SOMERSET COUNTY, Md. - According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 25 million people through out the U-S have diabetes and one local county is hoping to bring those numbers down through a new campaign.
Drivers on Route 13 near Eden may notice a new billboard, as Somerset County Health Department is using this as one tool to showcase their new campaign called "Know Your Numbers".
This campaign is to more awareness on the key indicators that would put a person at risk for prediabetes, which could leave to Type 2 Diabetes.
Community Health Educator at the Somerset County Health Department, Crystal Bell tells 47 ABC that Type 2 Diabetes is the most common form of diabetes.
We are told Type 2 Diabetes is rising and it's an epidemic, which is why the state of Maryland has launched this initiative to try to prevent it.
The health department says many individuals do not understand the risks of being prediabetic.
A PRMC nutrition and diabetes coordinator, Susan Cottongim, tells us there are three numbers to notice for those risks.
One includes the A1C testing, which is a reflection of blood sugar for a 3-month period.
A1C numbers between the range of 5.7 and 6.4 can indicate that you are in a prediabetic state.
As for the other two numbers to look at is high blood pressure and cholesterol.
Somerset County Health Department is hoping that through their new campaign, they can help residents identify those risks.
Bell states, "A primary risk factor is being overweight, not being physically active when you're over the age of 45, the metabolism slows down a little, so we say if you're over the age of 45 definitely your risk factors will increase."
The Health Department warns residents if you do not control it in it's prediabetic state, getting Type 2 Diabetes can lead to even bigger issues, such as blindness, heart disease, and kidney disease.
And because of those measures, Somerset County Health Department is hoping to make a difference through providing program.
One program is the free Diabetes Prevention Program.
This program is a year long and they meet once a month.
We are told they have already seen about 40 participants.
The program tries to help those that need to lose weight as well as those just pushing for a healthier lifestyle.
In order to help your prediabetic state controlling your intake is key.
For example, for your beverage choices, drinking less drinks with sugar. Food wise, portion control is a major factor by focusing on food groups such as fruits and vegetables.
If you click here, they even offer free resources, education, as well as a prediabetes risk assessment test.
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