Valley Healthcare

November is American Diabetes Month, and just in time for the holidays, the American Diabetes Association uses this month to help raise awareness of diabetes’ causes and prevention/treatment.

In a month when all the holiday excess of food and drink really is just getting started, American Diabetes Month is a perfectly placed reminder that while there’s typically never a shortage of leftover Halloween candy, your health IS finite! According to the American Diabetes Association, nearly 26 million children and adults in the United States have diabetes, and the average cost to our nation for diagnosed diabetic conditions is close to $250 billion. Even more alarming is the fact that two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke.

So what can you do to fight diabetes, protect your heart and blood sugar, and do your part to recognize American Diabetes Month? For starters, go into the holidays with a healthy and realistic viewpoint on food and celebration! Remember that while treats and eats are wonderful, you can always balance indulgences with exercise and healthier options. A few small changes to your Thanksgiving choices alone can make a huge difference in your energy level and your health:

  • Replace cheesy broccoli casserole with a waldorf salad containing broccoli, walnuts, raisins, and other delicious and healthy foods.
  • Instead of taking a post-turkey dinner nap, go for a walk around your neighborhood with your family and enjoy the colorful fall leaves.
  • Try bringing healthier options to go along with your traditional turkey dinner – baked sweet potatoes with cinnamon in lieu of mashed potatoes with gravy is a good “switch,” with delicious sweetness and tons of vitamins.
  • Drink plenty of water throughout your busy holidays festivities.
  • Try to include regular physical activity to help your metabolism stay at peak performance and help keep off holiday weight gain.

To learn more about how to get involved for American Diabetes Month, visit www.diabetes.org. And to get on top of your own fight against diabetes – whether you’re already a diagnosed diabetic, or simply someone looking to maintain the best health and quality of life possible – call the Valley Healthcare System main line at 706-322-9599extension 1710  our Diabetic Counselor Veronica Culpepper is available to assist you!

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