Know the Risks: November is National Diabetes Awareness Month

YMCA DPP Diabetes

November is National Diabetes Awareness Month and it's a great time to assess your risk for developing prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. Currently, of the 84 million people with prediabetes only 10 percent know they have the condition. In addition to the high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, people with prediabetes are also at risk of developing other chronic diseases such as heart disease and stroke. Prediabetes is a condition in which a person’s blood glucose is elevated, but not high enough for a diabetes diagnosis. To address this issue, the YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas offers the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program, which helps adults lose weight through healthier eating and increased physical activity, potentially preventing or delaying the onset of type 2 diabetes.


The YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program, part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) led National Diabetes Prevention Program, is a 12-month evidence-based program that features a lifestyle coach who helps participants learn tactics for healthy eating, physical activity and other lifestyle changes during 25, one-hour classroom sessions. Long-term program goals include reducing participants’ body weight by 5 to 7 percent and increasing physical activity to 150 minutes per week. The YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas is soon expanding the availability of the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program (YMCA’s DPP) to eligible Medicare participants as a covered benefit. The program has been shown to reduce the number of new cases of diabetes by 58 percent overall and by 71 percent in adults over 60.


“I was diagnosed prediabetic about a year ago. I knew I had to do something but did not know what. My doctor, in Maryland, told me to try to lose weight and watch my diet, but never told me how. When I heard about this program, I felt that maybe this was answering my ‘how’. It is a year commitment- that meant that I was going to have time to create new habits.”  “I am coming to the end of the program. I have created new ways of eating- controlling the fat intake on a daily basis and also incorporating physical activity in my lifestyle. I park the car far from the entrance so I can get steps. I try to walk places. My target on a daily basis is to have a minimum of 10K steps/day. I have lost 49 lbs. and I am not done losing. I feel good about myself. And I also realize that I have control of what I eat and how I exercise. The program has given me the opportunity to live a life without major illnesses. I will continue to incorporate all of these habits in my day to day life. I choose living a healthy life!” - Former 2019 DPP Participant


“At the Y, we take a community integrated approach to improving health, meaning we move health care out of the clinic and into the community where people can more easily access the care they need,” said Tim DeViese, VP of Community Health and Well-being, YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas. “Currently much of our focus is on prevention programs like the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program that provides a safe and supportive environment where people can learn to change behaviors and potentially decrease chances of developing prediabetes or type 2 diabetes.”


Individuals can assess their risk for prediabetes and type 2 diabetes by taking a simple test at Through this assessment, visitors can also learn how lifestyle choices and family history help determine the ultimate risk for developing the disease. Several factors that could put a person at risk for type 2 diabetes include race, age, weight and activity level. If a person is at risk, a diabetes screening conducted by a physician can confirm a diabetes or prediabetes diagnosis. Take a risk test today:


For more information about how to qualify for access to the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program contact Katrina Beavers-Gutierrez, Director of Chronic Disease Prevention at (469) 276-8419 and