Healthiest Weight Florida Work to Raise Awareness and Prevent Prediabetes

Posted in Latest News on February 9, 2015.

The Florida Department of Health joins the American Medical Association (AMA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in their campaign to Prevent Diabetes STAT: Screen, Test, Act—Today by raising awareness about the risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes and encouraging all Floridians to take action to lower their risk.

According to the CDC, an estimated 29.1 million people of the U.S. population have diabetes. An even larger amount however has prediabetes. Roughly 86 million American adults have prediabetes and nine out of ten people with prediabetes don’t know they have it. Prediabetes means a person’s blood glucose level is higher than normal, but not high enough yet to be diagnosed as diabetes. Those with prediabetes are at an increased risk for developing serious health problems such as type 2 diabetes, stroke and heart disease. The sooner people find out they have prediabetes and take action, the better their chances of preventing type 2 diabetes.

Studies show people with prediabetes can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes by losing 5 to 7 percent of their weight by making lasting lifestyle changes to improve nutrition and increase physical activity to 150 minutes each week. Healthiest Weight Florida—an initiative of the Florida Department of Health—is currently working across the state to increase opportunities for physical activity and access to healthy foods and promote health in worksites and schools.

The Florida Department of Health also provides several Diabetes Prevention Lifestyle Change (DPLC) programs through the county offices. The DPLCP is a 16-week program for people with prediabetes. Trained lifestyle coaches assist participants in reaching their goal of losing 5 to 7 percent of their weight and reducing their risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Health care practitioners are encouraged to access the Prevent Diabetes STAT website and download the toolkit as part of the initiative to help prevent type 2 diabetes in their patients. The toolkit includes posters to help increase a patient’s awareness and pave the way for conversations, patient handouts for waiting areas and exam rooms, as well as letter/email templates that allows for efficient follow-up and referrals with patients.

Additional Resources
CDC-recognized DPLC programs in Florida
Prevent Diabetes STATHealthiest Weight Florida
Department of Health Prediabetes info page

In conjunction with The Department of Health’s campaign to reduce chronic disease costs by lowering the weight curve 5 percent by 2030, the 22 professional health care practitioner boards organized under the Division of Medical Quality Assurance are working with providers to spread the message of healthy living. 

1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. National Diabetes Statistics Report: Estimates of Diabetes and Its Burden in the United States, 2014.
Atlanta, GA; 2014. Accessed May 7, 2015. Available at: National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2014.(pdf)

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