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Copyright 2013 Journal Sentinel Inc.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Wisconsin)
September 12, 2013 Thursday
Early Edition
News; Pg. 9
375 words
Local YMCAs team up for diabetes program

The YMCA of Central Waukesha County and the YMCA at Pabst Farms have teamed up and joined in a national program to help prevent Type 2 diabetes.

The YMCA's Diabetes Prevention Program is part of the National Diabetes Prevention Program led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The program works to help adults who are at a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. High risk factors include age, weight and family history.

The yearlong class follows those who have been diagnosed with prediabetes or who are considered at risk for diabetes through 16 weekly sessions followed by monthly sessions that educate on the importance of eating right, finding an activity routine and working lifestyle changes into their daily activities.

Melissa Hexom, diabetes prevention coordinator and former instructor of the program in Milwaukee, said the program is important because many people don't realize they are high risk. The first class kicked off in the beginning of August at the Mukwonago location with additional classes planned for Waukesha in September and more classes in the works before the end of the year.

"If people are at all interested or think they may be at risk, they should contact me," Hexom said. "If you are overweight and over the age of 65 you qualify automatically without family history or anything. There is also a quiz on the (YMCA) website or the CDC's website to determine if you are at risk."

The classroom-based program has two main goals: to reduce body weight by 7 percent and to increase physical activity to 150 minutes per week. Fifteen participants work with a coach to track their food and activity and make small changes to their daily routine that can lead to big results.

"I coached six classes and have seen participants lose as much as 167 pounds in the year," Hexom said. "We try not to focus on weight loss but focus on diabetes risk reduction overall, which include the entire lifestyle change." Hexom said they've also taken the program to the corporate setting and have seen amazing success stories beyond the classroom.

For more information on the program stop in at a local YMCA or contact Hexom at mhex or (262) 542-2557 Ext. 2812.

Copyright 2013 Journal Sentinel, All Rights Reserved.

September 12, 2013

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