Dining with Diabetes program promotes healthy choices | Kankankee Valley Post News

November is American Diabetes Month. Like many months the designation is designed to increase awareness of this chronic condition that affects 30.3 million Americans or about one out of every ten adults. Tragically 25 percent are unaware they have the condition. Another 84 million, or one in three adults, are diagnosed as pre-diabetic and ninety percent are unaware of their condition and ways to improve it.

According to the CDC, the annual cost for diabetes, including medical costs and lost work is $245 billion for individuals diagnosed with diabetes. The risk for death is 50 percent greater for individuals with diabetes than for those without.

There are two types of diabetes. In Type 1, the body does not make enough insulin. Type 1 diabetes can develop at any age, and there is no known way to prevent it. About 5 percent of adults are Type 1 diabetics.

Type 2 diabetes is much more common, and the body is not using the insulin properly. It can start at any age and, unfortunately, more and more children are being diagnosed. The risk factors include things we cannot control such as being over the age of 45 or having a family history of diabetes. There are also controllable factors that include being overweight or physically inactive.

If you have been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes it is important to learn as much as possible to improve your general health. Franciscan Health, Rensselaer has regular Diabetes support group meetings. Purdue Extension also offers a series called Dining with Diabetes.

Dining with Diabetes will be offered this fall on Monday evenings in both Rensselaer and Kentland. The Kentland class begins November 5 and runs through November 26 from 5:30 – 7:30 pm at the Kentland Library. The Rensselaer class begins November 19 and continues through December 10 from 6 to 8 pm at the Purdue Extension office, 2530 N. McKinley Ave, Rensselaer.

There is a fee to cover materials and food. Participants will taste several diabetic friendly recipes each session as well as developing a greater understanding of diabetes, good food choices and more.

To register for the Dining with Diabetes classes contact the Extension office in your county. Jasper County number is 219-866-5741 and in Newton County 219-285-8620 and follow the prompts.

Individuals with diabetes or pre-diabetes will benefit from small changes to their lifestyle. These changes include losing weight, eating healthy and exercising more. While each of these changes can seem difficult, worked with a support group can help. Start by making one or two changes at a time and as you see results you will be inspired to change even more.

Make some changes starting today. Take a walk with a friend, do the yard work you have been putting off, clean up outdoors in preparation for winter or resolve to exercise during commercials every evening.

The University of Illinois Extension has a wide variety of recipes for diabetics that will appeal to the entire family. Here is a recipe for Individual Apple Pies. It makes six pies but the extra can be frozen and enjoyed later.

Preheat oven to 375F. Spray a 6-muffin baking pan with cooking spray. Warm 1 frozen pie crust to room temperature and roll out to a rectangle, about 16” by 12”. Using a 3-1/2 inch diameter round cookie cutter or cup, cut 6 circles from 1/2 of the pie crust. Refrigerate remaining half of crust for later use. Place 1 pie crust circle in each muffin pan well, easing it to fit. Blend flour 1 tablespoon flour, 1 tablespoon Splenda, and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a medium bowl. Peel and chop 3 cups of apples (about 2 large apples) and toss apples with dry mixture. Place 1/2 cup apple mixture in each muffin well. Bake for 30-40 minutes until apples are tender.

Apple pie is a fall staple and will taste great after a brisk walk.

Remember to call and register for a Dining With Diabetes class today!