Published on November 17, 2023
Healthy Tips Video: Diabetes Prevention
Hi, my name is Sarah Renschler, and I'm a dietitian and diabetes educator here at the Healthpark. November is Diabetes Awareness Month, and I want to talk a little bit about diabetes prevention. Diabetes affects millions of Americans and is actually the seventh leading cause of death in Kentucky.
In addition, one in three of us has prediabetes, but we may not know it because it doesn't always have any outward signs or symptoms. Because of that, it's really important to know your risk for developing type 2 diabetes. There are a few risk factors that put us at higher risk. Some of those include being the age of 45 and older, having a family history of diabetes, having a history of gestational diabetes while pregnant, being overweight or obese, as well as being physically inactive.
While some of these, we have no control over, there are a few that we actually can control. And while we may not have diabetes yet, it's actually important to start making changes now because damage can start building up even with prediabetes. So some of those things that we can change are our weight and our physical activity.
So just some modest weight loss of about 5% to 10% of our body weight can have some really positive effects for us. So we might start to try to lose weight by changing our dietary habits and being a little bit more physically active.
So talking a little bit about healthy eating, one of the easiest eating methods that we can choose is the diabetes healthy plate method. With this method, it naturally portions our foods out for us without having to think too much about it or really measure anything. So how this might work is if you take your standard plate. We're going to make half of our plate our non-starchy vegetables.
So these are going to be vegetables that are lower in calories, lower in carbohydrates, but high in fiber. So this is going to take up about half of our plate here. A quarter of our plate, this is going to be our grains or our starches. So this might be your rice, your pasta, your bread, potatoes. This is going to be your main carbohydrate source here with your meal. And if you can choose a whole grain option, that's going to provide even additional nutritional benefits for you.
And finally, we've got our protein in our last quarter of our plate down here. So we want to try and choose lean proteins that are going to be a bit lower in saturated fat. So that might be something like chicken or Turkey without the skin, maybe some fish. Those are going to-- that is going to take up the protein on that last portion of your plate there.
So this is just an easy method. If you are new to that healthy eating, it takes a lot of the guesswork out of it and makes weight loss just a little bit easier for you. In addition, we want to try and be a little bit more physically active. Our ultimate goal with physical activity is to work up to 150 minutes of moderate activity each week. And that can be broken up however works best for you.
You might do 30 minutes of activity five days a week. You might just do 10 minutes here and there wherever you can fit it in. And if you're not at 150 minutes quite yet, that's OK. We just want to find wherever you are right now and slowly work up to that 150 minutes per week, because some exercise is better than no exercise.
So I hope these tips were helpful knowing your risk for developing type 2 diabetes and trying to prevent it. And if you're interested in learning more about prediabetes and how we can prevent type 2 diabetes, we offer a class here at the Healthpark called The Right Stuff. This is kind of a one time crash course. It's offered every other month. It's free. And our next class is going to be held December 5 at noon and 5:30 PM. So if you are interested in joining that class learning more about prediabetes and how you might prevent type 2 diabetes, please call 270-688-4858. Thank you.
About Owensboro Health
Owensboro Health is a nonprofit health system with a mission to heal the sick and to improve the health of the communities it serves in Kentucky and Indiana. The system includes Owensboro Health Regional Hospital, nationally recognized for design, architecture and engineering; Owensboro Health Muhlenberg Community Hospital; Owensboro Health Twin Lakes Medical Center; the Owensboro Health Medical Group comprised of over 350 providers at more than 30 locations; three outpatient Healthplex facilities, a certified medical fitness facility, the Healthpark; a surgical weight loss center and program, and the Mitchell Memorial Cancer Center.
On average each year, we have more than 19,000 inpatient admissions, deliver 2,000 babies and provide the region’s only Level III NICU. Owensboro Health physicians perform nearly 33,000 surgical procedures, including nearly 150 open-heart surgeries. Our physicians and staff have 90,000 Emergency Department visits and more than 1.25 million outpatient visits annually. Visit our home page for more information.