Today is World Diabetes Day.  The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) established November 14th each year as the day to bring attention to this disease that affects more than 366 million people worldwide.

Here are the current statistics:

  • In North America and the Caribbean, 1 adult in 10 has diabetes
  • 50% don’t even know they have it
  • Type 2 diabetes is increasing in every country
  • Diabetes caused 4.6 million deaths last year

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One of the organization’s goals to is to prevent diabetes.  Yes, that means much of this epidemic is entirely preventable with dietary and lifestyle changes.  Studies in China, Finland and the United States confirm this.

In the USA Diabetes Prevention Program study,  3,234 overweight individuals with Impaired Glucose Tolerance were divided into three groups.

  • Group 1 – Received general lifestyle advice once a year, plus the daily administration of an oral drug
  • Group 2 – Received general lifestyle advice once a year, plus a daily placebo
  • Group 3 – Received intensive lifestyle advice (16 sessions over 24 weeks) aimed at achieving weight loss and increased physical activity

Which group enjoyed the most success and avoided type 2 diabetes?  You might imagine the group getting the medication was most successful, but that was not the case.

” The subjects were followed up on for an average of 2.8 years.  Compared to the placebo group, the incidence of diabetes was 58% lower in the group that had received intensive lifestyle advice, and 31% lower in the group that had been administered metformin.” – IDF

This study demonstrates that frequent lifestyle advice, given by a trained health professional, is effective in reducing the development of diabetes in people at high risk.

Diabetes doesn’t have to be your future. 

As a Certified Health Coach, I am trained to support individuals seeking permanent lifestyle and dietary changes in order to avoid chronic disease and enjoy the best health possible.

Has diabetes touched your life?  Please share your experience below.