GOOD MORNING DELMARVA - From Mar. 26 through 31, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) will hold the Maryland Rally to Stop Diabetes: an empowerment campaign to change the course of type 2 diabetes and provide opportunities for citizens to make critical life changes.
"Seventy-nine million, or one in three American adults, have prediabetes, which puts them at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes, which is on the rise among children," said Kathy Rogers, executive director of the American Diabetes Association Maryland regional office. "In fact, an increasing number of children diagnosed with diabetes are being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, which was not the case 15 years ago."
"Diabetes is a serious disease that strikes nearly 26 million children and adults in the United States, including 404,000 in Maryland," Rogers added. "A quarter of those with diabetes— 7 million – do not even know they have it and recent estimates project that as many as one in three American adults will have diabetes in 2050 unless we take steps to Stop Diabetes."
Take the Test
With that in mind, ADA will kick off the Rally, Mar. 26, on the 25th Annual American Diabetes Association Alert Day®. This one-day, "wake-up call" asks the American public to take the free Diabetes Risk Test at Facebook or www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/prevention/diabetes-risk-test to find out if they are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
Overall, African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are at an increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Additional primary risk factors include being overweight, sedentary, over the age of 45 and having a family history of diabetes.
"Studies have shown that type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed by losing just 7 percent of body weight (such as 15 pounds if you weigh 200) through regular physical activity (30 minutes a day, five days a week) and healthy eating," Rogers added. "By understanding your risk, you can take the necessary steps to help prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes."
Everyone who takes the test will receive preventative tips and those at high risk will be encouraged to talk with their health care provider. What's more, Boar's Head® - a leading provider of premium delicatessen products - will donate $5 to the American Diabetes Association up to $50,000 for every test taken, Mar. 26 through Apr. 9.
Join the Rally
The Rally consists of a series of free statewide educational activities focusing on diabetes prevention and management, nutrition, exercise and more. It will include a variety of healthy cooking demos, physical fitness activities, lectures, grocery store tours and health fairs to reach Marylanders of all ages and walks of life, from students to working professionals to retirees.
Highlights include on campus Alert Days at Goucher College and Towson University; hospital Alert Days at Mercy Medical Center, St. Joseph Medical Center and Frederick Memorial Hospital; supermarket Alert Days at Graul's and Lexington Market, and Diabetes Days at The Candler Building and Northern Pharmacy.
Throughout the week, Baltimore area Walgreeen's will have the Diabetes Risk Test available for customer to take in the stores, and Y of the Chesapeake will encourage its 14,000 members and the greater community to learn their risk for diabetes.
The ADA also will host church, mall and retirement community activities, as well as a Baltimore Breakfast Summit targeting the corporate sector to raise awareness and appreciation among key business leaders about the economic impact of diabetes and chronic disease on business. For a complete schedule of activities, visit www.diabetes.org/marylandrally.
About the ADA
The American Diabetes Association is leading the fight to Stop Diabetes and its deadly consequences and fighting for those affected by diabetes. The Association funds research to prevent, cure and manage diabetes; delivers services to hundreds of communities; provides objective and credible information, and gives voice to those denied their rights because of diabetes.
Founded in 1940, the ADA seeks to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. For more information, please call the American Diabetes Association locally at 410.265.0075 or at 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383) or visit www.diabetes.org. Information from both sources is available in English and Spanish.