Diabetes is a leading cause of heart disease and poor circulation…especially in the feet and legs.
  • Kidney disease: Diabetic kidney disease is a leading cause of kidney failure (which can require dialysis or kidney transplant). Any change in expected frequency or foamy urine could be a sign you are starting to have kidney damage.
  • Nerve damage: Diabetes can affect nerves throughout the entire body:
  • Legs, feet and hands: Pain, burning, numbness, poor balance and increased risk of amputation
  • Stomach: Can cause “paralyzed stomach” (called gastroparesis) resulting in feeling too full, bloated, but can progress to nausea, vomiting and pain in stomach. It is also possible to experience heartburn related to diabetes.
  • Intestines: Food may travel too slow (causing constipation) or too fast (diarrhea).
  • Sexual Function: Leading cause of erectile dysfunction in men and vaginal dryness/infections in women.
  • Heart: Nerve damage can cause dizziness and a fast heart rate. It is also possible to experience a heart attack with abdominal pain or no pain at all.
  • Bladder: Trouble emptying the bladder and frequent urinary tract infections.
  • Feet: Affects sweat glands resulting in dry, cracked skin…which can lead to infection. Affects muscles in the toes causing “hammertoes” and other foot deformities. Loss of feeling in feet can lead to skin ulcers, corns, calluses, etc.
  • Eye damage: Diabetes is a leading cause of blindness. High blood sugars can cause blurry vision and over time can damage the retina (called retinopathy).
  • Teeth and gums: Uncontrolled diabetes can lead to gum disease, tooth loss and bone loss in the jaw.
  • Brain/Memory Loss: Uncontrolled blood sugars put you at up to 4 times higher risk for memory loss and dementia. Some scientists are calling Alzheimer’s disease “Type 3 Diabetes”.

People who have diabetes are not “doomed” to have the above health problems. If you work with your health care team and keep your blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol under control, you can prevent complications of diabetes. Knowledge is power over diabetes! If you already have diabetes, Halifax Health has a team of Certified Diabetes Educators (nurse and dietitian) who can help you.

For those of you who already have diabetes, learn more about Halifax Health’s Diabetes Education Services here. You may also call (386) 425-2242 or (386) 425-4829 or email: kim.koevenig@halifax.org for more information. To participate in a Halifax Health Diabetes Education service, a referral from your doctor is needed along with certain medical records (due to insurance requirements and national standards). The hospital staff can verify insurance coverage for diabetes education and diabetes nutrition counseling before you attend.