We often understand what it means when someone says they have diabetes. Do we understand as well when someone says they have pre-diabetes?

More than one in three people have pre-diabetes. But only nine out of ten of those with pre-diabetes know they have it.

Why is it a problem to have pre-diabetes? Having this condition raises your risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. Also, 15–30 percent of people with pre-diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years.

To find out if you have pre-diabetes, visit with your medical provider to learn what he or she would suggest for you. A simple blood test can let you know your blood sugar level. A person with pre-diabetes has a blood sugar level that is higher than normal. But the blood sugar level isn’t high enough to be called diabetes.

You are at higher risk for pre-diabetes if:

*You are over age 45.

* A family member has diabetes.

*You are not active.

* You are overweight.

Take steps to lower your risk by:

* Losing weight

*Getting active

* Eating healthier

If you have pre-diabetes, there are yearlong classes available in each county of the Four Corners District. 58 percent of the people who take these classes stop or delay their chances of getting diabetes.

Here’s who you call for each county:

Eric DeWispelare, Butler County Health Care Center 402-367-1256

To learn more about these classes, you also may contact Four Corners Health Department.

These classes have had great success! The class helps people to:

- lose 5 to 7 percent of their weight

- reach at least 150 minutes a week of physical activity.

People reap great benefits when these two things happen.

Since late 2014, when these classes began being offered, these are the numbers:

Average age: 57.8

Average weight loss: 14.1 pounds per person

Average percentage weight loss: 6.6 percent  per person

Total pounds lost: 1654.9

Average physical activity minutes: 169.1 minutes per week per person

Congratulations to all those who completed the classes and have this success. Two of the above listed sites have become Recognized Providers of the Diabetes Prevention Program. Those sites are Memorial Health Care Systems and York Medical Clinic. The other two sites are on their way to this success also. This is a national recognition through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Visit with your doctor to learn more about your health. For more on diabetes and other health topics, call Four Corners Health Department @ 1-877-337-3573. Send email to info@fourcorners.ne.gov. You are worth it!

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