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American Diabetes Month

Posted By Colleen Dougherty, NC Recreation & Park Association, Monday, November 2, 2015

Happy November,

It is hard to believe the fall months are nearing an end as we head into November. November is a busy month, preparing for Thanksgiving and family gatherings! Amongst the excitement, it is important to take steps that promote  and maintain a healthy lifestyle and community. November is officially known as American Diabetes Month and is dedicated to raising awareness of Diabetes across the nation.

There are two types of diabetes that are known. Type one is insulin-dependent, meaning that sufferers have to inject the insulin hormone into their bodies in order to produce what the body can’t. Type two is not insulin dependent, but means that one has high blood pressure and a decreased amount of insulin within the body. Recently statistics on the American Diabetes webpage states that nearly 30 million children and adults in the U.S. have diabetes. Another 86 million Americans have pre-diabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. The cause of type one diabetes is still being researched but there are several risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes. Some of these risk factors include weight, diets, physical inactivity, and high blood pressure.

So what are program opportunities that aid in helping increase awareness of the risks of developing type two diabetes? One idea suggested by the American Diabetes Association is to provide your employees with resources to access online tools communicating lifestyle information. Our Employee Wellness Programs page displays two ideas of how to implement physical activity and healthy eating within your department established by Garner Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources, and Kannapolis Parks and Recreation.


Garner led a series of healthy lunches that were followed by a health-centered presentation or activity encouraging staff members to create healthier choices for programs and events offered to the public. Kannapolis encouraged employees to become more active by passing out pedometers and tracking their steps on a large map. They also conducted biweekly mid-day fitness & team building activities to encourage participants to become involved and healthy.


An additional strategy is to share Healthy Snack Guidelines with your community. Unhealthy eating habits can be a major  contributor to the development of type two diabetes. These Guidelines provides resources for increasing healthy snacks and food in sports, camp, afterschool and other programs. You can implement healthy snack options among your fall sport teams. Share recipes, ideas and types of snacks through the use of social media, such as: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Our next webinar, Tuesday, November 10th at 1:00pm, will also discuss a program that encourages community members to be active and physically fit. Aaron David and Kristen Herndon, Graham Recreation and Parks Department will be hosting. The topic will focus on the Graham Walks program, which is a 5 week incentive-based walking program held during the spring and fall. Programs like Graham Walks generates inspiration within the community for members to reach the recommended exercise per week. Please register for the webinar to learn more of how you can start programs like Grahams within your own department:


During the month of November and beyond lets work together to help North Carolina communities to be healthy while we support efforts to battle this illness affecting thousands of children and adults. If you have any programming ideas to promote healthy eating and physical activity within your community then please email us or submit them on the wellness site here: (,




Tags:  american diabetes month  awareness  Healthy Living 

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