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Are you at risk for pre-diabetes or being treated for diabetes?

Information from this conference and at these links may be just right to help your family at the start of the new year.

By Linda Waggener


The Adair County WATCH Coalition ended its year with a potluck and a review of the annual Appalachian Diabetes Coalition meetings in Gatlinburg, TN. As a communications member of the group I was privileged to be the Coalition representative at the conference in October.

The messages from all the participating counties and states about pre-diabetes, type two diabetes and our serious health risks are urgent.


The conference provided a time of sharing on the changes that are being made across Appalachia. For two-and-a-half days there were presentations showing activity, successes, failures and goals in each of the Coalition areas.

I came away from this conference with these stark realizations:

Sugary drinks and highly processed foods = Obesity.

Obesity = diabetes.

We are herding our children & grandchildren onto the gangplank -- they are at dire risk right now.

While my own age range is already in the throes of debilitating diseases like diabetes, kids as young as middle school ages are being diagnosed with it.

Going into the conference, I had vague notions about risks of diabetes in my own age range. I am a product of Id like to Give the World a Coke, & fad Diets, and messages like, Oh, just eat fat-free processed foods and youll lose 10 pounds overnight.

But I had no idea of the risk my children & grandchildren face. I really thought diet stupidity ended with my generation and that with all the information available now, those coming behind me would be safer. Not true. High sugar, processed foods are being pushed so that the disease is rampant in younger and younger ages.

In this Conference, I learned that in every kitchen we need to run from diabetes, not walk, but run as fast as we can in the opposite direction from our sugar-filled, processed diet.

In running from Diabetes it is recommended we get the worst offenders out of our diets first: get sugary drinks out of our homes and out of our schools. That includes all colas and juice drinks.

Conference Directors strongly recommended studying the HBO series "The Weight of the Nation" published in the spring of 2012. Links to each of the four parts available on YouTube follow:

CONSEQUENCES, Part 1, The Weight of the Nation

CHOICES, Part 2, The Weight of the Nation

CHILDREN IN CRISIS, Part 3, The Weight of the Nation

CHALLENGES, Part 4, The Weight of the Nation

The Appalachian Diabetes Control and Translation Project is a partnership supported by the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention, and the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation, with the collaboration of the 13 Appalachian states in the USA.

The 9-state, 73-county Coalition is managed by the Center for Rural Health at Marshall University Huntington, West Virginia.

Our great country has a distribution system to get meds out across America.

America does not have a distribution system to get lifestyle change out across this country except for groups like WATCH, utilizing the power of small communities, helping educate and empower families.

Thinking about what I can do, change has started in my own home, our meals are going heavily green and were tracking daily steps. Im sharing information with my family.

A goal is to do more to support WATCH as they help Adair Countians become more healthy by using my strengths expanding communications to the public.

As a council member Im working to help improve our parks & recreation.

At the Conference, I added Adair to a list for Gentle Yoga training of trainers when the Marshall U trainers are available. A January date is scheduled for training. Yoga reduces stress that is a bad partner of sugar and processed foods making us sick.

Lifestyle Coaches are needed according to the CDC and they will train applicants.

My thanks to the Adair County Health Department, Jelaine Harlow and Destiny Greer, and the Diabetes Coalition managers, Richard Crespo and the staff at Marshall University they really walk their talk in food and exercise.

One thing they did at the conference was get everyone on their feet about once every hour of meetings for movement so that we werent sitting constantly. My desk now has a stepper and a stand-up computer option. I hope to hear from columbiamagazine.com readers about changes being made in your home and office. Just click "comments" below, select Linda, and reply anytime.


This story was posted on 2016-12-12 09:44:08
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Aubrey Kate Greer at WATCH December meeting



2016-12-12 - Adair County, KY - Photo by Linda Waggener, columbiamagazine.com photo.
Little Miss Aubrey Kate Greer attended, and was the focus from lots of admirers, at the Adair County WATCH Coalition December meeting. It was her arrival this fall that prevented her mother, health educator Destiny Greer, from taking her usual part in the Appalachian Diabetes Coalition in Gatlinburg, TN. That allowed this writer to attend and learn and I've said a proper thank-you to both mother and daughter. Aubrey celebrated her 10-week birthday at the local meeting December 1, 2016 at the Health Department.

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Lake Cumberland representatives at Diabetes Coalition meeting



2016-12-14 - Gatlinburg, TN - Photo from Marshall University.
Kentucky is represented in the Appalachian Diabetes Coalition from the Lake Cumberland Area Development District. In attendance at the fall meetings were from left: Lori Davis, Green County; Vicky Albertson, Wayne County; Janet Cowherd, Casey County; Jamie Lee, Russell County; Christy Nuetzman, Clinton County; Debbie Messenger, Cumberland County; and Linda Waggener from Adair. Click 'read more' for the story.

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