FANWOOD/SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- In 2020, it’s time to put your health first. If you are at risk for Type 2 diabetes, or have been diagnosed with diabetes, the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA (FSPY) is offering two programs beginning in January to help you on your path to health and wellness.

FSPY recently received Full Recognition from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for its YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program. The program is designed for those with pre-diabetes, a condition in which a person’s blood glucose is elevated, but not high enough for a diabetes diagnosis. According to the CDC, 86 million adults have pre-diabetes and 9 out of 10 individuals with pre-diabetes don’t know they have it. Without weight loss and moderate physical activity, 15 to 30 percent of people with pre-diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within five years.

The year-long YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program starts with 16 weekly sessions led by a trained lifestyle coach. This gradually eases to two sessions per month and then one session per month. The program helps adults lose weight through healthier eating and increased physical activity, potentially preventing or delaying the onset of type 2 diabetes. A group-based lifestyle intervention, it has been shown to reduce the number of new cases of diabetes by 58 percent overall and by 71 percent in adults over 60.

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To receive Full Recognition as part of the CDC’s National Diabetes Prevention Program, FSPY’s program had to effectively deliver a quality, evidence-based program that met all the standards for CDC recognition, including program participants having an average weight loss of 5 percent over one year; meeting attendance parameters, and participants keeping food/activity records.

“We are excited to have received CDC Full Recognition for our YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program and are looking forward to helping even more people in our community achieve their goals,” said Sheri Cognetti, Senior Program Director at the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA. “Our program has been shown to reduce people’s chances of developing diabetes and to improve their overall health and wellness. Through group support and our trained facilitators, we offer a comprehensive approach to tackling the diabetes epidemic.”

In addition, FSPY offers the Diabetes Self-Management Program (DSMP) for those who have already been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. This program helps them manage the disease through lifestyle changes, including healthy eating, exercise, developing goals and problem solving, as well as through group support. The program consists of several workshops totaling 16 hours that help participants understand diabetes and its risks. DSMP teaches participants how to live healthier in a fun, positive environment. It does not replace other programs or treatment, and participants are referred to their physicians for all medical questions.

Individuals can assess their risk for pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes by taking a simple test at YMCA.net/diabetes. Through this assessment, visitors also can learn how lifestyle choices and family history help determine the ultimate risk for developing the disease. Several factors that could put a person at risk for type 2 diabetes include race, age, weight and activity level. If a person is at risk, a diabetes screening conducted by a physician can confirm a diabetes or pre-diabetes diagnosis.

For more information about how to qualify for the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program or the Diabetes Self-Management Program, contact Donna Peart at dpeart@fspymca.org or 908-889-8880. Both programs will begin in mid-to-late January with days/times to be determined by enrollment. The programs are open to the community; you do not have to be an FSPY member to participate.

The Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA is dedicated to improving the quality of life of the individuals, families and communities it serves through programs and services that build wholeness of spirit, mind and body. The YMCA is a not-for-profit organization founded on Christian principles, serving people of all ages, races, faith, cultures and socio-economic conditions. For information on membership or programs, or to request a schedule of classes, please call the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA at (908) 889-8880 or visit https://fspymca.org. Financial assistance is available for those who qualify.