Millions of Americans are at high risk for diabetes, a serious and costly disease that has reached epidemic proportions in the past 10 years. The good news: type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed. To get this important information to those at risk, the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP) has created the Small Steps. Big Rewards. Prevent type 2 Diabetes campaign.
The NDEP has created campaign messages and materials for people at risk for diabetes, including those at high risk: African Americans, Hispanic and Latino Americans, Native Americans and Alaska Natives, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, women with a history of gestational diabetes and older adults. In addition, the NDEP and its partners are promoting diabetes prevention to health care professionals to give them the information and tools to help their patients take small steps to prevent or delay the disease.
The Science Behind the Campaign
The Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), a landmark study sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, found that people at increased risk for type 2 diabetes can prevent or delay the onset of the disease by losing 5 to 7 percent of their body weight through increased physical activity and a reduced fat and lower calorie diet.
In the DPP, modest weight loss proved effective in preventing or delaying type 2 diabetes in all groups at high risk for the disease. To this end the Department of Health and Human Services’ NDEP is mobilizing its partners at the national, state, and local levels to promote the DPP’s findings.
The Campaign's Message
Small Steps: If you have prediabetes (higher than normal blood glucose levels but not yet diabetes), losing a modest amount of weight - for example, 10 to 15 pounds for a 200-pound person - can help you prevent or delay type 2 diabetes. You can do it by building up to 30 minutes of physical activity a day 5 days a week and following a low-calorie, low-fat eating plan.
Big Rewards: Preventing type 2 diabetes can mean a healthier and longer life without serious complications from the disease such as heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney failure, and amputations.
Other NDEP prevention campaigns:
Family Health History and Diabetes
Family health history is an important risk factor for developing a number of serious diseases, including type 2 diabetes. In fact, most people with type 2 diabetes have a family member – such as a mother, father, brother, or sister – with the disease.
It’s Never Too Early…To Prevent Diabetes
If you had gestational diabetes when you were pregnant, you and your child have a lifelong risk for getting diabetes. Learn what you can do to lower your risk.
Small Steps, Big Rewards. Prevent Type 2 Diabetes. Campaign Components
Learn more about the Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), a major clinical trial aimed at discovering whether either diet and exercise or the oral diabetes drug metformin could prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes in people with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT).