ROCKPORT — Several free Do Well, Be Well With Diabetes classes will be held in late January and early February to help the tens of thousands of people battling diabetes or pre-diabetes conditions in the Coastal Bend area of Texas, according to Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service personnel.
“The statistics and predictions of this ravaging disease are appalling,” said Kirsten Corda, an AgriLife Extension family consumer science agent in Aransas County. “Approximately 86,000 people are dealing with this disease in our area and countless others have it but don’t know it. It’s increasingly affecting young Texans, but seniors also deal with diabetes at an alarming rate.”
With 72 percent of Texas seniors battling diabetes or pre-diabetes, Corda said retirement areas such as Rockport, near Corpus Christi, are especially hard hit.
“Education can go a long way toward avoiding the disease altogether, or alleviating its effects so that people can live full and happy lives,” she said.
Five classes will be held from 10-1:30 a.m. every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from Jan. 27 through Feb. 5 at the Aransas County Public Library, 701 E. Mimosa St. in Rockport.
Topics will include:
— Getting started, how blood affects your blood sugar.
— Are you eating the right amount of carbohydrates? Let’s find out.
— Beyond the diet: Improving your blood glucose control with physical activity.
— Beyond diet and physical activity: Improving your blood glucose control with medication.
— Celebrating diabetes control while avoiding complications: Having your cake and eating it too.
“The classes are free because our AgriLife Extension efforts are supported by the
Methodist Health Ministries’ Wesley Nurses and the Aransas County Indigent Care program,” Corda said. “Our collaboration will ensure that those who attend our classes will receive an outstanding standard of excellence to help them improve their health through self-empowerment and access to healthcare resource information.”
Kathy Wilson, a registered nurse and the local Wesley Nurse, said, “The expectation of the program is to provide education to people with diabetes and their family members underserved by health care. Our hope is that we reduce the complications associated with diabetes. Our long-term goal is reduce healthcare costs.”
The comprehensive costs of diabetes in Texas in 2010 were estimated at more than $28 billion, Corda said.
For more information on the classes or to preregister, call the AgriLife Extension office for Aransas County at 361-790-0103.
For more information on diabetes, go to http://fcs.tamu.edu . Click on the “Health” tab.