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Rye YMCA Offers Diabetes Prevention Classes

Fernanda Carillo, 58, program participant
Fernanda Carillo, 58, program participant Photo Credit: Provided/Rye YMCA

The Rye YMCA encourages Sound Shore residents to learn the factors for developing prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.

Tuesday, March 28 is American Diabetes Association (ADA) Alert Day and with millions of Americans at risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, the Rye YMCA urges everyone to take action to prevent the disease. Diabetes affects nearly 29 million people nation-wide. An estimated 86 million additional Americans have prediabetes, yet only about 10 percent are aware of it.

Prediabetes is a condition in which individuals have blood glucose (sugar) levels that are higher than normal, but not high enough to be classified as diabetes. People with prediabetes are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke. According to the Centers for Disease Control, over 59,000 Westchester County residents have been diagnosed with diabetes. In addition to the health impact, diabetes puts an incredible strain on our health care system, costing billions of dollars a year to treat and manage.

Understanding your risk is the first step in preventing diabetes. Several factors, including family history, age, weight and physical activity level, can contribute to developing type 2 diabetes. Learn your risk for type 2 diabetes by taking the diabetes risk test at ymca.net/diabetes.

“Studies show that people with prediabetes can prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes by making simple lifestyle changes that include eating healthier and increasing physical activity,” noted Tanya Stack, the Rye Y’s Director of Membership, Health, and Wellness. “The YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program can provide the support needed to make those changes.”

Facilitated by a trained Lifestyle Coach, the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program is an evidence-based, year-long program where participants work together in a small group to learn about behavior changes that can improve overall health. The goal is to help adults at risk for diabetes reduce their body weight by 5 to 7 percent and increase their physical activity to 150 minutes per week. Studies have shown that programs like the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program can prevent or delay new cases of type 2 diabetes in adults by 58 percent and by as much as 71 percent in those over age 60.

Since July 2011, 170 adults have enrolled in the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program through the Rye YMCA. Working in partnership with Open Door Family Medical Centers and Hudson River Healthcare, the Rye Y is able to offer classes in Spanish and English at locations in Rye, Port Chester, Ossining, Peekskill, and Yonkers.

Fernanda Carillo, 58, is currently participating in the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program and shares her story:

“I went to my routine doctor appointment, and unfortunately, I found out that I have prediabetes. As soon I listened to the word prediabetes, I thought of my two brothers that died of diabetes, and my cousin that is on dialysis because of diabetes," she said.

"My doctor recommended the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention program. I knew that the program was going to be the opportunity to change my lifestyle if I don’t want to have the same the issues that my family went through," she said.

To learn more about the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program or enroll in an upcoming class at the Rye Y, contact Tanya Stack at tanya@ryeymca.org or 967-6363, ext. 107.

The Rye YMCA is a family-oriented community service organization which welcomes all people and promotes positive values through programs that build spirit, mind and body.

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