This winter, UnitedHealth Group’s Diabetes Prevention and Control Alliance (DPCA) is reminding the nearly 26 million Americans living with diabetes – and the 79 million with prediabetes who are at grave risk of developing type 2 diabetes – to take precautions to help them stay healthy during the cold weather and holiday season.
In addition to managing the busy schedules, holiday stress, and temptations of rich food and drink that winter celebrations herald, people living in colder climates also might find it more challenging to get regular exercise this time of year than during warmer months. This lack of physical activity could lead to weight gain and a slowdown in metabolism, both of which can lead to significant health issues for people living with diabetes or prediabetes.
“The holiday season is a special time of year for many families, but it also presents its own set of challenges and temptations for people living with diabetes or prediabetes,” says Deneen Vojta, M.D., senior vice president of Business Initiatives and Clinical Affairs at UnitedHealth Group and Chief Clinical officer of the Diabetes Prevention and Control Alliance. “Fortunately, there are steps people can take to avoid over-indulging, lack of physical activity, and sugar levels ‘running a bit high’ during the festive season.”
Dr. Vojta and the DPCA offer these 10 simple tips to help people with diabetes and prediabetes enjoy a healthier winter and holiday season:
Dr. Vojta reminds people living with diabetes or prediabetes, “Talk to your doctor to find out if these suggestions and information are right for you.”
These tips can help people with diabetes and prediabetes stay healthy this winter; however, national data suggest that more than 27 percent of adults with type 2 diabetes and more than 90 percent of people with prediabetes may not even be aware of their condition. To learn the warning signs of prediabetes and assess one’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes, visit the DPCA’s interactive self-identification quiz.
The DPCA is an innovative partnership between UnitedHealth Group, YMCA of the USA and select retail pharmacies aimed at fighting the growing epidemics of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes, which are among the nation’s most serious and expensive medical issues. The alliance is based on research funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health demonstrating that lifestyle intervention and exercise can help reduce the chances of developing diabetes, and marks the first time in the country that a health plan is paying for evidence-based diabetes prevention in addition to engaging pharmacists to deliver critical control programs for the disease.
The DPCA is currently available in 24 states and the District of Columbia, and will continue to become available in additional cities across the country through 2012 and 2013. To learn more about diabetes and resources offered by UnitedHealth Group, visit: www.unitedhealthgroup.com/diabetes.
About UnitedHealth Group
UnitedHealth Group (NYSE: UNH) is a diversified health and well-being company dedicated to helping people live healthier lives and making health care work better. With headquarters in Minnetonka, Minn., UnitedHealth Group offers a broad spectrum of products and services through two business platforms: UnitedHealthcare, which provides health care coverage and benefits services; and Optum, which provides information and technology-enabled health services. Through its businesses, UnitedHealth Group serves more than 75 million people worldwide. For more information, visit UnitedHealth Group at www.unitedhealthgroup.com.