Physical activity is part of the strategy taught in the Prevent T2 Lifestyle Change Program, designed to help participants avoid diabetes.

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BENNINGTON — People with an A1C reading that indicates that they may be headed for a diabetes diagnosis now have extra support to help them avoid the disease, which is irreversible. The year-long Prevent T2 Lifestyle Change Program is virtual and free. The program is scheduled to begin 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 4, via Zoom.

“Diabetes is a major risk factor for COVID-19 and lots of other debilitating conditions. This class is a proven way to avoid it,” said Paula Haytko, RN, a certified diabetes educator. “And it’s just a fun and interactive way to learn more about how to live a healthier, longer life.”

The class was designed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and it includes one-on-one instruction and exercise. Meeting duration is 1 hour and meets three to four times per month February – May, twice monthly June – July, then monthly through February 2022.

Participants support each other to lower their A1C and prevent or delay the onset of diabetes. They learn proven ways to decrease weight and increased energy. And the same actions that prevent diabetes can prevent heart disease and stroke, as well.

The class is taught by certified diabetes prevention educator and ACE-certified group fitness instructor Andrea Malinowski and in cooperation with the Vermont Blueprint for Health and Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, part of Southwestern Vermont Health Care.

“I work with participants to develop and implement strategies to sustain a healthier lifestyle through simple, moderate changes,” Malinowski said. “I am excited to be involved with this program and to build on its success.”

Participants will enjoy guest speakers on topics such as nutrition, healthy cooking, physical activity, stress reduction, and more. Free healthy food giveaways will take place in a socially distanced outdoor location. Consistent attendance required for food distribution.

Participants may register online at www.myhealthyvt.org. Participants can contact Kathy Dockum at 802-440-4098 or kathy.dockum@svhealthcare.org with questions and to register.


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