FAIRBURY – American Diabetes Alert Day, set for Tuesday, March 25, is a one-day “wake-up call” asking the American public to take the Diabetes Risk Test to find out if they are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. The Diabetes Risk Test asks individuals to answer simple questions about weight, age, family history and other potential risks for pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes. The Diabetes Alert day campaign continues for a full month from March 25 through April 25, 2014.
JCHC will be offering free blood sugar screenings for those who may be at risk at the Fairbury Chamber of Commerce Spring Expo on Saturday, March 29, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds. Copies of the risk test will be available at the Expo, and will also be available throughout the campaign at the Bob and Wauneta Burkley Wellness Center.
Diabetes is a serious disease that strikes nearly 26 million children and adults in the United States, and a quarter of them – 7 million – do not know they have it. An additional 79 million, or one in three American adults, have pre-diabetes, which puts them at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Unfortunately, diagnosis often comes seven to 10 years after the on-set of the disease, after disabling and even deadly complications have had time to develop. Therefore, early diagnosis is critical to successful treatment and delaying or preventing complications such as heart disease, blindness, kidney disease, stroke, amputation and death.
Everyone should be aware of the risk factors for type 2 diabetes. People who are overweight, under active (sedentary lifestyle), and over the age of 45 should consider themselves at risk for the disease. African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, and people who have a family history of the disease are also at an increased risk for type 2 diabetes. Studies have shown that type 2 diabetes can often be prevented or delayed by losing just 7 percent of body weight (15 pounds if you weight 200) through regular physical activity (30 minutes a day, 5 days a week), and healthy eating. By understanding your risk, you can take the necessary steps to help prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes.
The theme for the 26th annual American Diabetes Association Alert Day is “Take it. Share it. Step Out! We encourage people to take the Diabetes Risk Test and share the test with everyone they care about. Prevention tips are provided for everyone who takes the test, including encouraging those at high risk to talk to their health care provider.
Be a part of the movement to Stop Diabetes and take the FREE Diabetes Risk Test by going on-line go to www.diabetes.org/risktest. For every Diabetes Risk Test taken on line from March 25 to April 25 Boar’s Head Brand (a leading provider of premium delicatessen products) will donate $5 to the American Diabetes Association, up to $50,000. Hard copies of the risk test will also be available at the Bob and Wauneta Burkley Wellness Center during the campaign.
For more information on diabetes and diabetes education provided by Jefferson Community Health Center, contact Kathy Helmink RN, Certified Diabetes Educator, at (402) 729-3351, extension 4311.