The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

JPS Hospital to offer 4 free diabetic awareness lunch classes to NE students

By Mario Montalvo/ne news editor

John Peter Smith Hospital is going outside the walls of its offices and into the community to provide free diabetes classes anywhere and everywhere, said JPS Community Diabetes Case Management member Toya Norton.Beginning Oct. 11, Norton will present a four-part brown bag lunch series Diabetes Empowerment Education Program 12:30-1:30 p.m. in the Galley (NSTU 1506A) on NE Campus.

DEEP teaches individuals with diabetes and those at risk of developing diabetes the importance of self-care, nutrition and physical activity.

Diabetes, the No. 5 killer among minorities, is becoming more prevalent in other races and in children, Norton said.

“Diabetes and obesity is becoming a big issue,” she said. “We have also been able to educate children in the school system and in after-school programs about exercising, diabetes and nutrition.”

NE health services coordinator Pat Marling said she sees many students and faculty with diabetes issues.

“We also see a fair number of students who just aren’t eating right that we do glucose sticks on because they have hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar,” she said. “And those students can be greatly helped by this.”

SE hosted the same program last year with much success and will offer it again this year, said SE health services coordinator Liz Lowry.

“It’s not just for people who have diabetes,” she said. “It can be for those interested in learning more.”

During the four-part class, attendees can expect to learn about the difference between type I, type II and gestational diabetes. Norton will discuss symptoms and risk factors as well as the importance of proper nutrition and exercise.

“We talk about how your body actually works so you will understand where insulin comes from, what a pancreas is and to explain to you how all of this works together,” she said. “We break it down for you so you can understand.”

Diabetes is sometimes referred to as the silent killer because its symptoms often go unnoticed. People often ask Norton if they might have diabetes because they feel tired in the middle of the day. She said it’s usually just the lack of a nutritious breakfast that causes students to crash.

“You want your car to go, but you’re not giving it any gasoline,” she said. “How is that supposed to happen?”

Norton said the only way to confirm diabetes is to get tested.

Participants may attend one or all classes. Norton said. But she hopes they will come every week because it’s fun, and each class picks up where the previous one left off, she said.

“On SE, instructors gave students extra credit, and they had to attend only one class. But after they came to the first one, they came to all four,” she said.

Marling said she received several inquiries about the program and hopes word of mouth will bring more people.

Participants are encouraged to bring their own lunches. Complimentary drinks and healthy snacks will be provided by health services.

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