Diabetes is a Family Disease: Learn How to Prevent It

If you are overweight or have a parent, brother, or sister with type 2 diabetes, or if you had gestational diabetes—diabetes that develops during pregnancy, you are at increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. However, diabetes does not have to be your destiny.

Type 2 diabetes can be delayed or even prevented. The longer you have diabetes, the more likely you are to develop health problems, so delaying diabetes even a few years will benefit your health. You can help prevent or delay type 2 diabetes in your family by promoting healthy eating, engaging in regular physical activities and establishing a healthy lifestyle.

January is National Family Fit Lifestyle month and what better time than now to get the entire family to begin establishing healthy lifestyle habits to beat diabetes.

Lose weight and keep it off. Obesity now affects 1 in 6 children and adolescents in the United States, and more than one-third of U.S. adults have obesity. Worse yet, over 48 percent of African Americans have obesity. There’s evidence that by losing 5 to 7 percent of your starting weight you may be able to prevent or delay diabetes. For instance, if you weigh 200 pounds, your goal would be to lose about 10 to 14 pounds.

Eat healthy foods most of the time. Eat smaller portions to reduce the