Project with Keck School of Medicine USC, Project Angel Food helps Native Americans battle diabetes

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Wednesday, November 9, 2022
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One joint project between the Keck School of Medicine of USC and the non-profit Project Angel Food is aiming to help Native Americans in the L.A. area battle diabetes through diet.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The CDC says Native Americans have a greater chance of having diabetes than any other racial group in the United States. One joint project between the Keck School of Medicine of USC and the nonprofit Project Angel Food is aiming to help people in the L.A. area battle the condition through diet.

Inside the Project Angel Food kitchen in Hollywood, the meals being prepared are not only life changing, they could be lifesaving. It's the Native American Diabetes Project.

"Our goal of this program is to decrease the sugar levels, which is A1C levels," said Dr. Claradina Soto, Keck School of Medicine of USC.

The program, which started two years ago, provides diabetic Native Americans in L.A. County a 12-week intervention of medically tailored meals. There's also nutritional education and peer-to-peer support - all of it helping to evaluate not only physical but also mental health.

"This is free of charge. This is no cost to you. We don't want you to fear anything. We want you to improve your wellbeing," said Dr. Soto.

"What we're finding is that we're reducing the sugar levels for people who live with diabetes in the Native American population," said Brad Bessey, Project Angel Food.

Native Americans have some of the highest diabetes rates when compared to other racial and ethnic groups; that's why the program is culturally specific and ready to help.

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