Katie Bell Diabetes 1 002

Prediabetes lifestyle change program meetings will be held at the 53 Market in Tate.

Prediabetes lifestyle change program coming to Pickens County

BY WAYNE TIDWELL. PHOTOS BY WAYNE TIDWELL
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Over 84 million Americans now have prediabetes according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). That’s one out of three adults. Of those millions, nine out of 10 of them don’t even know they have it. Without taking action, many people with prediabetes could develop type 2 diabetes within five years, the CDC says on their website, www.cdc.gov/diabetes/prevention.

Katie Bell of Bell’s Family Pharmacy in Tate has recently become a certified lifestyle coach to help prevent diabetes as a participant in the Diabetes Training and Technical Assistance Center at Emory University (DTTAC), made possible through a grant from the Georgia Department of Public Health.

“As far as I can tell there are no other National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) programs in North Georgia and I am the first licensed lifestyle coach through DTTAC,” Bell told Smoke Signals.

Bell is in the process of starting a prediabetes lifestyle change program in Pickens County with meetings at the 53 Market in Tate next to the Bell’s Family Pharmacy. An informational session will be held on August 13 at 7 p.m. at 53 Market.

The program currently is only for those with prediabetes, not those with diabetes, according to Bell. It will start in September and Bell hopes to have 10-15 participants.

“Prediabetes means that within the next few years you have an inclination to get diabetes,” Bell said. “The good news is that prediabetes is completely reversible. To get your risk factors down you have to work hard. But if you become a diabetic, you end up with all of these complications with higher risk of heart diseases and lower life expectancy.”

An easy way to determine a prediabetes diagnosis is through a five-point test based on age, lifestyle, heredity and other factors, according to Bell. If your score equals five then you are considered prediabetic.

“If you are a man that’s one point,” Bell said. “If you are over 40 that’s one point, over 50 is two points and over 60 that’s three points. If you have a family history of diabetes, that’s one point. If you are not physically active that’s another point. If you are overweight that can be between one and two points. You can see how easy it is to get five points.”

A self-test can be found at www.cdc.gov/prediabetes/takethetest.

The backbone of the program is the evidence-based lifestyle change program. 

 “We will host 16 sessions in the first six months then bi-monthly sessions and eventually monthly sessions,” Bell said.  “These are more like support group sessions and I am the facilitator. For the overall goal of the program to prevent diabetes, we will focus on a weight loss of five to seven percent and also achieve 150 minutes of moderate activity a week.  There is no diet, we will simply track our intake and learn to make healthy choices.  The group will help support one another and I will be checking in with each individual person on a weekly basis or more if they need more support in between sessions.” 

Bell says the program is non-prescriptive. Participants are not required to incorporate changes but will be educated and monitored. Action is up to the participant.

Medicare pays for the program (estimated value $360), according to Bell.  It is a year-long program with 24 one-hour sessions.

“This program can reduce your chance of getting diabetes by 40 percent,” Bell said.

Bell’s Family Pharmacy, 4875 GA-53 E, Tate, GA 30177, 678-454-2300.

Katie Bell Diabetes 2

A program guide will help participants learn how to potentially reverse prediabetes.

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