GSU launches program to help community prevent Type 2 diabetes

Prediabetes is a serious health condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Approximately 88 million American adults have prediabetes – and without taking action, many people with prediabetes can develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years. In partnership with Well-Ahead Louisiana, Grambling State University is launching a program to help students, faculty, and residents with prediabetes in northeast Louisiana prevent type 2 diabetes by offering virtual lifestyle change classes. The program, Change Your Lifestyle. Change Your Life. (CYL2) is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Diabetes Prevention Program. It teaches people how to incorporate healthy habits into daily life, cutting their risk for type 2 diabetes by more than half. The program also helps to reduce high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and other chronic conditions. 

“People can feel overwhelmed when they are diagnosed with prediabetes, but developing type 2 diabetes is preventable,” said Larry Proctor, Ph.D., CYL2 Coordinator at Grambling State University. “CYL2 provides participants with a support system, tools, and knowledge so they can feel empowered to make lifestyle changes that will help them lose weight and improve their overall health.” 

Grambling State University conducts online orientations where people interested in the classes can learn more about the program and ask questions. An orientation will be held on Thursday, December 9, from 11:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. To register for the free meeting on Zoom, visit bit.ly/CYL2GRAM-Dec9. 

Student and adult class cohorts will begin in January 2022. People interested in participating in the classes must call 318-274-2294 or email cyl2@gram.edu to determine eligibility and register. The classes will meet online for one year. In the first four months of the program, classes will meet 16 times. In the final eight months of the program, classes will meet 12 more times to help participants maintain healthy lifestyle changes. CYL2 is covered by many insurance companies, including Medicare for those 65 and older. A limited number of scholarships are available for those without insurance coverage for the program. 

CYL2 provides participants in the program with a trained lifestyle coach who teaches them how to make positive daily changes they can stick with. You will also have the support of others making positive lifestyle changes as well. The classes cover: 

  • Shopping and cooking for health 
  • Managing chronic stress 
  • Understanding how emotions can trigger eating 
  • Practicing self-care 
  • Achieving weight goals during midlife 
  • Staying motivated 
  • Making good food choices away from home 
  • Knowing what to do when weight loss stalls 

With such serious consequences, preventing type 2 diabetes is a major public health concern. The good news is that prediabetes can be reversed by making healthier lifestyle decisions. 
Having prediabetes increases your risk for severe health conditions like: 

  • Heart attack 
  • Stroke 
  • Blindness 
  • Kidney failure 
  • Loss of toes, feet, or legs 

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