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Show 1036: How to Prevent Diabetes by Changing Your Life

You may be able to reverse prediabetes or even type 2 diabetes by changing your life to get more physical activity and supplements that lower blood sugar.
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How to Prevent Diabetes by Changing Your Life

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An increasing proportion of Americans are at risk for type 2 diabetes. In 2012, 86 million adults had prediabetes, which is elevated blood sugar that doesn’t quite reach the cut-off for a diabetes diagnosis. Frequently, people with prediabetes go on to develop type 2 diabetes, but they don’t have to. You can reverse prediabetes by changing your life. Our radio show, which will air on Saturday, May 28, 2016, will provide insights on how to accomplish such changes in practical ways.

How Do You Succeed at Changing Your Life?

The CDC has approved an evidence-based approach to diabetes prevention that works through changes in lifestyle: exercise, diet, stress reduction and group support. That sounds like a good idea, but it also sounds daunting. Changing your life in those ways can be hard!

How Would You Make Those Changes?

There are ways to learn how make those challenging behavior changes. Learn about the YMCA’s successful diabetes prevention program designed for people with prediabetes. It is available at YMCA facilities around the country.

Health Coaching:

We also discuss how health coaching can help people make changes in their lives so that they can reduce their risks of diabetes, heart disease and other health problems. A health coach has skills and time that most physicians do not.

Botanical Medicines to Control Blood Glucose:

Are you interested in non-drug approaches to lower blood sugar? Dr. Tieraona Low Dog describes a number of botanical medicines that can be useful for this purpose.

You may be interested in our Guide to Managing Diabetes, which covers some nondrug approaches to blood sugar control as well as discussing medications. The sites Dr. Longjohn mentions for a self-assessment are ymca.net/diabetes and cdc.gov/diabetes.

This Week’s Guests:

Matthew Longjohn, MD, MPH, is the national health officer of the YMCA of the USA. He oversees programs and practices to advance the Y’s Healthy Living goals, including the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program. Dr. Longjohn is also an Assistant Adjunct Professor in the Departments of Pediatrics and Preventive Medicine at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine.

Karen Lawson, MD, ABIHM, is an assistant professor of Family Medicine and Community Health at the University of Minnesota. She is Director of Integrative Health Coaching at the Center for Spirituality and Healing (www.csh.umn.edu). In addition, Dr. Lawson is a co-founder and executive leader of the National Team for Standards, Certification, & Research for Professional Health & Wellness Coaches (www.ncchwc.org )

Tieraona Low Dog, MD, is Fellowship Director of the Interprofessional Fellowship in Integrative Health & Medicine with the Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine. She is an internationally recognized expert in the fields of integrative medicine, dietary supplements, herbal medicine and women’s health.

She is a founding member of the American Board of Physician Specialties, American Board of Integrative Medicine and the Academy of Women’s Health. She has served as Chair of the US Pharmacopeia Dietary Supplements/Botanicals Expert Committee.

Her books include: Women’s Health in Complementary and Integrative Medicine; Life Is Your Best Medicine; and Healthy at Home. Her latest is Fortify Your Life: Your Guide to Vitamins, Minerals and More. For more information, see her website: drlowdog.com  The photo is of Dr. Low Dog.

Listen to the Podcast:

The podcast of this program will be available the Monday after the broadcast date. The show can be streamed online from this site and podcasts can be downloaded for free for four weeks after the date of broadcast. After that time has passed, digital downloads are available for $2.99. CDs may be purchased at any time after broadcast for $9.99.

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies..
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