World diabetes population reaches record level


As November is National Diabetes Awareness Month, it is a good time to take a look at the health of you and your family.

"My grandfather died from complications of type 2 diabetes," said chef and cookbook author Leticia Moreinos Schwartz.

Moreinos Schwartz's grandfather's diabetes is one of the main reasons she changed her cooking habits for the better. Born in Rio de Janeiro, she is passionate about Latin cuisine, but wants to teach others to make important health changes.

"The Latin community right now is at a very high risk for type 2 diabetes," said Moreinos Schwartz.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 13 percent of Latino adults are affected by this disease, more than any other ethnicity in the U.S.

In town recently for the American Diabetes Association health fair, she demonstrated Huevos Cubanos, a vegetable egg dish, and a black-bean turkey sausage soup, both from her "My Rio de Janeiro: A Cookbook."

There is no one-size-fits-all solution to type 2 diabetes, and remember: Once you get it, you own it for life.

So remember:

  • Practice portion control by eating off salad-sized plate vs. a dinner plate.
  • Cook at home instead of going out to eat to maintain control over what you're eating.
  • Shop the farmer's market and use herbs and spices to add flavor to meals.
  • Make swaps like brown rice instead of white.
  • And plan meals for the whole family.

The other half of managing diabetes is activity.

"I've been living with diabetes for over 20 years," said personal trainer Rufus Dorsey. "I created D-Force for Life to motivate and inspire people, and it's actually a program I follow to be in the best shape of my life."

Dorsey developed his program D-Force for Life to provide easy solutions for those newly diagnosed to get up off the couch. Like elastic grips that turn water bottles into weights.

"It was very crippling and so I try to get people to focus on the positive side of it," said Dorsey. "For some cases it's a second chance at life for people."

Dorsey reminds us that eating well and moving more is something all of us should do.

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