Program to reduce Type 2 diabetes seeks DeKalb participants

DeKalb residents can learn how to prevent getting Type 2 diabetes with PreventT2, a new program being offered by the DeKalb County Board of Health.

The program, which is free for qualified residents, is part of the National Diabetes Prevention Program, led by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Omatola Gordon-Rose, MPH, DrPH, a Chronic Disease Prevention Coordinator and Lifestyle Coach, said participants will learn how to eat healthy, add physical activity to their routine, manage stress, stay motivated and solve problems that can get in the way of healthy changes.

PreventT2 is based on research that shows that people with pre-diabetes who lost 5 to 7 percent of their body weight (10 to 14 pounds for a 200-pound person) by making modest changes reduced their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58 percent. 

“The PreventT2 program offers a proven approach to preventing or delaying the onset of type 2 diabetes through modest lifestyle changes made with the support of a coach and one’s peers,” Gordon-Rose said.

Participants, who will be guided by a trained lifestyle coach, will meet for a year at the Richardson Health Center in Decatur and learn to lose a modest amount of weight, be more physically active, and manage stress –  which can help them avoid becoming a diabetic.

For the first six months, the meetings will be weekly in a supportive environment with people who are facing similar challenges and making the same changes.

In the second six months, participants will meet once or twice a month. Together, they will overcome obstacles and celebrate successes.

PreventT2 is targeting people with pre-diabetes – higher-than-normal blood glucose (sugar) levels – who are five to 15 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes.

In fact, the Board of Health says that up to 30 percent of people with pre-diabetes, develop type 2 diabetes within five years.

With one in three American adults having pre-diabetes, Gordon-Rose  said that the need for prevention has never been greater.

“Small changes can add up to a big difference,” Gordon-Rose said. “By working with a lifestyle coach, PreventT2 participants can make lasting changes.”

Qualified PreventT2 applicants must live in DeKalb County, be at least 18 years of age,  overweight  with a body mass index of  >24, have risk factors for developing type 2 diabetes; or have been diagnosed with pre-diabetes within the past 12 months or previously diagnosed with gestational diabetes.

Information sessions will be held on Sept. 26, and Oct. 3 and 10  from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Richardson Health Center, 445 Winn Way, Decatur. 

To register or more information, call 404-508-7847 or email DeKalb.OCDP@dph.ga.gov.