• By Todd Luck
  • Posted Thursday, January 17, 2019

Minority Diabetes Prevention Program Expands

The North Carolina Minority Diabetes Prevention Program (NC MDPP) is starting more local cohorts to help people reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes.

One of the new groups will be at Winston-Salem State University, where a “Community Conversation on Diabetes” was held on Monday, Jan. 14. The event talked about the free, year-long program that teaches healthy eating, meal planning, physical activity, and overcoming barriers. .

Diabetes is a disease in which blood glucose levels are above normal that can lead to serious health problems and is the sixth leading cause of death in the country. Risk factors for diabetes include being 45 years of age or older, being overweight, having a family history of type 2 diabetes, being physically active less than three times a week, and if you’ve had diabetes while pregnant or given birth to a baby that weighed more than nine pounds..

NC MDPP is a North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services program that uses the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s PreventT2 curriculum and is coordinated in this region of the state by the Forsyth County Department of Public Health. It’s a evidence-proven curriculum that can cut the risk of type 2 diabetes by more than half along with modest lifestyle changes..

Numerous participants told attendees that the program changed their lives. Bryan Speas said he thought he “was going down” when he was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. He said the program helped him learn about the disease and that watching what he eats and exercising can help him manage it. .

Shaketha Rorie joined the program after she found out she was at risk for diabetes. She said she’d tried weight loss programs in the past where she starved herself and gained all the weight back. MDPP was different, because it focused on preventing diabetes instead of just losing weight and taught her she didn’t have to deny herself to be healthy. She said as a result, she’s lost weight during each of the 13 weeks she’s been in the program so far..

“I really think this will be a lifestyle change and not a diet for me,” she said..

Lifestyle Coach Deltra Bonner told stories of how the program resulted in healthier living for both participants and their families. She talked about a grandmother who joined the class because she said she wanted to live for her grandson..

“It’s not just for us, it’s also for the people we live with,” said Bonner..

Other speakers included Public Health Educator and NC MDPP Region 3 Coordinator Sharon Roberts, Assistant Public Health Director Tony Lo Giudice, Health Services Coordinator Ashton Putnam, MDPP Specialist Kamaria Mason, and Melicia Whitt-Glover, executive director of the WSSU Center of Excellence for the Elimination of Health Disparities..

Those interested in becoming part of an MDPP cohort can call (336) 703-3219 or email Sharon Roberts at robertsc@forsyth.cc.

To view more photos from the event, click here.

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