Health Care

YMCA Fort Worth brings back diabetes prevention program

The YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth announced that it is relaunching its Diabetes Prevention Program later this month at the recently constructed Bedford Center YMCA, 2801 Forest Ridge Drive, Bedford. The facility was built by Bedford to provide needed recreational and well-being activities for the city’s 50,000 residents, with the YMCA providing management and programming expertise.

The Diabetes Prevention Program had been sidelined because of the pandemic. The relaunch begins with an in-person program on Wednesday, April 26, at The Bedford Center YMCA.  In all, 25 sessions are offered during the course of a year, starting on a weekly basis and then reduced to a monthly schedule as participants embrace healthier lifestyles.

The YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program incorporates Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) research and studies to help individuals reduce type 2 diabetes risks by eating healthier, increasing physical activity, and losing modest amounts of weight. Research by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has shown that this program and similar efforts can reduce the number of new type 2 diabetes cases by 58% for all individuals, and by 71% for adults over the age of 60.

“Approximately 96 million people in the U.S. are pre-diabetic, which means they are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes, and all of the complications that go with that diagnosis,” said Kevin McKinnon, association director of community health for the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth. “With the right education and support, we can help prevent this disease, its progression and change lives for the better.”

The program is also offered through distance learning, or blended virtual and in-person learning formats. All formats include small group sessions with a trained lifestyle coach that address healthier eating, physical activity, and behavioral changes individuals can take to substantially lower their type 2 diabetes risks over the course of a year.

Throughout the course, participants receive educational materials for each session as well as action-planning journals, and food and physical activity logs to document their progress.

Program registration is open to individuals at least 18 years old, with a body mass (BM) of 25 or greater (a BM of 23 or greater is required for Asian individuals) and at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes based on a confirmatory blood value or a clinical diagnosis of    Gestational Diabetes during a previous pregnancy.

“The Diabetes Prevention Program is a great example of the resources that our partnership with the YMCA is bringing to Bedford residents,” said Jessica Bruda, community executive of The Bedford Center YMCA. “It also demonstrates that the Y is more than a fitness facility — it is a holistic approach to support healthy living and a safe and welcoming environment for residents of all ages.”

The YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program is offered at more than 1,000 sites in 40 states throughout the United States, and has served more than 76,000 participants. Individuals who completed most or all of the sessions experienced an average weight loss of 5.5% within a year, and engaged in more than 160 minutes of exercise per week.

“There is so much value with this program,” said Mike Brown, president and CEO of the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth. “We have the opportunity to substantially improve the well-being of area residents. This new facility and program also showcase how a local government and the YMCA can combine resources for the good of the community.” publishes every week.
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Barbara Clark Galupi